If Lincoln is to succeed as a luxury brand, this much is clear: it needs more products than it currently has in its catalog. Chief among these is a compact luxury crossover, since the segment has experienced rapid growth in recent years.

Enter the Lincoln MKC compact crossover concept, the brand’s answer to the likes of the Range Rover Evoque, the BMW X1 and the Buick Encore. The diminutive crossover certainly looks good, especially the tapered-back grille design, which we find far less garish than the grille design of previous Lincoln models.

Based on the Ford Escape platform, the Lincoln MKC ups the style factor by quite a bit, proving that the MKC will be more than just a badge-engineered Escape. We like the subtle touches, like the full-width tail-lights and the two-piece tailgate design. Lincoln’s familiar panoramic glass roof is present and accounted for, too.

The cockpit is an elegant blend of leather, wood and what Lincoln describes as “natural-look” materials. The idea is to convey an upscale yet unconventional feel, since Lincoln is trying to set itself apart from the rest of the luxury herd.

The MKC is one of seven new or refreshed models expected from the brand in the coming years. It can’t come to market soon enough, since Lincoln is losing potential compact luxury crossover sales to the competition with each passing day.

Want more news and live images from the 2013 Detroit Auto Show? Check out our dedicated show page.


Follow Motor Authority on FacebookTwitter and YouTube.