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Ford cars: What's coming in 2008

Focus gets a facelift; Taurus returns

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2008 Ford Focus Coupe

2008 Ford Focus Coupe

Photo © Ford Motor Company

CROWN VICTORIA: Unchanged, but now only available for fleet sales.

E-SERIES: Ford's full-size van gets a new face identical to the F-Series Super Duty pickups. And yes, it's as ugly as it sounds.

FIVE HUNDRED: See TAURUS.

FOCUS: The Focus gets a major facelift 2008. The hatchbacks are gone, leaving a sedan and a slick new two-door coupe. Front and rear fascias are completely different and the interior gets a silver finish with a new center stack housing the stereo and climate controls. Ford's new Sync system will be optional. Alas, the 2008 Focus does not get the platform of the European-market Focus, introduced in 2005, but it does get a retuned suspension for even sportier handling.

FUSION: Antilock brakes and a tire pressure monitoring system are now standard across the board. New options include a parking-assist system, improved interior lighting, FordSync (which adds Bluetooth phone and media player connectivity), and five new colors. There's also a new Sport Appearance Package that appears to go beyond appearance: Along with a black-chrome grille, spoiler, 18" wheels and red interior trim, it includes a sport-tuned suspension.

MUSTANG: Side airbags are now standard and high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights and improved interior lighting are optional. A new Warriors in Pink package includes pink interior and exterior accents; a portion of proceeds (Ford's goal is $500,000) will benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure, an organization devoted to fighting breast cancer.

SHELBY GT: A convertible joins the coupe, and both are available in a new blue paint scheme with silver stripes.

SHELBY GT500: HID headlights are optional, and a new limited edition GT500KR (King of the Road) joins the lineup. The KR will produce an estimated 540 horsepower, and Ford plans to limit production to 1,000 examples.

TAURUS: The car formerly known as the Five Hundred gets the name of Ford's best-selling mid-size sedan alogn with a new Fusion-esque front end and structural improvements to improve safety. Those who complained about the Five Hundred's lack of power have new reason to rejoice: A new 3.5 liter 260 hp V6 replaces the old 200 hp 3.0-liter unit. The transmission and optional all-wheel-drive system are also new. Other new options include electronic stability control and Ford's Sync system, which provides cell phone and MP3 player integration.

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