But will this be enough to save the current generation flagship sedan?
Although we recently learned the Lincoln Continental may be discontinued after the current generation, launched only 18 months ago, runs its course due to slow sales, reports that Ford’s luxury brand will soon offer the big sedan with suicide doors. For those who know their Lincoln brand history, suicide doors, where the rear doors are hinged on the C-pillar instead of the typical B-pillar, were once featured on the iconic 1961 Lincoln Continental.
This was also the make and model year of the vehicle President John F. Kennedy was riding in when he was assassinated in Dallas, Texas on November 22, 1963. According to this latest report, Lincoln showed off a photo of the updated Continental featuring those doors to dealers at the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) show in Las Vegas over the weekend. However, Lincoln offered no specific details, such as a launch date or whether they’ll be standard or optional (likely the latter). While the announcement was made as part of an effort by Ford to show its continued commitment to Lincoln, Continental sales continue to decline. In the first two months of this year, sales have fallen 30 percent.
Fortunately for Lincoln, its all-new Navigator has been a huge success and it will also unveil the Aviator crossover this week at the New York Auto Show. Another SUV will also be added to the Lincoln lineup by 2020, stated the newly appointed head of Lincoln, Joy Falotico. Clearly Lincoln’s future lineup will be very SUV crossover heavy, which has become the industry norm as of late. While adding suicide doors to the Continental is a cool idea, it’ll likely not be enough to salvage the big sedan’s chances for a complete redesign down the line. This isn’t the first time Lincoln has dabbled in bringing back suicide doors, having done so previously in 2002 with the Continental Concept (also pictured here).