AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council - Ford Inside News Community
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-23-2018, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

http://www.autonews.com/article/2018...alers-optimism

“Luis Somoano, chairman of the Lincoln National Dealer Council, said 2018 will be a differentiating year for the brand, and that its newest products, especially the Navigator, continue to attract new customers and help it shed its troubled past.”

“What is still missing in Lincoln's portfolio?
I think the company recognized there's some opportunities in the cycle plan. The focus right now is on SUVs. In that particular segment, you have a few opportunities. There's opportunities to do something smaller, something bigger, something in the middle. And maybe do something creative. The Germans will do three or four cars off one platform. So I think there's a lot of opportunities, and I think the company has recognized that. In order to keep the brand moving forward, we need to reinvest in the cycle plan.”
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-23-2018, 12:36 PM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

^

tho
"Reinforcements will arrive this spring, including a freshened MKC crossover..."
actually, Job1 is May7
so don't expect them before the first day of Summer

What is still missing in Lincoln's portfolio?
I think the company recognized there's some opportunities in the cycle plan. The focus right now is on SUVs. In that particular segment, you have a few opportunities. There's opportunities to do something smaller, something bigger, something in the middle. And maybe do something creative. The Germans will do three or four cars off one platform. So I think there's a lot of opportunities, and I think the company has recognized that. In order to keep the brand moving forward, we need to reinvest in the cycle plan.

Is Lincoln doing enough to differentiate itself from the Germans and other luxury brands?
In the global world we live in, everyone offers similar comfort and fuel economy. But what Lincoln is doing differently than everyone else is the experience inside the dealership. When the people cross my door, or even when they call, things like pickup and delivery, a warm environment on the showroom floor, I think that's an advantage for us. Because of our scale, we can do a lot of stuff that would be difficult for Lexus or the Germans to do. The biggest change we make is on this side of the business: inside the dealership. Pickup and delivery has been great. The new generation of buyers want more than the normal process of buying and selling a car. They want that commitment that, after I sell you the car, I'll be there all the time for you. Our industry is changing a lot, and one thing that's changing very fast is how we interact with customers. They need that commitment we'll be there forever. When you combine things like that with great product, like the Navigator, that's lethal.

Do you think Lincoln's boutique "experience center" model could grow to replace regular showrooms?
It's a great opportunity to show Lincoln to people who would have never considered Lincoln. I'm pretty sure that it's pretty costly, and being a factory proposition, it's the only way it can work. You can't take it to a normal dealer and have it be an operational success. It's small, high-end places where the rent factor is huge. It's working for Lincoln, but I don't think we can take it to the dealers.

What are your thoughts on CEO Jim Hackett and his commitment to Lincoln? = STOOOPID QUESTIONS!
He's emphasized that Ford needs a luxury brand and they'll do everything in their power to enhance it. I feel we're on the right path.

How does he compare to Mark Fields?
Jim is more of an Alan Mulally type; more of a visionary and someone who delegates and lets his people do their jobs. Mark was more hands-on. It's a difference, but both have been great for Ford.


Do you see an electrified future for Lincoln and how can that technology enhance the brand?
We know the company has a plan, but that plan is still very high level. We don't have access to that. But I think every luxury manufacturer realizes they have to play in that space. If you don't, you'll be out in the next 10 to 15 years. It's going to be part of the future of Lincoln.

Were you happy to see Jim Farley return to North America and work with Lincoln again? = STOOOPID QUESTION!
Jim's a great guy. The level of energy he has is hard to duplicate. He's a really intense guy. We sometimes don't agree on stuff when we discuss it, but I love the way he takes this business really serious. He's not afraid to make big calls, and really, that's what visionaries are for. He owns his decisions and he goes for it. To be honest, he was a big part of the change at Lincoln [during his first stint with the brand]. We did a lot of stuff that now we're seeing the fruits of. He knows the car business and he's very involved in the daily operations. The biggest thing I see in Jim is he's not afraid to make the call. That's something you need in leadership. I trust his instincts.

Kumar Galhotra has been a big part of Lincoln's recent success. Are you worried now that he's taking on responsibility as Ford's chief marketing officer in addition to his duties with Lincoln?

You're always going to have a concern when someone takes on such a big role, but I love Kumar. He's an engineer, so he sees everything through that way of doing business. He's a visionary and is always focused on the customer, which I love. He's also very cycle plan oriented. Not only is he helping with the whole operation, he's very involved with the cycle plan and figuring out what products we need. Kumar has been doing great for Lincoln and I don't doubt that he'll continue doing great for Lincoln. He's probably going to help a lot on the Ford side of the business, too. He's been a key, key player in Lincoln's success, 100 percent.


What have you been most proud of during your time on dealer council?
We've been raising the volume every year. I take that personal. I'll fight with Lincoln and tell them we need this rebate or we need that to sell this car, and we do that on a daily basis. To grow the brand the way we've been doing, that's one of the biggest things we've achieved. Also the profitability. To come from where we've come from, and now we see light at the end of the tunnel. Those two go together and it's what I'm most proud of since I started serving in council in 2012.

What's next for you once your term as dealer council chairman ends this summer?
I'm investing $20 million to open a new dealership in South Florida later this year. Imagine how much I believe in the future of Lincoln if I'm investing $20 million in this brand. We could always go out and buy another dealership and put the money somewhere else, but we believe in the future of Lincoln.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-23-2018, 02:38 PM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

What is with these interviews being published so late? Quite a bit has already changed.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-23-2018, 07:46 PM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

@Assimilator
am I missing something (no surprise) but
what makes you think this is older than:
March 21, 2018 @ 12:45 pm
Michael Martinez
?

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-10-2018, 02:20 PM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

*bump* ...imho, this topic might be relevant for a bunch of other threads
should it be merged? & with which??

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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-10-2018, 03:12 PM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

I think honestly Lincoln is on the right track. Only place I see a real need would be something smaller than the MKC. Then I think they really have all their CUV/SUV bases covered. Well know there is going to be hybrid versions of all their vehicles as well, eventually. Other than than an all new MKZ replacement and they should be good.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-10-2018, 05:21 PM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

Quote:
Originally Posted by badhac View Post
I think honestly Lincoln is on the right track. Only place I see a real need would be something smaller than the MKC. Then I think they really have all their CUV/SUV bases covered. Well know there is going to be hybrid versions of all their vehicles as well, eventually. Other than than an all new MKZ replacement and they should be good.
Once they finish overdosing on SUV/CUVs, Lincoln still needs a true flagship Conti to replace he current placeholder. Then they should be good.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-11-2018, 08:27 AM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

Quote:
Originally Posted by glyphics View Post
Once they finish overdosing on SUV/CUVs, Lincoln still needs a true flagship Conti to replace he current placeholder. Then they should be good.

Yeah, once they reap all the profits that SUVs give them, I am sure they could invest in another sedan if they think it would be profitable.

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-11-2018, 04:03 PM Thread Starter
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

OK, I have some news about Lincoln's future! A Facebook group posted some things (Everything Lincoln...its a closed group so need to ask to join, which is run by a Lincoln dealer...of which I have no affiliation with) as Lincoln hosted a dealer presentation in Dearborn this week. The one who attended posted some details and better, videos (all allowed!) of a design presentation. Lincoln stressed their Quiet Luxury mantra and went through various aspects of it.

They included the MKZ and Continental in abundance in them, and ended with some future think design sketches...all of them of cars not CUV/SUV's! (see the pics)

I asked the attendee about the elephant in the room...did they talk about sedans and cars in their future. They mentioned that Lincoln made a point that Ford's announcement was Fords alone and does not dictate Lincoln's vision. In a Q&A they said they will maintain the platforms for sedans.

This Facebook group has been my news source of the rumored 80th Anniversary Continental L with suicide doors, and claimed to have seen it (not in Dearborn though...it was brought up at the presentation and Lincoln neither confirmed nor denied it, again!) They claim they already took a $25k deposit from a customer on it!

They also mentioned in a post about this presentation that the Black Label line will split to offer Black Label and Black Label Elite...seeming to combine all the options into a full package. No word on when this happens though and which model.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-11-2018, 06:16 PM
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Re: AN Interview with head of Lincoln dealer council

TY & @spudz64
you got really good screen-captures ...& I'm glad the dealer won't get in trouble!!

could you maybePlease take some of the interior renderings in that same video?

- - - - - - -
also
here's an article I'm not bothering with CUZ
I heard Hatchett on PBS/NightlyBusiness yesterday & apparently can't open his mouth
without STILL sounding like they're abandoning vehicles completely ASAP
AutomotiveNews: ford-earnings-annual-meeting-hackett

Ford defends plan to shareholders:
‘We're simply reinventing the American car’

Other topics: Stock price, cost cutting, Lincoln, train depot

Autoblog
- GREG RASA - May 10th 2018

- - - - - - -

anyone remember when Mulally told suits to stop arguing with customers, interviewers, or pollsters and to LISTEN?


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