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Where Is Ford taking the Lincoln Motor Company?

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  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    Ford has been on a roll, and Lincoln is still on life support until new product comes along. I see today that GM is now the world's largest car company, with over 9 million in sales (they have never sold this many units in any previous year). VW is second, or maybe first, as they dispute GM counting sales of a Chinese partner. Enter Nissan-Renault, who is also claiming second or third, depending on how you count their many brands and partners. Toyota may now be third or fourth. No one mentions Ford in these debates! Ford has got to be somewhere in the top five.

    Anyone know when the new MKZ will be on sale? We know it will be revealed in March, but will it be in dealers, say September? November?
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    November I think, but I don't think it's finalized yet.

    Ford sales are down a bit outside the U.S. but Ford has also stopped chasing sales crowns in favor of higher per unit profits, so don't expect any fire sales trying to catch them.
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    On the heels of Ford's reported profitability for 2011 comes this article:
    http://www.autoblog.com/2012/01/27/ford-tops-in-non-retail-sales-45-of-focus-sol- d-to-fleets/

    That sounds a bit like bad old habits.

    As for Lincoln, light a fire under that new Lincoln team. While they are struggling to get the MKZ to market by November, Cadillac will have both the ATS (completely new rear drive model), and the XTS (roomier, more luxurious and better looking than its MKS rival) on sale before then. Maybe Lincoln should stop with the useless but still costly tweaks to the likes of the current MKS and MKT, and move full tilt into a complete lineup revamp. Too many eggs in one basket right now, I'd say. Those seven "new" models better not include the refreshed models coming.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Well, that's why I'm not in a Lincoln Sedan these days. However, I'm also not in a Cadillac either. Why? Lincoln's sedans are overpriced for what you're getting under the bonnet and frame. The interiors are very nice, but it's a Taurus under there pretty much. But Cadillac? Their "good" models, RWD, good handling, etc., are too SMALL!! The slightly larger, but not larger enough for me, the STS, is now gone anyway, and everyone I know who has one (and that ain't many, BTW), says they're not very reliable. Need a lot of repairs. I need a large Sedan, and their large Sedan has been, and continues to be FWD and floaty. No better than the Lincoln. I'd rather pay $20,000 more for a really good sedan (Lexus) than less, but still too much, for a Ford and a Chevy in evening wear......
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    I hear what you say about preferring a big car, but the days of long overhangs and useless sheet metal space are over. The XTS has the interior space of a large car, and interior volume is superior to MKS, especially in the rear seat area. Both ATS and XTS have standout quality interiors, and the floaty stuff is history. Cadillac has more models in the pipeline, and one is a redesign of the CTS which will make it larger than today's car.

    Like it or not, the BMW 3 small-sized luxury car (Lexus IS, BMW 3, Mercedes C, Volvo S60, Acura TSX, Infiniti G, Caddy ATS) is now a staple, and Lincoln should have one too for those of us who enjoy a tossable car that has all the bells and whistles, plus most of the serenity of a larger car.

    My hope is that Lincoln will start a push with their new team to bring some excitement back to their product line. The 13 MKZ looks like a good start, but it will be a lone model amongst the rest of the lineup, which are also-rans at this point. They totally screwed up when they designed the clean sheet MKT (beating a dead horse, but whoever approved this CUV that looks like a bloated station wagon?...Cadillac and Chrysler had already issued such models that did not sell well). The MKT concept was a looker, and very polarizing. The dumbed down MKT they brought to market has none of the same love it or despise it pizzazz.

    Jim Farley would not have made the following statement if Ford was not concerned about how fast the crushed and bankrupt GM has bounced back: “F---- GM. I hate them and their company and what they stand for. And I hate the way they're succeeding."

    It's dog eat dog out there, Farley. No rest for anyone, no matter how good your product, because EVERYONE now is bringing awesome cars to market, and doing it whenever they are ready, rather than at traditional times.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Certainly agree with your comments on the MKT - that and the Flex to me are throwback Station Wagons. I rented a Flex for a week last year - it's competent enough, but reminds me of my Fairmont Station Wagon back in 2001 in a lot of ways. Not interested, and not interested in the one that costs $55,000!

    Lincoln is still adrift to me. But, my friends who drive Caddys don't give them very good dependability reviews. That's a problem for me. Still prefer Lexus.
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    Agreed. Before I bought my new Volvo in 2011, I decided to try a slightly used CTS in an effort to save some bucks. It did not sound or ride any longer like a luxury car should (and I know they are quiet when new), and additionally there were unexplained squeaks and creaks. I brought it back after a couple blocks, and said no thanks.
  • edward53edward53 Posts: 109
    Could someone explain to me why the new Fusion and new MKZ share the same profile? I thought that Lincoln was suppose to have a completely different body style? It seems that the marketing people have their work cut out for them. I can't wait to read the excuses.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    Nobody said it would be a "completely different body style" - that isn't feasible when sharing a platform. The MKZ doesn't share any sheetmetal with the new Fusion. The MKZ concept is not the final production version - it was actually built after the production vehicle. I don't think the production version will be confused with a Fusion like the current model.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,178
    ...featuring JFK's home movies on the History Channel tonight. Seems he was a big fan of early 1960s Lincolns and Mercuries. Sadly, there is no more Mercury and today's Lincolns hardly have the allure of those classic early-mid 1960s Continentals.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    today's Lincolns hardly have the allure of those classic early-mid 1960s Continentals.

    Nor, do the Cadillacs.....
  • edward53edward53 Posts: 109
    edited February 2012
    You wrote that "nobody said that Lincoln was suppose to have a completely different body style from the Fusion because of platform sharing limitations on design and yet the MKZ does not share any sheet metal with the Fusion." How can it be both? Sounds like some marketing double talk. I seen the new 2013 Fusion with the 2013 MKZ side by side . These are going to be the production vehicles. Their profiles are very similar. There is a difference in the front and the rear but that is it. In fact , members of the automotive press were expecting something completely unique for Lincoln than what was showed.Everyone was led to believe that Lincoln's styling would be unique and original to Lincoln as was stated when Mullaly spoke at Chicago's Ford Torrence Ave plant in Chicago last year. And you are correct when you point out that because Lincolns will share Ford platforms, Lincoln cannot have a unique body style to call its own. I think even you now would admit that as long as Lincoln shares Ford platforms it can never be a premium brand.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    By similar I mean they will both be 4 door sedans on the same wheelbase. But I do expect that the Lincoln will not share any sheetmetal with the Fusion including doors and the greenhouse.

    The problem Lincoln currently has with the MKX and MKZ is that from the side they look identical to their cheaper Ford cousins. That won't be the case with the MKZ as far as I can tell.

    I mean seriously - if they change all the sheetmetal and ALL the interior bits and the wheels and they give it more power and unique powertrains and they give it unique suspensions and unique features like retractable glass roofs - what more do you want?

    I think even you now would admit that as long as Lincoln shares Ford platforms it can never be a premium brand.

    I would not admit that because it's just not true. Audi shared cheaper VW platforms and had FWD/AWD and nobody ever claimed they weren't a true premium brand.

    Lexus' 2 biggest sellers are the RX and ES - both FWD and both based on cheaper Toyota platforms.

    You just have a personal bias against Ford platforms which is fine and dandy as far as your personal buying goes but don't try to make objective conclusions based on your subjective feelings.

    Lincolns formula will work fine if they execute on their plans with great styling and features and top notch customer service.
  • e_net_ridere_net_rider Posts: 1,380
    For those who don't know, it was the Olds Aurora and Cadillacs of that time that had stiffer chassis to the point that it called for the invention of RFB, road force balance for the tires. A slight imbalance was apparently annoying as hell for owners.
    With better tires and RFB they were able to work on better suspensions, etc. It seems they still have a way to go.
    I sat in a new 2-door Cadillac in the show room last summer. It was not the model I might have desired, but that highend vehicle would be enough to learn what I wanted. Vehicles with cooled seats pretty much fit the professional reviewer's opinions. The GM and Chrysler are absolutely horrible for padding and comfort on a long ride. I learned the problem after having a 2011 Lacrosse CXS with sport touring package. The problem, things related to this issue, start with horrible, noisy, poor wet traction, hard riding GY Eagle low profile tires. Passing any slight bump as a hard object completely through the vehicle. To the seat and steering wheel makes for bad design. (the full time electronic suspension definitely did not handle this, if it was working)
    And as reviewers have indicated, there is definitely an issue with seat design when they try to blow air through it. The choice of padding material becomes limited, it appears, and there is definitely not enough of it. And just because you buy a model that does not have the cooled seats, it does not mean you won't get the same horrible seat.
    Bouncing my butt into that seat of the Cadillac a few times told me it would be no better than the Buick. I also tried a Chrysler 300, which appeared to have the same seat as the one with the cooling and it was also a bad seat.
    I can say that the Lincoln MKS seat is a different animal to say the least. I could tell it when I sat in the one in the showroom. I was still hesitant because I test drove a Fusion a couple of years back. It was the dealer's demo car, but it was a horrible seat. It felt like it had been ridden to death. Like maybe by someone weighing 400# who only drove down railroad ties. (For those who don't know, that is an extremely bumping ride, like hitting a pothole every two feet on all four wheels.) I ran from that vehicle. I can say the seat in the MKS at 30K miles is still very good. On my recent long road runs, I had very little of the back problems the former vehicles induced.
    But the passenger seat, likely used very little, is quite a bit better than the driver seat.
    Lincoln, keep up the good work on this item, but can you do something with the darned headrest that beats the back of my head until I end up with painful neck and headaches?
    It almost seems designers still follow the development of horse drawn vehicles. The seat being the last thing thought of.
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    edited March 2012
    So you don't like the new MKZ...other people will. It will stand out, whereas the current one is anonymous. No marketing double talk...it does not share anything external with Fusion, and as Allen pointed out, you have yet to see the production version. By the way, have you not noticed that there are styling trends out there? Grab a handful of mid-size cars from different manufacturers and you will find a lot of them share a similar profile. For example, a "four door coupe" thing (no, they really don't look like coupes) is going on with everything from the CC and Sonata to the Volvo S60, Buick Regal and Lexus IS. Now, I suppose if Lincoln hired you as an advisor, they would be doing so much better in a few years than if they ignore what you think. But no one has to admit to anything contained in your last sentence, as many manufacturers are able to get premium models out of shared brands. I have given you numerous non-Ford examples previously. Have a nice day.
  • edward53edward53 Posts: 109
    edited March 2012
    OK! Explain to me how the new MKZ cannot have a completely different body style because of platform sharing with the Fusion and yet it does not share any sheet metal with the Fusion? I remember covering Mullaly when he spoke at the Ford Torrence Ave plant in Chicago and he said that Lincoln will have unique body styles that will share nothing with the Ford models. I realize that the marketing folks for Ford have got to really find some "weasel words" to get out of this jam that they find themselves in with Lincoln. By the way the Lexus IS shares platform with Toyota. Another example of body design limitations because of sharing platforms with a cheaper vehicle. So Thank You, and have a nice day. P. S. I did see the final versions of both the Fusion and MKZ. It was to have been introduced in April. I don't think that you and your partner Allen have seen the final production models. Ford can't change the dies now for these models to really differentiate the MKZ from the Fusion because of cost and time restraint of meeting the production date.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    If you put them side by side and they dont look like clones of each other like the current Fusion and MkZ then I just don't see the problem. It works just fine for the Camry and ES350.
  • berriberri Posts: 4,201
    I just don't see the problem. It works just fine for the Camry and ES350.

    Same for the base near lux Acura and Infiniti which is what the Lincoln MKZ is. Tweak the suspension, maybe up the engine compression a touch, upscale the interior. In fact I think lower line Audi's are pretty similar to some VW products as well.

    I'd like to see a new Mark and maybe a convertible version as well to give Lincoln some image again.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    They're going further than that - the MKZ will have a unique electronically controlled suspension plus a retractable glass roof and the 3.7L V6 - plus unique sheetmetal. As long as they deliver on the looks and interior quality it will be a solid seller and put Lincoln back on the luxury map.
  • edward53edward53 Posts: 109
    edited March 2012
    2013 Lincoln MKZ Leaked - Bing Videos
    www.bing.com/.../2013-lincoln-mkz.../...
    Feb 21, 2012 – 2013 Lincoln MKZ Leaked ... 2011 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid Review ... Lincoln MKZ Complaints Lincoln MKZ Pictures Lincoln MKZ Review Lincoln .

    All I have to write is to click the above link and judge for yourself if the new 2013 Lincoln MKZ does not share resemblance to the 2013 Ford Fusion. So enough with the weasel words and long winded paragraphs trying to convince everyone that the new MKZ- or as we call it "MK Weezie"- does not share any sheet metal with the new Fusion. I will wait for the vitriol from the Ford folks because I pointed out their fibs.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    Your link doesn't work but the only thing I could find on bing.com was the concept vehicle. Here are side shots and they do NOT look alike to me or any other reasonable person. Aside from the fact that they both have 4 doors and 4 wheels.

    Just admit that you will never like the MKZ because YOU know it shares a platform with the Fusion - regardless of what it actually looks like or how it actually performs or how the general buying public accepts it.

    image
    image
  • brucelincbrucelinc Posts: 814
    Hmmm....the front is entirely different, the rear is entirely different, the "C" pillar is completely different, the shoulder line is altogether different, the wheels are totally different, the accent line on the bottom of the doors is different, the curve of the roof meeting the rear deck is different.

    Wait a minute! The dam* tires are the same color! Allen, the the heck is wrong with you? You must be blind not to see that these cars are indentical!
  • e_net_ridere_net_rider Posts: 1,380
    Personally I don't know which picture is what, but the upper one looks like something from GM. Where the hell are the door handles?
    (That's a snipe at GM)
    There are only so many ways you can package a vehicle toward the ends of economy. That is that it meets the needs of fuel economy, the needs of the buyer, and the needs of Ford to economically produce at a price point.
    Here is hoping that dependability will be the main point is Ford's stable. As pointed out earlier, GM has real issues in that area and I know lifelong GM people that are now looking at Ford for the first time in their lives.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    The top one is the MKZ concept. The production version will have a different rear and door handles.
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    They don't share anything that I can see...not door glass, not any of the greenhouse or lower body, or any body details. They both use current styling trends, yes. But someone seems to have an axe to grind and is determined to grind it down until there is nothing left. Edward, you must be a fun guy at a party. :P

    And get this...I admit to being one of Lincoln's harshest critics these past few years, but here I am actually defending Lincoln's effort here in a totally weasel-y way (not to mention being called Allen's partner...sparring partner maybe). This is all sort of funny, especially the vitriole. What fuels your continued rant?

    BTW, there is no Toyota version of the Lexus IS, and there are no Nissan versions of Infiniti cars. However, the Lexus ES350 has been very successful using the same architecture as the Camry. The Audi TT and A3 and Q3 all share architecture with the VW Golf (a terrific design in its own right). An Audi and a Lamborghini share an architecture. The VW Phaeton and the Bentley Continental Flying Spur share architecture. The Buick Lacrosse and the Cadillac XTS share architecture, but no body or interior bits. The Chrysler 300 and Dodge Challenger use the same architecture. Heck, the Taurus and Explorer use the same architecture. Porsche and VW share some architecture.

    But what am I doing? All this and more has been said before. It does not sway Edward. No matter what other models have been successful with platform sharing and differentiation, that does not matter. So I am done. We all have opinions. In the end it is all up to the marketplace.
  • brucelincbrucelinc Posts: 814
    What excites me more than the new body style - and complete departure from the look of the Fusion - is the new electronically controlled suspension. The previous MKZ not only looked like a Fusion but it drove and rode like one, too. That is not a terrible thing - the Fusion is a good driving car. However, one would expect the MKZ to be even better. The new CCD should help the MKZ meet or surpass expectations.

    The new CCD suspension on the MKZ and MKS should go a long way toward providing a larger step up from their platform mates. I will be test driving a new MKS as soon as they are available to check out the difference in ride/handling compared to my 2010.

    I have been very pleased with my MKS but it rides and drives no better than a new Taurus. In fact, both the MKS and the new Taurus ride more stiffly than my wife's 2008 Taurus. If the continually controlled damping and driver adjustability work as expected, both the MKS and MKZ should ride and handle better than previous versions.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,699
    not to mention being called Allen's partner

    I thought you'd find that amusing.

    Or horrifying.....
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,764

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  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,205
    The MKZ looks good, but I like the lines of the '13 Fusion better.
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