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With thanks to "blue3231" at GMI:

Alphanumerics are taking precedence over normal titles. Carmakers say they sound classier.

By Ken Bensinger, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
January 5, 2008

Last November, Mark Fields, Ford Motor Co.'s executive vice president, took the stage at the L.A. Auto Show. He was there, he told the standing-room-only audience, "to show you our new flagship sedan, the Lincoln MKX."

Oops. Fields quickly corrected himself because he wasn't introducing the MKX, a luxury sport utility vehicle, but the MKS, a luxury sedan that will come out this summer. The gaffe wasn't surprising, considering that Lincoln also produces the MKZ, has a concept car called the MKR and is set to debut the MKT, another concept car, in Detroit this month.

If a guy like Fields can trip up, one can only imagine what may happen to the ordinary motorist who is checking out the 2008 offerings from Cadillac -- CTS, DTS, XLR, STS, XRS, XLR, ESV and EXT -- or Lexus -- LS, GS, ES, IS, SC, LX, GX and RX -- or Volvo -- S40, S60, S80, V50, V70, XC70, XC90, C30 and C70.

Where are the Gremlins of yesteryear? Or the El Dorados, for that matter?

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