We Hear: Lincoln to Launch Small Luxury Sedan After MKC
Luxury brand Lincoln plans on expanding its lineup with a small luxury sedan by 2016. According to Automotive News, the new model will follow the introduction of the MKC crossover, and be positioned to compete with the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class.
In a presentation to investors yesterday, Lincoln said it would launch four all-new models over the coming four years. The first is most likely a production version of the Lincoln MKC concept (pictured) that bowed at the Detroit auto show. It would be based on the Ford Escape and, AN reports, a production version of the MKC will go on sale next year. Lincoln’s slideshow said the MKC is, “representative of future Lincoln products.”
The next vehicle in the lineup is reportedly a small luxury sedan that could be patterned to take on the likes of the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class and even the Cadillac ATS. Lincoln’s presentation hinted that the small premium car segment is predicted to at least double in size by 2015. Such a car would likely be extremely successful in China, where the Lincoln brand plans to launch in late 2014. The new small luxury sedan would reportedly go on sale in 2016.
Previous reports suggested that a future Lincoln small car would be based on the Ford Focus, and would compete with the likes of the Buick Verano and Acura ILX. However, if the new Lincoln small car is to fight Mercedes and Cadillac, it seems less likely it will be Focus-based: the Focus sedan is somewhat smaller than both the CLA-Class (6.5 inches shorter) and the ATS (7.0 inches shorter).
So far this year, Lincoln brand sales are down 10.5 percent compared to the first five months of 2012. However, the brand’s presentation says that sales of the new 2013 MKZ are extremely rapid: the non-hybrid has a turn rate, or measure of how quickly it sells from a dealership, of 16 days, while the MKZ hybrid has a turn rate of 12 days.
Sources: Automotive News (Subscription required), Lincoln