Lincoln To Focus On Targeting Highest-Volume Luxury Segments

2013 Lincoln MKZ

2013 Lincoln MKZ

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Lincoln may be Ford’s in-house luxury brand, but don’t expect to see a flagship concept like Cadillac’s stunning Ciel from it in the near future. Instead, Lincoln’s product plan calls for a focus on building competitive products for the highest volume luxury segments.

While a flagship vehicle (or a stunning concept) may draw attention to the brand, producing such a high-cost, low-demand product simply doesn’t make financial sense for Lincoln. Instead, Lincoln is choosing to focus on building segment-leading vehicles to claw its way up the sales charts.

As Automotive News (subscription required) reports, Lincoln trails luxury marques like Lexus and Infiniti by a large margin, and barely sells more vehicles than Toyota’s entry-level Scion brand. The fact that Lincoln’s sales are down by 11-percent year to date (reducing its market share to just 0.6 percent) makes its climb back to prosperity that much more difficult.

Lincoln is banking on new products, like its 2013 MKZ sedan and the upcoming Ford Escape-sized crossover (tentatively called the MKC or MKD) to draw younger customers to the brand. Beyond that, it’s got updates of the MKX, MKT, MKS and Navigator in the works, but will a steady stream of new products be enough to ensure growth for the brand?

Time will tell, but time is a luxury that Lincoln seems to be running out of.
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Comments (13)
  1. Poor Lincoln Brand!!!

  2. Please, Lincoln, give us a break on the MK names. They are not only completely forgettable and meaningless but really dumb. Plus, IMHO, Lincoln really does need a flagship vehicle. Use the Australian Falcon RWD platform to build a kickass sedan, coupe and convertible.

  3. I like the Idea of RWD Flagship built on the Austrailian Falcon Platform...and while at it buy the name back from Pep Boys and builf a Falcon for the U.S. too.

  4. When I look at the MKZ, I see Lincoln closer to their goal of finding a global flagship than they were 10 years ago. Cadillac seems to have found theirs after struggling for many years. Animosity apart, Ford is already doing well with Fiesta, Focus, and Edge. There is a lot of hype about the new Fusion, and excitement about the new Global Mustang. Truck sales have never been a problem for Ford. Luxury seems to be the week link, and understandably so, since (IMO) is the toughest of all competitions today: it's about good looks, finest materials and manufacturing, high performance, and low fuel consumption! Those are the things Mercedes, BMW, Toyota and Nissan offer today. I for one hate the MKT, but I see potential for the MKZ.

  5. Cadillac has the same problem Lincoln does...MKnames... silly childlike sports car lettering that tends to send luxury car buyers toward other brands. Cars with names have class, cars with letters and numbers blend into the background easily.

  6. I agree.
    Everyone seems to bash the Lincoln naming convention(which I find confusing also) but this post is the first calling out Cadillac for the same BS naming. I find Cadillac even more confusing.

  7. Give the cars REAL NAMES ...drop all the bovine scatology of the clown related MKnames already and give the stuff classic luxury car names...Navigator is the ONLY vehicle in the Lincoln lineup that has a classy enough name to be recognized. The clown like MKnames of the others might as well be all the same because people get that stuff confused.

  8. Once again, Lincoln has it wrong.
    Without the LS, Lexus would never have sold many ES's.
    Without the S Class, Mercedes wouldn't sell many C Classes.

    Of course, what's worse is that when shoppers walk into the dealership and see a more attractive version of essentially the same car with a Ford badge across the showroom floor with a $15K lower pricetag - all thoughts of "Exclusivity" and "Luxury" tend to fly out the window.

  9. @Brian, and therein lies the problem - Lexus, Infiniti and even Acura did a good job of distancing themselves from parent brands, but Lincoln has not.

    Lincoln also hasn't done a good job of targeting younger buyers - even Buick has three turbocharged sport(y) sedans in its lineup these days, yet Lincoln is the same Ford pig, albeit with more lipstick and painted toenails.

  10. The name thing is interesting. Somehow, "Aviator," "Navigator," and even "Zephyr" seemed appealing, but "Town Car," geriatric. Unfortunately, I think all of Cadillac's models "Coupe de Ville," "Brougham," and "Eldorado" bespeak the pimpmobile era, and are best left in the bin where trademarks go to die. The alpha-numerics are a bit boring, though.

  11. The new MKZ makes a very nice looking Buick, just like the current MKZ. There is nothing there that appeals to anyone any younger than the current MKZ. I feel bad for the many Lincoln dealers pinning there livelyhoods on these products.

    This is like watching a train wreck in slow motion.

  12. their grille is still ugly and I find it hard to remember the MK names. What can I say about the back side of their newest CUV (forgot the name) which looks more like a luxury boat than I car I'd like to drive

  13. Lincoln simply isn't getting it....

    They need a halo vehicle..and NO it does not have to be ultra expensive, but it needs to showcase all that Lincoln can be. I have seen the new MKZ, and although it is well done and well crafted, it simply does not look premium. Let's face it, in order to see the beautiful interior of that MKZ you have to first get past that non-attractive grille. Sorry, the car simply does not look PREMIUM. It is bland and very vanilla, pure and simple, which is puzzling as Lincoln had some incredible concept vehicles that really made a statement. The designers simply fall short, I could do a better job at interpreting the so called "Lincoln DNA"

    Good luck Lincoln, though I don't see it making it.....

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