DT’s rule number 772: The original is always the best. Yup, sounds right, but let’s check; Terminator 1984 — yup. Star Wars — no contest. True Grit — John Wayne rules. Aladdin 1992 > 2019. Death Race 2000 1975>2008. The Italian Job 1969>2003. Ladykillers 1955 > 2004. Gone in 60 Seconds 1974 > 2000. Do I need to continue explaining this? Let’s move to cars. The original Mustang is still the best Mustang. The original Camaro — same. Finally we get to today’s feature subject which is a first generation Ford Taurus SHO (1986-1991) which was the original and the best of the SHO Taurii. Find this 1991 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $7250 in Los Molinos, CA via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!
I was checking out this car when I came to the startling conclusion that while I have ridden and driven in a few Ford Taurii SHOs over the years, I’ve never owned one, which seems like an oversight. This next thing seems like the perfect car to correct that error, a SHO (or is it an SHO?) that might be worth more than the sum of its basic Taurus platform and Super High Output parts. Find this 1989 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $4,000 in Kingsbury, TX via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
I saw the photos for this next car and was enchanted by the deep red paint. And I was truly hoping from the deepest pit in my heart that the interior pics would reveal a stick shift…but alas…this second generation Taurus SHO was one of the few that left the factory without a pedal for your left foot…and I don’t see why you’d want to drive this thing. It is slower and less reliable than something like a late model Acura TSX sedan or any number of other front-drive sedans with slushboxes and basic accommodations…but the manual transmission version brings with it all the charisma, joie de vivre and analog goodness that comes with life with a manual. Why do all the clean ones have to be slushbox? Find this 1993 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $5500 in Phoenix, AZ via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!
I had the opportunity to meet and shake Bob Bondurant’s hand at a Shelby Tribute car show a few years back, but I didn’t get a chance to get any tips on driving from him. But, Bondurant did teach Clint Eastwood, James Garner, Paul Newman, Tim Allen, Nick Cage, and Tom Cruise (among others) how to drive fast around a track in his world famous Bob Bondurant Racing School. Today the school uses Dodge Hell-things to teach people how to control uncontrollable Stellantis (hahahah, Stellantis!!) built muscle machines, but back in the 1990s, Bob used a Ford Taurus SHO to teach Hollywood elite how to properly heel-toe and control understeer, and this is supposedly his personal instructor’s car. Find this 1993 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $7500 in Fairfield, OH via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
The second generation Ford Taurus (1992-1995) wasn’t much of an enthusiasts car, at least until you consider the bundle-of-snakes manifold equipped Super High Output version that carried over from the previous generation. Ford pushed a surprising level of performance into their family sedan with a Yamaha built V6 and a 5-speed manual gearbox. Sixty miles per hour was hit in about 6.6 seconds and top speed as in excess of 140 mph, these were numbers that were reserved for real sports cars back in the early 1990s. Find this 1995 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $3,500 CAD ($2750 USD) in Edmonton, AB, Canada via kijiji.net. Tip from Erik202.
This next car comes as seller submission from Nic who writes; I recently listed my second gen Taurus SHO manual for sale, and my friend suggested I forward to you guys (he even sent one of the same color recently posted) Anyways, here’s my link below. My dad bought the car new in 1992. The car has never seen salt and spent its entire life in Oklahoma until I moved it to Michigan in the spring. The car was my primary transit in college, and is in really good (but definitely not perfect!) shape. Definitely sad to see it go but I have a few “toy cars” already and a daily driver. Find this 1992 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $5000 in Ann Arbor, MI via craigslist.
This next car coms as a tip from Rock On who called it a “bundle of snakes”…which surprised me because I hadn’t put the Taurus SHO in the same snake-in-the-box paradigm as something like a ’70s Italian sportscar or an ’80s Jag. Did Ford pickup were Jaguar left off — did they have a factory of careless workers assembling something that was so needlessly complicated that failure is only a turn of the key away at any given time? I’m not sure, but I have heard reports of transmission issues and consistently leaking oil pan…what can the ex-SHOwners in the audience tell us? Find this 1993 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $5500 in Portland, OR via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!
The original iteration (1989-1991 & 1992-1995) Ford Taurus SHO (Super High Output) was a love letter from the engineers at Ford’s Special Vehicle Team to everyone who wanted to have fun in a sedan. It had a screaming Yamaha V6, a 5-speed manual gearbox, and Conan O’Brien’s seal of approval. In 1996 Ford introduced a V8 SHO that had more O in the SHO, but it lacked the S…because it was only available with a slushbox auto and buyers went elsewhere after 1999. A few years later (in 2010) Ford introduced a new version of the SHO that had a whopping 365 horsepower from a twin-turbo V6 EcoBoost engine and all-wheel-drive…but a 6-speed slushbox auto. Find this 2011 Ford Taurus SHO offered for $9995 or best offer in Cherry Hill, NJ via eBay.
Remember the time when only nutty people drove fast cars? Most everybody else just picked something to get them from point A to point B, but a small group of nutters knew how to select cool options and get themselves into something that might spin off the road or burst into flames at point C. […]
The Taurus SHO (Super High Output) was a limited edition sports sedan built by Ford’s Special Vehicle Team, yup the same guys who developed the SVO Mustang, Mustang Cobra, etc. A first generation SHO may feel slow in comparison to today’s big DOHC V6s mounted in every economy sedan (or the twin turbo 3.5 V6 […]