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Lincoln Claims MKZ Production Finally Up to Normal

Supply crisis short-circuited critical sedan’s launch.

by on Mar.25, 2013

The new Lincoln MKZ should reach normal levels of inventory in the coming weeks.

It was billed as the most important product new product roll-out in decades for Lincoln, the 2013 MKZ expected to anchor a wave of new products designed to put the long-suffering domestic luxury brand back on the map.

But things didn’t go right almost for the start for the new sedan, parent Ford Motor Co. putting the brakes on production in a bid to head off troubling signs of potential quality problems. The result was a crash-and-burn that instead of kick-starting Lincoln sales saw them fall to a 32-year low.

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But the maker finally appears to be back on track, a senior official has advised TheDetroitBureau.com, with production now on a fast increase that should soon see plenty of 2013 Lincoln MKZ sedans in dealer showrooms.

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Lincoln Working Up Rear-Drive Options

Wave of additional models could follow if MKZ clicks.

by on Dec.03, 2012

A Lincoln video on Youtube hints at the future with a quick snippet of a Mustang hinting at a RWD offering to come.

While Ford Motor Co. officials want to shine the spotlight on their near-term plans for a Lincoln renaissance, they are already working up some aggressive product programs that would include the addition of one or more rear-wheel-drive models to the luxury brand’s line-up.

The strategy would continue to see Lincoln share most of its underlying platforms with the mainstream Ford brand, however, including the next-generation Mustang.

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“Rear-wheel-drive is definitely in the works,” one of Ford’s top executives confirmed in a background conversation with TheDetroitBureau.com.

That executive downplayed rumors that Ford might look to partner with another luxury brand on one or more future products, however.

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Lincoln Gets Dedicated Design Center

Collaboration “the order of the day, not the exception.”

by on Oct.19, 2012

A clay model at the new Lincoln Design Studio.

Ford Motor Co. has opened a dedicated Lincoln Design Center in Dearborn, Michigan, part of its effort to put the long-struggling brand back on track as a true competitor to marques like BMW, Lexus – and even the resurgent cross-town competitor Cadillac.

The new design center and studio will house approximately 150 designers, craftspeople and engineers dedicated solely to Lincoln production and concept vehicles, Ford said.  It also marks the first time in 40 years that all the disciplines required to develop a new vehicle for Ford’s up-market brand, both creative and technical, will work collaboratively in one space.

Setting up the new design center is all part of Ford’s efforts to reinvent the Lincoln brand, executives said. Once a serious competitor to Cadillac as dominant players in the U.S. market, Lincoln has become a weak second-tier nameplate – and one with virtually no presence outside North America.

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Ford hopes to change that situation by rolling out more stylized, technically sophisticated products – including an all-new version of the Lincoln MKZ coming for 2013. It has an assortment of additional models under development but industry observers warn that Lincoln now has to prove it has a unique identity and isn’t just a marketing operation for slightly more up-market versions of vehicles sold by the mainstream Ford “Blue Oval” brand.

A 2013 Lincoln MKZ shown with the brand's design director Max Wolff.

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