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Seems that Lincoln – once synonymous with luxury cars – is putting lots more focus on its luxury crossovers.
Lincoln has been completely redesigning its slate of SUVs of late, starting with the all-new full-size Navigator for 2018, followed by an update of the midsize MKX that was renamed Nautilus for 2019. Next came the midsize, 3-row Aviator – the subject of this report – which just went on sale as a 2020 model, soon to be joined by the new 2020 Corsair (based on the redesigned 2020 Ford Escape), which is the replacement for the compact MKC.
Got all that?
by Don Sikora
Note: The following story was excerpted from the February 2019 issue of Collectible Automobile magazine.
The Lincoln Continental seemingly faded away after 2002, but the storied nameplate—so integral to the marque—apparently was too important to lose. It came back in 2017, applied to Lincoln’s largest sedan on a stretched version of the Ford Fusion chassis. It’s fair to say the car’s styling elicited mixed reactions, a pity for a nameplate first used by Lincoln on a car that oozed style. That said, this installment of Future Collectibles focuses on the latest Continentals in Lincoln’s Black Label Program.
Question: What does Lincoln have in common with GMC, Jeep, and Ram? Answer: An all-truck lineup. Maybe.
Lincoln rounds out its roster of SUVs with the unveiling of the all-new 2020 Lincoln Corsair at the 2019 New York International Auto Show. The Corsair replaces the outgoing MKC as the smallest vehicle in Lincoln’s SUV lineup, and shares elements of its basic design with the recently unveiled 2020 Ford Escape compact crossover.
Dealing with legacy product is probably one of the most challenging parts of an automaker product planner’s job. What does a brand do with aging, unhip product that still sells relatively well, but compromises a marque’s image with the younger buyers that marketers so desperately want to attract?
Lincoln introduced a new midsize SUV at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. Called Aviator, the 3-row crossover boasts a number of new features along with a hybrid version seemingly aimed more at performance than fuel economy.
In recent years, Ford’s F-150 product planners and marketing staff have found themselves with an enviable “problem:” They have apparently not yet found the ceiling for what buyers will pay for a fully decked-out full-size pickup. With each new model year, pickup manufacturers keep finding buyers for ever-more-high-end trim levels loaded with new features and gilded with luxury-level appointments.
At the 2018 New York Auto Show, Lincoln unveiled a “preview” version of the three-row SUV that is set to join its lineup next year, presumably as a 2019 model. The Lincoln Aviator revives an SUV name from the brand’s recent past, and will be built on the same rear-wheel-drive platform that is set to underpin the forthcoming redesigned Ford Explorer.
Continuing a naming trend that began when the MKS large sedan was replaced with the Continental, Lincoln’s midsize MKX crossover becomes the Nautilus for 2019.
Revealed on the eve of the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, the new Nautilus features updated styling, a revised powertrain lineup, and new safety and tech features.