The Ford Taurus is one of the best large sedans on the market.
Comfortable to ride, fuel-efficient, and affordable, it’s hard to find a better sedan than the Taurus.
In this article, we discuss the Taurus’ ability to drive in winter and snow.
Here is the short answer to whether the Ford Taurus is good for snow and winter driving:
With a decent ground clearance and all-wheel drive, the Ford Taurus is a good option for anyone searching for a luxury sedan rugged enough to use in snow and wintry situations. The Taurus also features Electronic stability control, Traction Control, and ABS, which improve winter performance.
Is a Ford Taurus Good in the Snow?
Notwithstanding its small size, the Ford Taurus can drive well in snow.
The major reason for this is mostly because the car has available all-wheel drive, which aids driving on low-traction surfaces. The base Taurus models lack the AWD feature, but you can get it on upscale trims.
The AWD system can detect loss of traction in snowy conditions and respond accordingly. It will send torque to all four wheels to increase road grip in snow and prevent slipping.
A powerful engine beneath the hood also contributes to the Taurus’ confident driving in snowy areas.
The potent V6 engine pushes out 288 horsepower and 256 lb.-ft. of torque. That should be enough to ensure your car doesn’t stall when navigating roads packed with snow.
Nevertheless, the Taurus isn’t a truck or SUV, so it cannot handle driving in heavy snow. Doing this will only expose you to the risk of your car stalling while driving. You should also be aware that the key system on Taurus will work well in snow.
What Features Will Improve Winter Driving?
Here are features that enhance the Ford Taurus’ winter driving capabilities:
1. All-Wheel Drive (AWD)
The presence of all-wheel drive on the Ford Taurus helps the vehicle navigate winter weather with ease.
AWD enables a quicker reaction to adverse weather, including snow, ice, slush, and even rain.
The AWD system sends power to all corners of your car to keep it moving when roads become slippery. This stops the rear wheels from slipping and skidding out of control.
2. Electronic Stability Control
Electronic Stability Control helps to keep your Taurus stable in snow, ice, and slush. Without ESC, your car would slip off roads in winter, especially at bends.
The Electronic Stability Control system can sense stability loss in advance and stop it from occurring.
Thanks to its sensors, the ESC can activate once your car is on the brink of instability.
ESC will reduce your engine output, which reduces car speed and increases control and stability.
It will also exert brake pressure on the sides of the car to force to stop it from veering off.
3. Traction Control System
Traction Control is a subsystem of the Electronic Stability Control system. It’s one reason you can drive on snow and ice without your tires slipping.
Like the ESC, Traction Control uses a suite of sensors designed to detect wheel slipping and reduce it.
Once wheel slip is detected, Traction Control will reduce engine power — this reduces wheel speed and curtails slipping.
The Traction Control system can also apply the brakes on the wheels to reduce their slipping.
4. Antilock Brake System
To make braking in winter safer, the Ford Taurus has an Antilock Braking System that curbs wheel lockup in such situations.
The ABS has on-board computers that detect abrupt drops in wheel speed during braking (signaling lockup).
It will then release brake pressure to prevent the wheels from seizing.
5. Electronic Brakeforce Distribution
The Electronic Brakeforce Distribution works to promote safer braking on winter roads, just like the Antilock Braking System.
But EBD doesn’t decrease brake pressure; it redistributes brake pressure across wheels to stall lockups.
6. Heating Equipment
Traveling in winter can be uncomfortable, with all the cold you have to deal with.
The Ford Taurus has heating equipment dedicated to keeping your cabin warm and toasty in cold weather. This makes driving in winter a very comfortable experience for many.
Heating equipment on the Taurus includes heated steering wheels, heated front seats, and so on.
However, most of this heating equipment is available only on high-end luxury trims.
Please also read our article about driving the Chevrolet Impala in snow and winter.
Does a Taurus Have Snow Mode?
No model within the Ford Taurus lineup has a Snow Mode button.
Typically, pushing the Snow Mode button on some cars will automatically increase grip and control in snowy conditions.
Nonetheless, the lack of a Snow Mode on the Ford Taurus doesn’t subtract from its prowess in snow.
The combination of all-wheel drive, traction control, and electronic stability control will afford you all the grip you need on snowy roads.
Can You Install Additional Snow Gear on Taurus?
You can put extra snow gear on your Ford Taurus if it will aid driving stability in snowy terrain.
We’ve come up with a list of snow gear you can install on your Taurus sedan:
- Snow chains
- Snow tires
- Snow chains
- Tire studs
Before you get about buying and installing snow gear, endeavor to get accurate measurements of your car.
For example, if you’re buying snow chains, you’ll need to know your tire size. That information is available on the tire sidewall.
You should also confirm the legality of snow gear in your area before buying. Some counties, for example, have banned the use of snow socks on their roads.
How Much Snow Can a Taurus Handle?
The Taurus can handle between 1-4.5 inches of snow. Our estimate is based on an assessment of the car’s ride height, which is a little above 5 inches.
With such limited ground clearance, the Taurus can handle only moderate snowfall, not the blizzards and snowdrifts that appear during harsh winter months.
Make sure to also read our article about how long the Toyota Avalon lasts.
How Do Taurus Handle Low Winter Temperatures?
The Taurus uses Electronic Fuel Injection, so it has no issues with driving in low-temperature weather.
However, there are still things you must monitor to ensure your car functions properly when temperatures hit subzero digits. These include:
1. Battery: Bad battery performance will affect your car’s ability to drive in cold weather. If your battery is bad or has a low current, it won’t be able to power your vehicle.
2. Filters: Clogged filters will affect your vehicle such that it won’t be able to drive in winter.
For example, a blocked fuel filter will prevent fuel from reaching the engine, stalling the car.
3. Engine oil: Using the wrong engine oil will probably lead to poor performance in wintry situations. Some oil types thicken in cold temperatures and won’t flow properly at startup.
Buy a lubricant that flows fast, even when cold.
Can a Ford Taurus Drive on Ice?
You can drive the Ford Taurus on ice without fear of slipping.
The sedan possesses features such as traction control and electronic stability control that ensure maximum grip on slippery surfaces.
Moreover, the Taurus’ low ride height makes for a limited center of gravity, which translates to reduced chances of a rollover crash.
A low body mass also makes the Taurus sedans easier to control on slick surfaces covered in ice.
Also read our article about driving the Chevrolet Cruze in snow and winter.
Does the Taurus Have 4WD?
The Taurus doesn’t have the four-wheel-drive system that’s present on bigger Ford siblings, e.g., F-150. Instead, it comes with a standard front-wheel-drive setup.
Still, you can get all-wheel drive on select models within the Taurus lineup. The AWD system is similar to the 4WD system.
Both systems perform the same function: aid driving in adverse road situations such as winter.
What About Older Taurus Models and Winter Driving?
Many of the older Taurus models have limited ability for safe driving in winter conditions.
The reason is that most lack the safety technology that driving in risky winter situations requires.
For example, the Antilock Brake System wasn’t standard on Taurus models until 2008, even though the Taurus came out in 1986.
Similarly, electronic stability control and traction control only became available in 2008 and standard in 2019.
As these technologies aid winter driving, we’d advise staying away from any used Taurus that doesn’t have them if you intend to do heavy winter driving.
Do Taurus Need Snow Tires?
It’s imperative that you install snow tires on your Taurus at the start of every winter season.
Multiple tests have shown snow tires to be better than regular all-season tires in snow and ice.
Here are some benefits to switching to snow tires:
1. Optimal control and road grip: Regular all-season tires stiffen as temperatures drop, and this can affect their grip on wet roads.
Snow tires have a special tread compound that remains soft even in freezing temperatures, increasing grip and control.
2. Safer braking: Because they don’t get stiff, snow tires make for safer braking in winter driving situations. Thus, you can brake safely knowing your tires won’t slip.
3. Reduced chances of accidents: Snow tires have special grooves and sipes that help remove water from under the tread when you drive on wet roads.
This reduces the risk of hydroplaning when traveling in winter.
Can You Mount A Snow Plow on a Taurus?
You cannot mount a snowplow on the Taurus because it is not designed to plow snow.
Other Ford vehicles made for snow plowing will have pre-drilled front frames that you can fit your snowplow on.
Besides, installing a snowplow on the Taurus will damage its transmission and engine.