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SAFETY | 9 out of 10
'Good,' frontal offset; 'good,' side impact; 'good,' rear impact; 'good,' roof strength; Top Safety Pick
Four stars overall; four stars frontal; five stars side; five stars side pole
Among optional safety systems, the most innovative is the BLIS blind-spot system with Cross Traffic Alert.
The Auto Channel
Side-to-side visibility is a problem thanks to the high windowsills, and the high hood made it difficult to judge where the front end was.
Impressive crash-test results plus a better-than-typical roster of safety equipment make the 2012 Taurus a great pick for the safety-minded.
Crash-test results for the Taurus have been among the best of any vehicle, with top 'good' results from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) in frontal offset, side impact, rear impact, and roof strength; it's again been named a Top Safety Pick for 2012. In the new, tougher testing and rating system employed by the federal government, the Taurus earned a four-star rating overall, including four stars in frontal impact and five stars in side impact. But its top five-star score in the federal side-pole test, which simulates the side collision with a tree or pole, indicates that the Taurus' structure is especially robust and protective.
In addition to the usual roster of airbags, rain-sensing wipers are included throughout the model line, and Ford offers a collision warning system and adaptive cruise control on the 2012 Taurus, as well as Blind Spot Information and Cross Traffic Alert systems. For 2012, a side-mirror-integrated blind-spot system is standard across the model line, which does help make up for the limited visibility. The Taurus SHO also offers an optional rearview camera. And an SOS post-crash alert system is standard; after an impact that causes airbags to deploy, the SOS system unlocks all doors, turns on the hazard flashers, and sounds the horn.
The sole strike against the Taurus thus far is the poor rearward visibility that comes from its styling and big headrests on the backseats.
Excellent crash-test ratings plus a great set of traditional safety features and breakthrough accident-avoidance features make the 2012 Ford Taurus one of the safest big sedans.