Out with the old, in with the new?🤷‍♂️

Oct 7, 2012
Staten Island, NY
Memorial day was the demise of our late great 2006 Taurus :cry:
It was a basic SE, with convenience package, light tundra metallic over grey cloth
Column shift, no ABS, rear drums 💩
But spoiler, alloys, keyless entry 🤔
It started life as a Budget rental car, but after 6 months and 5k, it wound up at Scarsdale Ford, where my father traded his tired retired car service '96 Crown Vic for the $500 down payment
I remember riding home in the back of it (I was 9/10 years old) thinking how fancy (keyless entry) and comfortable it was (cloth not cold vinyl) coming from the former police Crown Vic
A matching green vehicle next to my mother's van (2001 Villager)
We had it for many years, me and my twin sister both learned to drive in it, I took and passed my road test in it, my mother begrudgingly drove it when the Villager was out of commission (later discovered by me to be a bad FPR)
Well one day fall of '19, it blew a brake line at the stop sign on the corner coming home while my dad was driving it, so it got laid up for the winter, we got by without it
2020 was quite a decade, so when me and my dad were home in lockdown, we got busy reinstating it
Got a Dorman stainless steel brake line kit, new rubber flex hoses all around and a new master cylinder+wheel cylinders, new battery, oil change, etc
Finally got the registration renewed, easily passed inspection, and it was on the road

Far from inspiring transportation, but inoffensive, reliable, cold A/C and hot heat, and with ~60k on it, a far better first car for my sister than her friends could wrangle up on their budgets

So she got turned loose in it, driving around the Island, and eventually becoming a very decent driver

Through the summer into the fall it got a full tune up, all the o rings on the manifold, both upstream oxygen sensors, coil/plugs/wires, miscellaneous filters and fluids
You all may remember threads about me needing a alternator (Bosch was A+), doing quick struts all around to fix the typical Taurus sag, and the 4 new Continental TrueContact Tours it got a few months back
She gets through the winter no problem, learning what it's like to have good tread, but no ABS/TC/ESP
She works a leisurely 10 minute drive up the boulevard from home, we thought that'd she'd do okay
Fast forward to the weekend of this Memorial day, and she's going on her first big out of state drive with her BF to their family's cabin in P.A
Checked the tires and topped off the washer fluid, made sure it was up to the trip
Took it for state inspection, it was due, on the way home from inspection, the flex pipe cracked and fell off, glad it happened locally, got that to the exhaust shop and all straightened out
You may remember a thread about intermittent starter issues, I put a new TYC starter in it, cabin filter, decent wash and vacuum, she was 💯 ready to go
I was fixing to put a dashcam in before she left, but she inadvertently left earlier in the morning than she said she was, to beat the traffic
I'm still kicking myself for not doing it before 🤬, I'd been working 7 days a week at the time, and was exhausted
She heads down, no worries, learning the joys of the cruise control and nice cold A/C, having a good time
They have a fun weekend, and start heading back up mid day to beat the traffic
They decide to stop at a favorite farm stand of ours for a smash pie or two to bring home
Two lane road, turning in, a new shape gold Pacifica (speeding) T bones the passenger side
They explained to me as if they got hit twice, and bounced off them
It was totalled, as was the Pacifica (airbags blew)
The elderly couple driving the Pacifica was cited for speeding and careless driving
Miraculously no one was hurt, just some seatbelt bruising
I'm impressed how well the Taurus did, considering I did not have the optional side airbags, and it being a roughly 20 year old design
I knew it was totaled when I saw the cracked glass

...her BF was sitting in that front passenger seat
This could've been a much different story 😕
This is why we wear seatbelts people, they work
So I'm working away at home in the driveway on my Camrys HID kit, and I'm taking it for a spin up the expressway after I'm done, my dad calls me and tells me what happened 😟
BF parents who were coming home in a different vehicle, doubled back to pick them up and bring them home
Cue multiple hours of hysterics (to be expected, I remember my first accident)
A night in the ER, some pretty nasty seatbelt bruising, but everyone's more or less uninjured

Tow people recovered it, called us somewhat rudely demanded we bring the title down to them, as they diagnosed it as a total loss
They weren't counting on it having full coverage, and our response being "wait for state farm to send someone", they're tune changed real quick after that 🤨
State Farm got it from them and took it to their own marshaling yard, and declared it a total loss

We're hashing out a value for it at this time, it's currently in an upcoming auction at Copart up in Newburgh

Mileage at death, 69,717
RIP 2006 Taurus, you served the family well 😓

But, when life closes a door, a window opens, and a replacement vehicle has been procured, I'll break that down in the next post
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I dig those Centennial style headlights 😉
I had an 01 SES, jeep pulled out in front of my sister who was driving, at 60mph. No injuries. Got it almost new at 33,333 miles. Drove it till it's death at 171k. Then got an 04 SEL. 240K faithful miles until someone ran a red and tboned my wife. Then have gotten numerous others, mostly to flip and make a profit. But those suckers rot out (or are crashed into) well before their time.
This will forever be the problem with DIY, there's little to no way to quantify your labor

Yeah us DIYers can't have it both ways, we DIY to save money but can't recover the free labor somehow when this happens. Been there.

Your precious sister is alive and at the end of the day it was an old car. You made it safe and reliable and it served her well.
Thank you for sharing your bittersweet story.

It's so easy for us to say "could have been a different story", but please take those words to heart. It IS a different story for my dear wife that was hit head-on 12 years ago. One learns to persevere, adjust, and continue moving forward.

I hope your family's new car works out well. Take care.
Ford made an '06 Taurus with a column shifter? Surely an automatic because it was a rental car.
Who ever thought they even had column shifters in the parts bin.
Then again, Mom's '91 Taurus GL had a column shifter.
Specs (like price and mileage) on the Mercury Milan when you have the time.
Glad you're OK.
How did the cops know how fast the Pacifica was going?
Glad your Sis and her friend are going to be o.k., the most important outcome here.

Shame about the car, it was obviously well care for and should have been on the road for many more years.
Ford made an '06 Taurus with a column shifter? Surely an automatic because it was a rental car.
Who ever thought they even had column shifters in the parts bin.
Then again, Mom's '91 Taurus GL had a column shifter.
Specs (like price and mileage) on the Mercury Milan when you have the time.
Glad you're OK.
How did the cops know how fast the Pacifica was going?
Based on their statements and the fairly severe damage to the Pacifica (all airbags blew)
I believe the limit was 30mph on this road
Now I'm not one to armchair crash engineering, but the strut towers caved in, windshield aperture deformed, subframe severely bent, CV shaft and control arm snapped in half
It fired both seatbelt pretensioners, but who knows what that means?
And the fact that they kinda bounced off on the first hit, then continued along the rest of the passenger side
It seems an awful lot of energy for 30mph
But I wasn't there, so it's all a bit academic
Dashcam, have one
So, onto the "In with the new"
After about a week, I start looking for what I could get relatively cheap, to get her my, understanding that whatever it is would likely be a downgrade
Problem is, I had a undesirable car but in sound mechanical condition with known quantity maintenance
A cheaper used car would likely also be undesirable, yet poorly maintained and expensive for what it is
I looked at a few Taurus/Sables for sale, with universally mediocre results
Now this being NY (city in particular), things are more expensive than people on this forum are used to paying
There's also rust, this being the northeast
Don't forget that our climate really demands both functional heat and air conditioning, for both safety and sanity
Also, we have yearly safety/emissions inspection
No $37 lick em stick em jobs in this household, I have standards
My cars earn their inspection, or they get fixed or disposed of
And if you get a questionable sticker, that's great for the first 12 months, but when you go to renew the registration, there won't be a inspection record in their system, so you can't renew
So idle P0440/P0420 simply doesn't work here, unless you can get it patched up enough to clear one drive cycle, then hightail it to a shop and get it plugged in right away
I'm also not gonna make her drive something with a brake line that's about to pop, or a subframe that's one speed bump from crumbling
That's just asking for more problems
After a weekend of wasted time and increasing anger at what Craiglist has become, mostly shady curbstoners and small time lots masquerading as private sellers
I passed on a $2500 '04 SEL 135k with a brake warning light, inop sunroof, inop ABS, and bogus inspection (and he acted like he was doing me a favor 🤬 )
I was tired, angry, and frustrated
All the trappings of good decision making 🤣
I had kinda forgotten about eBay motors, so I put in a reasonable starting price, continually curse dealers that use the buy it now price to advertise a payment
A non staged picture caught my eye, at $1600, with 1.5 hours left on it
From the listing:
2010 Mercury Milan. 102,700 miles.

Body in great shape. Check Engine Light and Wrench light are on. Related to the throttle body. Common issue with Mercury and Fords.

Last two owners are in my family. Titled in mom's name right now. Prior to that, it was under my brother's name. My brother has moved out of the country. Mom doesn't drive the car. I drive it a few times a week to keep it running. But with 4 other cars, there is no need for me to keep this.

Starting bid is far below the Blue Book value. Be aware that this is an 11 year old car. Bid where you are comfortable.

$150 due within 48 hours of winning the auction. Car must be picked up and paid for within 7 days.

I ran the VIN, saw some reasonable service history, an accident, an open airbag recall, and mileage and repairs that all made sense

I sat back and thought since I'm buying this myself, if it turns out to be junk, how much would I be willing to lose out of savings?

How could I get my money out of it if it was a complete dud?

I came up with $2800, put that in on the last 10 seconds

And I won it for $2156, including $150 deposit

Paid the deposit, the seller and me go back and forth, and I start to figure out how to get it home
A coworker called in a favor for a flatbed, from the 40 miles and two boroughs away it was for $250 (a very good price)
Said favor fell apart the day of, so I had to find someone local on the fly, wound up being $410 (about going rate, but still decent)
I withdrew cash, I thought about a certified check, my coworker talked me out of it, last time I listen to him 🤨
Met the seller and saw the car for the first time, seller was nice and cleaned it up a little bit, showed me the other 4 family cars he had, and how he was tired of paying the insurance on this one that hadn't gone 5k in the past 5 years
Drew up a bill of sale, exchanged cash, his wife double checked the cash, I was given a clean title and both factory keys, it started right up, A/C was cold, sunroof worked, check engine and wrench lights on as advertised
Codes as found were

Apparently these are known for throttle body issues, Ford had a Field Service Action that covered it for 10y/150k
According to the OASIS report, the in service date was 8/26/2009, so that warranty was up
As was the extended warranty for the LED taillights

He attempted to clean it, and he added a ground from a TB bolt to the negative battery cable, to no avail

It started and ran too well to have major mechanical deficiencies IMO, so I gambled and took it home

Tow truck came, family waved it and me goodbye, and it was delivered about 3 hours later



Once I got it home, first job was to dispose of all the covers and mats and trash it was full of



So what I'd apparently bought is a 2010 Milan, 2.5 Auto, 102k, base but with rapid spec 103A
White Suede over Camel Cloth
So I got automatic, SYNC, sunroof, power drivers seat, fog lights, rear spoiler, and those half hearted 17" steel wheels with a special cover that makes them look like an alloy that Ford was big on for a minute

Call it $2600 delivered, it's a **** sight better than a LeSabre, Sable, or Sebring



There's no way that's the 12 year old factory PDI plastic?
Although it was a Ford CPO at 3 years old 🧐




After disposing of the rear seat covers, all the pillows, the universal mats on top of the factory mats, the horrendous stitched on steering wheel cover, the steering wheel cover THAT WAS ON TOP OF THAT, and various interior detritus, plus that possibly factory carpet covering, I seem to be left with a very respectable interior

A real testament to cleaning out a car when you list it, I would've paid more had I been able to see how nice the interior was
So over the past week I've started it and drove it up and down our dead end block
It's about as much as I dare do with no plates
Cue several days of cleaning, rinsing, changing burnt out bulbs, a fresh pair of wiper blades, a 5w30 MC Blend w/910s oil change (old oil looked the same as the new stuff going in)
Cleaning all the tree detritus that clogs up rain channels and door jambs, etc etc
Checking and airing up the spare, hosing off the engine, other miscellaneous tasks
I still don't have plates or registration yet, so I'm limited in what I can do
I swung by my local Ford dealer, for a bottle of specialty green coolant (got the last one), 4 quarts of Mercon LV (is that enough for a drain and fill?), And a pair of wiper blades for the low low price of $86
Now at 102k, it's probably due for some standard preventive maintenance, plus the fact that throttle bodies and canister purge valves are ridiculously common failure points on these, I bet a little more money

Full tune up, common failure points have revised part numbers, maybe they'll last longer? 🤔
I picked up 4 SP-530 (reboxed NGK) plugs from Advance (they have the plastic sleeve so pre gapped right?)

Due to more eBay shenanigans, I've got NOS cargo net and remote start kit coming in for real cheap, and I'm looking into dual channel dash cams to make sure if this ever happens again, I've got the facts

I've kinda hit the wall with it now, with no plates yet and no parts delivered yet, but I'm gonna tinker and fiddle and maintain in my spare time, and hopefully by next week it'll be road legal, and I can drive it straight to Ford for the Takata airbag inflator recall

I don't think I did too bad, for the first car I've bought 100% sight unseen with 100% no one else's oversight or opinion influencing, and with my hard earned $$$

I think if it works out as planned, this'll be a very decent car for her

I'll add more pictures in time, mobile formatting is difficult
Based on their statements and the fairly severe damage to the Pacifica (all airbags blew)
I believe the limit was 30mph on this road
Now I'm not one to armchair crash engineering, but the strut towers caved in, windshield aperture deformed, subframe severely bent, CV shaft and control arm snapped in half
It fired both seatbelt pretensioners, but who knows what that means?
And the fact that they kinda bounced off on the first hit, then continued along the rest of the passenger side
It seems an awful lot of energy for 30mph
But I wasn't there, so it's all a bit academic
Dashcam, have one
I think it was a glancing blow. My sister had the same accident years ago on a 55mph road turning left into oncoming traffic, and the guy who hit her probably got down to 30 but caught the corner flush... The whole front end infront of the windshield was moved over a foot, even the opposite side from the crash. Same result though, nothing but bruises from the seatbelt.
The Milan looks nice though, should be a nice car for years to come.



It took the hit on the strut tower and subframe

Far stronger than the doors

I didn't notice they actually did a decent job on welding that flexpipe

And it's not supposed to be that tight between the coolant bottle and belt drive

Well, it is what it is, it's done now

Will probably be ♻️ to a couple hundred Coke cans?🤣

Working on the Milan this afternoon, did the 9011 mod for the headlights from the stock 9005, seems brighter and whiter

The fogs and headlights are a real bear to change, even with tools and fair weather

I pity the fool who's doing it in the AutoZone parking lot in a snowstorm

I went into the GEM/SJB with FORScan and enabled DRLs, which just means the fog lights are on whenever it's in drive
I didn't want H11 drain on the electrical system all day, so some modest LED plug in replacements give it a modern look for the DRL, without being a burden on the alternator

Coming together...

I found this hanging off the suspiciously shiny trans cooler lines while changing the bulbs

So 9/11/2019 or newer they were replaced, perhaps the fluid as well?🤔

Common on these to rot out?
Plates and registration came today, so I'm out taking it for a drive
Really for the first time ever, I've only driven it on and off tow trucks
2.5 has some off the line pep, and the 6 speed auto does it's best to keep it in the power band
It feels the stated 20hp up over the previous Vulcan V6/4 speed auto
Is spinning faster than you'd think at times, but it's gets you moving respectably
Transmission shifts normally, kinda odd like most 6F35s do, I might drain and fill the Mercon LV
Ride good, quiet and smooth, alignment damm near perfect
The 2014 era General Altimax RT43s are smooth and quiet, discounting the visibly bent LF rim, and associated shake at 60+
Maybe I'll track down a set of the Milan Premier spec 17" alloys
There is a grunt/clunk at parking lot speeds pulling in and out of drive thrus, intermittently
But it tracks straight and true at left lane turnpike speeds, so I'm thinking more sway bar link or strut mount 🤔
The throttle body limp mode scenario has yet to occur, but since parts have been bought, I'm gonna get ahead of that potential breakdown
Remote start working well, dashcam should be here Monday
Next week's an appointment at the Ford dealer for the Takata inflator recall

Thank you for the kind words and insight everyone, it's greatly appreciated

When parts arrive, I'll probably start a new thread on the repairs

My sister's gotta relinquish the rental '21 Sentra SV tomorrow, so she'll be getting aquatinted with her new ride over the weekend
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So glad they are ok! I never gave the Taurus so much as a passing thought, but we picked up a 2000 Taurus SE a few months ago as a third vehicle and so far it’s getting the job done for us. 208K miles and driven daily.