Buy Local: Lincoln Taking Orders for Chinese-built Crossover

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
buy local lincoln taking orders for chinese built crossover

No, it won’t be shipped to the U.S. — only General Motors does things like that. Chinese customers, on the other hand, will soon be able to get their hands on a Lincoln vehicle built within their country’s borders. Orders opened late last week.

The 2020 Corsair is the first Lincoln-badged vehicle green-lit for local production by Ford Motor Company’s joint venture with Changan Automobile, and it should reach buyers in March. A key plank in Ford’s China 2.0 strategy, local production is seen as a way to reverse the Blue Oval’s sliding sales in the volatile market.

As reported by Automotive News, the Corsair starts at $35,632 in China. For that sum, buyers receive a front-drive model outfitted with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder and eight-speed automatic. Obviously, opting for all-wheel drive pushes the price higher, and don’t expect to find the upmarket 2.3-liter engine on the options list.

Under its new strategy, Ford plans to start local production of a new model each year, reducing its dependency on imports. Currently, Ford imports all Lincoln-badged models available in the region, among them the MKZ, Nautilus, Aviator, Navigator, Continental, and outgoing MKC. Unlike its compact predecessor, the Corsair will eventually be offered as a hybrid, which should appeal to Chinese buyers.

Things aren’t great in that country’s new-vehicle market, but without the latest sales results to show you, all we can offer up in terms of info is Ford Motor Company’s 30.3-percent sales decline in the third quarter of 2019. The Lincoln brand fell 24.1 percent, year over year, in that time frame, though the automaker noted an uptick in volume towards the end of the quarter. With Aviators coming online, that’s not entirely unexpected. As for established product, there’s still some buoyancy to the brand.

Year-to-date sales of the midsized Nautilus rose 20 percent through the end of September, with the hulking Navigator enjoying a volume gain of 45 percent. Clearly, the far cheaper Corsair will appeal to a broader swath of Chinese buyers.

[Image: Lincoln Motor Company]

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  • Superdessucke Superdessucke on Jan 06, 2020

    Hate to see this and wish they would be made here and then imported to China, like free trade is supposed to work. But I guess as long as it keeps their grubby mitts off my tax money, I'm fine with it. Looks like they're going to need the help, what with declining Explorer sales. Not something you'll read on about on automotive cheerleader websites but here it is... Maybe that's just a blip due to production problems? Still disconcerting given their new singular focus on light trucks (insert rubbing chin emotocon)

    • See 1 previous
    • Superdessucke Superdessucke on Jan 07, 2020

      @ToolGuy I suspect the sales decline is largely due to the botched rollout and it'll probably recover. And I hope it does. I don't like the light truck trend but I certainly don't want our automakers to fail. But this definitely underscores how risky Ford's single-market strategy is.

  • TheAnswerIsPolara TheAnswerIsPolara on Jan 07, 2020

    We continue to teach our Asian friends how to compete against us by moving production out of the US. I guess we'll never learn until ALL of the US production is shuttered.

    • TMA1 TMA1 on Jan 07, 2020

      As long as the quarterly bonus check clears, I doubt the decision makers care.

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