Ford Division got an early start on the 1998 model year, releasing the restyled Contour and Windstar and an all-new Escort ZX2 coupe last spring.
So as the traditional start of the model year approaches, changes to most of the rest of the Ford lineup are less dramatic than the early entries.
Two years after its oft-criticized redesign, the Taurus gets a revised front end that features a larger grille with a trim bar and Ford logo that appears to 'float' in the opening.
The popular Explorer gains a self-adjusting clutch for models with manual transmission and improved antilock brakes that delivers improved control on wet or slippery surfaces and shorter stops in most conditions.
Axed from the lineup are the Aspire, Probe, Thunderbird and Aerostar.
Ford will round out its 1998 lineup with the introduction of the redesigned Crown Victoria toward the end of the year.