By on March 14, 2018

2017 Lincoln Continental

It’s not something a Lincoln aficionado, or even anyone with a general appreciation for history, wants to hear, but sources with knowledge of Ford Motor Company’s product plans claim the Lincoln Continental is headed for the grave.

Speaking to Ford Authority, the sources claim Lincoln’s full-size flagship sedan won’t see a second generation, with parent company Ford choosing to pull the plug and discontinue the slow-selling model instead.

Weak sales and the high cost of developing the model seem to have played a role in the decision. The automaker invested over $1 billion to bring the model back to the market in late 2016, the sources say, and the model’s slow sales aren’t refilling the coffers.

If true, it’s not exactly a shock, as other vehicles built on the same CD4 platform —Ford’s Fusion and Lincoln’s MKZ — don’t seem to have a future, either. Ford hasn’t committed to the production of those vehicles after 2020, and recently halted the development program for the next-generation Fusion. Nor will any new Fusion hail from China or Europe, the company states. (The longer Continental rides atop a modified version of the CD4 platform.)

While some Fusions and MKZs undergo assembly in Mexico, the Continental is an all-American affair, rolling out of Michigan’s Flat Rock assembly plant.

Hope for a next-generation Continental sprang from Ford’s development of the modular, and very versatile, CD6 platform, which can be configured for front-, rear-, or all-wheel-drive applications. However, a source close to the company tells TTAC that, as of now, the platform isn’t expected to underpin any passenger car, just the upcoming rear-drive 2020 Explorer and its Lincoln crossover sibling.

Under former CEO Mark Fields, the CD6 platform was expected to form the basis of the next-gen Fusion, MKZ, Mustang, and Continental, the source said.

Despite the fanfare surrounding its launch, Lincoln’s reborn Continental couldn’t escape the curse afflicting other passenger cars. As popularity of trucks and SUVs grew, something had to give. Lincoln passenger car sales fell 32.6 percent in the U.S. in February, and 36 percent over the first two months of 2018, dragging down the brand as well as Ford Motor Company as a whole.

Continental sales fell to the lowest point ever last month, sinking below the figure recorded in its first month on the market (September 2016). Just 751 of the big sedans left U.S. dealer lots in February, with Canadians buyers only snapping up 31. Last year, the Continental’s first full year on the market, volume reached 12,012 units in the U.S. and 576 in Canada.

In contrast, Cadillac’s aging (but recently refreshed) XTS front-driver recorded 16,275 sales in the U.S. last year, down from over 22,000 the year before. Canadians picked up 729 versions of the less-prestigious sedan.

When contacted by TTAC, Lincoln’s global communications manager, Angie Kozleski, wouldn’t confirm or deny the subject of the report, stating, “I can tell you that the Lincoln Continental remains an important part of the Lincoln lineup and we don’t speculate about our future product plans.”

2017 Lincoln Continental

[Images: Ford Motor Company]

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168 Comments on “Death Comes to the Lincoln Continental?...”


  • avatar
    Chocolatedeath

    Say it ain’t so.

  • avatar
    SaulTigh

    Sad. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen once in person, because we don’t have a Lincoln dealership in my town (though the population and average income around here can surely support one). Every time I think I see one it turns out to be a MKZ that they put the same snout on (dumb). Here’s hoping the Navigator is a success, but I would also be sad to see Lincoln go “full SUV.” Seems to be what the market is demanding.

  • avatar
    ajla

    It’s tempting to say “they should have done ‘X’ better” when it comes the Conti, but I’m not going to do that.

    It is a very, very tough market for passenger cars right now. I’m glad Ford at least gave it a shot.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      I love the new Continental (not $80,000 worth).

      And they did actually advertise it, I’ve seen commercials for it that actually focused on things like the supper adjustable seats, not “REAL PEOPLE” or “That’s a Buick?”

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Continental, its a thing that goes. See your Lincoln dealer today!

      • 0 avatar
        Zarba

        Ding! $80K for the Continental is just not going to bring in the traffic. Ford priced it well into BMW/M-B territory and Lincoln just doesn’t have the brand value to carry it anymore.

        Setting aside the crushing market for sedans in this price range, Lincoln should have been more aggressive in pricing the car.

        While I like the Conti, something about the proportions just seems…off to me. It looks like a FWD car, and that doesn’t sell. Personally, I think they should have gone with a longer hood/shorter deck to clean up the profile. More ’61 slab-side to it and sharper lines on the greenhouse, maybe.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Johann’s Cadillac made the same mistake, you’d think Dearborn would have learned from it.

          “More ’61 slab-side to it and sharper lines on the greenhouse, maybe.”

          I agree but its a +10% maybe in sales at current pricing. Correct pricing, +30% tops. This was not moving 50K units a year, period. Society is too damaged for this to still work.

        • 0 avatar
          brn

          The Continental starts out well equipped at $44K. A Black Label edition can be had for $61K. You need to try pretty darn hard to get the price up to $80K. If you do, you’re much better equipped than an $80K BMW or MB.

          The Continental is a relative bargain in the full size luxury market.

          • 0 avatar
            bd2

            And for the ’18MY, the Conti starts at $45k, still $9k lower than the starting price of the CT6 and $8k lower than the starting price of the MB E CLass.

            Pricing is not the reason why the Conti is not selling as well as Ford/Lincoln has hoped it would (it’s a relative bargain compared to midsize lux sedans, much less the flagship class).

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    F150 Continental?

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    Geez it feels like it just landed and it’s already dead? Seriously, I thought it was just released last summer.

    I’m pretty sure I’ve seen a couple on the road. But, I’m not certain because the front looks similar to the MKZ. And I think that’s an issue with having a corporate face on everything.

  • avatar

    Sweet mother. Who didn’t see this? Charging $$$ for 6 cylinders and FWD doesn’t work unless you have four rings or a “L” on your grill. So. Frakking. Disappointing.

    Look, I generally like the vehicle. They brought the interior into the 21st century. And, the car has much more presence in person than in photos.

    So, a cool billion written off after one model iteration……

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Luxury buyers don’t care about drive wheels or cylinder count. Cadillac failed doing it the “right” way, Audi and Lexus succeeded doing it the “wrong” way. Lincoln’s fundamental issue it getting people who go to the dealerships of Lexus and the Germans to come to them instead. To a large degree the product doesn’t even matter.

      • 0 avatar
        bd2

        Actually, they do.

        There’s a reason why Audi doesn’t offer the A7 and A8 only with Quattro here and why Audi sedan sales overall lag far behind that of its RWD competition (Audi’s CUVs do a lot better in comparison).

        Cadillac’s issue has been packaging/sizing – which they are rectifying.

        The RLX has been a complete failure for Acura and the only reason why the ES sells as well as it does is b/c Lexus priced what is basically a full-size FWD sedan as an entry-level (a price segment below the XTS, Conti, S80 and RLX).

    • 0 avatar

      There are very few FWD cars this large in the luxury segment, and maybe only one other which costs a similar amount.

      The Kia Cadenza

  • avatar
    gasser

    I just don’t get the numbers. $1B for development??? How much can they make per vehicle over production costs? $10,000?? Did they really think they could sell 100,000 of these?? Its NOT a world wide car, like Audi or BMW sedans. Who at Ford approves these business plans? When the Town Car was selling 20,000 to 25,000 annual it wasn’t worthwhile to redesign, but the Continental was??? Admittedly the price point is different, but are there no pencils and backs of envelopes at Ford for them to ballpark these numbers??

    • 0 avatar
      SaulTigh

      Makes you wonder if they’d kept the Town Car around and spent 1/10 the money making incremental improvements. Bitch about the ancient platform all you want, but slap a 5.0 in there and invest in upgraded interior materials and the Town Car could have soldiered on for years and been dang near bullet proof.

      • 0 avatar
        TwoBelugas

        The Town Car was doomed due to a few reasons:

        (1) CAFE, since the 16v detuned motor and 4 speed auto were meant for durability rather than beating the EPA MPG testing and

        (2) the 2012 roof crush standard that was going to require a bit of capital to redesign the body and

        (3) Mullaly was hell bent on closing down as many plants as possible and St Thomas just was at the place at the wrong time after decades of neglect while churning out free money to FoMoCo.

        The Ford loyalists may sing all the praise of Mullaly but that doesn’t mean they will actually buy the FWD Lincolns.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Yes, the cheap, reliable, and durable motor must die! Say hell to unreliable DI turbozzzzz.

          • 0 avatar
            arach

            I thank the good lord above that I’m precisely the age I am, where I start having disposable income at the age of FIDIs.

            If I would have been stuck at the bottom of the car market when these things were 150k miles and 15 years old, I never would have gotten to a point in my life where I HAD disposable income…

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Very true, Arach.

    • 0 avatar

      I thought it only cost $1B to develop a new S-Class.

      So they spent a billion dollars and ended up with a modified version of a FWD car they already had?

    • 0 avatar
      bd2

      $1B seems really high for development when Ford/Lincoln used an off-the-shelf platform and powertrains.

      The Germans make numerous niche models and (seemingly) still make $$ off of them despite relatively low sales volume.

  • avatar
    readallover

    After all the great Continental show cars over the last two decades they settled for this design that just screams: `Meh`. Completely uninspired, I have seen maybe two in the wild and they are generic as it gets.

  • avatar
    olddavid

    That development amount sounds very suspicious. Doesn’t pencil out, especially in the context of the Fusion sibling. Plus wrong wheel drive.

    • 0 avatar
      KalapanaBlack7G

      Isn’t this same CD4 LWB platform shared with the Chinese Taurus?

      Maybe the two models ate up a million. If they throw in the AWD architecture shared with the Fusion/MKZ. Which of course makes no sense.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    The Church will call for a meeting of the Council of Elders on whether or not to call for a new Crusade against Dearborn.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      The six was only liters of 3…

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        They do offer the 305hp 3.7L though.

        A light blue FWD 3.7L in “Select” trim with the fancy 30-speaker stereo and climate package as the only extra options is about $50K. That’s a more compelling car to me than the $80K mega-option versions.

        It will probably hold up better over the years too.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          The premier ones are posted below, I did not check select because I don’t understand the trim order. Must be: Executive, Signature, Cartier or does not compute.

        • 0 avatar
          SaulTigh

          You’d think, but my 3.5L MKZ didn’t hold up well at all, and that engine takes up the entire engine bay, so work was always expensive. Not “take of the front clip to put the car in service position” expensive, but expensive nonetheless. Youtube has some great videos of people trying to change water pumps on those motors. I will never again own a FWD car with a transversely mounted V6.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            I’ve owned a lot of transverse V6 cars that weren’t bad to work on, but they were all pushrod engines.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Water pump on the transverse Coyote V6 is a known hazard. I think its like 13 book hours and I wanna say they drop the motor/trans out of the subframe..

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Depending on package MY17s still pulling 28-33 on the block, AWDs 29,4 on avg in premier. Still too much money for my taste. Watch these things become expensive because of low supply and higher than expected demand. The MY15 MKS AWD trades for 20,3 on avg, or about a third less than the Conti. But psssst there’s no inflation.

    Believe it or not, CT6 RWD Turboz I4 is worth more than the FWD V6 Conti at present. Wowzers.

    Date Price (USD) Odometer (mi) Condition Engine Transmission Exterior Color Type Region Auction In Sample Year Make Model Style Edition Country
    3/6/2018 $37,800 3,838 4.7 4GT Automatic Black Lease Southeast Orlando No 2017 CADILLAC CT6 2WD 4C 4D SEDAN TURBO 3/14/2018 US
    11/30/2017 $35,100 5,249 4.4 4GT Automatic Silver Midwest Detroit No 2017 CADILLAC CT6 2WD 4C 4D SEDAN TURBO 3/14/2018 US
    10/25/2017 $38,000 10,666 4.7 4GT Automatic Blue Regular Southeast New Orleans No 2017 CADILLAC CT6 2WD 4C 4D SEDAN TURBO 3/14/2018 US
    5/31/2017 $40,000 11,522 4.9 4GT Automatic Black Midwest Milwaukee No 2017 CADILLAC CT6 2WD 4C 4D SEDAN TURBO 3/14/2018 US
    5/10/2017 $40,500 3,168 4GT White Regular Southwest Dallas No 2017 CADILLAC CT6 2WD 4C 4D SEDAN TURBO 3/14/2018 US

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Really feels like it ended up being the trial run for the Navigator. A lot of of the Conti’s interior design reappeared there. And that thing is just crushing it in the market.

    The next place this first-class interior treatment should appear is a CD6-based, smaller three-row CUV.

    Such is the sedan market these days. I got a bit over $14,000 for a beautiful, loaded, low-mile 2008 LS460 on trade. Hell of a deal for the eventual buyer, but we didn’t want a sedan anymore either.

  • avatar
    Mike-NB

    I’m dreading the day when the only vehicles available are autonomous electric CUVs.

    I think I’ll stick away a red Barchetta for my nephews to enjoy.

  • avatar
    OneAlpha

    Isn’t this exactly what the automotive press wants?

    The death of every American brand, one at a time, until there are no more domestic carmakers?

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    The Edmunds’ long-term Continental fared poorly against their Genesis G90 which they had at the same time:

    https://www.edmunds.com/lincoln/continental/2017/long-term-road-test/2017-lincoln-continental-vs-2017-genesis-g90-comparing-our-big-luxury-cars.html

    I don’t know how the beaners justified a $1 billion investment in a car that has sold only 18k copies to date. Somebody overpromised.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      A year is “long term”?

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        @28: Compared to the usual ‘test drive’ reviews we normally read, yes.

        The Edmunds’ LT reviews are not perfect. Some of their cars are mfr donors, but most are purchased. Being in LA, their ‘cold weather’ testing usually bottoms out around 40 F, unless they go cross-country. The Edmunds team sets the cruise at 80 mph across the desert, then complains that their cars don’t hit the EPA mileage rating. A few years ago, their donor Dart experienced major issues throughout the year, and ended up ingesting a spark plug at the end of its stay. The car promptly disappeared from the fleet, with a thumbs-up by the staff; that episode smacked of mfr collusion and really fried me.

        There is obvious tension between their duty to tell the truth, and being beholden to the mfrs they work with.

        But, all in all, the various writers put the cars through workaday duties that reflect most drivers’ lifestyles, and they uncover little things a drive around the block will not. Things like usable cargo capacity, infotainment reliability, seat wear, and dealer/garage experiences – not all of which are stellar.

        To their credit, they also sample an interesting cross-section of vehicles, usually something for everybody.

        • 0 avatar
          brn

          As far as I’m concerned, Edmunds fell off the edge of the earth about eight years ago. They basically told their readers to go ‘f’ themselves.

          Before that, they just sucked. They proved they didn’t understand reality with their TMV pricing. They proved it by never being able to sell a car that was remotely near the TMV pricing.

          They’d obtain identical metrics (e.g. braking distance) for two vehicles. One would be called good, while they’d claim the other needed to be removed from the road.

          Edmunds represents everything that one can hate about automotive journalists.

          I did enjoy Karl Bauer though. He was a little out of touch, but generally interesting. I enjoyed his articles.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      G90 – Big, RWD, available V8. Luxury done correctly. Even the old Equus was better than any Lincoln of Cadillac I’ve been in recently.

      • 0 avatar

        Cadillac is doing much better than Lincoln. There are still some gear heads at GM. Ford engineering excellence has been replaced with accountants and cost cutters.

        If you count Chinese sales Cadillac is the third or fourth ranked luxury brand in the world. On-the-other hand Lincoln is not even on the radar. Still, the MKZ and Continental were easily Ford’s best cars.

        Ford is simply now the worse car maker in Detroit, which is strange since they survived the crash of 2008 without a bailout.

        The F-150 and Mustang are not enough to carry Ford!

        • 0 avatar
          sportyaccordy

          Cadillac and Lincoln are both in dire straits. The only bright spot for Cadillac vs Lincoln are their crossovers/SUVs- XT5 is doing much better than the MKX; alarmingly so actually. But all both companies cars are in sales freefall. Lincoln actually had a leg up on Cadillac in sales for a while but that has all but diminished.

    • 0 avatar
      TW5

      “Sometimes it almost feels like a horse has kicked the car’s frame.”

      Surely, this bit of hyperbole was written by someone in Hyundai marketing department.

    • 0 avatar
      ToddAtlasF1

      I remember when the Lincoln MKS was reviewed in the same issue of Car and Driver that introduced the Hyundai Genesis. Any residual dignity Ford may have been hanging onto vanished that day. While it might well be true that both cars turned out to be horrific long-term ownership propositions, the cynicism and lack of ambition of Ford’s expensive practical joke was obvious in comparison to what the Excel makers of twenty years earlier had to offer the ignorant luxury car buyer. Bringing back the Continental name didn’t change that relationship dynamic.

      • 0 avatar
        TMA1

        That first Genesis might not have set the world on fire, but at least it’s still under warranty for any original owners who have hung onto it! Everyone I know who gets behind the wheel of an MKS seemingly can’t wait to get rid of it.

  • avatar
    Superdessucke

    Noooooooooooo!!!

  • avatar
    Fred

    You guys keep buying SUVs and pickups, what do you expect.

    • 0 avatar
      Tele Vision

      We have an F-150; an Equinox; and a CTS-V. Probably not too different from the Sun Belt – but we’re currently under a Snowfall Warning. Hey, you Southerners! Buy More Sedans! We can’t up here.

    • 0 avatar
      brn

      You guys? I drive a full size sedan. Technically, it qualifies as an Executive Class. It got bashed by the automotive press, but it’s awesome. Everyone that rides in it agrees.

      Just goes to prove that everyone else is doing the wrong thing. Follow me, people!!!!

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    You mean even the “Bridge of Weir Deepsoft seats” couldn’t make this a success?

  • avatar
    TMA1

    Sad, but not unexpected. I see these pretty frequently, but only as livery cars. If it wasn’t for that 25% tariff, these could sell like gangbusters in China. But it’s probably not worth building them over there.

    I’m not liking the way Ford is moving as a company. Giving up on so many mainstream segments, and turning to Chinese production. It wasn’t that many years ago that the humble Focus was the world’s best selling car. Ford sedans were practically domestic vehicles in Europe. And they’re throwing all that out the window. I imagine the next Mustang will come from China too, so they can built more trucks in Flat Rock.

    • 0 avatar
      JDG1980

      Subcompact cars and midsize and large sedans are no longer “mainstream segments” in the United States. Sedans are a niche product going the way of minivans – you don’t have an entry in the market just to show up, you only do so if you think you can be one of the best. Basically that means Honda, Toyota, maybe the Koreans, and Nissan for the subprime crowd. American manufacturers just can’t make it work, for whatever reason. The Chevy Impala is a great car – reviewers loved it, Consumer Reports gave it a glowing rating. But people just won’t buy it. The only real exception is the Dodge Charger (and the Chrysler 300), which survive because they target a particular sub-niche and are built on an ancient platform which was paid off years ago.

      Ford’s profitable stuff is still made in the U.S. I don’t see them moving the Mustang overseas; it’s too much of an American icon and there would be a substantial amount of backlash. Chinese production is limited to the Focus, which is part of a dying market. Frankly, I think the only reason they’re even bothering with that is because of fleet sales.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        Ever since Nixon took the country full retard in ’71; money in America has been made from idle asset appreciation. Then asset/property “protection”, and squabbling over who has the “right” to avail themselves of government/courts to take “assets” from someone else. Rather than from doing productive work.

        Hence C-suites in the US are stuffed with the kind of people whose focus is on the American ball: Lawyers, banksters, “managers,” “compliance”-what-have-yous etc. Rather than people focused on building the best product for the best price. Which predictably leads to management by lobbying for tariffs, bailouts and special treatment, and management aimed at defending whatever is left from being overran by hordes of ambulance chasers and apparatchiks on the make. Rather than management by engineers and narrowly focused on customer needs marketers.

        Japan had it’s flirt with similar idiocy in the late 80s, but recovered before too much damage was done. Europe, ex Germany, has suffered similarly; but, aside from US’ish-play-host-to-a-giant-financial-parasite UK, to a lesser extent.

        It really ought not come as a surprise, that car companies ran to produce cars maximally efficiently, ends up producing cars more efficiently; than competitors ran to maximize returns to shareholders by futzing around with every other financial, legal and regulatory shenanigan; other than efficiently building cars.

        • 0 avatar
          ra_pro

          Yes sir to that. America doesn’t produce much first rate stuff any more. When I was growing in Eastern Europe American products were considered the best though obviously due to political/economic reasons were not available. Nowadays when I shop for a good product I am willing to pay extra and hardly ever do I find a competitive US-made product. And if I do I am immediately suspicious that there is something I have missed that’s why it appears as high quality.

      • 0 avatar
        TMA1

        I get it. But are you telling me it’s not worth investing in the 4th-best selling sedan in the US? There are always going to be people who aren’t going to pay the premium for an SUV. Honda/Toyota see this, and invested in brand new Camcords. Nissan is going to make a new Altima. But a Fusion isn’t worth it?

        Sedans and compacts still matter in many parts of the world. The Focus didn’t get to be a #1 seller because people wanted it, but because it was the best thing within reach. Most of the world isn’t hooked on SUVs and crossovers yet. Those markets, as well as the US corollary, need to be served.

  • avatar
    TW5

    No one ever built a luxury brand by packing it in. Maybe they think it’s not impressive enough, and they’d rather take the loss now, and get busy on the next-gen, which will require a more advanced powertrain and more substantial proportions.

    Hopefully, Ford will reconsider if CAFE standards are modified or altered. The regs are basically putting fullsize sedans out to pasture, while giving consumers an irrational preference for full size trucks. I’m not the biggest fan of fullsize sedans, but I’m not sure what they did to be more loathed by environmental regulators than pickups.

    Big picture, I’m not sure why Lincoln isn’t doing better. It seems they’ve made all the right plays. Cadillac went East Coast old money. Lincoln went West Coast new money. Cadillac went for Gotham Art & Science. Lincoln went West Coast swing. Lincoln’s interiors are excellent in the Black Label. Value for money is decent. Yet sales are down 25% through February compared to last year.

    I dunno. Marketing must be off somewhere. Navigator might save the day.

    • 0 avatar
      JDG1980

      “Hopefully, Ford will reconsider if CAFE standards are modified or altered. The regs are basically putting fullsize sedans out to pasture, while giving consumers an irrational preference for full size trucks.”

      Consumers prefer crossovers, SUVs, and pickup trucks because they are more useful. The three-box design just isn’t really that practical for most people; it was primarily styling considerations that kept it alive for so long. Most people are fine with the cargo area being part of the passenger compartment, and for those who want a separate cargo space, a pickup is just so much more versatile (try putting a sheet of plywood in a sedan’s trunk).

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        The “versatility” of needlessly high COG vehicles, begins and ends at ridiculously low, for current levels of state-of-the-art go-turn-stop development, speed limits. Import German speed limits on US/Western freeways, and you’ll quickly see a preference shift towards the kind of cars Germans buy to drive on them.

        Conversely, if Germany imposed speed limits designed around farm tractors on their freeways, Germans would start driving around in farm tractors as well.

        And why not? The whole point of destining/building/buying vehicles that are lower, leaner and more dynamically competent, becomes rather moot; if any benefit from increased dynamic competence is banned by fiat.

        • 0 avatar
          JDG1980

          On which freeways in the U.S. do you think it would be safe to substantially exceed 100 MPH? Pretty much every large American vehicle can go as fast or faster than that.

          And the talk about “dynamic competence” is nonsense. If you’re driving in a manner that would test the handling limits of *any* Class 1 vehicle sold in America in the last 20 years, you’re driving recklessly.

          • 0 avatar
            stuki

            The ones which are wider, straighter and with better visibility than most or all German ones. In a Panamera, almost every bloody highway ex population centers in the Mountain West, is safe enough at 155. The mere fact that 1 ton live axle leaf sprung pickups run those highways at 100 all day long with little in the way of accidents (and fully loaded Big Rigs stay at 85), is a pretty good indication that a less dynamically compromised vehicle can run plenty faster. For comparison, Rigs are limited to 50-62mph in Germany. Because they are dynamically less safe at speeds than optimized freeway cars. Something which doesn’t magically change Mid-Atlantic.

      • 0 avatar
        TW5

        @JDG1980

        The inherent value of light trucks (or lack of value) is not directly related to the onerous regulations issued by the United States government. CAFE 2025 marks the second time manufacturers have attempted to make the V8 fullsize family sedan extinct, which forces people into the truck market. The V8 family sedan has merely become the Crew Cab V8 pickup, a segment dominated by the same American corps as the old BoF V8 sedan segment.

        I don’t know why regulators are doing it, but we cannot simply declare that light trucks are better anyway; therefore, commence with the irrational pillage of a once-great US vehicle segment. This argument is particularly dubious if the stated goal of various regulations is to reduce carbon emissions and increase fuel economy.

  • avatar
    Pete Zaitcev

    This is unfortunate. The Conti was such a massive improvement over their previous “flagship”, the MKZ. I wish it could be developed further. But if the market has spoken, then there’s nothing more to say.

  • avatar
    Gregg

    Sure, the sedan market is weak, but Lincoln could have done better with a few changes. THe concept was better looking than the watered down production model. Why did they discard the frameless side glass? Why price a new model in a competitive and shrinking class so high? And where is the updated transmission? They really think they can charge nearly $100K for a fully loaded one with a 6 speed transmission? I’ll give them that it is way better than the MKS montrosity, but really, the hubris here…

    • 0 avatar
      gottacook

      Somebody explain to me how a company like Subaru decided to drop all its frameless-side-glass cars while undergoing its (successful) effort to become less of a niche brand, while at the high end of the market there’s been an opposite trend toward frameless-side-glass cars (such as the Audi A7, or the current Maserati Quattroporte versus the previous one).

  • avatar
    darex

    I’ve only ever seen three, including, ironically, one today.

  • avatar
    fireballs76

    Too bad they can’t make this platform into a police cruiser, seems to have a more stout or upright position than the Police Interceptor Sedan – Taurus.

  • avatar
    Whatnext

    Very sad to see both Ford and GM shrinking away towards irrelevance.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    The door handles are cool, it has a great stereo and nice seats.

    It’s also pretty boring to look at with the same corporate face we’ve seen for a few years. On a new car.

    At a time when crossovers are the new sedan.

    The CT6 isn’t faring much better, is it?

    • 0 avatar
      KalapanaBlack7G

      Actually, this debuted the new corporate face, which replaced the baleen whale deal from before.

      Of course, the MKZ was first to market by a few months, I think. But the Conti concept was the debut.

      Everyone hated the whale schnoz. But this design language, at a year and a half old, is ‘dated.’ Woops, wrong direction, Lincoln!

      It also simply doesn’t work on the Navigator. Super impressive technology, dynamic lighting, sumptuous interiors, perfect proportions, good rear styling, knock kneed AND cross-eyed from the front, with the awkward large grille, and the hideous alloys on the upper trims. Also, oops.

      Who is handling details at The LMC? Are they planted there by Cadillac to make sure a handful of wild, ill-advised moves keep Lincoln down compared to its self-defeatingly conservative competitor?

      • 0 avatar
        SC5door

        The front of the Navigator is fine, it’s the back what kills it. They cheapened out on the lift gate glass and stuck the wiper motor in the same exact place as the old one. The Escalade gets this feature right.

    • 0 avatar

      At least the CTS-V has a reputation for World class performance. The ATS has a North America car of the year award from 2012 in its corner. Despite a few flaws, Cadillac’s are probably the world’s best handling luxury sports sedan. Unfortunately, many customers don’t care about Cadillac’s superior performance value. That said Cadillac is in far better shape than Lincoln, and they don’t have to contend with a hatchet-man CEO running things.

      It is amazing how demoralizing Hackett has been at Ford.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        All we hear from that putz is “mobility, mobility, mobility!” We won’t need Contis when we’re all being driven in some POS pod, never exceeding a speed limit!

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        All we hear from that putz is “mobility, mobility, mobility!” We won’t need Contis when we’re all being driven in some POS pod, never exceeding a speed limit!

  • avatar
    V16

    The smart luxury car buyer would choose a Chrysler 300C Platinum Edition.
    GREAT value if low mileage, lightly used.

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    Shame, I like everything about this car except the astronomical price that’s about 25-30% too high. A loaded Conti is not too far off a reasonably equipped E400. That’s madness.

  • avatar
    jthorner

    When Hyundai’s Genesis car line is outselling Lincoln’s, something is wrong.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      To be fair, Hyundai is trying really hard, and makes constant improvement. Koreans are still pretty competitive. Any chance to outperform the Japanese is met with gusto. Meanwhile, Ford is getting ready to ship over cars from China.

      • 0 avatar
        SC5door

        Hyundai went conservative with the G90 inside design wise and out but the material quality is far and beyond what the Lincoln offers. The tests that I’ve read has the 365 in the Hyundai just a tick slower than the 400 HP Lincoln as well which I suspect is due to the older 6 speed auto.

  • avatar
    SMIA1948

    The Continental is just too small. The show car version that caused such a stir was much, much larger. The biggest Lincoln sedan should be larger than the Mercedes S-Class, but a much better value.

  • avatar
    Zipster

    I understand that the financial calculations were done by Jerad Kushner as one of his many side endeavors, including $1.6 billion for a 50 year-old office building in Manhattan.

  • avatar
    TMA1

    Suicide doors. Can you imagine how much attention this car would get from trendsetters if they could be seen stepping out the back of a production car with suicide doors?

  • avatar
    Spartan

    You mean to tell me with all this MAGA’ness going on, the Continental isn’t flying off the lots? I guess they’re not nationalist enough to give up driving their Benz, BMW or Lexus.

  • avatar
    Jerome10

    I do not like how Ford is being run at this time. At all.

    I get it. Sedan sales are soft and getting softer.

    But as discussed in the fusion thread a few weeks back, how can you walk away from some 210k+ sales of fusion/mkz/conti(and Mondeo?) ?

    Yes it seems to have been the right call for FCA…. Today. I still would like to know what Ford plans to do 1) to get those lost sales and 2) if fuel prices jump or consumer preferences shift again.

    Maybe they won’t but I just am dumbfounded that there is no business case at a 200k+ annual volume, and well reviewed cars at that.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      “But as discussed in the fusion thread a few weeks back, how can you walk away from some 210k+ sales of fusion/mkz/conti(and Mondeo?) ?”

      Volume doesn’t always = profit. This is a tell that that small-midsize sedan is overcroded and transaction prices are too low to continue the way things are. Consumer preference is a chicken/egg scenario. Perhaps cosnumers prefer CUVs over sedans. It’s easy for them to prefer them when a disproportionate amount of product investment and marketing as been put into CUVs because they transact at higher prices and cost less in CAFE fines.

    • 0 avatar

      Hackett, like a child with ADD, wants instant results from the wall street. Ford is not capable of thinking even a month ahead of time.

  • avatar
    bultaco

    This ugly car didn’t sell for the simple reason that even octogenarian Lincoln car shoppers are savvy enough to know a hideously overpriced, tarted up, fwd shitbox when they see one. Why buy this crapcan when you could have a reliable Lexus with good resale value? When will American car companies “get” that consumers have been onto their practice of putting lipstick on pigs since the Cimmaron?

  • avatar
    Polishdon

    The thing is, it had a chance to be something. But from the front, it’s a clone of the MKZ. You cannot tell them apart. From the side, the door handles are the only easy giveaway. The rear end is different.

    Ford did not spend enough to separate the two cars, style wiae. Look at the Dodge Charger/Chrysler 300. They are the same car, but don’t look it. Ford needed to/needs to do the same with the MKZ/Continental.

    FWD: Someone else said to drop the FWD Continental. Absolutely! Car should have VERY minimal crossover with the MKZ.

    Styling: redesign the car so that it doesn’t look like a MKZ. Can be the same underneath & same styling language, but be different.

    Price: Look at the other makes. where does the Continental compare to? Price it accordingly. Don’t try and make a mid-size common car compete with a S-Class Mercedes.

    If you drop it, that leaves Lincoln with one car (MKZ) and a three suv’s (MKC, MKX, and Navigator) I’m excluding the laughable MKT. When is the last time you even saw one???

    Maybe FCA was ahead of the game dropping the Dart & 200 and focusing on CUV/SUV/Trucks. Ford is heading the same way, just slower.

    • 0 avatar
      NN

      yep. came here to say same thing. From the front, this is indecipherable from an MKZ. I have to look at the door handles to know the difference.

      Bold front-end styling alone would do a lot to help this car, IMO.

  • avatar

    Hackett is just a hatchet man. At least with Fields there was hope in optimism. Ford is going to end up with a smaller carline than Chrysler. The longer Hackett the hatchet man is in charge the more damage he will do to ford. It must be obvious to everyone now he is incompetent.

  • avatar

    Lots of anticipation and expectation with people after they had seen the spectacular show concept. The ‘real thing’ isn’t as good, is it? Gone were the stance and attitude people were looking forward to in order to be lured away from the usual import cars.

  • avatar

    Ford and to some extent the other US carmakers are following the Swedish and Australian carmakers into oblivion. At least Detroit will still have the CTS, Corvette, Pacifica, and Telsa surviving as viable nameplates.

    Ford looks to be exiting the passenger car business. With nearly a year in charge Hackett has made Ford the weakest US carmaker. Who would want to work for Ford motor company today?

  • avatar
    gtem

    The “rhapsody” Signature edition or whatever it was with with very blue interior is unequivocally the handsomest and most interesting car interior (to my eye) on the market today. Better than anything from the Germans or Japanese or anyone else.

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    I’ve either seen 3-4 of these in my ‘hood, or it’s the same 1 that pops up over and over. It’s a handsome car but a little bland. It doesn’t draw the eye like one of the “big 3” German cars. Too much Fusion-esque and FWD is never a good idea (though Audi gets away with it because ?)

    Or maybe the Lincoln name, sans Navigator, is just too far gone down the memory hole. I know I’m in the minority (at least in the real world) but I want a Lincoln to have heft and authority. It has to be BIG – hence the success of the Navigator (and the Cadiilac Escalade) – and RWD and have a V8 engine.

    But what do I know? I still mourn the loss of the Panther and the B-bodies.

    • 0 avatar
      gottacook

      Years ago I already thought there was no more juice in the “Lincoln” marque – that it already seemed as old-hat as “Oldsmobile” or perhaps “Marmon”. If restoring a Continental to the lineup can’t shake loose an appreciable number of customers, I don’t know if there’s any point to having a truck-only Lincoln brand. And I think even a Continental that would have been satisfactory to commenters here – properly wide and long, plenty of silent power, big leather seats, ostentatious yet elegant – would have sold just as poorly, whether FWD, RWD or AWD; the market isn’t there anymore.

  • avatar
    noorct

    Well.. . that should help resale. I mean you can already get a used one with less than 1 year and 8k miles on it for something around 30% off new (and that’s paying Carmax prices). The one linked below is $41K and the reserve has a starting price of $55k.

    Although I think the biggest issue for the conti is that the pricing is outrageous. The cheapest continental is $45,000. For a FWD, V6 sedan with the ability to add zero options. For that you need to step up to the ‘Select’ (wut?) for $50k. And goes up to 6 figures. I just don’t get it.

    https://www.carmax.com/car/14459455

  • avatar
    phila_DLJ

    It’s a shame they couldn’t release it a couple of years before everyone decided to stop buying all kinds of sedans. Maybe it could be resurrected as a CUV, like the Eclipse…but then again, perhaps it would be better if the nameplate was just put to rest (again).

  • avatar
    IBx1

    I get it, it’s hard to sell a sedan today, but I hope Lincoln doesn’t get discouraged and can keep their momentum in developing new models like the Continental and the Navigator. Those have the best interiors of any American car this decade and I’d love a deep blue Continental with the blue leather.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Wow…pour one out.

    The good news, though, is that these are gonna be silly cheap used.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      Lincoln’s CPO warranty is pretty good.

      I’m just sayin…

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Not cheap enough Freed, at least not yet. By the time they reach a more reasonable price, most of them will have too high of miles to interest me at least (75k+).

      I can just imagine taking a bath on trade in seven years, smart money is on the Lex first and then Acura. Maybe a short term buy/trade could work (buy year two, sell year four)?

      Pity, I really wanted Conti to succeed.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        I just looked some up in my area…found one with an asking price of mid-40s for the Reserve trim, AWD and the 2.7 TT, 15,000 miles.

        Forty large isn’t in my budget, but if it were, I’d take a look. That’s a helluva nice car for that kind of money.

  • avatar
    ra_pro

    Let’s face it American car companies cannot produce competitive sedans that they can sell at a profit with one exception China. But Chinese will eventually figure out what the rest of the developed world knows already, American cars are just not good enough compared to the competition. Detroit has maybe 10 years left in China until that happens and then their only hope of survival are trucks and such. If those go down as eventually they will, Detroit will be finished for good.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      It’s not just American nameplates, sedans for the most part aren’t very profitable for anyone in North America. It’s just that some manufacturers are reliant on those segments for volume and marketshare, so they won’t easily walk from them. Frankly, if they wait it out, the attrition may help their transaction prices. Maybe. Really, the fact that the Altima exists will keep sedan prices depressed.

  • avatar
    Sub-600

    I was thinking of this last night when I watched a rerun of ‘Cannon’. The smooth, dangerous, fat man chasing perps in his ‘72 Mark IV. Nothing would stop him in his pursuit of justice, unless he spotted a Carl’s Jr. drive-thru.

  • avatar
    Compaq Deskpro

    I saw one of these at a gas station, didn’t seem to be livery, might have been the first I saw on the road. I complimented him, he was like “yeah its nice” but he was much more interested in my car (grey base Challenger). Even the people who buy these aren’t enthusiastic about Lincoln.

  • avatar
    olivebranch2006

    Ford should have released a new Taurus based on this 3 months after the Lincoln version was released. Leverage more quantity on the 1 billion dollar platform and it becomes more affordable.

  • avatar
    Tstag

    Ford should just give up on Lincoln and axe the brand. It would be far easier to buy a brand like Volvo or Jaguar or Land Rover oh wait that’s been done badly by Ford before.

    To be fair to Lincoln sales in this sector are dying. Jaguar are giving it one last throw of the dice by launching an electric XJ next year. Ford should electrify Lincoln and make it their Tesla. It may even then be able to shift Lincoln’s in Europe. As it is Jaguar and co will get there first. That’s TATA management vs Ford management for you….

  • avatar
    scott25

    As someone who drives these and is around them on a daily basis, it does have presence, but not the type of presence that appeals to or impresses anyone in this day or age. It mostly just looks like a caricature of a 50’s or 60’s sedan on a FWD platform, and old people would rather have something with better value for money/easier to get into and out of and luxury car buyers aren’t ever going to shop Lincoln, period. There really wasn’t ever a market for this, it was just a marketing ploy. They should’ve just launched the new styling direction with the Navigator, followed it with the Aviator.

  • avatar

    They’re discontinuing it?
    I didn’t know it had even been released.

    I’ve never seen one.

  • avatar
    russification

    gorgeous car. proportioned just like a mercedes. perhaps theyll dump them off at firesale prices and I can pick one up for a drift car.

  • avatar

    Ford sucks…

    Case closed.

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