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Low Mileage Driver: 1993 Ford Taurus SHO

The Ford Taurus SHO remains one of the few limited-production performance cars that are seriously cheap to buy and not that much more expensive to own over the long term. This example wears attractive blue paint over gray leather and is said to have had one owner from 1993 to 2020. With just over 60,000 original miles, one can hope that the pricey 60,000-mile service has already been completed, but even if it hasn’t, the $5,500 asking price seems more than reasonable for a car that hasn’t been abused. Find it here on craigslist in Portland, Oregon.

Thanks to Barn Finds reader Rocco B. for the find. The SHO is a classic factory hot-rod in the truest Q-ship sense, with subtle bodywork tweaks to clue you in that there’s a little more going on under the hood than initially meets the eye. Of course, Ford didn’t overdo it with the aero add-ons, limited to some spoilers, air dams, and dual exhausts poking out from under the rear valence. The SHO lettering was carved into the rear bumper and the nose got a custom treatment, upping the aggression factor ever-so-slightly. The SHO seen here comes in one of the lesser-seen colors, as many of them wear red or silver paint.

The engine was built in partnership with Yamaha, which has a colorful history in the automotive industry when it comes to building beautiful, high-strung engines that still made plenty of torque down low to satisfy the expectations of American consumers. The intake runners are a work of art, but the engine itself still turns a bit needy right around 60,000 miles. Many of these cars are discarded by second or third owners who don’t want to deal with the pricey service, or who wait until it’s too late and begin encountering some mechanical faults once the maintenance schedule goes ignore for too long. It’s a shame, as the cars generally aren’t very needy.

The interior featured nicely bolstered leather buckets, and while these aren’t torn, the leather could use some reconditioning. You could get one of these with a five-speed manual, which is truly the hot ticket, and a car yours truly would still like to experience. In general, Ford’s in-house hot-rod sedans have been home runs, from the SHO to the Contour SVT, but they don’t get much love on the used car market. Enthusiasts would be wise to snatch one of these up while they’re still cheap, as they’ll likely start to see an uptick in prices as good examples become near impossible to find.


  1. Avatar photo Bob_in_TN Member

    I liked my 1992 SHO, one of the funnest cars I have owned. Mine was a 5-speed. I’m not sure, the info and pictures are inconclusive, but I think this one is an automatic (not surprisingly, when the automatic became available in 1993, most were equipped that way).

    It does look good, and as Jeff points out, these tend to be undervalued for what you get (even acknowledging their humble Taurus roots). After spending the maintenance bucks, one wouldn’t have much money into a car which would be both practical and fun.

    Like 3
    • Avatar photo Dave

      Back in 1995 I got a “good deal” on a 1988 3.0 Taurus GL with 65000 miles.
      Two weeks later, the oil pressure light began flickering at idle. Replaced the switch…no effect. Test the switch, 8-10 psig was the result. Install gauge…5 psi at idle, 25 psi running. Front main seal starts leaking…replace seal. Change seal three weeks in a row! Monday morning stoplight…hammering starts coming through the steering wheel. Shut it off and called a garage I trusted. Had them install a genuine Ford long block. Original motor looked like the inside was coated with roof tar. Upgraded suspension with new rack and Monroe SensaTrac struts. Transmission was lousy until I replaced the backup light switch. Drove it everywhere in field service and put another 130000 miles on it before things started falling off. It was one of the best cars I ever had. Room for a family, cruise all day at 70 and get 30 mpg.

      Like 5
  2. Avatar photo nycbjr Member

    Ick automatic, pass! Good color tho!

    Like 4
  3. Avatar photo DayDreamBeliever

    Ad Deleted!

    Like 5
  4. Avatar photo Superdessucke

    It went fast. This was priced within my definition of hobby car. A lot of people don’t have $40,000 to spend to get into the door.

    Like 5
  5. Avatar photo Dave Mathers

    I had a couple of SHOs back in the day (company demos). We did a little work on the electronics on one and at about 6.30 one morning on an almost empty four laner I got it up to 7 grand in 4th and figured it wouldn’t go any faster in 5th. Wrong – that bad boy went to 7 grand in 5th!!!! STOUT!!!

    Like 2
  6. Avatar photo JoeMac

    Portland? No thanks.

    Like 2
  7. Avatar photo Rretrogreg

    The SHO gen 1& 2 (5 spd) and and Volvo PV544 Sport are the two best value sport sedans followed by the VW GTI & Caddy CTS-V
    All yield many smiles per mile and for just very few bucks.

    Like 0
  8. Avatar photo Kent Ferron

    I had a 1992 it was a sleeper , car had wicked speeds up to 140 mph no problem engine was smooth but 5 speed tranny couldn’t handle the torque out of the engine . As trannies were a problem I put 2 in the car, But still loved the SHO

    Like 0

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