Judging by the success that many luxury automakers are currently experiencing in China, it's no surprise that Lincoln plans to take advantage of the situation by peddling its wares across the Pacific. Lincoln will open its first Chinese dealership next year, but potential buyers there won't be mucking through the same alphabet soup of car names found in American showrooms. USA Today reports that Ford's luxury car division could revert back to legacy names (like Continental and Zephyr) in China while keeping the MK_ names here in North America.

In speaking to Ford exec Jim Farley during the LA Auto Show, USA Today says that Lincoln could switch its naming structure as models are refreshed. Farley didn't confirm that the naming revamp would be a China-only decision, but article leaves little hope that American buyers will get to see the return of classic names anytime soon.

Why would Ford rehash old Lincoln names for China only? Buyers there seem to have a better historical associations with the nameplates than in the US. Chinese also still hold Lincoln in high regard, associating the marque with use by prominent government officials.


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  • 60 Comments
      The Wasp
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'd like to see Lincoln ditch or limit the MK_ naming here in the US, too. The MKZ is doing well but I don't think there is much loyalty invested in the MKS, MKT, and MKX names. Bring back the Continental and the Town Car (a real car) and a deserving Mark 9.
        Jesus!
        • 1 Year Ago
        @The Wasp
        I was really looking forward to the Aviator name on the MKX. Sounds classy and expensive. What a let down. Zephyr sounds awesome too. Im 35 Ford! Get it?!
      anon
      • 1 Year Ago
      I like names better they need to do it in the US again Continental, Premiere, Cosmopolitan, Lido.............no MKZ MKT MKetc.
      artandcolour2010
      • 1 Year Ago
      I really wish Ford would find someone to head Lincoln that actually understood its history and significance.
        anon
        • 1 Year Ago
        @artandcolour2010
        They were probably born after the classic 61-69 Continentals AND HAVE NOT A CLUE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      PiCASSO
      • 1 Year Ago
      Please bring back the names for North America... I hate the MKx names...
        Mike
        • 1 Year Ago
        @PiCASSO
        The only one with the MK should be a Mark Coupe based on the new Mustang. I agree that the old names should come back and be global.
      Chris
      • 1 Year Ago
      I really wish they would ditch the alphabet names here too. I don't mind some of those kinds of names, but Lincoln's are not that interesting, and they have actual names in their history that sound much better than MK this and MK that.
      Lagonda12
      • 1 Year Ago
      Sometimes I wonder if FOMOCO wants Lincoln to fail. Yet another bad and puzzling move by the Lincoln brass..... Why not start giving the new Lincolns real and proper names instead of this MK/Alphanumeric nonsense which does nothing to create any sort of identity? And to think the execs are getting paid big bucks for THIS??? PROPER NAMES HERE AND ABROAD PLEASE!!
        Sam Diamond
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Lagonda12
        Unlike Cadillac, Lincoln has burned out every single good name they had. That's probably why they moved to product codes instead of names. Buick still sells the Park Avenue in China and its really nice (and nothing like the one the USA had). Chinese market never experienced some of the crap we had in the 80's and 90's that burnt out a lot of American brands.
      merlot066
      • 1 Year Ago
      If I end up buying an MKC the first thing I'd do is buy three sets of "Aviator" badges from the Ford parts catalog. I'm tempted to buy "Zephyr" badges for my mom's MKZ as well.
      cpmanx
      • 1 Year Ago
      One key part of the One Ford strategy is to use one set of names around the world, so that the company can build up a unified global image and ad strategy. So far the only exceptions have been for cars with well-established brand equity (ie, Escape vs Kuga, Fusion vs Mondeo). Surely that is a good argument for taking a unified approach with the Lincoln names as well. There is zero brand equity in MKS compared to Continental. This might be a way to save face and promote the return of names as part of a global strategy, not an admission that the MK naming convention is weird and confusing.
      adam1keith1980
      • 1 Year Ago
      Lincoln needs to ressurrect V8 and RWD.
      jonnybimmer
      • 1 Year Ago
      I know it's probably frustrating for Lincoln seeing GM and Buick specifically doing so well in China, but they should really reserve the Continental and Zephyr names for cars that really deserve it, not for renaming the MK cars. Cadillac doesn't have to use DeVille or Eldorado to successfully sell their cars in China, neither should Lincoln.
      sckid213
      • 1 Year Ago
      I predict that real names will once again come "in style." Look at Porsche - they use both numbers and names for their vehicles, and they are true performance vehicles. I have a feeling Caddy will resurrect the "Eldorado" name for their flagship. Maybe Lincoln can do the same with a "Continental" flagship (I'm sure that's unlikely). Hopefully we start to see real names creep back in so we can stop seeing cars badged RLX SHAWD PAWS and similar nonsense.
      lagasca142
      • 1 Year Ago
      Ok so the power that be want to use letters & numbers on cars here and use the name of the cars we know over here in China where they have not a clue. Am done with Lincoln with the ugly grills & stupid names, just send everybody packing,close the doors,& call it a day. For half the pay I could have done a better job of rebuilding the company...
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