Thursday, February 09, 2006

Autoshow Season - Lincoln Navigator and MKZ

At this year's Chicago Auto Show, Lincoln had a couple announcements.

2007 Lincoln MKZFirst up, is further proof that Lincoln is committed to an alpha-naming system for their cars. So much so, that the just released Lincoln Zephyr is the Zephyr no more. Now, we have the Lincoln MKZ. Stylistic changes appear to be slight, if any, to go along with the new name.

Announced, however, was the future availability of all-wheel drive and Ford's 3.5l V-6 that packs 250hp (and more torque than the 3.0l that is standard in the Zephyr...er...MKZ).

Now, with all this alpha-naming goodness, you'd be sure that the new Navigator would be something like the MKN or some such. Well, Lincoln's having none of that. Showing that they have no nerve to go their own way, they are keeping the Navigator name - as if to say 'Cadillac kept Escalade, can we keep Navigator, huh? huh?'

Navigator packs mostly the enhancements we've come to know and love from the Expedition (in standard and EL) trim. In a move that further shows Lincoln's lack of trend-setting-ness, we have the new Navigator ESV (er...L). It's heartwarming to see Ford getting hay from canceling the Excursion just to replace it with not 1 but 2 extra-big SUV's ain't it?

2007 Lincoln Navigator interiorInterior styling on the Nav carries forward Lincoln's retro-70's styling theme with square gauges and switches that seem somehow reminiscent of buttons I haven't seen since the early 80's.

2007 Lincoln NavigatorAnd, as if to answer my MKX post where I hammered Lincoln for using the new cheesegrater style grill there and there alone (even beside a MKS concept sedan that had a grill like that on the Zephyr)...we now have the mother of all cheesegrater grills on the new Navigator. Whether Ford will have the nerve to carry this grill to the MKZ and the upcoming MKS flagship remains to be seen.

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