• Sep 10, 2010
With Mercury on the way to the morgue, there are plenty of very nervous Lincoln dealers in the United States. Ford Motor Company is looking to calm those nerves a bit by inviting dealers to Dearborn, MI on October 4. Automotive News reports that The Blue Oval is going to show dealers its plans for its North American-only luxury arm.
Ford spokesman Christian Bokich tells AN that the event is all about the future of Lincoln, adding "It's more about giving dealers a look how Ford will now work with Lincoln as an exclusive, luxury brand." There is no word at this time concerning the content being covered, but we're expecting Ford to show future product, along with how the automaker will further differentiate the four-pointed star from the Ford brand in the years to come. Bloomberg is also reporting that Lincoln dealers will be asked to upgrade their showrooms and work on improving customer service. There are currently 264 retail outlets that do not sell Ford product, and at this point many dealers don't know if they will live on as stand-alone Lincoln dealers in the future.

One interesting byproduct that could result from the meeting will be the likely product leaks that are soon to follow. Among the future vehicles anticipated to be added to the Lincoln brand are a Focus-sized C-segment small car inspired by the Concept C from the 2009 Detroit Auto Show and a similarly proportioned crossover.

[Source: Automotive News – sub. req., Bloomberg | Image: Justin Sullivan/Getty]


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  • 28 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Most of SimpleCar's comments are about minimalism or the 2uetto interior.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well, we DO have stripped down Nissan Versa, Hyundai Accent, and the horribly cheap Chevy Aveo to grant your wish... but they are so spartan that they are destined to be niche products and nothing more.

        Hate it or love it, consumers WILL pay more than 10-12K... especially when faced with the Aveo. If you want to pay less, then just buy a decent used car.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @theblackemblem

        You would rather pay more?
        • 4 Years Ago
        @blackemblem

        That's what I'm getting at. It doesn't pay to buy new. And I don't know if you seen the new Aveo, but its pretty attractive.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Most of your comments are about me.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Naw, I'm talking about the old Aveo.

        I've seen the new Aveo. It IS attractive, although a bit gaudy to me. I'll be damned if the new Aveo is under $12K and still manages to be on par with Ford Fiesta... but naw, I'm not getting my hopes up on that. GM is very likely to sacrifice one of the two characteristics.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Won't take em seriously until they have a modern full-size RWD/AWD sedan
      • 4 Years Ago
      Lincoln should start by killing off the MKS, MKT, MKZ, MKX model names. They mean
      NOTHING to a prospective buyer. Even Zephyr and Aviator meant more than 3 letters.
      The first step in the revitalization of the brand has to be a modern rear wheel drive platform. Small, medium and large vehicles to compete with BMW, Audi, Lexus...
      Lincoln has a legacy, Ford has to rediscover it.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The Lincoln "Mark" series of vehicles should actually come back.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "Minimalist luxury brand" of Fords in drag. "Lincoln, what a luxury car USED to be." And formerly MY brand. My favorite car of all time is the 61 Lincoln-Continental 4-door convertible. Will they EVER again have a car that can generate that much excitement and look so unique?
      • 4 Years Ago
      heh another one I sent in YESTERDAY and still get no love for...

      I agree with this move, separate show rooms would really help the image, and different experiences!

      But this was needed yesterady, as was the new 3.7 in the MKZ...
      • 4 Years Ago
      Lincoln needs to become a minimalist luxury brand. They need to try to be different. Everybody else is doing whatever the latest tech trend is. They need to look at the Alfa 2uetto concept for interior inspiration. It has high quality materials, comfortable, and no it doesn't have all the techno magic like every other luxury car, but makes you focus on the comfortable ride and relaxing while in the vehicle, not connected to a social network(i'm looking at you, Volt) and not fiddling around with sat nav and other menus.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I love all of Ford's current offerings, but Lincoln need to take a new styling redirection if they want to reestablish themselves. They still reek of old people, especially the grills. Audi, BMW, Lexus, and Acura (before those chrome noses) look classy without 40 pounds of chrome (or fake plastic chrome) on their front end. The whole "Oh, big chrome grills are classy!" is such an American geezer mentality. People that truly appreciate luxury cars don't like the gaudiness of Buick, Mercury, Lincoln, and Cadillac. "American Luxury cars" has always been synonymous with "gaudy, bad taste" in my book.

        IMO :)
        • 4 Years Ago
        @AnalogDan

        I don't see how adjusting the blue/red dial to adjust the temp is all that difficult. If so, you shouldn't be driving. There's this little thing called a speakerphone on a cellphone and a hand to turn to down the volume knob on the radio and voila! Hands free calls. Rolls Royce makes cars packed with latest tech. Does that make your late model loaded Accord "spartan" by comparison. There will always be something better in other peoples minds. Its all about being content with what you have. Plus you have to ask yourself does it really justfiy the price when cars depreciate faster than Sanjaya. Or another question you can ask yourself is "am i really THAT lazy?" or "do I really want to be stuck paying a car note forever?"
        • 4 Years Ago
        SimpleCar, if you want simplicity, go buy an old, crappy car (oh wait, you already drive an old, crappy car). But most people these days want to drive hands free with Bluetooth (Ford's SYNC is brilliant), know where they're going, not have to muck about with non-automatic climate control, etc. I drive a car with a "simple" interior, a VW GLI with no options. But even I, as an entusiast, wish for some more technology from time to time.

        If you give a rich person an empty car interior, they'll wonder what they spent their money on.
        • 4 Years Ago
        SimpleCar, let me put it this way. Name a successful minimalist luxury brand. There isn't a single one, and there's a lot of reasons why. People don't consider "minimalist" to be luxury. Luxury, to be frank, is the opposite of minimalist. Luxury is leather, and wood and electronic gadgets, none of which those peons that buy Ford and Toyota get to have, so their bragging rights are secure.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @SimpleCar

        Some people, including myself, aren't always "paying off" new cars with the latest tech. I bought a used 2005 GLI up front with cash. I don't pay monthly. I don't pay interest. It was 2 years old when I bought it. It has depreciated much less than if I had bought it new. So don't make blanket statements about people. All generalizations are false.

        It's not difficult, but it's one more thing to think about. I never really understood automatic temperature control until I drove my friend's new Lexus. What I noticed was that neither me nor my friend touched the climate system at all. The car turned on, it made it 72 degrees, and it kept it there. Period. It never crossed our minds.

        No, that is not hands free calling, because you have to use your hands. I don't know if you've actually *tried* Ford's SYNC system (I test drove a 5.0 Mustang that had it... amazing car), but it's completely different than that. You put your cell phone in the glove box or on the console, and you NEVER touch it while you're in the car. You answer calls with a single button on the steering wheel, it mutes the music, and you talk. MUCH safer than fiddling with your phone, the volume control, and a bluetooth headset. That's how it should be. No temptation to answer/read text messages or take your eyes off the road for even a single second. This should be standard in every car, and it will be very soon. Ford has proven that it's cheap and something people want.

        All of these features are being added to cars without hurting the price. Lower and lower end cars are receiving more and more standard technology features every day. It's called progress, something you seem so against.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The problem with Lincoln is that there isn't a single luxury car in the lineup. The last true luxury Lincoln was the 1939-48 Continental. The current flagship, the porky MKS, based on a 1990s Volvo front-drive platform, doesn't come close to competing with a budget, near luxury Korean car, the Hyundai Genesis. Building a luxury product line from scratch for a tarnished brand with no status is a hopeless proposition. Lincoln should go the way of Mercury.
      • 4 Years Ago
      They also need to get a new flagship car. Their current flagship is the Towncar taxi.
      • 4 Years Ago
      in till Lincoln gets serious about competing in the Luxury segments, The don't have a future..They need a good 3 series RWD competitor, a good Halo coupe with gadgets up to yin yang, def upgrade their dealerships for the higher end customers...b4 Ford excuses were viable for not taking Lincoln further upmarket since Ford owned plenty of luxury marques..but not anymore....At least Cadillac is doing a better job even tho it's still a half @ss job..It's unbelievable that Lexus has been able to achieve what they have from being created in the 90's and all these companies that have been around longer are still catching up...
      • 4 Years Ago
      Has anybody discussed what will become of Lincoln's livery business? Limos, "black car" fleets, etc what with the demise of the Town Car/Panther platform. Will Tauruses fill that gap? Fleet specials of the MKS? Any extended wheelbase versions?

      This is one area where I could see retaining Mercury. Not as a retail brand to the general public, but as a fleet brand for company cars, black cars, limos, and maybe even taxis and police cars. That way the retail sales of Fords and Lincolns would never be hit with the lousy resale values that accrue to cars that are otherwise good, but are tainted with a reputation of being a fleet car.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I agree with Ford that Lincoln needs some serious "rebranding". Your average upper middle class guy (Lincoln's new target demographic) if he thinks of the make at all, thinks of Lincoln as a limo service provider. People may have liked to ride in the old Checker cabs, but they wouldn't have gone out and bought one for themselves.

      The cure? Distinctive platforms and styling. Right now all of their cars are obvious rebadge jobs and that needs to stop. It also needs some exclusive engines, a Boss derived V10 or V12 would be a good start.

      Probably their best bet to get people's attention, and some sales, is a retro inspired Continental four door convertible with an exclusive engine. Why try to be an American Mercedes or BMW (Cadillacs already doing it anyway) when you can be a "budget" Rolls Royce?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Killing a brand is so complicated.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Nah, it's as simple as "One Ford, Only Ford".
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