2008 Ford Taurus, Mercury Sable Receive Highest Safety Ratings

By: Anthony Fontanelle

In the crowded car market, it is hard to choose from different car models offered by car manufacturers. For car buyers, they need to consider different attributes of the cars they are looking at to buy.

In a recent survey, it was found out that among the top things car buyers look for in their next vehicle is safety and this category goes right along with performance and fuel efficiency. That is why car manufacturers are hard at work to develop and produce safe cars for the car buying public. The Ford Motor Company is one of the leading innovators when it comes to safety, after all, the Volvo brand goes under the company's Premiere Auto Group (PAG). For the 2008 model year, two vehicles from the company have already been given the highest safety ratings.

Both the 2008 Ford Taurus and the Mercury Sable have been awarded the Top Safety Pick ratings by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Aside from that, both car models have also been awarded the five-star ratings by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The five-star rating given to the Taurus and the Sable is the highest safety rating being given by the government agency.

The Top Safety Pick rating is given by the IIHS to vehicles which have showed good results after several tests. These tests are done to measure how the vehicle can adequately protect its occupants in cases of frontal, side, and rear collisions. Aside from showing good results for those crash tests, vehicles given the Top Safety Pick rating should also have the electronic stability control. This system improves a vehicle's handling capability. The said feature uses sensors to monitor the driver's input on the steering wheel and the actual response of the vehicle. If the ESC senses that the two variables can lead to the driver loosing control of the vehicle, it takes actions like activating a brake or adjusting the torque output of the engine.

This safety feature has been widely used although car manufacturers give it different names. For example, Audi calls their ESC the ESP or the Electronic Stabilization Program while Dodge calls it the Electronic Stability Program. On the other hand, Hyundai calls it the Vehicle Dynamic Control. No matter what the name may be, it works on the same principle as the first ESC developed by Mercedes-Benz and Bosch called the Elektronisches Stabilitatsprogramm.

For their ESC and their good crash test scores, the Taurus and the Sable are the only large family cars to be given the Top Safety Pick ratings by the IIHS.

Meanwhile, the highest rating given by the NHTSA is the result of high scores for different crash tests conducted on new vehicles. The tests are done to find out how the vehicle can provide protection not only to the driver but for all passengers as well. In response to the safety ratings received by the Taurus and the Sable, Sue Cischke, the Senior Vice President for Sustainability, Environment, and Safety Engineering of Ford, has this to say: "It's a true testament to the safety engineering of these vehicles that they achieved top crash test ratings from both IIHS and NHTSA. Ford and Volvo worked together to leverage our technical and intellectual resources to create this outstanding vehicle architecture, and now it's better than ever. These cars offer it all: safety, power, spaciousness, comfort and great features, all at a great value."

The company owning Volvo has taken full advantage of the safety advancements made by the Swedish car manufacturer. For years, Volvo have been making advances in the field of car safety and the same architecture used by Volvo cars are being used by the Ford Motor Company's vehicles. Both the Taurus and the Sable are designed to have crush zones which absorbs energy in cases of collision. This is one reason why the two car models were given the highest rear impact ratings by the IIHS. The high ratings means that the vehicles can protect its occupants from serious neck injury which is the most common injury sustained by persons involved in a rear collision.

An innovative two-row Safety Canopyâ„? side airbag system is also used on both the Sable and the Taurus. The said airbag configuration not only offers protection during side collisions but also during rollovers.

Performance wise, both the Taurus and the Sable are known to remain true to their bloodline of being made by Ford. Highly reliable parts like those used on the iconic Mustang like the can be expected to be similar to the ones used in the Taurus and the Sable.

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