(from Lincoln Press
Release) Lincoln MKZ Concept: Future Vision Today
DETROIT, Jan. 10, 2012 – The new Lincoln MKZ Concept, revealed today
at the North American International Auto Show, signals a significant
step in Lincoln’s reinvention, providing a clear vision of its
“With the Lincoln MKZ Concept, we are not introducing a new car. We
are essentially introducing a new brand,” said Derrick Kuzak, Ford
Motor Company group vice president for Global Product Development.
“The MKZ Concept is the next step in the reinvention of Lincoln,
something we’ve been quietly but aggressively pursuing.”
Lincoln MKZ Concept: Exterior
The MKZ Concept strongly
hints at the production model arriving in dealerships later this
year, as well as Lincoln’s design future.
“The MKZ Concept’s shape is a vision of simplicity completed with
just a few strokes,” said Max Wolff, Lincoln design director. “Our
movement as a brand is toward something we call elegant simplicity.
It’s something warmer and more restrained, which is moving away from
complex designs and traditional luxury.” (View a video highlighting
the main design elements of the Lincoln MKZ Concept here.)
Warm hues are evident in every aspect of the new vehicle’s
Cognac-colored exterior. The deep finish is achieved with a rich
base coat covered in multiple layers of tinted clear-coat finishes.
By retaining key, recognizable brand design elements, the MKZ
Concept remains clearly identifiable as a Lincoln. One example is
the more refined interpretation of the split-wing grille, introduced
on the 1938 Lincoln-Zephyr. (Click here for image.)
The sedan’s profile is dominated by a long, sleek and sweeping
roofline that allows the design to break away from the traditional
sedan three-box shape. The lengthening of the roofline enables a
more flowing, elegant and more naturally aerodynamic appearance.
(Access Lincoln MKZ Concept specifications here.)
A panoramic glass roof spans uninterrupted from the windshield to
the top of the backlight. Integrated into the sedan’s aluminum and
boron steel superstructure, the fixed-glass expanse extends to the
side roof rails of the cabin, creating an airy, open interior.
(Click here for gallery.)
LED technology enabled an extremely thin and distinctive full-width
taillamp graphic. Exhaust tips are cleanly integrated into the rear
Lincoln MKZ Concept: Interior
The Lincoln MKZ
Concept’s four-seat interior is open, warm and inviting. “The front
graphic is repeated in the dramatic sweep of the instrument panel,
helping tie the interior to the exterior. These flowing forms create
a comfortable and functional interior that particularly appeals to
the younger, more diverse customers we are targeting,” said Wolff.
Innovative interior features include push-button transmission gear
selection, an open, tiered center console and liquid crystal
instrumentation. The reconfigurable 10.1-inch Thin Film Transistor (TFT)
LCD positioned ahead of the driver operates with the latest version
of MyLincoln Touch™ as does the nearly flush-mounted center 8-inch
LCD touch screen.
Responsibly harvested poplar wood, aluminum in bright and satin
finishes as well as leather help create a sculptural, luxurious and
comfortable interior space. Champagne-colored leather seats with
dark taupe accents feature a champagne perforation pattern,
so-called because the perforations on the seat backs conjure the
image of champagne bubbles rising from the bottom of a glass.
Lincoln MKZ Concept: Engineering
The Lincoln MKZ Concept
is a styling study that rides on an all-new midsize platform. The
sedan is capable of utilizing multiple powertrain options in
front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive configurations.
Like the recently introduced MKS and MKT with EcoBoost™, the Lincoln
MKZ Concept features Lincoln Drive Control and the sophisticated
Continuously Controlled Damping (CCD) adjustable suspension. (Click
here for information on these Lincoln technologies and here for
background on the Lane Keeping System, another feature integrated
into the MKZ Concept.)
The Business of Lincoln
“Lincoln is an important
part of our company’s success,” said Mark Fields, Ford Motor Company
president of The Americas. “The luxury piece of the industry is
significant. In any given year in the U.S., the luxury segment is 11
to 13 percent of overall sales, and it is important for us to win
customers in the luxury market with strong new vehicles. That is a
key reason we have invested so heavily in Lincoln.”
During the past 14 months, Lincoln has built a dedicated team –
including designers, engineers, quality and manufacturing experts as
well as marketing and sales leaders. The team includes people from
luxury brands, some outside of automotive.
“This team wakes up every morning thinking about Lincoln – and only
Lincoln,” Fields said. “These are the people committed to delivering
world-class vehicles with a customer experience to match.”
Under Wolff’s direction, construction of the 40,000-square-foot
studio began in early 2011 and ultimately will house more than 180
modelers, engineers, stylists and designers in a space that
encourages creativity and collaboration.
“This is the first time Lincoln has had its own studio since the
1970s,” said Wolff. “Having our own space is critical to the
continued development of the brand. We are passionate about creating
beautiful, even seductive, vehicles – and the MKZ Concept marks just