Home » A Tale Of Three Taunuses: Cold Start

A Tale Of Three Taunuses: Cold Start

Cs Taunus 1
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This morning I think I’d just like to provide your eyeballs (hello, eyeballs! Big fan here!) with some engaging things to look at, this time both Ford Taunus related. Here in America, The Land Of The Free Refills, Taunuses are extremely rare, and if you talk about them, most people think you mean “Taurus” and just say things funny, replacing your Rs with Ns, and they’re just hoping you’re going to say something like “I need to nun to the can to gnab my unbnella” or something like that. But Taunuses are real, and they sometimes had V4 engines, and, well, let’s look at some pictures of them.

Like the one up top, that’s a 1961 Taunus wagon. What a lovely station wagon design! It’s a two-door wagon, I’m not going to say necessarily a shooting brake, but maybe, depending on how sporty its character is supposed to be. Look at that lovely character line that swoops all the way down the side there and, perhaps most significantly, the roof-mounted taillights! They’re fantastic!

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Cs Taunus 1 Lights

Damn those are great. Shit, maybe I should have saved these for a Today’s Taillight post? Crap.

Okay, more Taunusean goodness. Just take a look at this:

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Cs Taunus 2

So, this is a 1979 Taunus, no longer with the V4 engine and a very different design language, but look how tidy and clean the coupé version is! You rarely see cars like this anymore, simple, attractive coupés, not overtly sporty but not un-sporty, either. Look at the subtle kick-up over the rear wheel arch, and how that lower rear quarter window line raises just a bit. It’s as subtle and elegant as a well-tailored suit.

Cs Taunus 3

Also, the idea of one basic car coming in sedan and wagon and coupé versions is kind of a thing of the past, too, but I kinda miss it.

Okay, one last Taunus thing. Look at this:

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Cs Taunus 4

I love the illustration styles going on here, for this early ’60s brochure. It’s not often you see art this gestural and loose in a car brochure, but I very much appreciate it. The loose sketch style of the upper drawing works so well with the cut-paper, minimal line look of the lower style, too. It’s so well done I find it soothing to look at.

What a treat for those eyeballs. You’re welcome, eyeballs.

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Martin Ibert
Martin Ibert
8 months ago

Is there a reason that so many of the brochures you show us are from the Netherlands?

Scott
Scott
8 months ago

My eyeballs are grateful Jason for the refreshing sight of a graceful two-door wagon, complete with chromed hubcaps and in a lovely shade of lavender. 🙂

I too miss the way some cars used to be available in a wide variety of body styles: sedan, coupe, hatchback and wagon being the basic four (not counting versions also offered as a convertible). Plenty of folks don’t need or want four doors when they’re only ever going to use two… I had a four-door TDI Golf for a couple of decades as my daily driver, and I probably used the back doors only one time for every 30 or 40 times I used the front doors.

I bemoan the death of the Accord Coupe, which was considerably more handsome than the sedan in most generations. And going further back, when Accords could be bought as hatchbacks, or even a wagon… those were golden years! Even today, on the rare occasion I spot a Camry wagon, I can’t help but point it out to anyone else within earshot, even if it’s just my own dog riding shotgun.

There are plenty of relatively mainstream cars from Japanese and South Korean manufacturers that I’d personally find much more interesting if they were available in two-door and/or wagon guise: the Elantra comes immediately to mind… it would be much tidier as a coupe, and I bet a properly styled little wagon version would be very appealing too. 🙂

Scott
Scott
8 months ago
Reply to  Scott

And I forgot to mention (replying to one’s own post as questionable comment etiquette be damned) that I can’t help but notice that the skirted lady in the illustration of the lavender Taunus is doing that pose that gals sometimes opt for in an effort to accentuate their decolletage. The fact that she’s doing so while wearing what looks like a mock turtleneck, instead of the more traditional cleavage-baring plunging neckline, doesn’t really detract from the effect in the least.

As long as it had working AC, I’d SO love to daily a lavender two-door Taunus wagon exactly like that one for the rest of my life, even if it meant I’d have to scour European auction sites in order to source parts. That car, in that color, is just so appealing! 😀

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
8 months ago

Apropos of nothing, does anyone else recall the kids’ book, “The Tawny, Scrawny Lion.” Just thought I’d throw that out there.

Scott
Scott
8 months ago
Reply to  Canopysaurus

No, the only Tawnys I can recall are Kitaen of early music video fame, and port, which I’ve only ever heard of and never sampled myself.

OrigamiSensei
OrigamiSensei
8 months ago

The ’61 Taunus wagon is really attractive, but definitely a two-door wagon and not a shooting brake.

Mike Harrell
Mike Harrell
8 months ago

“…a 1979 Taunus, no longer with the V4 engine…”

True, but it’s worth mentioning that the ’61 Taunus doesn’t have a V4, either. That engine didn’t come along until 1962.

Boulevard_Yachtsman
Boulevard_Yachtsman
8 months ago

Those are great for the eyeballs this morning! That ’79 must have some connection to the Ford Belina Corcel II found in Brazil, a car I only know about after finding a diecast model of one at a “banca” (place on the street that sells newspapers and magazines) in Petropolis.

Behold, the wagon version:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tlUqyuDic2s

Autorama
Autorama
8 months ago

The Corcel 2 was still based on the Renault 12 chassis.

Boulevard_Yachtsman
Boulevard_Yachtsman
8 months ago
Reply to  Autorama

Thanks for that info.! I’m fascinated by Brazilian cars in general, but the details on most are still a long ways out of my knowledge base.

Gilbert Wham
Gilbert Wham
8 months ago

It’s pretty much a mk IV Cortina. Which is/was a nice car.

Trust Doesn't Rust
Trust Doesn't Rust
8 months ago

Can we talk about how, in the top picture, the kids are clearly trying to carry a suitcase stuffed with dad’s arms? Maybe a femur? And the car is already loaded up with the rest of his body parts?

Parsko
Parsko
8 months ago

It almost looks like the female adult has handcuffs on. The whole stance is odd too, like she is, indeed, stanced.

Col Lingus
Col Lingus
8 months ago
Reply to  Parsko

the handcuffs are the reason Dad is in pieces now. and for ignoring the safe word.

Chris Jackson
Chris Jackson
8 months ago

You can’t prove it. And when they’re done ‘visiting’ the hog farm, you’ll never be able to prove it.

UnseenCat
UnseenCat
8 months ago

I was travelling in Spain in the mid-80s and saw many of the 70s/80s style Taunus like the picture. The 4-door version seemed to be the most popular, and it tended to emphasize the rear fender kick-up and rear door window sculpture just a little more. Definitely some of the tidiest, prettiest car designs running around then. It was very much a less-is-more style, and Ford’s European designers pulled off so well. It’s a shame it never made it to the States. Sleek, minimalist form not unlike the Fox body cars, but with just a bit of flair from that fender profile/lower window edge sculpturing.

Alan Christensen
Alan Christensen
8 months ago
Reply to  UnseenCat

Funny you should mention “Fox,” because the Taunuses remind me of the Audi Fox of that era.

Slower Louder
Slower Louder
8 months ago

What’s not relaxing is seeing that couple puzzling over their car. Maybe they can’t open the trunk? And she’s tearing out pages from the owners manual in frustration?

Chris D
Chris D
8 months ago
Reply to  Slower Louder

They have the trunk open. It looks like they are tearing the owner’s manual apart to figure out how to close it.

I drive a boring SUV
I drive a boring SUV
8 months ago

THANK YOU SO MUCH Jason! I have a foggy childhood memory of seeing a station wagon car with those high-mounted tail lights parked near my home, I must have been no more 3 or 4 years old, and I guess I was already a tail light geek lover because they made quiet an impression on me. A Ford Taunus station wagon of that generation was an exceedingly rare sight in Spanish roads (I don’t even know if they were sold here officially or it must have been an import), and I never saw one again. I have been wondering ever since what car it was.

TOSSABL
TOSSABL
8 months ago

I would gladly forsake modern amenities to drive that wagon. Simple, clean lines-elegant, but not overstated. Not minimalist stark; just classy.

Chris with bad opinions
Chris with bad opinions
8 months ago

Imagine if that person with the speech impediment was from the s’th and c’ldn’t use o and u together either. (I really hope someone gets this reference.)

Phantom Pedal Syndrome
Phantom Pedal Syndrome
8 months ago

I stubbed my toe, ‘ch!

Last edited 8 months ago by Phantom Pedal Syndrome
Data
Data
8 months ago

That 1979 model looks more like a Mercedes than the Granada. They chose the wrong car.

MaximillianMeen
MaximillianMeen
8 months ago
Reply to  Data

My thoughts exactly. I had a Mercury Monarch coupe and I never got Mercedes vibes from it.

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
8 months ago

They both begin with M-E-R-C and there the similarity ends.

Jakob K's Garage
Jakob K's Garage
8 months ago

the 1979 is not really a coupé, but a 2-door sedan, we had many of those over here around that time. Just think of the Volvo 242 or the BMW 315.
The fast back coupé went out of production before 1979, but man, that was one sweet ride!

My first car ever was actually a 1979 Taunus. 5 door station wagon, you could sleep in the back of and have your surfboard on top of. Besides from that a worn out shitbox…

MY favourite Taunus is the P5. That Zagato / Wartburg / Saab looking grin it has. Love it! Never owned one yet though.

Last edited 8 months ago by Jakob K's Garage
Argentine Utop
Argentine Utop
8 months ago

They were made until 1983 in Argentina. Really gorgeous cars.
This one was for sale some time ago: https://www.arcar.org/ford-taunus-119768.

W124
W124
8 months ago

Cool, another Taunusian! My first car too was a Taunus, a 1982 2-door sedan just like in the picture, but I had some alloys and car was painted in a lovely pearlescent blue. 1,6 L OHC and all the fury of 75 horsepower. The car was actually quite crap but I’d still love to own one one day.

Last edited 8 months ago by W124
Jakob K's Garage
Jakob K's Garage
8 months ago
Reply to  W124

Yes, considering it was an upper middle class car (when it was new) and a sales rep car in the UK, it really was quite crap:
Rough plastic on the inside, rusted fast, only 150 km/h absolutely flat out with a long run up, only 10L/100km if you almost didn’t touch the throttle at all, and the rear diff “singing” merily along all the way. And that typical burned engine oil used Ford smell..
Gave up the idea of sleeping in the back, and ditched mine for a square headlight 1983 Citroën 2CV 🙂

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
8 months ago

These Taunuses (Taunii?) are so nice, they almost make me want to change my name to Taunus Taunus.

Collegiate Autodidact
Collegiate Autodidact
8 months ago

What are the silver (chrome) bits just visible on the C pillars of the station wagon in the first two pictures? And it seems notable that in the first picture it looks like the rear passenger windows actually roll down, not necessarily something one expects to see in a two-door station wagon.

Last edited 8 months ago by Collegiate Autodidact
Geoff Buchholz
Geoff Buchholz
8 months ago

What was the last two-door wagon, anyway? They seemed to endure longer in Europe and South America than here. For us, it must have been the Pinto?

Boulevard_Yachtsman
Boulevard_Yachtsman
8 months ago
Reply to  Geoff Buchholz

VW imported the Paratí from Brazil as the Fox 2-door wagon here to the states from ’88 to ’90, so technically a person could buy one here in 1990. I can’t think of anymore after that.

Geoff Buchholz
Geoff Buchholz
8 months ago

Of course! The Fox! I forgot about that one … I liked those; shame they’re all but gone here.

Boulevard_Yachtsman
Boulevard_Yachtsman
8 months ago
Reply to  Geoff Buchholz

So true – I found a half-way decent one about 6 hours away from me on Craigslist a few years ago. It’s tucked away in a garage for the time being – I was driving it semi-daily, but it suddenly needed a few too many things and there were other projects to attend to. It has some hail damage, but not much rust and overall it’s in about as good a shape as one could hope to find in the midwest. Hope to get back to it before too long – they make great little runabouts.

Lew Schiller
Lew Schiller
8 months ago

I need to nun to the can to gnab my unbnella

I just watched Hello Tomorrow! on Apple TV in which there’s a character who talks much like this. It’s “retro future” and the cars are all 50’s and earlier but CGI’d to be hover cars. Pretty cool.

Last edited 8 months ago by Lew Schiller
Mike Smith
Mike Smith
8 months ago

That Taunus wagon does look very nice. Similar in a lot of ways to an early Falcon but… cleaner? maybe just a little less trim work on the European car. I wonder how close they were in size?
The 79 Taunus has great lines, as you discussed, but is let down in a big way by the most pedestrian looking wheels 70’s science could achieve. Honestly, could they be any uglier? I can almost imagine the shouting matches in meetings over whether Ford *really* had to provide those hub caps, because what’s so wrong with just leaving the bearing dust cap out there, anyway?

Martin Dollinger
Martin Dollinger
8 months ago
Reply to  Mike Smith

If Wikipedia is correct, the 1960 Falcon (sedan) is 6 inches longer than the 1961 Taunus (sedan), 4 inches wider, but 3 inches lower. Wheelbase is also up 6 inches for the Falcon.

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