Buick has done well for itself in the Chinese auto market, and now Ford Motor Company is hoping it can find a similar success by introducing Lincoln to the growing market. Starting during the second half of 2014, Lincoln will begin selling its cars in China through a dealer network that will deliver a personalized brand experience.

By the end of this decade, Lincoln says that the market for luxury cars in China will not only be larger than that of the United States, but it also expects this segment to account for around 2.7 million sales annually. Aside from Buick, other luxury brands doing well in China include Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, and Lincoln hopes it can attract buyers looking to show off their wealth and enjoy cars specifically tailored to this market. While Lincoln is not elaborating on what kind of tailoring it plans to deliver, it could easily mean that the automaker is expecting to offer market-specific, long-wheelbase models as is the case with other luxury automakers on sale in China.

While it isn't clear which cars will be offered in the Chinese market, we can almost guarantee that the lineup will include the completely redesigned 2013 Lincoln MKZ. In addition to the Lincolns, Ford is also increasing its presence in China with the introduction of 15 new Blue Oval vehicles (and 20 new powertrains) by 2015. Ford is also investing into production facilities in China including five new plants which is expected to help it increase its global sales to eight million total units within the next few years.

Scroll down for Lincoln's official press release.
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Lincoln Coming to China, Bringing Rich Heritage and Unique Alternative to Growing Luxury Market

-Lincoln will be coming to China, offering its rich and unique heritage to customers seeking a new level of luxury

-Lincoln will provide a personalized brand experience for affluent Chinese customers seeking a luxury experience tailored to their specific needs

-Expansion into China further strengthens Ford Motor Company's commitment and aggressive growth strategy in China and establishes Lincoln as a brand with global appeal; this mark's Ford's largest expansion in 50 years

-Lincoln cars will be available in China in the second half of 2014

BEIJING, 28 August, 2012 – Lincoln is coming to China, bringing its rich heritage and a unique alternative to the evolving luxury car customers in one of the world's most important auto markets.

With a nearly 100-year history, Lincoln will deliver an exceptional and personalized brand experience for Chinese customers seeking luxury tailored to their own needs. New Lincoln products will begin to be sold in China in the second half of 2014 through an independent dealer network. The company begins meeting with dealers interested in being part of Lincoln's growth in China in the fourth quarter of this year.

"Lincoln is an important part of our plan, and introducing Lincoln in China marks the next step in our expansion in Asia and our commitment to serving customers in the luxury market," said Ford Motor Company President and CEO Alan Mulally. "We recognize the growth potential for Lincoln in China, building on the growing appeal of our new Lincoln products and unique, personalized customer experience in North America."

Luxury for an Evolving Market

The luxury segment in China is forecast to surpass the luxury segment in the United States by 2020. In China, luxury vehicle sales are expected to more than double – from 6 percent of the market today to nearly 9 percent by the end of the decade, according to IHS. Annual sales of luxury cars are forecast to be approximately 2.7 million units by then.

In China, consumers now see luxury as more than a product, according to an intensive observation study of luxury car buyers conducted by TNS China, "Targeting luxury car drivers in China".

The study also shows that while many affluent consumers in China are still motivated by a primary desire to display their wealth noticeably, data gathered over the last 2 years reveals that a select group of consumers are evolving towards purchasing luxury for the personal experience rather than as an outward signal to others. Their motivation to purchase is also led by self-discovery of products and services that meet their own unique demands, providing a high degree of self-reward in making the right choice.

Lincoln's combination of outstanding products and a personalized luxury buying and ownership experience is expected to be particularly appealing to this evolving group of Chinese luxury consumers.

"Globally, we're seeing a new generation of luxury clients who value more individualistic and tailored options," said Jim Farley, Group Vice President, Global Marketing Sales and Service, Ford Motor Company. "In China, the emerging luxury buyers are younger and fast-changing, and they have a strong desire to understand and appreciate the heritage of a brand- the origins of its real values such as timeless elegance, sophistication and craftsmanship in Lincoln."

A Luxury Brand Heritage, Unique Vision for the Future

Lincoln, named after U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, was founded by Henry Leland. Lincoln was acquired by Ford Motor Company in 1922 when it saw the potential in the brand and identified with its purpose to serve luxury customers uniquely.

"Lincoln will distinguish itself by providing more individual and personalized motor cars, and a more personal and crafted experience to match," said Farley. "The Lincoln experience promises to deliver elegant simplicity, something warmer and more personally engaging."

"Research shows that for luxury consumers in China, international credentials are not enough; heritage and excellence are also expected of a luxury car."

From the brand's start, Lincolns were known for challenging convention and driving innovation in design and craftsmanship. This includes the ground-breaking design of the Lincoln Zephyr and original Lincoln Continental.

Today, Lincoln is combining outstanding vehicles with personal and innovative customer service at every step.

Ford Motor Company Expanding Aggressively in China

"Lincoln's introduction to China represents a significant step forward in Ford's aggressive growth strategy for the country", said Dave Schoch, Chairman and CEO, Ford Motor China. "We are on track to deliver 15 new Ford-branded vehicles and 20 powertrains by 2015 to Chinese customers. With Lincoln, we will be expanding our product offering to cover China's fast-growing luxury car segment."

Ford Motor Company is building five new plants in China, including in Chongqing, which is home to the largest manufacturing location for Ford outside southeast Michigan. Once completed, the plants will double the company's capacity in China to 1.2 million passenger vehicles a year.

The expansion, the largest by Ford in 50 years, will help the automaker realize an increase in global sales by around 50 percent from 2010 to about 8 million vehicles annually by mid-decade.

About Lincoln

Lincoln is the luxury automotive brand of Ford Motor Company, committed to creating compelling vehicles with an exceptional ownership experience to match. Lincoln cars will be available in China in the second half of 2014. For more information, please visit media.Lincoln.com or www.Lincoln.com.cn. Follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/Lincoln

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 164,000 employees and about 70 plants worldwide, the company's automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company.

Ford's wholly owned subsidiaries, joint ventures and investment in China include Ford Motor (China) Limited, Ford Motor Research & Engineering (Nanjing) Co., Ltd., Ford Automotive Finance (China) Ltd., Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co., Ltd., Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co., Ltd. Nanjing Company, Changan Ford Mazda Engine Co., Ltd. and Jiangling Motors Co., Ltd.

For more information regarding Ford's products, please visit www.fordmotorcompany.com and www.ford.com.cn.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 59 Comments
      Jason Golden
      • 2 Years Ago
      A couple of my import-loving (BMW, Jag) friends bought Lincolns in the last three years. I was shocked. They both report that the ownership experience and dealer service is NOT up to the standards provided by their previous import lux brands. Product is finally looking better, but the image problem lingers. It's as if the Lincoln brand hovers quietly in the Twilight Zone of invisibility and irrelevance. I have hopes of a Lincoln revival (similar to Buick) , but I'm not confident that Ford is firmly committed to the brand here in North America.
      Car Guy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Lincoln has a very long road to travel. It's taken Cadillac 10+ years to make a comeback and they still have work to do.
      Tiberius1701
      • 2 Years Ago
      Any serious plans on entering the Chinese market requires that they offer LWB models. Judging from some of the previous comments, I do not think that people realize that the Lincoln nameplate still carries an air of luxury in the Pacific Rim. This may not be as much of a pipe dream as some of you might think. Besides, look at Buick.
        GreenN_Gold
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Tiberius1701
        There's a reason Buicks are popular in China. They have a storied history from transporting China's leaders. Lincoln doesn't have that.
        carguy1701
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Tiberius1701
        It does? I wasn't aware they knew it existed, as outside of a few Town Car exports, it has been exclusive to North America for most of its life.
      Yang Xi Gua
      • 2 Years Ago
      Lincoln is written as Lin Ken in Chinese, very easy to pronounce.
      Slartibartfast
      • 2 Years Ago
      I guess if we can learn how to pronounce Hyundai (yes, I know that's not Chinese) and Huawei, they can learn to pronounce 'Lincoln', but it sounds like a tough sell.
        Yang Xi Gua
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Slartibartfast
        Hyundai is derived from the Chinese word Xiandai which means Modern.
          Slartibartfast
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Yang Xi Gua
          Did not know that! So...what do you think of marketing the name Lincoln in China? Is the pronunciation a problem?
      lqqkingfrfun
      • 2 Years Ago
      It really gets me how people are just "GA GA" over BMW, which has been designing their cars with the same stupid look and design since the 1980's...yet nobody complains about THAT at all... Nearly 30 years of the same stupid look. Yet folks criticize Lincoln?? Give me a break. I love my Lincoln and will stick with it :)
        Jason Golden
        • 2 Years Ago
        @lqqkingfrfun
        BMW has consistently delivered an image, products, and a product message (Ultimate Driving Machine) which have all played well to enthusiasts and "fancy label lovers" alike. There's some intelligence and a bit of luck in BMW's success, as it's not something that many other brands have achieved.
      MANARC100
      • 2 Years Ago
      Just market the styling as Tiger Whiskers and it will sell like crazy.
        MANARC100
        • 2 Years Ago
        @MANARC100
        oh and don't forget to make special editions, stretch the wheelbase, and add gold leaf somewhere on the inside.
      roy
      • 2 Years Ago
      That might be the best place to sell all the Olds/ Pontiac grill models.It looks more like a import than american built luxury car.
      itceps
      • 2 Years Ago
      Can somebody please explain me why is Buick so popular in China and how did it become a top luxury brand in China? It is really short of miracle, as Buick in many other places is either unknown brand or at best laughable stock when compared to Teutonic masterpieces.
        terp
        • 2 Years Ago
        @itceps
        I read somewhere that the last emperor of China had a Buick which makes the brand resonate with the people.
        Wills
        • 2 Years Ago
        @itceps
        The Chinese luxury market favors cars that aren't as 'flashy' as the US. so Cadillac, Mercedes, etc... are not as popular... Buick however, is more of 'modest' luxury brand, and appeals more to the Chinese demographic.
          gtv4rudy
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Wills
          The Chinese buy as much Audis and Volkswagens as Buicks ,maybe more.
          Mr.Roadrage
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Wills
          Rick, Cadillacs are most certainly sold in China. Here's the website: http://www.cadillac.com.cn/
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Wills
          [blocked]
      amerifight
      • 2 Years Ago
      People hate and hate and hate. I am honestly getting sick of the bad mouthing. Lincoln can sell where it wants, if Buick has had sucess there then why couldn't they? This blog has become a crazy discussion about why ur fav is better only! I am an AMERICAN I support Ford because they are AMERICAN and GM because they are AMERICAN (want them to get out from under the gov though) and I used to support Chrysler before they were primarily owned by the Italians. I don't care about any other automakers, even if they put factories here, the money goes straight back to a nation that doesn't invest further into ours. Make a stand! I will only buy american.
        Mr.Roadrage
        • 2 Years Ago
        @amerifight
        I like your thinking. You're an example to us all. I am not American, so henceforth I shall buy only non-American products.
          SatinSheetMetal
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Mr.Roadrage
          Well **** there's nothing left for you to watch on TV now.
        Merc1
        • 2 Years Ago
        @amerifight
        And your view is just as narrow minded and dumb as the rest. You don't support Chrysler because they are owned by Italians? Nothing but Americans are working in their factories here. Do they not count? See how dumb that is? Anyway the problem with Lincoln going to China is that they're pretty much dead here and nothing but a joke in the luxury market, at best. Why would you spend the money to sell a group of duller than dull cars half way around the world when you're home market sales are next to nothing? Now if you just want a quick fix then that might work, look at Buick. At least GM is now investing a lot more back into Buick, here in the U.S. While they primarily kept the brand in 2009 because of China, they haven't forgotten about the U.S. market. Lincoln is a joke isn't going to fool many Chinese. Watch and see. Lincoln will be gone completely in 5 years, then where you gonna wave the flag from? M
        • 2 Years Ago
        @amerifight
        [blocked]
      That Guy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Cool. Now we can watch Lincoln fail over there and over here. I mean, if Lincoln is a joke and the saddest excuse for even a “near-luxury” brand in the only place it was ever sold…how is it going to be received over there? It’s obvious by the mediocre 2013 Lincoln Fusion that Ford is not serious about Lincoln. Sure, it doesn’t take much to have the night janitor peel off the Ford stickers and apply some Lincoln stickers, but they are losing money hand over fist. And this scam isn’t going to help.
        XJ Yamaha
        • 2 Years Ago
        @That Guy
        The troll only comes out with his unfounded and completely biased comments when the topic is FoMoCo related. You're sad. How often are you going to have to change you're name before you finally realize their is a reason you're being forced to do so?
        • 2 Years Ago
        @That Guy
        [blocked]
      The Wasp
      • 2 Years Ago
      For anyone saying Lincoln will fail in China, I ask this: did Buick have a strong lineup when they started selling in China? No, they did not [not in the US, anyway]. They had a pretty bland lineup which has since improved. Buick found something that resonated with Chinese buyers -- probably the image of being American combined with a not-too-high price point. Lincoln can capture that as well if their cars are marketed, priced, and distributed well.
        Jonathan Ippolito
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Wasp
        Sorry but Buick wasn't pretending to be a luxury car and Lincoln is !
          The Wasp
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Jonathan Ippolito
          I'm not old enough to really know the classic Buick lineage -- but in my lifetime, Buick has never done anything but pretend to be a luxury car.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Jonathan Ippolito
          [blocked]
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Wasp
        [blocked]
          MyerShift
          • 2 Years Ago
          STFU
          Zeal of Sparta
          • 2 Years Ago
          Do you have something better to do than troll all day? Most of have jobs and would rather not waste what little free time we have sifting through irrelevant (i.e. I am here to troll) comments just to find a good well thought out or to the point comment.
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