By on May 24, 2006

The Old Guard Before these days of endless, shameless bling, V8 sedans of a sporting nature took their job seriously. Flat black trim outsold chrome and wood by a hefty margin. Intrusive electronic nannies, TV screens, time-wasting joysticks and promiscuous style were notable by their absence. Q-ships owners reveled in their car's ability to speak softly and carry a big stick. Fast forward a decade and the sporting sedan's standard bearers have been desecrated; tainted by electronic frippery and morphed into cartoon caricatures of their dignified selves. Even more improbably, the genre's sole survivor was made by the hand of Lincoln.

To see it is to know it. The Lincoln LS Sport's purposeful creases, beefy haunches, short over hangs, and wikkid fast C-pillars seem carefully crafted to win the hearts and minds of Bangle-aversive buyers. The car's hunky proportions and aggressive stance also make a strong case against chop-top chic, and for the design firm of Longer, Lower and Wider. Mind you, the LS' generic taillights and frumpy deck lid are reverse Viagra for anyone under 65. Luckily, squinting HID projectors, 17' chrome wheels and a timeless monotone paint treatment keep the Mitsubishi Diamante references at bay. A new front bumper with a drop-jaw intake, fog lights, and chrome accents lightly spices the plain Jane front fascia.

We don't need no stinkin' sports seats! Oh wait, we do. The LS' elegant 'approach' lamps shed unwelcome light on a different story within. Lincoln's trademark 'satin-nickel' bling-bling abominates the LS' dated interior like a chandelier in a doublewide. A farrago of trim elements fights for your attention with all the forced, misplaced charm of a Brady Bunch family reunion. There's enough walnut trim to panel an upscale rumpus room. The steering wheel places nickel, wood, and antiseptic beige polymers in inexplicable proximity. The oversize gauges look as dull and cheap as a motel lobby clock. Thankfully, mercifully, the LS' switchgear is elegant and functional.

Fight the urge to find an Audi, any Audi, and you'll discover that the LS bombards its occupants with surprise and delight. From the electric parking brake to power adjustable pedals, the LS knows the luxobarge drill: easy does it. The DVD-based navigation system offers the perfect blend of plastic and virtual buttons; it's a quick study compared to the perpendicular learning curve of I-Drive. The LS' air-conditioned thrones are a Dallas matron's best friend, though the short, thin seat bottoms will fatigue any long-legged Texans who happen aboard.

Not the sharpest tool in the box... The LS' THX ICE features a trick motorized faceplate, but a choir of slowly roasting Wookies would sound more appealing (on many levels). George Lucas' crew fitted the LS' cabin with the audio equivalent of Jabba's jowels. Not to mix metaphors (much), but the woofers throw enough mud to win a mid-term senate election. De-power those drivers and have a look around. A bright greenhouse and large sideview mirrors afford excellent views of the scenery. Impressionist paintings are a mere eight cylinders away.

In case you Gen Y Botherers never clocked the whole "Hot-Rod Lincoln" thing, nail the LS' throttle. A bracing blast of torque and horsepower establish a welcome link to the brand's muscle car past. The LS' fierce intake growl adds to the drama. While there are plenty of more accelerative six-pots out there, a luxury whip with a 280-horse 3.9-liter V8 that wafts to sixty in 6.5 seconds in the great American style works for me. OK, that's almost two seconds slower than a V8-powered 5-Series, but you can console yourself with a lot of champagne with the money saved.

Lincoln LS; we hardly knew ye. Or just go out and clip a few apexes. The LS V8 Sport (the only trim level) sits on the Jaguar S-Type's platform. Both the LS' chassis and its ZF steering box are ideally weighted for lateral fun. Firm but fair dampers keep body roll and understeer in check. The Select Shift auto-manual transmission keeps the power coming. Put it all together, throw the four-door into some bends and you'll soon long for more supportive chairs. Yes, sports-tuned imports can run rings around the LS through mad twisties, but the LS is no slouch and it does the cruising thing with far more comfort and class.

Old school sports sedans like this are an endangered species. The company that invented and perfected the genre has abandoned the path not Bangled. Infiniti's Straight-G sedan and the equivalently-priced Germans are off the mark by two cylinders. Lexus has yet to understand the relentless pursuit of performance. Even with infrequent and low-dollar updates over the past six years, only the Lincoln LS personifies all that was right with the last big-bore BMW sedan. Unfortunately, Ford's given-up on the LS. The almost vacant Wixom assembly plant (the brand's home since 1957) ceases LS production later this year. Meanwhile, there's a fire sale of old-school thrills down at your local Lincoln showroom.

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12 Comments on “Lincoln LS V8 Sport Review...”


  • avatar
    Sajeev Mehta

    Sure enough, Ford’s remaining LS inventory currently has $8000 slapped on the hood. That puts a base model (V8 Sport) on par with a moderately-loaded, badge engineered Zephyr. Hot-Rod Lincoln, RIP.

    A tip of the hat to the fine folks at http://www.jalopnik.com for that info!

  • avatar

    What would it take to give this thing into a muscle car makeover?

  • avatar
    Sajeev Mehta

    Besides an S-type R engine swap? LS’ aftermarket presence is meager at best…the likely cause is Ford itself. The same basic chassis carries the new Mustang; a car with crazy amounts of bolt-on goodies available.

    Maybe Elton should sound off on an LS-based Cougar.

  • avatar
    LS V8 Owner

    OK, YOU DON'T LIKE THE "SATIN NICKEL BLING BLING THAT ABOMINATES THE OUTDATED INTERIOR" WHAT WOULD ME MORE ATTRACTIVE OR FITTING? HOMOGINIZED ONE COLOR, ONE TEXTURE INTERIOR TRIM LIKE MOST CARS TODAY? WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO CHOICES BEYOND BLACK, GREY OR TAN.I OWN A '05 LS V8 AND LIKE THE GRAPHICS ON THE GAUGES, SURE I WISH IT WAS A FULL SET OF GAUGES BUT I CAN LIVE WITH WHAT IS THERE. AS AN OWNER, I CAN SAY ABOUT THE ONLY THING ABOUT THE CAR I REALLY WISH LINCOLN HAD DONE DIFFERENTLY IS MADE THE HEADRESTS SMALLER. I FEEL THEY ARE A LITTLE TOO TALL AND WIDE AND CAN SOMETIMES BLOCK QUICK GLANCES DURING LANE CHANGES. AS FOR AUDIS, NICE CARS, EXPENSIVE TO MAINTAIN AND REPAIR PLUS I FIND THE INTERIORS KIND OF BORING. BUT HEY, FREE OPINION IS WHAT MAKES THIS COUNTRY GREAT!!

  • avatar
    Mrb00st

    I loved the LS, i’m sad to see it go despite it’s lacklustre interior.

    It was that same engine that made me go “whoa, wtf?” when i pressed to go pedal on a new-style thunderbird a while back. Whole lotta lovin’ from that V8.

    the MKZ is a very poor replacement for the LS.

  • avatar
    Sajeev Mehta

    WHAT WOULD ME MORE ATTRACTIVE OR FITTING? HOMOGINIZED ONE COLOR, ONE TEXTURE INTERIOR TRIM LIKE MOST CARS TODAY?

    How many cars that stickered over $30,000 have a one texture interior? Why aren’t you comparing the LS interior to other luxury cars in its class?

    The LS was a dull interior in flat black plastic (2000) and didn’t look any classier when they painted it satin nickel. Its the same stuff you see in a $19,000 Camry. None of the elements worked like they did in German and Japanese luxury cars.

    Have you seen how quickly Lincoln LS’ depreciates on the used car market? Now you can have a 2006 LS V8 Sport with low miles, certified pre-owned, etc for $25,000. This was a $45,000 car last year! That interior is one reason why.

  • avatar
    tentacles

    They should have put together a higher trim version with the supercharged AJ-V8. That’s how you sell these cars. People buy more 535s because the M5 exists, even if they don’t actually sell that many M5s.

  • avatar
    Sajeev Mehta

    Forget about that, I just wanted one with the same 6-spd stick as the 540i. I have a sneaking suspicion that the Powers that Be told everyone that Ford SVT was the only division that was allowed to have high performance vehicles.

    Maybe that’s nuts, but there’s no logical reason to not make a Super-LS and let the V6/V8 LS die on the vine, either.

  • avatar
    allyza866

    Iffin it can’t be bought in de store it don’t exist. Iffin de store don’t set the value, no one knows. Aw come on people, I know you are smarter than this. Take the door panels to a trim shop and put your desired pattern and materials on them and redo the seat covers. It’s very easy to do. For power, put 2 80cu. ft. bottles of nitros in the trunk = $800 gets you 150 more horse power for $1,000 bucks for 2-4 minutes (refills are available at a welding supply shop like AirGas). Buy the rig used after the first year’s depreciation too.

  • avatar
    its all good

    What about 7 years depreciation? I just bought my 3rd LS… an 06′.I’ll put over 200,000 fun miles on this one too! Buy used at a fair price take a little care and let your friends use it once in a while. Tell them to “put their foot in it” when they drive. They will smile when they bring it back to you and say “That was fun!”. Plan to spend $7000.00 and you will get great value from a car that wants to please! Thanks Ford and Lincoln!

  • avatar
    omer333

    Don’t get me wrong, I love my car.

    But I COMPLETELY forgot that I could have got a V8 LS for way less than my Dart.

    I’d have sacrificed some of the tech that’s standard in a 2014 car vs. a 2006 car.

    But dat V8, tho’.


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