Cadillac is getting ready to launch the much anticipated rear-drive ATS and new flagship XTS this year. The Lincoln MKZ concept shown at this month's Detroit Auto Show was very well received, and will be followed by six more new and refreshed vehicles by 2014.

Earlier this year, General Motors CEO Dan Akerson told reporters he thought "holy water" should be sprinkled on the Lincoln brand. Ford's marketing chief Jim Farley dropped the "F" bomb on GM in Bill Vlasic's "Once Upon A Car" book, and says brands like Caddy, Lexus and BMW have become "big box" retailers.

AOL Autos Editor-in-Chief David Kiley, in his HuffingtonPost Grand Blvd. column, looks at whether the old rivalry between Caddy and Lincoln can be rekindled.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 103 Comments
      Dennis Baskov
      • 2 Years Ago
      Not unless Lincoln does a complete turnaround and does something about exterior design as well. Currently I think Cadillac is more interested in taking on BMW more than anything, Lincoln is more in the league with Buick and Acura since they all make boring cars that are more attracting to an older group and both Lincolns and Acuras have something bizarre going on their models design that they can't seem to get rid off, no matter how unattractive it looks.
        Jonathan Arena
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Dennis Baskov
        I was about to say the same thing: "Not until Lincoln fires everyone in their design department"
          Dennis Baskov
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Jonathan Arena
          Luckily Lincoln will get its own separate design team in near future. Hopefully that means a completely new Lincoln designs, no more of this vertical bar mustache shaped grills.
          Autoblogist
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Jonathan Arena
          @Dennis Baskov You're actually looking at the first offering of the separate Lincoln design team. So if the MKZ concept is any indication, they should've just kept that team in the Ford studio.
      mikelee
      • 2 Years Ago
      In response to your headline question, "Can rivalry between Caddy and Lincoln heat up again?", the obvious answer is "no" . . . not if Lincoln continues to look like a facelifted Ford Fusion. Lincoln, to be competitive, needs an separate and totally unique design language to differentiate the brand from anything else Ford sells. Look back at the history of the marque. In the early 60s, the line was completely different in styling from all other Ford vehicles. But over the years, to save money, Ford starting building Lincolns (and Mercurys) off existing platforms and...in the process...'dumbing-down' the Lincoln brand. It lost its individuality. And the trend is obviously continuing at Ford. Lincoln is still an 'also-ran' brand, and not even close to competing against Cadillac or others in the segment.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @mikelee
        [blocked]
        Mike B
        • 2 Years Ago
        @mikelee
        "But over the years, to save money, Ford starting building Lincolns (and Mercurys) off existing platforms and" No, they didn't started building them on existing platforms, they just grabbed Fords and slapped Lincoln and Mercury badges on them. Platform sharing =/= Badge engineering.
        Dennis Baskov
        • 2 Years Ago
        @mikelee
        Well fortunately Lincoln announced that some time in near future, it will get it's own separate design division from Ford. I just hope they will drop that silly mustache grill that has been plaguing their cars for years.
          Dean Hammond
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dennis Baskov
          BINGO...someone has actually been reading rather than just flying off the cuff with impromptu speculation....the 2013 Z is the FIRST product ( the current vehicles were mere stepping stone stop gaps ) pointing to the new direction being taken, hopefully new product that follows wont bemerely "luke-warm, or complete mis-fires like the MKT
      me
      • 2 Years Ago
      If BMW is a big box retailer, what is Lincoln? A dollar store?
        MrWhopee
        • 2 Years Ago
        @me
        If only. Then it would have a clear focus, and probably can do pretty well. Witness Hyundai, Kia and Scion, primarily a low-cost brand. Lincolns is kinda in between, don't know what they are or what they wanted to be. Not really good enough to be considered a luxury car and command high price, but don't want to be perceived as value brand (or even mainstream brand) either.
      Bill Burke
      • 2 Years Ago
      That would be a very good thing for American car makers. What would be even better is if Chrysler bings back the "exclusive" Chrysler Imperial. Now that would be really interesting, indeed.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Bill Burke
        [blocked]
      gregmlr
      • 2 Years Ago
      "Ford's marketing chief Jim Farley ... says brands like Caddy, Lexus and BMW have become "big box" retailers." Lincoln wishes it had that problem.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Smooth
      • 2 Years Ago
      Lincoln needs to find their niche and get back to making vehicles that are Lincoln's, like those in the past like Town Car, Mark Series, Continental. Not rebadged Fords. Lincoln also needs to find out where they want the brand to go. Do they want to be Tier 1 with BMW, Mercedes, et. al or on the lower end with Acura, Buick, Volvo, etc.? Acura has stated they're not going to do Tier 1, and Buick and Volvo are having success on their level. Will Lincoln fill the void between them? We'll see.....but Lincoln and Caddy have different aspirations it seems and that is fine. Different strokes for different folks....good luck to them both though! Should be interesting to see!!
        exp57
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smooth
        The Town Car, Mark Series, and Continental were rebadged Fords.
      artandcolour2010
      • 2 Years Ago
      They're going to compete, but in a completely different way than in the past. In the past, each mfr went after the others with almost copycat cars. The Mark series went up against the Eldorado. The Lincoln sedans went up against the Devilles. They matched market for market. Today, Cadillac seems to be going for the "macho-performance" end of the luxury spectrum, with its RWD/AWD platforms and V-Series. Lincoln, signalled by this MKZ concept, seems to be going for the New Age, Green/Techno crowd, if they can find one. I think it could be a very interesting rivalry. They're going after different audiences, but in the same price range.
      Rob
      • 2 Years Ago
      Both Lincoln and Acura need to really step up. Both are only in limited markets around the world and both are losing sales and in danger of going under within a few years Ford has been on a roll but has ignored Lincoln. Honda is floundering like a fish out of water as of late
      Carpinions
      • 2 Years Ago
      Can the rivalry heat up? Sure, all it takes is for Lincoln to finally bring some kind of game. I'm frankly not sure the new MKS will do that for them; interesting look, but not enough I don't think. I'll wait to see it in person though. I actually think it was a mistake for Lincoln to abandon a more angular styling theme in favor of what they've been doing lately. An angular theme obviously worked for Caddy, and Lincoln had very angulaar styling on many of its very beautiful older cars like the Mark II Continental. They could have brought the retro idea back with a modern touch, and made it work, and cut a real profile for themselves in the market. We'll see what happens, but it's going to be a long road, especially when Caddys are flying off the lots, and Lincolns are still seen as overpriced Fords.
      Groagun
      • 2 Years Ago
      I think it can, but why? Both Cadillac and Lincoln are great traditional brands with glorious histories but time and technology has moved on and other marquees have stepped up into the spotlight. Lincoln is in a very precarious position where it has the opportunity to re-invent itself and really do something new and radical: or it can fall upon its tradition and cross it's fingers. My vote is to go in a completely new path but the original question can only be addressed when Lincoln decides on what it is going to become.
      estridge48
      • 2 Years Ago
      I had the opportunity to purchase a new 1993 Lincoln Mk V111 and it was the best car I ever had. I put 346,000 miles on it and only replaced the suspension, water pump, and other normal maintanance items you would do on any car. The engine and transmission had no work done to them and I had to replace only one of the catalitic converters.
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