Lincoln: No Reveal At NIAS
Lincoln Motor Co. will not hold a press conference or reveal a new vehicle at this year's North American International Auto Show.
Instead, Ford Motor Co.'s luxury brand will use its nearly 15,000-square-foot show floor display to spotlight the Navigator SUV concept that debuted last year at the New York show. The production version of the full-size utility will be revealed later in 2017 and will likely be at dealerships by the end of the year.
The concept version -- with gull-wing doors and concertina steps -- wowed crowds when it was revealed in March. Executives said the production vehicle won't have the dramatic gull-wing doors, but will feature the "new face of Lincoln," a mesh grille that replaces the split-wing front on previous Lincoln nameplates.
The current Navigator is built alongside the Ford Expedition and Super Duty at the automaker's Kentucky Truck Plant.
The next-generation SUV will continue to be built there, according to the most recent four-year contract between Ford and the UAW.
Lincoln is hoping the next-generation Navigator will help it recapture some former glory. The brand is credited with inventing the large luxury SUV segment when it first introduced the Navigator in 1997, but sales have fallen from a high in 2003.
Beyond the updated Navigator, Lincoln's fortunes in 2017 will hinge on another retro product -- the Continental.
Last year, Lincoln used the Detroit show to reveal the production version of its flagship sedan, reviving a name it discontinued in 2002. The cars hit showrooms beginning in September 2016, and dealers are counting on a full year of sales to help boost volume.
Lincoln executives have vowed to introduce two new vehicles to the lineup by the end of the decade; it's unclear if either will be revealed in 2017.
Lincoln's Detroit show display will be near the Hall C entrance to Cobo Center. It's the second-straight year the luxury make will be positioned away from the main Ford display and grouped near competitors Cadillac, Audi, Infiniti and BMW.