Lincoln Zephyr/MKZ

ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
I'm opening this forum about the Lincoln Zephyr. It'll be the new Lincoln entry vehicle that will be released at the New York Intnational Auto Show. Based on the Mazda6 platform, in AWD placed as Lincoln entry vehicle under the LS.


  • upsetter1upsetter1 Posts: 205
    You mean its a production vehicle, kinda Futura ?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
  • theo2709theo2709 Posts: 476
    Except Futura doesn't exist anymore.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsPosts: 11,114
    Sounds cool - do you have any links to pics?


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  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    They will be released at NYIAS. The program has a tight lip on it.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Can't wait to see the new "look" of LIncoln. Can you tell us if it's got the 61 Continental styling cues like the new Aviator seems to have?
  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    I'm anxious to see this one. I just hope it isn't the 2006 Lincoln least the Mazda 6 platform provides an excellent foundation.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Nvbanker, Do you think I know what the 61 Continental was like? Let me do some research on the 61 Conti first, and move on from there :-)
  • dondiliodondilio Posts: 56
    I hope the new Lincoln doesn't lose the sporty character of the 6. I can assure you the 6 platform is a solid foundation. I consider myself a Ford man, even though last year my lease ended and I found myself in a crossroad to buy another identical Taurus or switch brands. Even though Im completely familiar that Mazda is controlled by Ford, my father worked for Ford, I sometimes feel nostalgic that Im not driving a Ford. I bought the Mazda mainly because Ive had great experiences with the 3.0 Duratec but it turns out the car itself is a great car with wonderful underpinnings. I give an A++ to that platform and powertrain. Im positive the 10 models derivated from it will be a hit.
  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Posts: 1,031
    What happened to the Futura???
  • dondiliodondilio Posts: 56
    It seems theres a problem with Pep Boys and their Futura tires. Could you believe it!!

    There are speculations they might name the Futura Four Hundred.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    The Zephyr will be sporty like, entry vehicle for Lincoln.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Not sure I'm good enough at this to find you a picture of a 61 Continental and insert it or not, but I may give it a go if I'm slow after lunch. Meanwhile, the interior of the new LIncolns, Navigator, Aviator, Navicross, all have a dash & cowl design reminiscent of the 61 Continental, which was a huge success! The 07 Aviator has an almost identical eggcrate grille to the 61 Conti. So, I'm wondering if the waterfall grille look is out, and the 61 Eggcrate look is the future of Lincoln.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Yes, I asked around and got a huge file on the information of the 61 Conti. Maybe the Aviator concept gives us a glimpse as to what they are trying to conjure up. Granted, the concept at the autoshow will be a culmination of positive reviews over the previous Aviator and other Lincoln concepts of before. Depending how well it's received (the Zephyr concept) then it'll depend on what styling elements will be kept/enhanced/replaced/etc.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Well, for one, I LOVE the new interiors of the Lincolns, which is probably priority one for me when I buy a car. The exterior style needs to grab me too though, and I'm a big fan of the Waterfall grille - not too anxious to see it die, but I'll keep an open mind.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
  • bretaabretaa Posts: 130
    ... Well, I'll say this... It's certainly distinctive and won't be mistaken for anything else on the road. It's not really my cup of tea, as I haven't liked any of Lincoln's neo-60's Continental reborn motifs.

    It's the interior, though, that really disappoints me. I know the style is what Lincoln has been doing lately, and I'm sure the quality and detailing will be good. But take a look at the Acura RL concept interior or the current TL and take a look at the Infiniti M45 concept interior and, in my opinion, the F-series vents and A/C controls (and shifter?) with that neo-60's dual hooded style just doesn't match up. And could the gauges be smaller? What happened to the electroluminescent gauges that at least updated that 60's look?

    Again, I know it'll appeal to many here, and I'm glad it does so, and I hope it sells a ton. But as someone who really liked the LS and was looking for a vehicle with similar aura but just more distinctive, the Zephyr is just not something that gets my heart racing. Too bad, as I really have a soft spot for Lincoln.

    - Bret
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    I'll have to reserve any judgements about the interior of the new Lincolns until I see the production versions, but I'm not happy with their colour choices on their concepts. The off-yellow looks washed out, boring and not even practical. It's almost as bad as black on black. Most European cars have had distinctly two toned interiors for ages, they are dramatic looking and practical, the darker colours on the dash, atop the door panels, etc. cuts down on glare and reflctions in the windows and windshield whilst the lighter colours on the seats lower door panels etc. give the interior a roomier feeling and make it easier to see where you dropped your parking stub. Please do go to a nice classic two tone interior on the production models, and offer something other than those awful pukey yellows.
  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Posts: 1,031
    Much better than I expected! Looks pretty good!
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    The concept is just 80% of what we will really see. IN other words, some of the gripes mentioned, will probably not make it to production. This being, the gauges which are highly doubtable. The bumper's will definately not be implemented as seen, nor the frontal fog-light looking recesses. Interior colors are another thing that will be altered differently from what you seen (for safety reasons).

    Some styling elements that date back to older Lincolns, will be kept. Notice the waterfall grill, is what Lincoln has, and will be, sticking to. With the emblem centered. The rear lights will make it. So will the twin cockpit design it has.

    It'll sport a 3.0L V6 (HP not released yet) and 6Speed auto (which will improve acceleration dramatically). And AWD and 3.5L will be implemented soon after.
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    Do you have inside info on the bumper design? I never thought that the T-Bird would look so much like the concept especially the front grill and bumper, but the production model's front end was nearly idenical to the concept's and the Zephyr's front bumper looks more bashworthy than the 'Bird's.
    Anyway, the new exterior styling looks good, I like the direction Lincoolns going with it. It harkens back to classic mid-century modern American design. Maybe they could do some lifestyle marketing tie-ins with Knoll and Herman Miller. Don't know if that'll sell to the Hip Hop bling-bling generation though.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    "Specialty" vehicles such as Tbird, Corvette, Aston Martin, etc. can get away with having such softly styled bumper's since it's highly unlikely they will be crash-tested by NHTSA or IIHS. (instead, the manufacturer might suply the data/testing) Since very few are sold, and they are expensive as it is, they (being NHTSA and IIHS) rather relocate their monetary resources onto other vehicles which more consumer's will purchase.

    Granted, as long as they past the federal standards of 5MPH bumper's must endure. The only assessment where such vehicles might be critisized, is on the bumper bashing tests that IIHS periodically performs. Later critisized by other media outlet's when there's a vehicle that's a bad performance... lately, the Acura TL for example.

    As for the Zephyr, the actual bumper's will be a tad more pronounced. The side stays as is, maybe a rub strip might be integrated for example.

    Since it's a concept, the manufacturer will test consumer's reactions towards the vehicles. And I know for a fact, Ford reads these boards.... so mention ALL likes and dislikes so they are aware of it.
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    Do you have inside info on the bumper design? I never thought that the T-Bird would look so much like the concept especially the front grill and bumper, but the production model's front end was nearly idenical to the concept's and the Zephyr's front bumper looks more bashworthy than the 'Bird's.
    Anyway, the new exterior styling looks good, I like the direction Lincoolns going with it. It harkens back to classic mid-century modern American design. Maybe they could do some lifestyle marketing tie-ins with Knoll and Herman Miller. Don't know if that'll sell to the Hip Hop bling-bling generation though.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    I plead the 5th.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,565
    ANT14 is the Ford employee assigned to monitor these boards?

    C'mon ANT, tell them to keep the Taurus name and put it on the Futura, since Futura can't be used. Keep the bull in the family. Naming every car with and F is just too confining.

    I suppose Taurus is too masculine to pick up the female customer? So what, they can buy the Lincoln or Mercury version.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I may have found my next Sedan! Personally, I love it, inside especially, and the outside doesn't look bad either.

    You mentioned the waterfall grille is here to stay as a styling theme for Lincoln? Makes me happy, but then why did the Aviator concept have the 61 Continental eggcrate grille on it? Testing the waters?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    It's still some months away and a bit too early to tell, but drive the vehicle and see if you like it, I believe that will be the part which might convince you otherwise.

    I agree on the interior, but I'm currently dealing with a vehicle with chrome instrumentation bezzles, and I can tell you it's quite annoying to have reflection hit me, and the windshield at certain times of the day.

    But more info should pour over the next couple of months... Either way, every person has their favorite between the Zephyr, Milan and Fusion.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
        I do not believe they have a specific person that monitor's web-boards per-se... can you imagine that position... "Hey what do you do?".... "OH I just go online and read board all days". I believe it's more in the lines of personal data/information. Example, If Joe Shmoe were in the styling dept. of a specific vehicle, and wanted people's impression of a certain concept...think of what the web-boards can do and for free! Without having to spend money on consumer groups. That's an example.

        Testing waters... You know how the Futura concept (which-ever name they pick soon), it has a different grill, than the new 500/Freestyle/Focus are using this year........
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Yes it has the 93 Tempo grille :)
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Personally, I think Bill Ford reads these'll never guess what his ID is.....
  • a_l_hubcapsa_l_hubcaps Posts: 518

    I like the interior except the wood is too light. The point of wood on the dash is for contrast. If you have to look hard to tell whether it's wood or beige plastic, you've missed the point. Other than that, the interior looks really cool. I like the classy retro style.

    Exterior: I love the front fascia! I'm glad to see the real grille make a comeback (though Chrysler did it even better with the 2005 300). The back is so-so. It's not ugly, but it's not what I would have done. I would make the corners a little sharper (not just like a CTS, but more like one) to give the back a more substantial appearance. Another idea that springs to mind is to accentuate the taillights by putting the chrome Lincoln star in the middle of the lens (yeah, I know, "so '80s," but it would look cool!) and replace the Lincoln star on the trunk with the word LINCOLN or ZEPHYR.

    One other thing I'd like to note is that I really feel that the wheels overpower the car. In general, I will never understand why people like the look of HUGE wheels on sedans, but these ones are particularly bad IMHO (I have the same issue with the Buick Velite, which uses a similar wheel design). Wheels are supposed to look good and harmonize with the car, not dominate it and distract from the styling. When I have to hold my thumbs over the wheels in a picture in order to get a better sense of the car's proportions, something is wrong. I'd like to see how this car would look with the 16" or 17" flat-spoke wheels from the current Lincoln LS.

    Overall I think this is a pretty nice effort. They could have done a lot worse. For one, they could have called it the Versailles :-)

    -Andrew L
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    So guys is this Linc's answer to the ES330 or Acura TL? I guess Ford was serious when they said Lincoln won't go after Cadillac. I have to say I think the Lincoln brand has a lot of potential once they truly figure out what they want to do. They do have a unique, while attractive design heritage to draw upon. Execution is the key.

  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    Jaguar will take on the upper levels of the market. From what I've read, Lincoln will play in the $30-50,000 league.

    I like the car, but the more I look at it, the more I worry that it may be too narrow. I notice that some of the publicity photos were shot from an angle that makes the car look wider.
  • buckwheatbuckwheat Posts: 396
    The car will be smaller than its sibling the LS with Zephyr dimensions reported at, @71" wide, @107.4 wheelbase length. That makes it @2.7" narrower than the Lincoln LS. With a wheelbase that will be @7.1" shorter than the Lincoln LS. Using the Five Hundred for reference @2.7" narrower, @5.5" shorter wheelbase. The Zephyr will be nearly identical to the Ford (what was Futura) and as yet an unamed Mercury version. All, considered mid-size, will have the same exterior dimensions. All will be built side by side in Hermosillo,Mexico beginning next year
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    In essense, the Zephyr will be to Lincoln, what the Es330 is to Lexus...Just a Camry with more toys. Research shoes, Ford never really went to this market. While having the Lincoln LS, it was just a bit MUCH from what those ES330/TL consumer's, were looking for. So it's definately not a segment you wish to ignore....And this will allow the LS to be placed higher in the price scale.

    This is one of the 10 vehicles, that will debut using the Mazda6 platform/architecture.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Question to you: Where did you get the dimensions of the Zephyr? The vehicle on stage was a teaser, as in (it was larger than what it will really be).
  • buckwheatbuckwheat Posts: 396
    that info: was in an article printed in the Detroit Free Press..
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Ok thanks :)
  • pearlpearl Posts: 336
    given the LS? I have one of the earliest production BMW E39s (97 528i, 5spd) which has 105K on the clock, looks and runs beautifully, which I had hoped to trade on a new E60, until Chris Bangle destroyed BMW's styling. If I decide to trade just to get a newer car, I am looking at the six month period from about Sept 04-Mar 05 as the window during which many very intriguing cars will be released (STS, M45, GS, A6, RL, etc). Now the Zephyr pops up as an '06 launch. Great, except that, compared to the others listed above, it has FWD and the lame Ford 3.0 V6. Right off the bat, I sense a loser. Sure, some will buy - and I will look/drive - but it seems to me that Ford has confused their low end Lincoln market by adding the Zephyr in essentially a competing mode with the V6 LS??? I wish Ford well, but do not think that the Zephyr is sufficiently differentiated from the LS to get potential customers to understand the difference. Anyone stopping in another brand's showroom may not even bother visiting their Lincoln dealership.
  • setzersetzer Posts: 127
    Lincoln just needs to shape up it's LS and then it will have a line-up of real winners.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    The Zephyr is not competeing against the STS, GS, RL, etc. It's an entry level luxury vehicle, so your looking at the Lexus Es330 as an example. And just as what the ES330 is to Lexus (a glorified Camry), the Zephyr will be a glorified midsize "F" named vehicle formally known as Futura.

    The LS will be going a bit up, and your probably going to see more LS V8's being sold, than the V6, while the V6 is placed into the Zephyr.

    Some key points over most competitors, it'll have a 6 Speed automatic, AND Available AWD after introduction. And the platform itself is much more fun to drive than any Camry/ES330.

    The Zephyr doesn't need V8 option, since those seeking more power can upgrade to an LS. Same aspect with the ES330, where some can up into the GS-series.

    The interior will be very luxurious (in material/quality) over numerous other's.
  • buckwheatbuckwheat Posts: 396
    Speaking of the V-6, the LS an undeniably larger car that has at present a V6 that is 232Hp & 220lbs of torque. The Zephyr starts its career using the Duratec-30 having 200Hp & 200lbs of torque. While these numbers will change with the near 20 month away Duratec-35 it is not unreasonable to conclude that an upgrade engine will occur for the LS and therefore continuing discernible differences between models.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    The Zephyr will be getting a higher output version of the 3.0L, so your probably looking at 220+HP.
  • revdrluvrevdrluv Posts: 417
    Gorgeous design, I find myself continually re-reading the write ups to make sure it is really a Lincoln. I would actually buy this one. Unfortunately I think it will take much more then this to shake the stodgy boca retirement community image they have.
  • theo2709theo2709 Posts: 476
    I'm worried that this car will lose much of its luster with smaller wheels, a different bumper, and toned-down interior. Lincoln really needs cash and sales right now.
  • The Zephyr is great, but here is the porblem as i see it, this could be off but i would appreciate some input as if FOrd dies the govt could turn to us for tax revenue...
    Ford has too many brands that compete with one another (like GM in 50 - 60 or 70's) for example: Jaguar, Volvo, Lincoln, Landrover (did i miss any) meybe Mercury but nah. What happenns is every brand needs its own commercals and image, this costs money. Diamler has 1 heavy hitter in these segments (MB) GM has Cadillac, VW has audi and we all know BMW.
    I believe this is the reason (or one of the reasons) why when Ford is introducing a new car with 200 hp (the Zephyr) to compete against an established vehicle that now has 330hp (Es330), with toyota about to put a new engine into its new avalon at 3.5L with 270 hp, fords new 3.5L will have 245 from what i gather at and other sources. Hell, they had an Aviator on display with a 240hp V6! Thats a honda accord output rating, on a Lincoln?!
    Ford needs to consolidate, lower costs (get rid of UAW or move out of the country entirely, since honda and toyota USA aren't afiliated with UAW and the catastrophic heath care / retirement costs that come with such relations) and mount an offensive.
    Guys, why do you think toyota's stock is in the upper 60's (69 dollars as of last friday) while ford is in the teens (about 15 dollars)?!

    Its more than the Zephyr. Ford needs to compete, hell, at least GM is trying.
  • carlisimocarlisimo Posts: 1,280
    The ES330 has 225hp... the 330 refers to a 3.3L engine.

    I know a few people who'll probably love the Zephyr. Its competitors are moving towards a different kind of styling, and the Zephyr will fill the (conservative) void.
  • revdrluvrevdrluv Posts: 417
    One could argue that most things built during the 70's are rustbucket junk.

    The reason there are no Maximas in Tokyo has a lot more to do with size then dealership cost. For Europe it's the same way. Not only would it be a pain to navigate and park a car of that size on the narrow roads of those congested cities, but they don't get the cheap gas that we do. The other big reason is the way in which both japanese and european governments tax automobiles every which way to sunday. Size, width, displacement, etc... You end up paying an outrageous amount every year just to run a big car. That's why the trend in other markets is to sell small cars with lots of room inside.

    Also if you make the exchange rate between what a car cost in Japan/Europe vs what they cost here the difference is alarming. Not only is our gas amazingly cheap by comparison, but so are our cars. The reason we have lower prices has a lot to do with how many cars we buy and how long we keep them for (not very).

    But back to the Zephyr. How big is this car? It seems to me that with it's engine and fwd layout it would be competing with cars like the TSX, S40 and upcoming SAAB 9-2x.
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