Lincoln kills Continental, goes all-in on utilities

Rodolfo Schellin

DETROIT — Lincoln Motor Co. verified Wednesday it will conclude production of the Continental at the conclude of 2020 as the luxury brand name abandons sedans.

U.S. profits of the Continental, reintroduced in 2016, slowed in recent decades as prospects shifted to the brand’s escalating crossover lineup. Lincoln announced this calendar year that it would conclude production of its other sedan, the MKZ, at the conclude of the calendar year.

“Lincoln is investing in advancement segments and the brand name will characteristic a total portfolio of SUVs, which includes a thoroughly electric car or truck in the long run,” the brand name stated in a assertion. “Lincoln will keep on to retain its most recent SUVs fresh and we will have far more information to share afterwards this calendar year nonetheless, as the total-measurement quality sedan phase continues to drop in the U.S., we strategy to conclude production of the Lincoln Continental at the conclude of this calendar year.”

Lincoln knowledgeable workers Wednesday at the Flat Rock Assembly Plant that Continental production would conclude.

“We develop to customer demand and customer needs are altering,” John Savona, Ford vice president, North American Producing, stated in a letter. “Lincoln is crucial to Ford Motor Business and we know it has a vibrant long run.”

Lincoln introduced back again the Continental in 2016 as the flagship car or truck for a rebounding brand name. It was a person of the first versions to characteristic Lincoln’s new mesh grille and was the first solution to involve 30-way massaging seats, which have turn into common alternatives on far more recent versions.

Income hit 12,012 in 2017 but fell steadily from there. Officials attempted to juice profits with a hyper-limited run of mentor-doorway versions in 2019.

A spokeswoman stated the brand name would present a 2021 Continental in China.


The Continental is amongst Ford’s most revered nameplates. It joined Lincoln’s lineup in 1939, when it was designed as a a person-off car or truck for then-Ford President Edsel Ford, who experienced fallen in love with the very long hoods, short trunks and rear-mounted spare tires of European sports cars on a recent journey abroad.

In 1951, the Museum of Present day Artwork called it a person of the eight most crucial cars just before Environment War II. Architect Frank Lloyd Wright viewed as the first Continental “the most lovely car in the earth.”

It obtained cachet by the nineteen fifties and ’60s as it was utilized in videos and boasted superstar motorists these kinds of as Clark Gable, Rita Hayworth and Mickey Rooney. It also served as the limousine of U.S. presidents, notably carrying John F. Kennedy the day he was assassinated.

In overall, 9 generations of Continentals were generated just before the nameplate was shelved in 2002.


Designers were thrilled when Ford officers knowledgeable them they’d resurrect the car or truck for the 2017 design calendar year.

Originally, they were instructed only that they were supposed to create a “large Lincoln.” When no standout styles emerged, the automaker’s management team instructed them they’d be crafting the upcoming Continental.

“You could practically see an speedy adjust in the room,” then-Lincoln President Kumar Galhotra instructed Automotive Information. “Right there was a very crucial lesson in the emotion powering the identify.”

Although the 10th technology car or truck unsuccessful to attain traction in a utility-major market, Lincoln’s dealer council as not too long ago as February was lobbying the brand name to continue to be in the sedan phase.

“You only have to glance at Tesla,” Tom Lynch, chairman of the Lincoln Countrywide Dealer Council, instructed Automotive Information. “If you have a powerful solution, men and women are likely to want it, and they are likely to want to purchase it. What that appears like for Lincoln likely ahead, I’m not certain of.”

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