The belt was worn down and squeaked very loudly. Inexpensive replacement.
The LED that lights up the knob for headlights died. It feels weird driving without it, as though something is missing... But I think I can go on.
Rear left blinker broke, but that was because I drove it into someone's van at night while it was foggy and raining. The van did not suffer.
I replaced the thermostat at some point, it was not reporting the temperature correctly and I was afraid of the engine messing up under bad conditions.
One of the rear lights is still dimmer than the other, and during the day looks like it is out, while in fact it is not. I have not been stopped yet, so I am in no hurry to fix it.
Front wheel bearings had to be replaced. (Tip: Buy your own wheel bearing instead of letting a repair shop order it.)
I was quite pessimistic when I first obtained the car. I got it for $250 because its transmission was very broken. I was under the impression that Tauruses were a 50/50 chance, i.e., people either loved them or hated them. My impression was wrong.
I would put about 400-800 miles on the car each weekend. I do not understand why other Taurus drivers are so commonly scared of using their Tauruses to the fullest potential on the highway. It is possible to cruise at tolerantly legal speeds on the highway and be where you want to be before everyone else. This counts if the destination is 174 miles away, as it was for me.
I also took it off-road to camp quite a few times. This means a rocky road where you do not dare go past 5 mph unless you own a truck or a Blazer. That meant about 20 minutes each way of the car bouncing back and forth on the confusing, painful, and scary dirt road. It survived without any damage, minus possibly branches scratching at the paint which is not something I care about.
As far as comfort - everything is great except I do not like how the seat hurts my back during long drives. I am not sure if the seats were built with slouching people in mind instead of me, but... One day I will just end up shoving a pillow under the car seat cover or something.
Another comfort issue - after getting used to my Escort, when I switched to the Taurus, I would get into the car, and hit my ear against the door. Very painful. But that was just from my stupidity. It happened only twice, and has not happened since I got used to the car.