A number of Lincoln customers have had to make do with rental cars while waiting for a Lincoln MKZ to get delivered. The supply line is a bit slow-moving, so Ford has allocated cash incentives to dealers to pay for any losses customers have suffered while waiting on their new Lincoln.
New flagship, Lincoln MKZ, a bit slow moving to customers driveways
Lincoln, as most are aware, is trying to change it’s image of being a brand nobody except very old people buys and shake up its sales. Granted, the Lincoln Navigator was popular with rappers, gangbangers and white kids from the suburbs who want to be rappers, but the plug got pulled as full-size SUVs went out of style.
The company has cast it’s lot by renaming itself the “Lincoln Motor Company,” according to Popular Mechanics, and seven new vehicles for the next few years. The first is the redesigned 2013 Lincoln MKZ, the slightly-bigger than mid-size luxury sedan.
Currently, according to AutoGuide, deliveries are running a bit behind. Lincoln has allocated cash to dealers, to compensate customers who have extended previous leases or rented cars while waiting for an MKZ delivery, for any losses incurred.
In the name of QC
The reason for the hold up is that Ford, as a whole, is a bit concerned about shoddy construction that’s led to a number of recalls for brand-new models in recent months, according to MotorAuthority. That doesn’t necessarily mean one shouldn’t bother getting, say, a SunTrust auto loan for anything by Ford, just that there have been some hiccups.
To avoid a repeat of the 2013 Ford Escape and Fusion recalls, where Ford had to recall just off-the-line vehicles due to manufacturing defects, every Lincoln MKZ is being shipped to Ford’s plant in Flat Rock, Mich. The MKZ is built in Hermosillo, Mexico, as is the Fusion though the Fusion is also built in Flat Rock. At Flat Rock, each new MKZ goes through quality inspections, making sure it’s all put together correctly.
The Hermisillo plant, according to AutoGuide, is reportedly unable to keep pace with demand, though problems with quality isn’t a concern. Final QA is just being moved to Michigan before sending the cars to dealers and ultimately to customers.
Not yet a Hail Mary
The 2013 Lincoln MKZ, featured in two commercials during the Super Bowl this year, is part of a big push to reestablish Lincoln among the luxury brands. The brand has declined over the past 20 years, going from 200,000 units sold in 1990, according to Popular Mechanics, to 85,643 in 2011.
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The slump continued in 2012, according to MotorAuthority.
Whether the MKZ is going to be the home run the newly-minted Lincoln Motor Company needs remains to be seen. It’s anticipated inventory could be on back order until April.