1990 to 1996 had transmission problems and Ford paid out generously to repair. After improving design they decided in mid 2000's to use the old style transmission and they went out again, but Ford refuses to repair past 36000. That cost me 2000.00. The rack and pinion steering handles well on the road and at high speeds. I've gotten 185000 out of vehicle. The accelerator pedal sticks when starting out from a stop. If you expect it just pump the pedal and that unsticks it.
The catylictic convertor is bad and their design requires 3 converters be replaced at cost of 3500.00(happened at 150,000). I didnt replace instead use mystery oil in the gas tank eliminates any performance problems(8 oz per week)
Just turned 200,000 Kms and love this car. Big, comfortable for long trips, reliable and can pack in as much as most half tons. Other than a prematurely rusted weld in the gas tank neck I only do regular maintenance to this car. I look after it, keep the rustproofing going, fix anything like paint chips etc. After I do a total clean-up and wax it it looks, runs and drives like new. Just changed the left ball joint and did a complete brake job (only the 3rd since new- hyway miles only). Tried the new Taurus and it felt claustraphobic due to the small windows and I don't like the way it and the new Focus are high in the rear. Vulcan engine is a Will keep mine until it is done - 6 more years???
bought my '05 wagon new, replacing a '95 volvo 960. the volvo was my dream car become rude awakening, so i wanted an affordable, reliable car. i got one.
i keep the mobile one fresh,
am careful with the transmission, complete stops before shifting, etc. when i change the trans fluid, the old looks as clean as the new.
84,000 problem free miles so far. smooth ride, quiet cabin, ice cold air, wonderful stereo,
cheap to insure, and invisible to cops. she is garage kept, and i always park her at the far edge of a lot, so she looks new. last oil change, my mechanic offered to buy the car. i'll drive her 'til she drops, then i'm buying a ford flex