Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ - Ford Inside News Community
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 09:01 PM Thread Starter
FIN Moderator
 
nruggiero's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Metairie, LA
Posts: 2,104
Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ

By Keith Naughton on August 09, 2012

Wolff has just finished designing his first Lincoln (F), the MKZ sedan, out this fall. He shows Keith Naughton around Lincoln’s new Dearborn (Mich.) design studio.

Why is it important to have this studio? How will it help you design better cars?
Getting the entire creative team together is important. It allows more of those creative moments where people run into each other and strike up a conversation and then ideas bloom from that.

Everything catches fire. Ideas spread.
Absolutely. And for our management to be able to see the products laid out in front of them, it’s a fairly powerful statement and really lays out where we want to take Lincoln.

I know it’s still a work in progress, but do you eventually want luxury furnishings and artwork that will inspire the designers?
Yeah. We’ve got some elements of that. We envisage this space as being examples of imagery that inspires us. When you walk through those doors, you enter the world of Lincoln. [Gesturing.] This is our engineer area, upstairs. The designers are down here. One of the first things we did was purchase a decent espresso machine.

Tell me about this car. What year is it?
This is a ’61 Continental. We use this space for showing our newer models as well. But it’s great to have a space where we can put some inspirational products.

Is there a place in Lincoln for retro? Would you ever remake the ’61 Continental?
My viewpoint is that the time for recreating the past is gone. We went through that stage once before. I think we need to look forward, not back. If you looked at it against its domestic peers at the time, this car stood out as much for what it didn’t do as for what it did. A beautifully proportioned vehicle, great detailing, but very, very simple—astonishingly proportioned.

The MKZ is similar. It’s very sleek. But the detailing is not as ostentatious and in-your-face as some other vehicles.

Is there a luxury brand that you think does it right that has set a standard that you would like to meet?
I like the story behind Tom Ford and Marc Jacobs. Both of those guys went overseas, learned their trade, established themselves, came back to the U.S., and established these very successful, very international, but still American luxury brands.

Very authentic, with a great sense of detailing, a great sense of style. Marc Jacobs has this sense of fun, whereas Tom Ford is a little bit higher up on the ultimate luxury totem pole. But both of those brands have very inspiring stories.

How do you think luxury is defined today, vs. the way it was defined by your parents?
With each generation, you don’t gravitate to the same sorts of things that your parents did. Right? And you can see that in music. You see that in fashion. There are waves. I think these days, people are looking for that luxury experience that is not the traditional or the big-box kind of luxury experience.

Do you think that also is true of luxury cars, that we’re not looking for the big box there? The big black sedan used to be the epitome of luxury, right?
There is opportunity for somebody to make a different statement—that smaller, more personal brand. Lincoln definitely wants to be part of it. I mean, even an iPad is just a beautifully put together piece of equipment, but certainly it doesn’t sell on bigness, right? It sells on smallness.

It’s interesting you bring up the iPad. It seems like now the thing that gets consumers excited is the next iPhone. How do you make luxury cars that compelling again?
You need to do it with a product that is compelling, and the communication of the product, too. Maybe we tell a little bit more of the story of how we got here.

What’s the story that the MKZ tells?

This car tells the story of being very modern, of being transformational. It tells the story of grace, of elegance. On the interior, it tells the story of technology.

People live in their cars. How did you create a space where people could feel at home?
We wanted the vehicle to feel more spacious. And we wanted a fairly calming environment. So again, there is not a lot of disjointed surface changes in here. It’s a very flowing environment, very clean and uncluttered.

The center console looks like a suspension bridge.
Yeah, that was one of the inspirations. A suspension bridge, you look and you don’t even understand how they stay up, but they manage to.

So this is the antidote to road rage, a calming interior?

Yes, to some extent.

They’ll be at peace.
Yeah, hopefully.

http://www.businessweek.com/articles...he-lincoln-mkz
nruggiero is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 10:24 PM
2b2
Mercury C557
 
2b2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: N NW of Atlantis (Reno)
Posts: 18,014
Blog Entries: 5
Re: Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ

TY for posting this, N.R.
for some reason I "enjoyed" this interview more than previous ones
(not nec. "agreed" with parts but... )

Quote:
Originally Posted by MxW
...Why is it important to have this studio? How will it help you design better cars?
Getting the entire creative team together is important. It allows more of those creative moments where people run into each other and strike up a conversation and then ideas bloom from that.
all the better to BPR with*
& imho
to HIDE some stuff from FordBrand peeps
so their best ideas don't get stolen in time to put them on/in Fords First!!

(* Business Plan Reviews aka as every-thursday-meetings)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MxW
Tell me about this car. What year is it?
This is a 61 Continental. We use this space for showing our newer models as well. But its great to have a space where we can put some inspirational products.
Don't tell that "philistine" ANYthing...KICK some sense into him


Quote:
Originally Posted by MxW
...The MKZ is similar. Its very sleek. But the detailing is not as ostentatious and in-your-face as some other vehicles.
yeah r i g h t

Quote:
Originally Posted by MxW
...There is opportunity for somebody to make a different statementthat smaller, more personal brand. Lincoln definitely wants to be part of it. I mean, even an iPad is just a beautifully put together piece of equipment, but certainly it doesnt sell on bigness, right? It sells on smallness.
this gives me MKhopE

Quote:
Originally Posted by MxW
...Whats the story that the MKZ tells?
This car tells the story of being very modern, of being transformational. It tells the story of grace, of elegance. On the interior, it tells the story of technology.
yeah R I G H T
&
tho I'm only qualified to tell Mercury's story,
imho they need SOMEone to help them with this

Quote:
Originally Posted by MxW
...People live in their cars. How did you create a space where people could feel at home?
can anyone say for sure if Luxcar buyers "live" in their cars???
I doubt this
2b2 is offline  
post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-10-2012, 10:38 AM
Ford Falcon Ute
 
Andrew L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: St. Petersburg, FL
Posts: 4,340
Send a message via AIM to Andrew L
Re: Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ

It's nice they have a 61 Continental as inspiration on the main floor

Current Car: 2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid Reserve Ice Storm 2.0h CVT
Previous Cars
2008 Ford Focus SE Sedan White 2.0L Duratec I4 4 Speed Automatic
2004 Lincoln LS V6 Luxury Cashmere Tri-Coat 3.0L Duratec V6 5 Speed Automatic with SST
1999 Mercury Sable LS Premium Toreador Red Clear Coat Metalic 3.0L Duratec V6 4 Speed Automatic
Andrew L is offline  
post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-10-2012, 06:40 PM
Ford Focus ZX
 
timmm55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 254
Re: Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew L View Post
It's nice they have a 61 Continental as inspiration on the main floor
**** I think it's great that they do! Now take a look at the new Rolls with the suicide 4 doors and tell me why Lincoln isn't doing that?

Sometimes people miss the inspiration even when it's right in front of their noses.
timmm55 is offline  
post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-10-2012, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
FIN Moderator
 
nruggiero's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Metairie, LA
Posts: 2,104
Re: Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ

Quote:
Originally Posted by timmm55 View Post
**** I think it's great that they do! Now take a look at the new Rolls with the suicide 4 doors and tell me why Lincoln isn't doing that?

Sometimes people miss the inspiration even when it's right in front of their noses.
IMO, Lincoln needs its own factory so they can hand-build vehicles like the Continental to rival the finest(Rolls-Royce and Bentley). Then Mercury can make a comeback to rival BMW and Audi. So basically Lincoln needs to move further upscale. GM needs to do the same with Cadillac and Buick also.
nruggiero is online now  
post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-11-2012, 02:25 AM
2b2
Mercury C557
 
2b2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: N NW of Atlantis (Reno)
Posts: 18,014
Blog Entries: 5
Re: Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ

Quote:
Originally Posted by nruggiero View Post
IMO, Lincoln needs its own factory so they can hand-build vehicles like the Continental to rival the finest(Rolls-Royce and Bentley). Then Mercury can make a comeback to rival BMW and Audi. So basically Lincoln needs to move further upscale. GM needs to do the same with Cadillac and Buick also.
^ imho
at the "speed" Lincoln is moving (or being allowed to move )
they could prolley "hand-build" the whole factory.


not that I'm disagreeing with you, N.R.
just I need to 'see' more of the next decade before I can think THAT far ahead

edit
plus I'm not at all sure we have to wait THAT long to bring back Mercury
that^ imho is more of a philosophical problem than anything else
ie
people at Fomoco have LEARN a view of Mercury that is so different from the 'outward' Ford and Lincoln,
that differentiation becomes a "DUH"
2b2 is offline  
post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-11-2012, 10:58 AM
Focus RS WRC
 
scford58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 731
Re: Max Wolff on the Design of the Lincoln MKZ

Quote:
Originally Posted by nruggiero View Post
IMO, Then Mercury can make a comeback to rival BMW and Audi. So basically Lincoln needs to move further upscale. GM needs to do the same with Cadillac and Buick also.

I like your way of thinking nruggiero - I would love to see the return of Mercury complete with a rwd Cougar XR7. I also agree there should be a distinct difference between Mercury-Lincoln and Cadillac-Buick.
scford58 is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Tags
design, lincoln, max, mkz, wolff

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Ford Inside News Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome