Thursday, July 8, 2010

MK-Zephyr Hybrid. Eco-Sport Sedan for 2012

Hot off the presses—Could a rear-wheel drive sport sedan, a replacement for the LS, be in Lincoln's future? The flowing, windswept lines on this MK-Zephyr lead the way for the return of Lincoln's classic nomenclature, now combined with alpha-prefixes.

C H O P — Based on a new press photo of the 2011 Infiniti M. The premise behind this car is that Lincoln's designers liked what was shaping up over in the Jaguar studios when FoMoCo owned both marques. They took those initial dramatic fastback concepts for the flagship XJ and shaped this new entry-level Lincoln—and deftly elevated it from its Fusion-derived first series. 

Rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive versions would be available. Engines would range from an uprated version of the just-introduced Hybrid drivetrain, to a Twin-Charged 2 liter inline 4 cylinder making 225 hp and 225 ft/lbs, and up to a brand new 3.0 liter dohc V8 with 350 hp / 300 ft/lbs. Weight could be cut by several hundred pounds over the current MKZ through the use of computer-designed 'smart steel.' Every square inch of sheetmetal is optimized in width and tensile strength for its given 'job' and location on the monocoque for maximum strength and lightest weight. The new body-in-white would be 50% stronger than the MKZ, and 500 lbs lighter in base form.

The tagline I created for Lincoln in this ad, "Birds sing after storms, why shouldn't we? is a paraphrase of a famous quote by Rose Kennedy, mother of J.F.K. and late-matriarch of the Kennedy clan:

Birds sing after a storm; why shouldn't people feel as free to delight in whatever sunlight remains to then?
—Rose Kennedy

I think it's fitting to use a Rose Kennedy quote for the soon-to-be resurgence of Lincoln in the 21st century: John F. Kennedy's lasting legacy is forever entwined with those twentieth-century Camelot-era Lincoln Continentals The circle is complete.

BTW 2:
The irony isn't lost on me that I've berated the styling of the Rapide today and then posted two more large gray fastbacks that are in no way as elegant or as well-designed as the Rapide. There goes that Gemini thing again.


  1. You are totally smitten with fastbacks !! LOL
    What are your favorites of all time ?

  2. my favorite fastbacks would have to start with the streamliners of the thirties and forties of all marques. i love the '63 Sting Ray, the '71 riviera, the '70 Thunderbird, the original 2+2 Mustang, Aston Martins of the '60s. i guess the original Tucker would be in there too. all the italians of the sixties and xeventies.... i could go on and on!

  3. my first car was a 70 thunderbird !
    omg FAST !
    I could punch the accelerator from a dead stop and spin the tires for a city block
    my buddy had a boattail riv
    we have alot in common

  4. the '70 and '71 Tbirds are a fairly late arrival on my 'best of' lists, oddly enough. growing up we had a '58 and a '64 for years and years. I kept the '64 until '94. While I loved, loved, loved the 4 door Thunderbird of '67 with it's bucket seats and power window controls on the upper center console (I love the details!), the fastback version didn't do it for me as a 13 year old when it came out. I have now come to believe that the 1970 model, even though it was a facelift of the '67-'69 version, to the point of even using some common body panels, it's the most avant garde and pure of them that last 'small Bird" unit-bodied series. I dream of a navy blue 1970 Landau, with the full windows but a perfect vinyl roof. I'd give it larger wheels in the original style. I'd even have painted sections like the optional wheelcovers in '70-'71 were, but in 18-19 inch versions..

    would you like to see a 4 door version based on the fastback style, instead of the notchback? that just occurred to me. maybe i'll look for some photos tonight and see if i can find a good base photo.

  5. Would be a great tie-in for me - I'm loooking to buy a 70-71 fordor.
    In high school, my friend Mike's mother owned a 71 4 door - midnight blue with a black landau interior - it was a used funeral procession car when she bought it - so it even had dual spotlights - and it was our high school cruising car - great memories - the 4 door inspired me to get my 70 fastback - I'm partial to the blue as well, black, or that year's browns, either tobacco or ginger. Mine was white with a ginger landau interior - flashback memories

  6. i really like Ford's color palette from the late sixties into the seventies. They had some really rich colors, like burgundies, dark and ivy greens, royal blues, that awesome ginger. they had interior colors to match or contrast. I think 1963-64 through 1972-75 would be in my 'wheelhouse' for personal favorite period. i have SO many of those brochures.

    I've been thinking about what you said about my chops and art. I think the next 8-10 of my pieces on wood, will use printous of my car chops, integrating the digital and the 'analog' art worlds. at the very least, they'll be a great insight into the artistic compulsive mind, lol.

  7. Nice chop! It reminds me a lot of the Infiniti M sedan.

  8. "It reminds me a lot of the Infiniti M sedan."

    lol, I wonder why? : )

  9. If you do the chops on wood I'll have to purchase one. Does that mean I'll have to attend one of your gallery showings to get one ?