By on January 13, 2010

Having divested much of its premium brand portfolio (Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover, Aston Martin), Ford is missing out on luxury sales in growth markets like China. So it comes as no surprise that Automotive News [sub] would ask Ford President of the Americas Mark “MKF” Fields whether Ford’s Lincoln brand could go global. Fields’ reply?

Potentially, but we are focusing Lincoln here in North America for right now. We don’t have any plans at this point to take it global. That doesn’t mean in the future we wouldn’t look at that, but it’s very important for us to focus on North America.

The question (and its distinct non-answer) open an uncomfortable can of worms for Ford. Thus far, Alan Mulally’s regime has focused on building up the Ford brand as a global player, largely relegating its remaining luxury divisions to rebadge-based irrelevance. As the Ford brand starts to gain its footing with truly global products, the FoMoCo will eventually have to start figuring out a strategy for Lincoln and Mercury.

For Mercury, death is the only real option. Other than possibly keeping it as a dedicated hybrid or EV brand, there’s nowhere to go with the Jill Wagner brand but the grave. Besides stealing focus from Lincoln and gaining a tiny bit of incremental profit, Mercury has little to no role to play in Ford’s future. Coming to terms with this reality is the first step to figuring out Ford’s luxury brand strategy.

From there, Lincoln will require immense investment to recreate it as a luxury brand of global relevance. It’s re-workings of Ford products are of the latter day GM school: just restyled enough to prevent widespread accusations of cynical rebadging. Needless to say, this will not be enough to generate enthusiasm among American luxury buyers (Lincoln’s US sales fell nearly 23 percent last year to their lowest level since 1981), let alone China’s nouveau riche who have no history with the brand. Especially with products like Ford’s Taurus SHO intruding on its premium positioning and price point.

Unfortunately, Ford’s colossal debt won’t allow for much in the way of unique Lincoln product development. The pre-requisite of winding down the Mercury brand won’t be cheap either. Still, with the Premier Auto Group now defunct, it’s getting to be about time for Ford to turn towards its luxury strategy and figure out how to make the most out of a tough situation. One thing is for certain: with Lincoln and Mercury withering on the vine to vary extents, inaction on this front is not an option.

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48 Comments on “Lincoln Going Global?...”


  • avatar
    briancataldi

    It drives me crazy how irrelavant Mercury and Lincoln are.
    Everytime I see one on the road I cringe becuase of their re-badged bad-ness.
    I 100% agree with Mercury needing to go the graveyard ASAP for Ford to have any real chance of rebuilding Lincoln…it just makes me wonder how so many of us on the blogs know what to do yet the big boys making tons of money seem clueless…

    • 0 avatar

      Regardless how you “feel” about lincon and Mercury, I SUGGEST YOU BUY SOME FORD STOCK NOW.

      I bought in twice when it was below $2.00 and now I’m smiling  with glee every time I look at my scottrade account.

      Even at $11.50 a share I see room for growth and I’m going to buy another $1000 worth of shares by week’s end.

      I “think” of Lincoln as a pathetic wannabe  and I simply see Mercury’s as boring…but, they are still selling so rather than argue with success, my bottom line is “get filthy fuckin rich off it while you can”.

      PS, you should consider buying into pharmeceuticals while you’re at it.   As soon as this healthcare debacle is over, that’s going up too. I’m not going to even tell you how much I made on CHBT, DNDN and CTIC in the last year and a half  :P

    • 0 avatar
      TrailerTrash

      So “many of us on the blogs” don’t know what we are talking about, have never run companies and never have been successful bringing products to market.
      That makes us side-line know-it-alls and more than likely irrelevant.
      If you feel blessed with special qualification and like expensive. over-priced and hard to maintain automobiles, I suppose Ford might possibly benefit from the sage advice should listen.
      Personally. I like affordable cars with available dealers for maintenance.
      I know and understand the differences between the MKS and the Taurus.
      Ditto Audi and VW or Lexus and Toyota.
      Its the Mercury brand that has lost relevance.

    • 0 avatar
      Len_A

      And Mercury is going to end up with only  three small cars – the Mariner SUV, the Milan, and a Focus based vehicle in 2012. The existing Mercury models sell and bring in some add-on business, which is the only reason the brand is still around (and I drive a Mercury Montego). Some of the add-on business, like the Milan, is entry level business they hope to step up to a Lincoln on their next purchase.

  • avatar
    Dr Strangelove

    Of course, they could just axe Lincoln and keep Volvo.

    • 0 avatar
      HerrKaLeun

      +1
      Maybe it is because I’m European… but Volvo has international reputation (at least used to) and sounds like a solid car. Lincoln kind of is unknown in the rest of the world. Every american knows Volvo has safe cars. So does everyone in the world. But to the rest of the world Lincoln just is the president who got shot (that’s why JFK drove a Lincoln???). No one really would think of  a car first when hearing Lincoln.
       
      Maybe Volvo won’t fit into the upper upper class. But none of the Lincolns does and the upper upper class is very small anyway, often not much money to make. Volvos at least could very economically be the luxury brand while sharing platforms with Ford.

    • 0 avatar
      John Horner

      Volvo isn’t a luxury brand and never has been. The endless efforts to push Volvo upmarket have backfired repeatedly. Volvo is actually a brand much like Oldsmobile was in the 1960s, something a touch above the mass market, but certainly not a luxury brand.

  • avatar
    Cammy Corrigan

    If Ford decide to take Lincoln global, then start Ford’s deathwatch up again. Utterly silly idea. They might get some success in China, but Europe? Australia? Africa? India? No. Ask GM how taking Cadillac global worked out for them. In the luxury segement, the Germans are the boys to beat. People still aspire to own a German car, not an American one. It took the Japanese millions of pounds and a carefully executed marketing plans, not to mention a dedicated network of dealers to make the inroads they did in the North American market. I just don’t think Ford will execute Lincoln’s global launch that well.
     
    Having said that, taking Lincoln global makes sense in Mulally’s “One Ford” strategy. Global everyday brand (Ford) and global luxury brand (Lincoln). I just can’t see it doing that well globally. But, I’ve been proved wrong before…

  • avatar
    mtymsi

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, as well as Ford has done with the Ford brand they’ve done equally if not more poorly with the LM brand. Whoever is allegedly focusing on the LM brand is blind in one eye and can’t see out of the other. Between LM and PAG Ford has proven they are completely clueless in running luxury brands. Hyundai has done a much better job with their first luxury car, the Genesis than Ford has with LM or PAG. The Blue Oval boyz need to borrow a quarter and buy a clue.

  • avatar
    Steven02

    I don’t think that platform sharing between Ford and Lincoln is a bad thing.  Lexus shares the ES with Camry, RX with Highlander, LX with Land Cruiser, and GX with 4runner.  The GS shares its platform with the IS.  If Lincoln can differentiate the offerings from Ford, which shouldn’t be hard to do, I don’t see why Lincoln won’t thrive.  Lincoln doesn’t need its own platforms forever car it makes.  Just look at Lexus as an example, or Acura, or Infiniti or etc etc.

  • avatar
    guyincognito

    I think this question is a bit misplaced. I mean Ford is doing much better, but they aren’t anywhere near the point where they need to be thinking about expanding Lincoln abroad. Once they come out with a vehicle that generates more than 15K sales per year and makes a profit, kill Mercury, and get rid of those hideous noses and then they can start to worry about going global.

  • avatar
    Steve Biro

    While I agree with Edward about what needs to be done with Lincoln, I disagree that MKF’s response was a non-answer.  Despite the impatience of many auto fans and financial analysts, Ford’s strategy keeps coming back to this:  “We have to fix the core company and core brand first before we can start getting grandiose with Lincoln and reinventing Mercury.”  And MKF’s response clearly reflected that.  I believe this is the proper approach.  Once the Dearborn-based company and its Ford brand are healthy, I’m sure we’ll see the kinds of Lincolns many of us want.  Meanwhile, the oft-repeated insistance that Mercury must die represents unimaginative, conventional thinking at its worst.  Mercury, and to a lesser extent Lincoln, are idling right now.  They may not be adding much to the bottom line but they’re not hurting things either (unlike Saturn at GM).  Both brands will represent a major opportunity once Ford has its cash flow back.  The Ford execs aren’t clueless… but many outsiders are.

    • 0 avatar
      mtymsi

      If the Ford execs weren’t clueless about running luxury brands LM wouldn’t be in the position it’s in today and Ford would still own PAG making a profit. Keep in mind LM was a viable brand in the not too distant past. They couldn’t profitably run Jaguar, Land Rover, Aston Martin, Volvo, or Lincoln Mercury, five different luxury brands, and you don’t think they’re clueless about running a luxury brand? You couldn’t possibly ask for any more proof than already exists that Ford does not know how to run a luxury brand.

    • 0 avatar
      Robert.Walter

      Aside from Bill Ford Jr., the execs that espoused the megalomanical luxury brand expansion strategy have left the Glass House.

  • avatar

    If pre-MKF Lincoln couldn’t capitalize on the global strategy of the Lincoln LS, how could they make it happen now?  The current crop of Lincolns aren’t nearly as global in design/feel, and there’s no money in the bank.  Not to mention the inability to sell Lincoln MK-anythings with Jags or Volvos.

  • avatar
    gslippy

    Mr. Fields is right.  Lincoln is already near death; thinning its meager resources to go global would starve it into oblivion.
     
    And Mercury has no reason to exist; dump it, and maybe Jill can help sell Lincolns.

  • avatar
    Martin Schwoerer

    Potential global Volvo brand promises based on heritage: rugged sportiness; class-leading safety; class-leading seats; reliability to 200k KMs; economical repairability to 20 years.
    Potential global Lincoln brand promises based on heritage: they built a comfortable car for Frank Cannon; they built a beatiful sedan with suicide doors you could even open and close if the street was level; JFK was shot in one; there were special Bill Blass editions in the 1970s.

  • avatar
    mpresley

    If I was a decision-maker at Ford, and understood Lincoln to have less prestige and desirability than, say, even Buick, but wanted to increase the brand’s appeal, what would I do?  It’s a no-brainer.  I’d make sure they looked as if they were designed by a half-crazed orthodontist.  Yeah…that’s the trick.

  • avatar
    PaulieWalnut

    I don’t think they’re talking about going to Europe but the BRIC countries are a possibility. You can already buy a Lincoln in the middle east.

    With the sale of the last PAG brand, I’ve been thinking about the fate of Lincoln/Mercury lately.

    Mercury will have to hang around, at least in the short term. Lincoln/Mercury dealerships won’t survive without the volume provided it. To that end, a Focus variant has been promised for the brand. If Ford were ambitious this C car would be a re-badged version of the rumoured Euro Ford Capri (the current Focus 3 door has been discontinued due to poor sales but this paves the way for the rumoured VW Scirocco competitor). The Mariner should be replaced with a re-badged Euro Ford Kuga (as Ford’s 3rd highest  seller in the US, the Escape should get unique, mini-Explorer sheet metal).  If Ford decides to produce a Mondeo CC to compete with the Passat CC (this was rumoured a while ago but I haven’t heard anything lately) , then it should be a Mercury in the States. If not, leave things at a 2 car line up.

    Lincoln is actually harder to figure out. It looks like Ford will have only 1 RWD platform in the future which will underpin the Mustang and most likely the Falcon* too (the Territory might have to die or be merged with the Explorer or something. I can‘t see them stretching a platform from the Mustang to a 4200lbs SUV). I seriously doubt Ford will be able to stretch this platform over their entire Lincoln line-up. With these restrictions in mind, I can see an updated MKZ, MKX and Navigator continuing to be twinned with the Fusion, Edge and Expedition. Hopefully, the MKS gets twinned with Falcon eventually. The fate of the MKT will be determined by how the next Explorer does. The Explorer will determine the fate of the controversial D platform.

    How do we differentiate Lincolns from Fords if they’re on the same platform? Different sheet metal, premium interiors and some proprietary snob features like adaptive dampeners, torque vectoring AWD and tons of gadgets. Be a bit more like Audi. A better design language would be nice too.

    Finally, I hope they don’t build a Lincoln smaller than the MKZ. MKC concept, I’m looking at you!
    *Why aren’t the hyperlinks working? Here’s the Falcon link: http://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/sunrise/video/index.html?autoplay_id=17586890#embedded-video-top

  • avatar
    mjz

    Forget Europe, introduce Lincoln in China as Ford’s upscale luxury brand. They’ll sell a zillion of them.

  • avatar
    jpcavanaugh

    Lincoln got relegated to near-Buick status during the days of the PAG, because FoMoCo put Volvo, Rover and Jag up at the top of the prestige ladder.  With the undoing of the PAG, Lincoln is now trying to do a job that nobody equipped it for over the last 4 or 5 years.  So, they do what they have to to get some product into the showrooms.  I hope that this is just temporary in order to hold the fort until the company’s finances stabilize.  Then, maybe we will see  a real flagship.  With rear drive and more than 6 cylinders.  I hope I am not just dreaming here.

  • avatar
    NulloModo

    It makes sense to keep Lincoln on the back burner as far as the world stage goes for the moment.  Current Lincoln sales in the US aren’t good, but they aren’t horrible.  The product line feels like a stop-gap in some areas, but even though most are Ford platform clones, they are fairly well differentiated inside and out if you actually spend some time to look at them, both in terms of interior and feature set.
     
    As popular as Buick is in China,  I think Lincolns could sell like gangbusters over there.  Latin America would be another strong market, as apparently Mexico has enough demand for Mark LTs that they are getting a new one based on the 2009+ F150 while the US market soldiers on without.
     
    Ford is doing the right thing with Lincoln currently.  It was neglected and abused even before the PAG days, and while they easily could have developed new Lincolns based on Jaguar/Aston-Martin technology that would have blown the doors off of anything Cadillac has, and rivaled anything from BMW or Mercedes, they were smart enough to realize that they couldn’t charge $80K+ for a Lincoln with the brand where it is now to make it profitable.  The current lineup offers a ton of value, best in class standard features across all models, great interiors, acceptable performance, and great reliability.  We don’t have many people cross shopping us with BMW or Mercedes at the dealership, but we get plenty of people cross shopping us with Acura, Lexus, and Infiniti, and we get a lot of those sales.

    • 0 avatar
      Z71_Silvy

      Lincoln sales are not terrible?
       
      The Lincoln Taurus since July 2009:
      July 2009 – DOWN 47.1%
      August 2009 – DOWN 42.3%
      September 2009 – DOWN 27.5%
      October 2009 – DOWN 22.3%
      November 2009 – DOWN 27.2%
      December 2009 – DOWN 14.9%
       
      And that is a car that is less than a year old and the beginning of Lincoln’s new “baleen” grille.  And it has bombed almost as bad as the Flex.  The Lincoln Taurus’ poor performance is really telling about the future of Lincoln.
       

  • avatar
    Telegraph Road

    It’s always a good idea to ignore stories whose titles end with a question mark.

  • avatar
    ekay

    The thesis is simply wrong….how much of Lexus’ volume is Camry based? What is the average transaction price of an RX? $46K for a Leather Camry on stilts?
    Lincoln is aiming for the fat middle of the psuedo-lux market—and they’re doing just fine, given the level of investment. Better returns than PAG  ever managed…Lincolns aren’t aimed at the B+B–never really have been, for the most part—so get over it and get on board the Ford fan club. I agree with the above posters that think they’ll get around to some cars for us, but not in the near term.

  • avatar
    getacargetacheck

    Ford’s strategy with Lincoln and Mercury is spot on.  Lincoln is not trying to compete with BMW or Mercedes.   Not everyone on a luxury budget wants a German-style sled.   As Mulally is fond of saying, “it’s all about brand promise.”  The Lincoln “brand promise” is flash and comfort paired with Ford quality and value.  Same with Mercury except Ford has wisely decided to focus Mercury on the D class and smaller. Lincoln on D-class and larger.  Thereby, dealers have a small to large lineup of dressed-up Fords.  That’s a business strategy that has and can work again.  My prediction is that GM will in a few years wished it had pursued the same strategy with Cadillac — Cadillac will never be cross-shopped with the Germans, and their costly CTS and ATS programs will yield little in profits.

    • 0 avatar
      John Horner

      I agree. Cadillac’s fascination with the Germans has done them plenty of good in the buff books, but hasn’t really gotten the job done in the showroom. People who wanted a Cadillac didn’t want an American interpretation of the E-class!
      The Seville was once arguably the world’s best front wheel drive luxury sedan. Cadillac blew it when they went chasing the RWD religion. Totally blew it.
      The Sedan deVille was once the champion luxury machine for lovers of American style luxury … and it was left to rot on the vine.
      Cadillac is more screwed up than Lincoln is RIGHT NOW.
       
       

  • avatar
    detlump

    Ford has sold some Lincolns in China already, such as the Navigator and MKS.  Back in my previous life, when I was working at Export Engineering/Asia Pacific, we were getting those cars certified to be sold in China, GCC, etc.  Fun with lighting, glass, rear seat amenities.  Of course, I managed to chopper out of there and into a new career before launch, so I can only assume that the projects went forward.  That dept has been decimated, just like most others at Ford.  It was neat seeing Falcons, Euro Focus, and other export market cars in the parking lot, even a purple Falcon Ute.

  • avatar
    Telegraph Road

    The winding down of the Mercury brand will be very cheap, in fact.  (I have no idea whether Ford Motor Co intends to kill Mercury, however.)  But Lincoln-Mercury is a single division with two brands.   It has a single dealer network.  Lincolns and Mercuries are sold side-by-side under the same franchise roof.  Killing one of the two brands is easy, and cheap.  It’s not the same as killing Saturn, Pontiac, or Olds–where countless dealers need to be compensated for lost franchises.

  • avatar
    Z71_Silvy

    Lincoln would be laughed off the word stage with their “near-Luxury” appliances.
     
    Nothing Lincoln sells can be considered Luxury…especially when they are just tarted up Fords.

    • 0 avatar
      Telegraph Road

      Yes, Matt.  Just like Caddy was laughed off the world stage.

    • 0 avatar
      John Horner

      Lexii are tarted up Toyotas. Infinities are tarted up Nissans. Alfas are tarted up Fiats. Bentleys are tarted up VW Phaetons. What is your point exactly?
       

    • 0 avatar
      Z71_Silvy

      And Acuras are tarted up Honda’s.
       
      But the difference is that while Ford has been AND CONTINUES to destroy Lincoln…those other manufactures have been building and strengthening their *real* luxury counterparts.
      Ford’s recipe for making a Lincoln is to take 1 part Ford…and 2 parts silver interior paint.  After you paint some interior bits silver, you can put the Lincoln sticker on the front.
       
      Lincoln is a joke….the last decent product they had was the LS…and that came out in 1999.  Every new product since then has been a complete joke.  If Ford was capable of making a sound business decision, they would have killed Lincoln and Mercury…and kept Volvo.  Despite Ford’s best efforts, Volvo has not been ruined yet…and is still a legit luxury player.  Lincoln is just a poser.
       

  • avatar
    npbheights

    Lots of people on ttac over the years have questioned Mercury’s existence, including myself.   Everybody knows they are just rebadged Fords. Lincolns have always been fancy fords as well, but were always quite a bit more special than a Mercury.
    My family has long been a Lincoln family.  My dad had a Mark IV when he met my mom.  I was taken home from the hospital in a Versailles.  We had Town Cars, Continentals, Marks, you name it.  My first car was an old Town Coupe.   Ive owned a 79 Collectors Series Mark V (1 0f 6,262) I have a ’79 Continental Town Car in my garage right now.  My mom currently has a MKZ.  Yesterday, I took her MKZ in for an oil change and I realized, for the first time in all my thirty years, why Mercury has lasted all of these years.  THE DEALERSHIP EXPERIENCE.
    For the first time in my life, I brought a Lincoln to a Ford dealership for service.  Since the local Lincoln Mercury dealership closed a few months ago it was the only game in town. While waiting in line for service (waiting in line?!) I was sitting behind an F-150 that looked like it had been beaten with a base ball bat, a crusty looking Focus and an F-350 that was spewing out copious amounts of diesel smoke that was working its way into my car.  After about 20 minutes I finally got greeted and served.  As the service writer was hunting and pecking my name and address into the computer, another pickup pulled in towing a Taurus with a rope! Ok, so I am now in the waiting room.  Painted floor.  The choking stench of day old coffee cooking on the burner.  Some old vending machines.  Stained seating areas.  Some huge guy coughing into his cell phone “Im sick as a dog”.  When the car was ready the cashier handed me the keys and said “the car should be out front”  It was, and it still had a cellophane slipcover on the seat and a soiled paper floor mat on the floor.   It looked like a greasy boot slipped and soiled the light tan carpet as well.  As I walked the paper and plastic refuse to the trash can and gazed up at the ford-blue painted corrugated steel siding of the dealership I thought, “This is why people bought Mercurys!“.  For a few thousand dollars more (if that)  You got the Lincoln-Mercury Dealership Experience.  You got the covered port-cochere, the porters pulling your car up to you like a valet.  The “Good morning!”, the “Have a pleasant day!”,  The marble flooring, the leather seating in the waiting room, the “would you be needing a loaner today?”
    Without it, yes, Mercury is toast.  But it is Lincoln customers I am concerned about.  While in the end I found the whole Ford experience mildly entertaining, I am sure someone who spent 35-55,000 dollars on what is basically a Fancy Fusion, Fancy Flex, Fancy Edge, Fancy Expedition or Fancy Taurus will find it no laughing matter.  If you have to mingle with the work-a-day lunch pail crowd at the old Ford dealership, what’s the point.  I’ve seen the local Lexus dealership – the amount of marble in the place would give most palaces a run for it’s money, and the danishes and gourmet coffee are second to none.
    Without decent stand-alone dealerships, Lincoln, and certainly Mercury, is toast.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    Lexus’ top sellers are the ES (a luxified Camry) and the RX (a tarted up Highlander). Lincoln does need a halo car to add luster to the brand, but the meat of the $40k and up market is actually served well by shared platform vehicles. Heck, the Mercedes mid range luxury sedans are really just optioned up German taxicabs.
    Mark Fields answered the question correctly. First Ford needs to get the Ford branded lineup in good shape and sharing global designs. Only after that can Ford afford to put more serious effort into rebuilding Lincoln in North America, and only after that can Ford afford the luxury of going after global luxury car markets.
    Ford is a bread and butter brand and has been forever. Lincoln even at its best never emerged from Cadillac’s shadow. Get the low end and mid range products and platforms right and there will be plenty of time to go for a bigger slice of the upscale markets.
    By the way, there are good reasons why there are basically ZERO successful independent ultra-luxury car makers.
     
     

  • avatar

     
    My sister and brother in law drove Town Cars for years. He’s 6’5″ and when they went to the current body style he opted for a Cadillac DTS due to headroom. He’s pissed off about the bailout so he won’t buy another GM, so when his lease was up he opted for the MKS. Other than not being able to wear his hat in the car, he’s thrilled with it. My sister says the engine gives “g-force acceleration”, so I don’t think the fact that Ford’s Ecoboost is a 6 cyl is going to hurt sales with traditional Lincoln buyers.
     
    There’s no need to stretch the Mustang platform if Ford wants a RWD flagship sedan for Lincoln. Remember, they still make the Panther platform Town Car. I think  that a complete restyling and upgrade of the Panther platform Town Car wouldn’t be a bad idea. It wouldn’t cost a lot of money, and give Lincoln a true flagship sedan with RWD. The MKS isn’t bad but it’s still ultimately based on a FWD platform. Ford has a new 5.0liter V8, use that. Carryover the chassis parts but use the police interceptor versions for better handling. Then give it all new sheet metal and a modern interior. If they want to make a really bold statement, base it on the MKR concept, which  I think was nicely done.

  • avatar
    gimmeamanual

    I don’t think you can sell Lincolns in China in any appreciable volume.  Since they’d be imported, they’d be expensive, much more than the locally made Buicks.  And at that price point, the Chinese would rather buy an A6.  You see Cadillacs every once in a while, and my reaction is usually “Huh, wonder who bought that.”  If Caddy can’t sell CTS’s in volume, why would Lincoln have any better luck? 

    That said, there’s a mid-90′s Town Car around that I see every so often, and I always giggle, it looks ridiculous here, much more than any H3.

  • avatar
    mtymsi

    I don’t think anybody that posted on this thread disagrees that LM could be doing a lot better than they are currently. While it’s easy to dismiss Mercury, as pointed out, LM dealers can not survive without it. The suggestion to rebadge some of the European models I think has a lot of merit for not a lot of cost. Hopefully Ford will muddle through the LM mess they’ve created. As with any manufacturer the right products will make the difference. I think the idea of making the Focus RS a Mercury only product is a very good one to start. LM was a very viable brand through the early 90′s can most certainly can be again with the right products.

  • avatar
    vkt2009

    Have any of you actually sat in, rode, or driven the new Lincolns?  The quality of craftsmanship (especially inside the cabin) have caught up with BMW, Lexus, and Infiniti.  My wife was looking to replace her Lexus RX, and we happened to stop by the Lincoln dealer.  She wanted to look at the MKX, but the MKT caught her eye.  Yes the front end is different, but much better looking in real life.  The pictures don’t do it justice.  Quality of the interior was easily on par with the Lexus and actually quieter during our test drive.  And the engine.  Damn, that Ecoboost lives up to the rave reviews it gets online.  Stomping on the gas to pass threw us back into our seats.  Something you never get with any of the Lexus crossovers.  And had every electronic gadget, that actually worked well, that a gadget guy would want.  The Ford Sync is far and away better than the BMW iDrive.  The auto-parallel parking is so much more simple and accurate than in the Lexus I test drove a few weeks ago.  Needless to say, we have a new MKT in our garage.
    All our friends have commented on how nice the MKT looks (which amazes me due to the griping you see on the internet), but they all question us on buying a Lincoln.  (They all have MBs, BMWs, Toyotas, Lexus).  All it takes is to hand them the key fob, let them take a quick 5-10 test drive, and they are amazed at how good the interior quality is and how fun it is to drive.  Some are going to check out the Lincoln dealer when the time arrives for a new car.
    Would I trade in my M3 for a MKS?  Hell no.  But if Lincoln came up with a 2 door sports coupe that competed with it, I’d at least take a look and take it for a test drive, whereas in the past, I would have driven right by the Lincoln dealership.
    Is Lincoln ready for the global market?  No. Or should I say, not yet.  But they are a hell of a lot closer than many of you armchair/internet critics think.

    • 0 avatar
      Len_A

      Way to go!! Great crossover choice – my wife also thinks their gorgeous. EcoBoost and Sync are far ahead of anything the luxury import brands have, and you’re 100% spot on, regarding the interior quality. Enjoy your purchase!!

  • avatar
    AccAzda

    Hmmm

    I was reading a bit ago about the redo front clip on the MKX. Then I heard about the redo on the EDGE. Stupid me.. actually thought that theyd atually have a design that sets them apart.

    Apparently all that does.. is that shit eating grill in the front for Linc, and that stupid MAW on the Edge.

    And…
    Its obvious that ya dont buy a Lex for power.. as noted by the muted accelerator pedal.

    Id like to point out..
    It takes a lot more than a re-glaze of what Ford already produces for a 5-10g markup for the stuff to be considered a success.

    NTM the very reasons you purchased it.. are the exact opposite reasons.. I’d stay far away from it.. and its segment. Inaddition to stuff of this size is just as bad in size and weight and drive-ability as the body on frame stuff Navigator and its base brother Expedition EL

    And MKX = EDGE in comparison against RX
    MKT is only comparo with the Lambdas = ONE big ass / heavy ass damn vehicle.
    And you actually BOUGHT a vehicle with the parallel parking unit?
    Id also like to know.. what merit does the vehicle actually have besides its obese weight, its tech gadgets?


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  • Authors

  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • J & J Sutherland, Canada
  • Tycho de Feyter, China
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Faisal Ali Khan, India