Rumor

President Trump May Be The Only One Who Can Save The Lincoln MKZ

Doubtful he will.

You may not have known this, but the Lincoln MKZ mid-size sedan, a corporate twin to the Ford Fusion, was one of the brand’s best-sellers last year, right behind the MKX crossover. As we’ve already reported, crossovers, in general, are killing sedan sales, a trend that automakers literally have no choice but to continue with. Business is business. According to Autoline Daily, the MKZ may meet its maker by 2019, despite last year’s fresh and solid sales. There are a few reasons for this.

One is that the assembly plant that builds the MKZ (as well as the Focus) is moving to Mexico soon. Does President Trump know about this? He does, but the decision can’t be reversed at this point. Ford doesn’t want to move MKZ production to its Flat Rock facility in Michigan because it’ll soon be converted into a unique plant specifically for electric and autonomous cars. Aside from not having a place to build the MKZ, Lincoln very much wants to continue capitalizing in crossover as well as SUV sales. Remember, the redesigned Navigator is on its way, and we wouldn’t be surprised that, if at some point, a premium SUV based on the same platform underpinning the also upcoming Ford Ranger and Bronco could be further utilized.

There’s also the Lincoln Continental factor. Yes, it’s larger than the MKZ, but it also represents a shift "away from alphanumerics to a new naming structure," according to Ed Kim, vice president of AutoPacific. However, Lincoln still hasn’t ruled out having a mid-size sedan in place of the MKX, although with a different name, at a later time. If that does happen, it’ll once again share a platform with the Fusion along with the next generation Explorer. What’s interesting about this new platform is that it’s modular, and can be configured in front-, rear-, or all-wheel drive. Hopefully someone at Lincoln with authority has the sense to have that MKZ replacement be RWD.

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