Ford's first cars were baby steps; experiments that taught Ford what mistakes to avoid when he began to get serious about making a large production of cars. From the first Model T built in 1908, to the latest 2006 Ford Taurus, each car has its own individual signature and characteristics, yet each holds the admirable Ford name. Ford's affordable Model T irrevocably altered American society. As more Americans owned cars, urbanization patterns changed. The United States saw the growth of suburbia, the creation of a national highway system, and a population entranced with the possibility of going anywhere anytime. Until 1903 the automobile had been a status symbol painstakingly manufactured by craftsmen. But Ford set out to make the car a commodity. For vehicles like the Ford Taurus and Model T, each represent many similarities yet still hold onto their defining features and qualities that reveal their differences.
Although separated by many decades in production, the Ford Taurus and Model T actually are similar in several ways. Comparable to the Taurus, the Model T (also known as the Tin Lizzie and the Flivver) started out very basic with many flaws to straighten out. Over time, those flaws were perfected to make a timeless, affordable and perfected piece of work. Another similarity results from the fact that each of the models mentioned has lasted longer than originally expected. Both models helped boost Fords production to new levels and helped to keep Ford as one of the reigning auto production companies of all time. At the time of their arrival, both vehicle models were the "innovation" cars and were very popular - at first. Like the Ford Model T, the Taurus was a very important and successful midsize sedan that introduced a radical new design philosophy.
The Ford Taurus was also used for experimental purposes, parallel to how the Model T was used decades ago. The Model T and Taurus were experimented through engine, body size, performance and design (Bostick). Ford took drastic risks on both vehicle models, and stuck his neck out for what he believed would be a best-selling car. And both times, the Ford Motor Company came through with unpredicted successes.
Although there are many similarities that the Ford Taurus and Model T bring to the forefront, there are obvious differences that still loom. Production, for one, is on two different ends of the spectrum. For one, automobile production in the twenty-first century has increased by substantial numbers since 1908 (Bostick). Production could not keep up with the demand during the first few months of the Ford Model T. This is quite different from the Taurus, which is slowing drastically in production and only making the 2006 Ford Taurus available for employees and rental companies, not the general public. In fact, the last Ford Taurus will come off of the assembly line during the first three months of 2006, ending a successful 21-year run of $6.7 million in sales (Mayne A1). Another significant difference in Ford models is that the Ford Taurus is still being produced in 2006, whereas the Model T is no longer in production at this time. With more resources than ever before, Ford has been able to dramatically increase production, therefore creating a successful running, multi-billion dollar corporation.
The Ford Taurus