When a Ford F-150 became a Lincoln.
The Ford F-150 wasn't always the luxury truck that it is today. F-150 buyers can spend over $80,000 for the top-of-the-line Limited trim. Even the Ford Raptor is a near $60,000 purchase. Over the years, the F-150 has become more refined while still maintaining its truck characteristics, as Ford realized there was more money to be made in the world of luxury pickups.
Twenty years ago (if you can believe it!), someone at Dearborn had the idea of adding a truck to the Lincoln lineup. If it didn't work, then fine. Not much would be lost. But if it did, then Ford would have discovered a new and profitable segment. The result was the Lincoln Blackwood. Built only for the 2002 model year in the US, the Blackwood was pretty much deemed a failure due to slow sales. Interestingly, the Blackwood received a positive reception when it debuted at the 1999 Detroit Auto Show.
Lincoln figured since it had achieved solid success with the first-generation Navigator, the Blackwood would be an instant hit. Also, Lincoln wanted an SUV-truck duo to compete against its crosstown rivals, the Cadillac Escalade and Escalade EXT. Essentially an F-150 underneath, the Blackwood came powered by the 5.4-liter naturally aspirated V8 with 300 horsepower and 355 lb-ft of torque, paired to a four-speed automatic transmission.
However, it was available in rear-wheel-drive only, immediately making it a non-starter for those with off-roading in mind. That wasn't Lincoln's only product planning mistake. While its SuperCrew cab configuration offered plenty of passenger room, the traditional truck bed was altered and essentially became a trunk. It featured a power tonneau cover and even carpeting. The box, which suffered from supply issues that caused the truck's delayed market arrival, was a plastic composite construction and lined with stainless steel. The bed lacked the practicality truck buyers wanted.
If you wanted a big trunk, there were plenty of big sedans available, such as the Lincoln Continental and Town Car. Lincoln misjudged what luxury truck buyers were looking for. The Blackwood's odd exterior styling was hit or miss. The bed's exterior, for example, had aluminum pinstripes over fake black wood. It just looked a bit odd. And, needless to say, just one exterior color was offered: black. All told, only 3,356 Blackwoods were built. Initially, Lincoln hoped to sell 18,000 or so examples in 2002 and 2003. Pricing began at almost $53,000 and because sales were so bad, the last Blackwoods were sold for below invoice price. Dealerships just wanted them gone.
Is the Lincoln Blackwood a collector's truck today? Not really, but it's definitely a fun conversation starter. This Lincoln Blackwood is currently up for sale at Coughlin Auto in Ohio for an asking price of $18,989. You're not alone in thinking that amount is way too high, but the truck does have fairly low mileage for its age, reading 65,903 miles on its odometer. Its overall condition appears to be pretty solid inside and out. And yes, it looks just as awkward as did in 2002.