The Great Reset
Pulled some interesting quotes from Andrew Frick Lincoln Group Marketing Manager out of an article I was reading this morning about the MKZ and what it means to Lincoln...
"Our vision is to be a fully competitive luxury brand, the transformation plan itself can't be measured in a matter of months, but over a series of years. It will be product-led, but also service-led. A lot of new initiatives coincided with the launch of (the Lincoln) MKZ."
"When you have a brand like Lincoln, it is always an advantage to play on history. As in the past, it's about standing apart from the crowd, being true to your own personal integrity — not to show off. The '61 Continental was about strong and elegant lines."
"There are four all-new products coming, we're having a lot of success with the MKZ and are seeing 60 percent conquest rates (from competitors) with the hybrid version. The MKC Concept that we debuted in Detroit is a good indication where we plan to go with the next generation of products. There's more to come."
With any brand, you have to be realistic with where you sit today, there's a perception of Lincoln being an older vehicle. MKZ is an example of what we're doing to attract new luxury buyers. Average age is down five years and income is up. Lincoln is not just about the highest level of horsepower, but unique, personal service."
"First and foremost are the products coming out, we will focus on meeting expectations in a whole new way. Everybody at Ford is committed to getting back to the level Lincoln has been. There is laser focus on Ford's sole luxury brand. Lincoln has traditionally been a U.S. brand, but we have to compete in China — and we will next year."
So clearly the axe is not as imminent as some members would like to think, Ford is going to give Lincoln enough rope to escape or hang themselves with and I think that is the right play. No one has ever succeeded by seeing the chopping block. They're really hung up about Lincolns history but the truth is the majority of shoppers they want to target dont remember the Lincoln heyday of the 30s through late 60s so maybe history isnt the right avenue. I'm all for incorporating the history to a degree but you dont see companies like Mercedes and BMW prattling on and on about cars they built in the 50's...
Its interesting that the MKZ hybrid is taking 60% of its buyers from rivals but that may have more to do with a lack of Hybrid choices from non- Japanese rivals. Average age is down 5 years but from where to where 65 to 60, 45 to 50? Without clarification I'm assuming the worst, if it was good Lincoln would share.
Again we hear Lincoln talking about personal service but thats not going to happen in a Ford dealership. They could bring you personalized chocolates and rub your feet as you peruse the sales brochure but that is still not going to change the fact YOU'RE IN A FORD DEALERSHIP.
The definition of insanity is continuing the same process expecting a different result, lets see if Lincoln knows that...