NAIAS 2016: 2017 Lincoln Continental Offers 'Quiet Luxury' in Detroit

Chris Tonn
by Chris Tonn

A few grainy spy shots wormed their way through the Web over the last week, but Lincoln finally unveiled the new Continental in Detroit and it’ll be hitting showrooms this fall.

The new Continental was designed with a theme — “Quiet Luxury” — and three terms permeate the press materials: Elegance, Effortless Power and Serenity.

(If the Continental were focused toward Millennials, these would be easy hashtags.)

The styling is unquestionably elegant. The character line flowing from the front fender vent, echoed just above the rocker panel, keep the big Lincoln from looking too slab-sided. The rear fender kicks up, adding some “hips” to the rear view. The chrome strip at the beltline hides the integrated door handles nicely.

And as every OEM must have a signature grille, the Continental follows. The split chrome strip below the main opening is a bit odd, but distinctive. At first glance, the mesh in the grille opening looks like a simple eggcrate — but no, the apertures mimic the classic Continental logo.

An available four hundred horsepower turbo V-6 defines effortlessness. As this will likely be a transverse powerplant, powering either the front or (optionally) all four wheels, the overall feel may be less refined than a traditional rear-drive luxury car, but for the intended owner, this will not be an issue.

Lincoln’s press release notes that the seats were inspired by private jets, offering 30-way adjustments, heating, cooling, and massage. Three exclusive interior design packages are available: Chalet, inspired by ski lodges, with two-tone leather and wood; Thoroughbred, with saddle-inspired leather, quilted to evoke a horse blanket; and Rhapsody, featuring blue leather and aluminum accents.

There was word on pricing.

Chris Tonn
Chris Tonn

Some enthusiasts say they were born with gasoline in their veins. Chris Tonn, on the other hand, had rust flakes in his eyes nearly since birth. Living in salty Ohio and being hopelessly addicted to vintage British and Japanese steel will do that to you. His work has appeared in eBay Motors, Hagerty, The Truth About Cars, Reader's Digest, AutoGuide, Family Handyman, and Jalopnik. He is a member of the Midwest Automotive Media Association, and he's currently looking for the safety glasses he just set down somewhere.

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  • Maxk1947 Maxk1947 on Jan 14, 2016

    The lower edge of the grill looks like somebody has a Kia fetish. It would make more sense if they had kept the chrome "bumperettes" from the concept, which created this shape. I wish they had kept more of the exterior chrome from the concept, which really looked like American Luxury.

  • DrGastro997 DrGastro997 on Jan 20, 2016

    This new Lincoln reminds me of the Homer Simpson lookalike Taurus and 500. There's something about the design that just seems rather weird looking...

  • Akear I just wish GM could produce a vehicle 80% as good as the crown.I sat in a Trax at a Chevrolet dealership this weekend and was shocked how cheap it felt. GM does not care.GM - what a disgrace!
  • Akear I like the grill treatment of all Mitsubishi products. It is an interesting and original design.
  • El scotto Some rambling thoughts; Elon is pulling billions in cash out of Tesla. Tesla will be around, Elon won't let them fail. Mitsubishi is an odd place, you can't sell vehicles if you don't have dealers. Out of all the "Automalls" near you, how many have a Mitsubishi dealership? The Agnellis owned Fiat, Fiat got sold to Stellantis. The Agnellis control Exor. How much of Stellantis does Exor own? I really should be drinking beer with Billy Ford and talking Big-10 trash with him. Ford and Lucid should work out a partnership. You want an electric Lincoln? Have Lucid build it and slap a Lincoln name plate on it. BTW, kick Farley's butt to the curb.
  • Akear US contentChevrolet Trax - 5%Honda Pilot - 52%What a disgrace!I glad Consumer Reports panned the Trax, and put it on its avoid list.
  • Akear This is similar to what lazy GM and Ford used to do.