The bottom half of the glass is empty

… it’s full from the middle up. We’re talking of the 1986 Cadillac Sedan de Ville, naturally.

1986-1993 Cadillac Sedan De Ville

That’s what the photos show. However, more newsworthy is the announcement** that Joel P. is leaving his position as Ford’s European design chief to make way for Amko Leenarts, an RCA alumnus. Previously he oversaw Ford/Lincoln interiors at Dearborn. Joel P. goes back to Dearborn after a few short years to a newly created (read: not very powerful) position. That’s probably because he a) Continue reading “The bottom half of the glass is empty”

Cars That Could Have Been Citroëns – 1983 Lincoln Quicksilver

We’re definitely not in Kansas any more, Toto. But where in heck are we?

1983 Lincoln Quicksilver by Carrozzeria Ghia. Image: cardesignnews

Acquisitions by Detroit big-hitters was not a phenomenon restricted to the latter-1980’s – it began well before that. Ford had made several stabs at acquiring Ferrari in the late ’60s to no avail, but in 1970, they purchased (from Alessandro de Tomaso of all people) the Italian coachbuilder, Carrozzeria Ghia. In addition to using the Ghia logo as a ‘brougham’ trim level, initially for their European model lines, Ford also used Filippo Sapino’s Ghia studios as an advanced styling skunkworks, commissioning a series of conceptual styling studies and pre-production prototypes over the following two decades. Continue reading “Cars That Could Have Been Citroëns – 1983 Lincoln Quicksilver”

Oh No, Not Again

Everyone else is doing it so why can’t we? That was the plaintive question asked by Irish folk-rock-pop balladeers the Cranberries in 1993.

2016 Cadillac CT6: caranddriver.com
2016 Cadillac CT6: caranddriver.com

The Cranberry question applies to Ford’s Lincoln division who must be squirming in their corporate seats. The Genesis G90 saloon will be sold with a V8 as we well know and it looks the part. The other day Car & Driver revealed more details of the V8 Cadillac will be fitting to their CT6 which also looks the part. Considering that Genesis is a newish entrant in the upscale V8 market and that Cadillac is selling fewer cars than they were a decade ago (and so short of cash), Ford’s unwillingness to Continue reading “Oh No, Not Again”

2017 Lincoln Continental Facelift

Further to our discussion of the visual attributes of the 2017 Lincoln Continental, here is a view of the current car and one where I generously added more length front and back.

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Put together like this you can see how wrong the Lincoln really is. There is no point in making Lincolns off Ford platforms. They should do it the other way around. It looks like the front wheel is about half a wheel’s diameter too far back on the existing design. It could be that my version would be too long in reality. It just shows you can’t design a car piecemeal. Proportions matter.

Be Careful What You Wish For II

In December 2014 we ran an item about the changing styles of luxury car interiors. 

2017 Lincoln Continental interior in its Rhapsody form.
2017 Lincoln Continental interior in its Rhapsody form: caranddriver.com

A year or so later we find someone answering our calls.

In an article about how Lincoln do not want to copy the Germans, there is also discussion of the Lincoln Continental’s blue interior option. Here is a chance then to see if blue interiors are something that appeal to anyone other than automotive design commentators. My impression is that this is a welcome bit of bravery on the part of Lincoln. The all-blue colourway creates a very pleasant atmosphere that manages to Continue reading “Be Careful What You Wish For II”

Can Lincoln Really Do Luxury Luxuriously Enough?

Car and driver headlined an article about Lincoln with wording about the brand’s  focus on luxury over performance. They didn’t really address the point.

2015 Lincoln Continental concept: caranddriver.com
2015 Lincoln Continental concept: caranddriver.com

I’ve been very busy so it’s taken me eleven days to get around to drawing your attention to this one. After the boiler-plate text about there not being any chance of European sales (there will never be European sales of Lincolns), the blog from Car and Driver gets down to the point and notes how luxury not performance is the main focus of the new Continental. This is a theme we like to bang on about at DTW, the by-now tiresome predominance of performance over non-quantitative aspects. You could be cynical and say Continue reading “Can Lincoln Really Do Luxury Luxuriously Enough?”

Looking Back: 2000 Lincoln LS

260,000 examples in a six-year period isn’t bad.

2000 Lincoln LS. It looked questionable when new. Fifteen years later I see Astra wheel arches and crude detailing on the front bumper´s chrome: wikipedia.org
2000 Lincoln LS. It looked questionable when new. Fifteen years later I see Astra wheel arches and crude detailing on the front bumper´s chrome: wikipedia.org

The LS racked up a few awards, namely Motor Trend’s car of the year 2000 and it was nominated as American Car of the Year though it was pipped by Ford’s Focus and Audi TT. The LS was also Lincoln’s first attempt to fight off its reputation as a car for the nearly dead. That battle is reminiscent of Cadillac’s fight for a younger image, a fight Lincoln is still losing 15 years later. The LS shared its main elements with the Jaguar S-type and Ford Thunderbird and had a similarly contentious styling. Of the two saloons (while we’re comparing) the Jaguar managed a better job than the Lincoln. The 2000 Car Buyer’s Guide called the design “ho-hum”. I’d call it a derivative mash-up of VW Passat, Mitsubishi Diamante, Opel Astra, Ford Edge Design details and Lincoln motifs. Continue reading “Looking Back: 2000 Lincoln LS”

Learn what Lincoln´s line-up looks like

Today I will turn my attention to Lincoln. How good does it look for Ford’s premium brand? What are they selling? Read on to find out what the main UK-based websites** aren’t telling you.  

Lincoln MKC. It´s a Kuga underneath.Image: Lincoln.
Lincoln MKC. It´s a Kuga underneath.Image: Lincoln.

Lincoln´s range of vehicles has changed dramatically in the last decade. For nearly the entirety of its history the brand sold luxury cars in varying flavours of large.  Not all of these have been particularly well-regarded but Lincoln has also managed to avoid overt product disasters. It has no equivalent to the Cadillac Cimarron, for example. Lincoln´s high points involve the Continental limousine of 1961 and 2002 but thereafter it stagnated gently as a provider of non-Cadillac, non-Mercedes luxury cars to an older clientele. Unlike Cadillac, Lincoln has made no notable efforts to sell their cars in Europe. As such, while many who are somewhat interested in cars have seen the occasional Cadillac in Europe, the Lincoln nameplate is unknown outside the livery trade where a white stretched Lincoln Town Car vies with Cadillac, Hummer and Rolls for business. If your impressions of Lincoln are lodged circa 1963 in Dallas it might be time to find out how the brand looks today.

Continue reading “Learn what Lincoln´s line-up looks like”

Continental Drift

As Lincoln’s Simon Woodhouse gets a quilted leather handbag in the chops courtesy of his Bentley opposite number, are the designer gloves off for good?

2015 Lincoln Continental concept - image via netcarshow
2015 Lincoln Continental concept – image: netcarshow

This week’s pique-fest courtesy of Bentley’s Luc Donckerwolke is interesting for a number of reasons. Firstly, it breaks a tacit understanding that rival stylists do not publicly criticise one another’s work. Secondly, it prompts the question, is it possible to Continue reading “Continental Drift”

Theme: Benchmarks – the biggest boot on a passenger car

….is, according to my research, the one fitted to the 2008-2015 Skoda Superb. 

633 litres of luggage capacity. The 2015 Skoda Superb. Image: best-carz.com
633 litres of luggage capacity. The 2015 Skoda Superb. Image: best-carz.com

It holds 633 litres. The rear leg room is astonishing as well. You can fit loads of legs back there.

Continue reading “Theme: Benchmarks – the biggest boot on a passenger car”

Press Photo For The Day: 2010 Lincoln MKT

…the T stands for touring.

2010 Lincoln MKT: not popular.
2010 Lincoln MKT: not popular.

It has a “choice” of a 3.5 or 3.7 litre V6 engine. The smaller one is tuned for economy. And the engines drive the front wheels. Odd looking thing, isn’t it? The customers have been few. In its first full year on sale 7,435 buyers wrote a cheque. And in 2013 just over 6000 customers were found. Ford fondly imagine it is a competitor for the V8 Audi Q7. That’s what Motor Trend reported.

 

Engineering Made It Happen: 1977 Lincoln Versailles 351 V-8

Milestones: DTW looks back at significant automotive achievements. Today, the 1977 Lincoln Versailles, the first car to offer clear-coat paint.

1977 Lincoln Versailles: "Now, a car with a 110-inch wheelbase, with a superb luxury car ride."
1977 Lincoln Versailles: “Now, a car with a 110-inch wheelbase, with a superb luxury car ride.”

According to Motor Trend, May 1977, the Lincoln Versailles represented Ford Motor Company’s attempt to compete with GM’s successful and smaller-than-was-usual Cadillac, the ’75 Seville. Lincoln also wanted the Versailles to Continue reading “Engineering Made It Happen: 1977 Lincoln Versailles 351 V-8”