Lincoln unveiled its first all-electric concept vehicle at a Hollywood event on Wednesday: the Lincoln Star Concept, a crossover that looks a lot like a Corsair or Nautilus crossover with a longer, lower body, sharper body creases put prominently featured with LED lighting effects and some exciting offerings that are unlikely to debut on a future production vehicle.
The Lincoln Star Concept vehicle is a concept that will not end up on the production line. This is purely a research exercise and will be used to gauge customer interest in the potential features and design style of Lincoln’s plans to fully electrify half of its offerings by 2050. attended by TechCrunch showed off the Star Concept and several other vehicles that appear to be full-size cruisers or low-slung sedans, which is particularly interesting given that Lincoln currently only offers SUVs and crossovers in the United States.
“We solicit feedback and get ideas with the Star Concept. The bulk of the proportions is something that obviously can sit in two or three rows,” said John Jraiche, global director of luxury vehicles on the corporate product line management team at Lincoln, in an interview with TechCrunch. “In the lineup we showed you in the presentation, each vehicle will serve a very unique purpose and I honestly think they don’t have any proxies that are currently on the market.”
While journalists were not allowed to take photos during the pre-embargo presentation today, the slides clearly showed what appeared to be lower and sleeker sedan-style bodies under foils next to the Star Concept. When asked if there might be a grand touring or “sports” style car coming from Lincoln, Jraiche hesitated.
“You use the word ‘sports’…I think there’s room for some sort of low, long, low-roofed, high-topped vehicle. I wouldn’t necessarily use the term “sports car”. I think there might be an opportunity for a form language, like the one I just described. Kind of ride lower and lower to the ground, lower ride, lower roof, height.
If Lincoln rolls out a grand tourer or sedan, it would represent a significant shift in Lincoln’s product plans since the company currently only sells crossovers and SUVs in the US market. The company stopped selling the Continental sedan in the United States in 2020, just four years after announcing the return of the famous moniker, after Lincoln’s parent company Ford announced that it would only produce SUVs and cars. crossovers for the US market (except Mustang).
There’s a very strong possibility that US consumers will get a Mach E-based Lincoln, which also has a lower ride height and fastback grand tourer styling.
Lincoln targets Chinese EV market
In reality, however, the United States is not the growth market for Lincoln; China is. If Lincoln makes a battery-electric grand tourer sedan, chances are it’s for the Chinese market, not the United States.
“China is really the key to our future growth.” Joy Falotico, president of Lincoln, said during the presentation. “Last year, we sold over 91,000 vehicles in China, representing a 48% year-on-year increase.” Lincoln currently sells more vehicles in China than in the United States
In the spring of 2021 Lincoln announced the Zephyr – a sedan that is built and sold only in China. According to the company, they have taken over 5,600 pre-orders for the vehicle since the announcement. The Lincoln Corsair (a crossover also available in the United States) has been the top-selling nameplate in China for the past 23 months, according to the company.
“Sedans are strong in China,” Jraiche said later, echoing Falotico’s statement during the presentation. “The data indicates that where the market will go in the future with electric vehicles remains to be seen, but we have forecasts and believe it will be a low-slung vehicle with a low ride height and a lower roof height A lowered vehicle.
The Star concept certainly matches the low ride height and low roofline styling, though it looks more like a crossover or wagon than Jraiche has hinted. Jraiche made it clear that what really matters most when it comes to Lincoln’s future is content. “What you deliver inside the vehicle is going to be paramount,” he said. “What problems are you solving for the client? How do you use computing power? What experiences will you offer? We choose to serve as a flexible driving environment.
To that end, the concept included nice touches like coach doors, front seats that swivel to create a lounge-style space inside, hidden storage space in the door for a laptop that can be put mirrored on the vehicle’s internal screens, a trunk-drawer style front and a rear hatch that transforms into an exterior lounge.
While we’d certainly love to see any of these features appear on a production car from Lincoln, we doubt we’ll see them in the form they take on the Star Concept. Beyond the Star Concept, Lincoln says it will have a total of four new all-electric vehicles by 2026. It remains to be seen what form these will take and where they will be sold.