2011 Ford
Taurus SEL
vs. 2012 Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE

2011 Ford Taurus SEL

9.8

starting from

$28,550
"More of a driver's car than ever before."
theautochannel.com | talking about the Taurus's ride quality
"Full-size sedans are not dead!"
theautochannel.com | talking about the Taurus's overall satisfaction

Reasons to buy the Ford Taurus SEL

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Paddle shifters
Standard
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Average power
263 HP @ 6,250 RPM
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OK performance
15.3 lb/hp
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Leather
Optional
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE

9.6

starting from

$24,495

Reasons to buy the Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE

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Comparable turning radius
36.4 ft
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Average highway fuel efficiency
32 mpg
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Fantastic range on the highway
592 miles
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Good range in the city
389 miles
Performance 10.0 vs 8.7
2011 Ford Taurus SEL Winner: Taurus SEL
[details]
  • The Taurus SEL comes standard with paddle shifters for ultimate driving control; not available on the Passat 2.5L SE
  • More than 50% more powerful, 263 HP @ 6,250 RPM vs 170 HP @ 5,700 RPM
  • The Taurus SEL's automatic transmission is convenient for stop-and-go traffic, Automatic transmission vs Manual transmission
Luxury Features 10.0 vs 8.8
2011 Ford Taurus SEL Winner: Taurus SEL
[details]
  • Have your choice of leather or cloth seats on the Taurus SEL
Entertainment System 9.2 vs 10.0
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Winner: Passat 2.5L SE
[details]
  • Have your pick of music from around the world with the Passat 2.5L SE's satellite radio
  • The Passat 2.5L SE has 2 more speakers, providing a better entertainment experience, 8 vs 6
Practicality 10.0 vs 9.7
2011 Ford Taurus SEL Winner: Taurus SEL
[details]
  • The Taurus SEL has 4 more cupholders, 8 vs 4
  • Almost the same, 54.8 ft3 vs 53.5 ft3
  • Room for around 30% more stuff, 20.1 ft3 vs 15.9 ft3
Cost 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Shorter-lasting basic warranty
  • Shorter basic warranty
Safety Features 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Child door locks come standard
Crash Test Ratings 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
Road Tests 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
Overall 9.8 vs 9.6

Performance

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
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Horsepower 263 HP @ 6,250 RPM vs 170 HP @ 5,700 RPM The Taurus SEL is of average power, but the Passat 2.5L SE is underpowered
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Number of gears 6 vs 5 Average number of gears
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Transmission Automatic transmission vs Manual transmission The Taurus SEL's automatic transmission is convenient for stop-and-go traffic
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paddle shifters Standard vs Not Available The Taurus SEL comes standard with paddle shifters for ultimate driving control; not available on the Passat 2.5L SE
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Air compressor None vs None Neither has an air compressor to maximize power output
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Power-to-weight ratio 15.3 lb/hp vs 18.6 lb/hp The Taurus SEL has OK performance while the Passat 2.5L SE gives sluggish performance
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Drivetrain type front-wheel drive vs front-wheel drive Neither has a good drivetrain for off-road or bad weather driving
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Curb-to-curb turning radius 41.0 ft vs 36.4 ft The Passat 2.5L SE is comparable to most other vehicles for turning, but the Taurus SEL is quite bad

Luxury Features

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
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moon roof Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a sun roof
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power seats Standard vs Standard Both have power seats
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keyless entry Standard vs Standard Both have keyless entry
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leather Optional vs Not Available Have your choice of leather or cloth seats on the Taurus SEL

Entertainment System

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
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Number of speakers 6 vs 8 The Passat 2.5L SE has an OK number of speakers, while the Taurus SEL has very few
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Has speed sensitive volume No vs No Neither offers speed-sensitive volume
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CD player Standard vs Standard CD player comes standard
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premium radio Not Available vs Standard Have your pick of music from around the world with the Passat 2.5L SE's satellite radio
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Has auxiliary audio input Yes vs Yes Both have an audio-in jack so you can plug in your own MP3 player to the stereo
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Has subwoofer No vs No Neither has a subwoofer; audio won't have that deep thumping bass sound
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entertainment system Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers an entertainment system

Practicality

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
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Passengers 5 vs 5 Average number of seats
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Highway driving range 532 miles vs 592 miles Both can go pretty far on the highway on a single tank, however the Passat 2.5L SE in particular gets exceptional range
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Cargo space 20.1 ft3 vs 15.9 ft3 Both have OK cargo room
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front seats 54.8 ft3 vs 53.5 ft3 The Taurus SEL has roomy front seats and the Passat 2.5L SE is OK
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folding rear seats Standard vs Standard Both have a rear seat that folds down for extra storage space
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power outlets Standard vs Standard Both have power outlets
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roof rails Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers roof rails
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navigation system Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a navigation system
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Cupholders 8 vs 4 The Taurus SEL has an absurd number of cupholders, 2 extra in front and 2 extra in rear
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front air conditioning Standard vs Standard A/C for hot summer days comes standard

Cost

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
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MSRP $28,550 vs $24,495 Both are priced reasonably
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In-city gas mileage 18 mpg vs 21 mpg The Passat 2.5L SE has OK city mileage, while the Taurus SEL is very inefficient
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basic warranty miles 36,000 mile vs 36,000 mile Shorter basic warranty
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basic warranty years 3 year vs 3 year Shorter-lasting basic warranty

Safety Features

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
Help
antilock brakes Standard vs Standard Both come standard with ABS brakes
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Stability control system Yes vs Yes Both have electronic stability control
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Airbags 5 vs 5 OK number of airbags
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Rear brakes Disc vs Disc Both have the usual brakes for this class of vehicle
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child door locks Standard vs Standard Child door locks come standard
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Roadside assistance system None vs None

Crash Test Ratings

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
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Rollover resistance 4 stars vs Unknown
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Front driver crash test 5 stars vs Unknown
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Driver side crash test 5 stars vs Unknown

Road Tests

Ford
Taurus SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SEL
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE Volkswagen
Passat 2.5L SE
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0-60 mph 7.9 seconds vs Unknown
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Braking distance at 60mph 139 ft vs Unknown
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1/4 mile 16.1 s @ 90 mph vs Unknown
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Lateral acceleration 0.81 g vs Unknown
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Top speed 115 mph vs Unknown

Other Vehicles to Consider

2011 Ford Taurus SHO 2011 Dodge Charger R/T Taurus SHO vs Charger R/T
2011 Ford Taurus SEL 2012 Ford Fusion SEL Taurus SEL vs Fusion SEL
2011 Ford Taurus SHO 2012 Ford Mustang GT Taurus SHO vs Mustang GT
2011 Ford Taurus SHO 2012 Lincoln MKZ Taurus SHO vs MKZ
2011 Ford Taurus SE 2012 Ford Focus S Taurus SE vs Focus S
2012 Volkswagen Passat TDI SEL Premium 2012 Audi A3 Premium Passat TDI SEL Premium vs A3 Premium
2012 Volkswagen Passat TDI SEL Premium 2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Passat TDI SEL Premium vs Golf TDI
2012 Volkswagen Passat 2.5L SE 2012 Volvo S60 T5 Passat 2.5L SE vs S60 T5
2012 Volkswagen Passat TDI SEL Premium 2011 BMW 335d Passat TDI SEL Premium vs 335d
2012 Volkswagen Passat V6 SE 2011 Audi A4 Premium Passat V6 SE vs A4 Premium

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