American sedans are on life support, and Lincoln has dealt the segment another critical blow. The American luxury manufacturer is following its parent company, Ford, with its sedan lineup discontinuation.
The midsize MKZ and the iconic Continental were the last sedans standing in Lincoln’s vehicle catalog. However, according to Ford Authority, the MKZ’s production concluded in July, and the final Continental will roll off the assembly line by the end of 2020.
The luxury automaker now only offers crossovers and SUVs for the time being, but it isn’t discounting sedans’ return in the future.
Ford VP and President of the North American region, Kumar Galhotra, told Ford Authority, “For the foreseeable future, we don’t have any plans to go back to sedans. But we’re always looking at the marketplace if there is an opportunity, so never say never.”
While sedans have occupied a large portion of the market for decades, the segment’s relevance has waned in recent years. The decision to discontinue the grouping, while disappointing, is not unexpected.
Slumping Lincoln sedan sales
Lincoln had been a significant player in the sedan market since Ford purchased it in 1922. However, the market has shifted, and shoppers are leaning toward more versatile crossovers and SUVs. The result has been a massive drop in sedan sales, which have significantly impacted higher-priced executive models such as the Lincoln Continental.
According to GoodCarBadCar.com, the Lincoln Continental only sold 6,587 units in 2019, and the numbers are looking even bleaker for 2020. The model reached its peak in sales in 2017 with over 12,000 sales, but it has trended down every year since.
Meanwhile, Lincoln MKZ sales have plummeted since achieving over 34,000 sales in 2014, according to GoodCarBadCar.com. That once respectable number has been cut in half based on the 2019 sales data report, and it’s not likely to be any better by the end of 2020.
What does the current lineup offer
The discontinuation of its sedans shouldn’t be seen as a slight against Lincoln itself. The luxury manufacturer currently produces the Corsair compact SUV, the Nautilus two-row midsize SUV, the Aviator three-row midsize SUV, and the Navigator full-size SUV.
Lincoln doesn’t bring forth the same amount of models as competing luxury brands such as BMW does. However, it is still keeping up with the latest developments in the automotive world.
For instance, the Lincoln Aviator Plug-in Hybrid delivers incredible power at 494 hp while maintaining eco-friendly performance. Meanwhile, the Lincoln Navigator remains king among three-row SUVs, and it retains its identity as a status symbol of the elite.
Meanwhile, the discontinuation of the last two Lincoln sedans leaves room in the manufacturer’s lineup. This leaves plenty of room for future innovations, whether it be via new models or eco-conscious reinventions of its current ones.
A fond farewell to the classic Lincoln sedan
Nothing says understated elegance quite like the Lincoln Continental. This sedan and its brethren indeed served their drivers well for years and will not be forgotten soon. However, it appears a new age is dawning with the uptick in sales of SUVs and crossovers.
The sedan’s era seems to have reached its end, but the door remains open for a bright comeback from Lincoln sedans.