Remember when Lincoln was cool?
No. You probably don’t.
The reason you don’t is because Lincoln hasn’t been cool since about 1964, when its rear-wheel-drive land yachts defined luxury and class.
Lincoln has been in decline since those glory days and currently struggles for relevance in a fiercely competitive luxury market that is dominated by Audi, BMW, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, and even Cadillac.
How can an automaker that has become a relative afterthought establish itself as a real player in the luxury game?
In Lincoln’s case, it must look to the Ford Mustang
Lincoln already has hopes of a home run in its upcoming Continental. That luxury machine has looks that can rival Jaguar, Maybach, Bentley, and Rolls-Royce, and should have enough features to position the car among the world’s elite executive sedans.
A Mustang in Lincoln clothes would take things a step further and do for Lincoln what the Camaro-based ATS has done for Cadillac. It would give a proper RWD performance coupe to Ford’s luxury brand at a time when it desperately needs some personality and excitement.
The idea is just heresy and conjecture for now, but Lincoln would be wise to pull the trigger.
A couple of conditions would need to be met for it to happen. First, Lincoln has to agree to use the Mustang platform for a future product. That should be a no-brainier decision.
Second, the production car must sit on that rear-wheel-drive architecture and must come as a coupe. Lincoln might be tempted to revert to what it knows and modify it into a sedan, but that would defeat the entire purpose.
With a new coupe and the new Continental on the market, Lincoln could generate enough excitement around its brand to remove its reputation for stodginess and make itself competitive again.
Could Lincoln pull off a Mustang-based coupe?