According to Automotive News, Lincoln is developing a seven-passenger crossover based on the Ford Fairlane concept. However, in the report, the Ford representatives stressed that the styling between the two models will be very different. The styling of the upcoming crossover was compared to the "sleekness of a Gulfstream Jet."
Just as Lincoln established the "design languages" of the egg-crate grille for SUVs and crossovers, and the vertical "waterfall" style grille for passenger cars, the MKR concept re-defined the Lincoln signature look once again with its prominent center logo in a split-grille design. Most analysts are expecting this to be the "new" look of future Lincolns, much as Cadillac's "art & science" theme that debuted on the CTS became the brand's signature style.
Once again, Ford seems to be changing course mid-stream. Under such intense scrutiny and pressure for results, it's not a surprise. However, constant changes in design, style and strategy confuse customers, and send a message of desperation. However, of all their domestic divisions, Lincoln is perhaps in the greatest need of a shot of adrenaline and excitement in its product lineup.
When the Navigator first debuted in 1998, it was the style leader for the segment when Cadillac was caught flat-footed and hastily dusted off the Escalade which was itself confusingly similar to the GMC Denali at the time. But when the Caddy was re-designed for '01, it quickly eclipsed the Navi in street cred. Lincoln needs to find it's mojo again to be a serious player in the luxury market.