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Where Is Ford taking the Lincoln Motor Company?

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  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,320
    The XJ8L has been considered, however, our home on the hill would be easier to reach in the Snow with an AWD. There isn't a Jag dealer within 50 miles & the nearest dealer has prices higher than a huntchbacks [non-permissible content removed].
  • Euphonium, based on your posts, I know you like the TC, and like me, you would have likely bought a newer one if they had kept the old girl up to date. Have you considered an MKS? Not as much room for sure and a less user-friendly trunk opening, but they are a pretty fine vehicle to drive.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,320
    After considering the MKS, it would be at least 10k more economical to instead buy the Taurus Sho with AWD.

    In the process of Sho shopping, it appears the factory is selling a "gadget goer". To get what is needed would require a special order.

    Vibrating seats, heated or cooled, Navigation, Synch, hole in roof, distance sensors are not items to be appeciated. The $295 added charge for the Red forces a dark Black interior. The Limited offers a Tan interior, but no Ecoboost engine.

    As of last week, you could not order a Limited Taurus with the Ecoboost.

    Computer sequential production of Ford vehicles has given way to Bundling of gadgets.

    Would be interesting to see an AWD 4 Door TC with at least the Mustang V8 and 5 speed tranny. :)
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,515
    For the price of a new Lincoln or late model Jag, you could probably have that AWD TC Franken-car built to your spec. You've already got a nice car to use as a body donor, right? :shades:
  • There are indeed other differences between MKS and Taurus besides sheet metal and $10K. MKS comes with another year of base warranty, and it's NVH properties are considerably more refined. Furthermore, the interior materials are appreciably better in MKS. Taurus may be a better overall value in the strictest sense, but the MKS doesn't command a meaningless premium.

    A lot of inconsistencies in features among badge brothers an the product heirarchy reflect Ford's emphasis upon bringing the most improved product to market as quickly and economically as possible. To not offer BLIS on MKS, EcoBoost in Flex SEL, but no non-SHO Taurus, massaging seats, and the lack of a simple backup camera in a non-SHO Taurus because it's spoiler-mounted and despite a badge-embedded alternative used in F-Series, Flex, and others are all similar examples.

    With more cash andless uncertainty, 2011 will hopefully see many of these discrepancies cared-for, including why a Performance Package fitted SHO is made to forego so many of the other niceties that otherwise make 2010 Taurus such a terrific, nay the best, mainline large sedan available in North America by a wide margin.

    As for Ecoboost, despite Mustang's 2011 butching-up, it would indeed have been nice to see EcoBoost work it's way to RWD platforms, including a Panther platform swansong. A V8 Ecoboost would indeed make a Police "Interceptor". As for Town Car and/or Grand Marquis, as much ad I happen to love both, the world probably doesn't need roads full of turbocharged airport livery drivers or white-shoed buffet-seekers dragging each other from red lights in order to make their tee times and doctor's appointments, do we? Polygrip doesn't make a strong enough product for that demographic. :)
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,666
    The Taurus was really the first "clean-sheet" design under the new Ford management model and business plan and Ford is spending the money on Ford first and Lincoln second.

    I see this (the Taurus) as a great sign of even bigger and better stuff from Lincoln over the next 2-3 years.
  • speculatorspeculator Posts: 116
    Now that Ford has decided to replace the Crown Vic Police Interceptor for 2012 with the fwd Taurus,it is only logical to believe that a rwd drive Lincoln sedan is dead. The Caprice police variant is rwd. If Ford were going to compete with Cadillac,It would certainly make there bread and butter fleet sales leader rwd to compete with the Chevy and thus a Lincoln premium pltform variant based on a rwd Ford police vehicle to compete with Cadillac. I hear that the Mustang for 2014 will be smaller than the present vehicle but may be rwd with an irs. It all depends on the cost of such a vehicle and on international demand. The only way to justify the production cost of the new Mustang with rwd and irs is to develope an international market for it. Why not do the same with Lincoln? Lincoln still has some cach'e to its name in the world.
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    Where does Lincoln have that supposed cache in the world? Lincoln has been an also-ran for many years now, and the MKZ/MKS'MKT have done little to turn that around.

    Not that Lincoln couldn't, with a concerted effort. Look at what Hyundai did in a few short years. They went from Daewoo-style economy car mediocrity to building the Genesis, the Genesis coupe, the Equus and the 2011 Sonata, while renewing all the rest of their extensive line-up--and in the process became a sales leader. All Lincoln has to do (ok, it is a tall order) is build exceptional vehicles too, and all will be forgiven.

    But so far, Lincoln has largely squandered their newest chances. The MKZ could have gotten more differentiation at its Zephyr introduction, but the beancounters did not think it was really necessary. Turns out it was.

    The MKS is a decent and competitive car with almost zero Lincoln DNA is its Japanese-style look (except for the grill). The MKT was a stunner in concept form and would likely have defined a new genre, like the Explorer and Navigator did back in their day. Instead we got a carefully dumbed-down looking MKT (so as not to offend as much) and now it looks like a too-long station wagon. We know Americans unfairly dislike station wagons. Translation: unremarkable sales.

    So where from here? I do think the MKR would be a logical step, but given the Taurus Police Interceptor, I doubt anyone at Lincoln yet understands what makes a truly aspirational vehicle. The small Lincoln C could be a surprise hit with its full size passenger room in an era of higher mpg standards. But I have no faith that they will bring it to market without dumbing it down a la MKT. What else is in the pipeline?

    As long as the Ford brand is on a roll, I doubt anyone is overly concerned about the mish-mash at Lincoln. Besides, Lincoln sales have finally stopped their many years long nose dive. But for how long will even that hold? The moving targets are moving much more quickly today.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,666
    I'd say it's pretty hard to argue with the "beancounters" decisions given Ford's recent miraculous financial turnaround. And I don't question their desires for Lincoln - Mulally made that clear a year ago.

    They obviously put the money into new drivetrains (all new V8s, new diesel, new V6, ecoboost V6 and I4, 2nd gen hybrids, etc.) and new market segments (MKT, Flex, Fiesta, unibody Explorer) and new technology (Sync, MyFordTouch, etc.).

    Yes, a new roof and doors, upgraded interior and a 3.7L/3.5L EB powertrain upgrade would certainly help the MKZ, but there is limited opportunity there due to the popularity (and publicity) of the Fusion and Milan. I think they went a little above and beyond to give the MKZ a brand new interior right in the middle of a design cycle.

    There is no doubt in my mind that Ford has big plans for Lincoln including a new RWD platform in the near future. They just can't afford to implement it all right now.

    Patience, grasshopper.
  • speculatorspeculator Posts: 116
    Actually the Lincoln brand still has some cache in the U.K. I had clients from the U.K. who purchased Lincolns from me.The most popular were the Marks and LS series eventhough they all were LHD. I would say that about 75 % of those, still own them. It still is possible to bring Lincoln back to its former glory. For god's sake, Buick is considered to be a premium car in China.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,666
    A hand full of enthusiast buyers doesn't make an entire market feasible. Any European presence would be an afterthought - U.S. and Aussies would be driving the development which probably means big V8s and ecoboost V6s. I think any type of Euro volume would require dedicated European powertrains which drives up the cost and makes it hard to justify financially.
  • speculatorspeculator Posts: 116
    If that is the case then the new rwd Mustang and its irs is not feasible. Ford would have to dedicate one model for its rwd line-up. If to make that feasible it has to have international sales. The sales of Mustangs in other markets is not very great. For international sales it would have to smaller than it is today. But you have made a good point as to why Ford will not make the Mustang on an entirely new platform that can accomodate an irs. The present platform is paid for and it would be hard to develope an export market to help pay for a new Mustang rwd platform. It is the same for Lincoln.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,666
    1 - the new mustang with new engines should sell around 200K/yr, more than enough to support a dedicated platform if necessary (assuming drivetrain and other parts sharing). This was enough to justify the all new platform for the 05 mustang.

    2 - you're forgetting about the Aussies. A global RWD platform would be shared with them, not with Ford Europe, since they already have RWD V8 capable platforms. Same reason that the Fiesta was jointly engineered with Europe.
  • speculatorspeculator Posts: 116
    200 thousand sale of a new Mustang. Where is that number coming from? What about the competition from Chevy? Right now the Camaro has recently out sold the Mustang. Assuming that Chrysler is still around, what about the Charger/ Challenge?. These are all competition. The only thing I can think of in order for the Mustang to reach that number is to produce a car that is cheaper to build and has a really cheaper base price than it competition. Does any body remember the Mustang II? It was certainly cheaper that what it replaced. It was so cheap that no one wanted it. Another thing, it would be lucky if total auto sales in the U.S. hit above 13 million total sales in 2012. If it does, it would probably hover around that number for quite a few years. The auto market will probably never hit the 15 or 16 million mark again until about 10 years from now. That's according to those who watch the industry. Ford already has determined that the new Falcon will be based on the U.S. Taurus platform which is based on a Volvo platform. Read some of the Aussie Auto mags. The same platforms that Ford is going to base all of its domestic products on are going to be used in Aussie land. I hear that the Aussies are really teed off at Ford for going fwd in Australia. It's this one world Ford formula.
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    edited March 2010
    2011 Mustang is a whole new ball game. With power parity having been established with Camaro and Charger, Mustang simply becomes a class apart and above its bemuscled brethren. Neither Camaro nor Charger has Mustang's "daily driver" chops; and any subjective aesthetic bias Camaro may win due to the simple vagueries of personal preference are usually worn away once the vehicle is actually seen, or especially, touched. Add real-world grown-up practical benefits like SYNC, an honest-to-Jesus world class navigation suite, and all of the other "real world" sensibilities Ford has engineered into Mustang without detracting one iota from the fun it's meant to inspire, and the narrow band of drivers to whom the narrow range of circumstances in which Mustang's "live axle" matters, the broad marketplace has to really be willing to make some Olympic caliber rationalizing before either alternative becomes even nearly equally-compelling as Mustang. While there's no doubt that a true IRS would only be reasonable for Mustang's next wholesale platform development, 2011 Mustang is simply the state of the art in American muscle without a credible peer.

    What does this mean for sales? There will certainly be new motivation for current Mustang owners to make their next purchase, and it will win the lion's share of present "fence sitters" who, until now, had to consider a more expensive GT to match LS/LT power. Ford also enjoys its media darling halo on behalf of its indisputably-Improved product and the propriety of it's own renaissance, a message that tends to play well to the "all-American" segment mindset in which endless entitlements and bailouts aren't as popular as they are among the left-leaning CamCord owners who suddenly don't know what to do with their Priuses now that Oz and Toyota City seem to be co-located. Atop organic demand within the marketspace and the very real potential to win business away from other RWD models at a much lower price point, 200K units may seem optimistic, but it's certainly not pie-in-the-sky. My pre-order goes in next week.

    As for the D3 successor to Panther, the Commodore-based Caprice, while being a terrific driver's car, especially for the money, otherwise has no inherent advantage whatsoever over a Taurus interceptor, nor do the mythical benefits of an RWD law enforcement vehicle whose ONLY benefit is price and whose many disadvantages are fundamental to any fleet operator in a climate with rain or snow. Not only does Taurus provide an inherently safer platform by virtue of its available drivetrains, its larger mass puts physics even more squarely in safety's favor, period.

    Price, therefore would be Caprice's only conceivable buyer's advantage, but that's only as much of a challenge as Ford decides will exist. Furthermore, with a common-platform and drivetrain LE truck based on 2011 Explorer, fleet maintenance cost advantages will help offset any difference in acquisition cost among fleet operators of both.

    There are plenty of options today for RWD and cheap, yet Panther and Crown Vic continue to rule the day. When combined with just about any council member in any city where GM doesn't have an established U.S. assembly facility would have a very tough time indeed remembering to constituents at election time the justification for choosing to support a bailed-out GM over the self-sustaining Ford when spending further public funds.

    That's not to say there won't be police fleets operating Caprices, Chargers, Impalas, or other vehicles as their mainline patrol vehicles, but the truth is that Taurus is likely to enjoy greater momentum and support, even as an entirely new platform to law enforcement operators than many existing models that are already in service. (At least, in a JUST world, it would.)
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,666
    Ford has announced that Mercury will be shut down at the end of the year. Lincoln/Mercury dealers will be consolidate with Ford dealers or bought out if necessary.

    Lincoln will receive 7 new or significantly updated models over the next 4 years including a C class vehicle and unique engines.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,666
    Let's face it...they were as similar, or more similar, than the GM middle cars, like the Cutlass, LeMans, Chevelle, and Skylark...the only difference between Ford and Merc was slightly different grill, taillights and dashboard...remember the Maverick and Comet???...Sable and Taurus???...aside from a 2% styling difference, who really needs Mercury???...Lincoln, as a potential luxury brand, makes sense to me, but Mercury should have been eliminated when GM killed Oldsmobile...
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Yes, and GM should have also killed either Cadillac or Buick as well. At present, Buicks have more amenities on them than their Cadillac cousins do. It's an upside down situation once again.

    As far as Lincoln goes, IMO every Lincoln should come with an Eco-Boost standard to differrentiate it from Ford.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,666
    Ford already confirmed that all Lincolns will have unique drivetrains and they'll all be offered with an Ecoboost option.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,320
    Buy the Eco boost Taurus and save 12 grand.
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