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Lincoln Forum: The New Continental has weakened sales.
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  1. #1
    mark95man's Avatar
    mark95man is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2014 Navigator & MKZ Hybrid, 07 TC Designer, 96 TC, 79 MARK V Cartier, 75+ 69-71 Lincoln MARK IIIs
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    The New Continental has weakened sales.

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    Ford Motor Co.’s (NYSE: F) Lincoln brand suffered a setback in March as sales dropped 1.4% to 9,554. The new flagship Continental had sales of only 963. The car was not for sale in March of last year.

    Lincoln sales for the first three months of the year were up 8.7% to 27,083. Continental sales were 3,209, and the car was not for sale during the first three months of 2016.

    The figures were particularly poor in light of Continental’s competition. The new Cadillac flagship CT6 sold 968 units in March, BMW sold 3,161 units of its 5 Series, Mercedes sold 4,690 of its E-Class/CLS line (which includes a sedan, coupe and crossover) and Audi sold 1,576 of its A6 model.

    The “all new” Lincoln Continental has been presented as a major cornerstone of a turnaround of the Lincoln Motor Company by president Kumar Galhotra. Instead, in the United States, it is one of the slowest selling cars in its category.

  2. #2
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    I'm confident sales will pick up as more and more people see the Continental on the road. It may take some time to take off but I think it will. A lot of people have forgotten about Lincoln since the Town Car went away...

    I see Cadillac is still playing the in-between game with the CT6 competing against the 5-Series and E-Class...
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  3. #3
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    Asked the sales people at my dealership about the Conti sales. Most of the personnel agreed about the lack of incentives on the Conti may have hurt the sales numbers. They said people want the incentives that they are used to getting. Since there are no incentives on the Conti , there are lack luster sales.
    Apparently American cars sell better with incentives.

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    Understandable as i see it. Although i like this vehicle, there is no way I'm handing over $ 83,000 + 13% Tax (Canada). If i wanted to drop that much, I'd be looking hard at BMW and Mercedes as well.

  5. #5
    Town's Avatar
    Town is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Lincoln Continental Reserve 2.7 AWD; 2007 Lincoln Town Car Signature Limited (sold)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pete@STAP View Post
    Understandable as i see it. Although i like this vehicle, there is no way I'm handing over $ 83,000 + 13% Tax (Canada). If i wanted to drop that much, I'd be looking hard at BMW and Mercedes as well.
    That price is very high, must have every option. When you look at what you need (as opposed to what is available) the price will drop dramatically.

    In the production process you need to allow for the Airbag module recall that affected Continentals produced before 1 March 2017, some of which would normally be sold in March. Those models could not be sold due to the recall so there was a major production disruption covering the sales period quoted. Lots of aspects to consider in early production of a new model.

  6. #6
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    March sales dropped for cars from 41 to 37% . The SUV market continued to climb. However if the price of gasoline increases then the demand for SUVs may go down. However a Ford spokesman commented that worldwide the car demand is still high. Maybe the Chinese market will boost the sakes of the Conti?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Town View Post
    That price is very high, must have every option. When you look at what you need (as opposed to what is available) the price will drop dramatically.
    Yes, but who buys a bare bones vehicle without additional options, especially in that price range.
    Select starting price is 57,000 and the Reserve starts at 61,000. Still pretty high as is.

  8. #8
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    Are your base prices for the Conti thst much higher than in the US? What about the Premier? Is that model available? You can pick and choose additional options to get your price point, but remember a lot of extras are already included in the base price. So you don't get a sun roof or the 30 way power seats, you still have a lot of great features in this car!

  9. #9
    Town's Avatar
    Town is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Lincoln Continental Reserve 2.7 AWD; 2007 Lincoln Town Car Signature Limited (sold)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pete@STAP View Post
    Yes, but who buys a bare bones vehicle without additional options, especially in that price range.
    Select starting price is 57,000 and the Reserve starts at 61,000. Still pretty high as is.
    Quote Originally Posted by Pasadena Lady View Post
    Are your base prices for the Conti thst much higher than in the US? What about the Premier? Is that model available? You can pick and choose additional options to get your price point, but remember a lot of extras are already included in the base price. So you don't get a sun roof or the 30 way power seats, you still have a lot of great features in this car!
    The Premier is not sold in Canada. The choice is: Select with 2.7 direct injection twin turbo AWD at $56,900 plus delivery; or the Reserve with same 2.7 engine and AWD at $60,400 plus delivery. The 3 liter with AWD and torque vectoring is an option at a little over $3,000, but comes with much lower final drive of 3.39:1 compared to 2.77:1 for the 2.7 liter so the 2.7 should be more frugal for my driving.

    My car is the Reserve and the only option is the tri-coat white paint for $700. It has the 13 speaker Revel audio system, 24 way leather seats and tri-zone HVAC, Sync 3 with navigation and automated trunk operation. I did not want the moon roof at $2,200 because it lowers headroom and I only used it a couple of times in my 10 year old Town Car. I also didn't want the Technology Package at $3,000 since I want to drive my car myself since I don't trust the current state of technology (based on highly problematic self driving cars). The 20" wheels with low profile tires are the same diameter as the 19" std wheels with higher profile tires so add nothing and detract from ride quality so not for me. The luxury package is $5,500 and includes the 19 speaker Revel system and LED headlamps so nice but out of my reach. The rear seat package is $5,000 and includes reclining back seats (which precludes the folding rear seats that I like) and a rear seat control system that overrides the driver and front passenger requirements (I can just see my 4 grandkids with that kind of power at their fingertips).

    So I don't think my $60k Continental is a bare bones vehicle since it is all I need/want and a $80k version is not much better, but beyond my reach anyway. Everyone can make their own choices and most are different to mine judging by the dealer spec'd ones in showrooms.

  10. #10
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    I believe the problem with the sales of the Continental are two things; price and looks. What I mean about the looks department is that the production vehicle is not as attractive as the concept vehicle that wowed the public at the NY Auto Show a few years ago. That car was so attractive that it even was compared to a Bentley. That car was much wider and I believe a bit longer. It side profile was more proportional than the production model.

    Check it out on the numerous videos posted on the web. The production vehicle is not as wide and the front length from the A pillar to the grille is shorter giving it a stubbier look and seems out of balance, short length in the front, longer length in the rear. While it may be only a matter of inches, I feel those loss of inches in the width and front length, the car lost alot of its road and Bentley presence.

    A big mistake by Lincoln I believe. As far as the price, in order to have that presence on the road having those LED headlamps is a must. Unfortunately most Continentals I have seen on the road, and those numbers are small, have the regular projector style headlamps giving the car a regular road presence instead of an expensive dramatic look. A small deletion like that will cost Lincoln in sales.

    I understand that those LED headlamps are available in the upgraded packages but like many said here you have to pay over $80k to get them. At this time most non-Lincoln customers are unwilling to do that as well as many Lincoln customers who may not put an importance on road presence just comfort, and in that department the new Continental does get it right. Lincoln always get it right with Concepts but always water down the production vehicles. While the issues I have with the new Continental may not seem huge, they are subtle but important details. I believe those small details are important to many customers and the weaken sales of the new Continental would have many agree with me.

  11. #11
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    Don't you think thst Lincoln was trying to re-capture the allure of the Continental in an updated version?
    I have never seen any concept car go into production looking exactly like it's prototype. There are always costs and design work that carries through to production.
    I am still waiting for vehicles to have a look that immediately tells you what they are. The older Conti cars had a look! But in this day and age there are not as recognizable designs. Some mistakes are made like you can pick out a Cadillac CTS or ATS or even some of the SUVs by the front design or rear lights design. The only problem that I see is the distinction between the models is blurred. (Is it a CTS or ATS or a CTS-V or ATS-V, but you know it is a Cadillac)
    Maybe Lincoln is going that route?

  12. #12
    Town's Avatar
    Town is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Lincoln Continental Reserve 2.7 AWD; 2007 Lincoln Town Car Signature Limited (sold)
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    I talked to my dealer today about lower sales in March and he confirmed that the air bag module recall was responsible and would also affect sales in April. I ordered my car on 16 March and it is going into production the week of 1 June with anticipated delivery about 18 to 24 June. So my car is anticipated to take 14 weeks to delivery (for a rushed order accepted by Lincoln even) when the advertised time frame is 6 to 8 weeks to delivery.

  13. #13
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    Hard to believe thst your car ordered in March won't even be built until June. This airbag problem seems to be getting worse and not better!
    You must have the patience to wait it out! Hope your wait time will be worth it all when your car finally arrives.
    I haven't got the second letter saying the parts arrrived to fix the airbag problem. My brother wonders if it is safe to drive? I mentioned about all of the used cars out there with airbag problems thst aren't being recalled.

  14. #14
    Town's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pasadena Lady View Post
    Hard to believe thst your car ordered in March won't even be built until June. This airbag problem seems to be getting worse and not better!
    You must have the patience to wait it out! Hope your wait time will be worth it all when your car finally arrives.
    I haven't got the second letter saying the parts arrrived to fix the airbag problem. My brother wonders if it is safe to drive? I mentioned about all of the used cars out there with airbag problems thst aren't being recalled.
    My dealer received today the module for a stock Continental that could not be driven since before I ordered my car, 16 March. A MKX from the same time frame is still back ordered. New driveable Continentals are in very short supply. My dealer bought one from another dealer and paid a $1,700 premium to get it so he could have a demonstrator for his clients. This recall is way more extensive than the Ford recall notices indicate.

    It is apparently a Takata air bag module for the driver frontal air bag that may separate from the air bag itself or involve other problems. Why would Ford source from Takata when they cannot correct air bag problems from 2008 and later that caused deaths. The current Continental recall initially affected Continentals built from Jan 13, 2016 to Jan 18, 2017, but my dealer says it was expanded to Continentals (and others) built up to 1 March 2017, and affected the production line too in March.

    What a mess.

  15. #15
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    Maybe my brother was right. How safe is my car? I don't know what can really happen with the Takata airbag before , during or after an accident. Apparently Ford/Lincoln must be ok with letting owners drive until a fix is available. Really?

  16. #16
    Town's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pasadena Lady View Post
    Maybe my brother was right. How safe is my car? I don't know what can really happen with the Takata airbag before , during or after an accident. Apparently Ford/Lincoln must be ok with letting owners drive until a fix is available. Really?
    The cars that are affected by the recall as dealer stock cannot be driven on the road, they are stuck at the dealership. That is why very few Continentals are on the road. Looking at the VIN of cars made in Nov and Dec 2016 and subject to the recall there is a 17,000 difference in the production sequence number (VIN digits 12 thru 17) and my car scheduled for 1 June production. So with only 3,200 or so reported as sold so far there must be a lot of Continentals parked somewhere waiting for the driver air bag module.

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    I agree that Lincoln was trying to do that to some degree, I feel they would have been real successful if they would have included the suicide doors. Talk about having the look! I also agree that most concept cars look exactly like the production vehicles, Lincoln is especially bad in that regards. I can name the Lincoln Contempra back in the early 1990's beautiful car, but the production version was bad, the 2006 Lincoln Zephyr Concept I thought was also nice looking, the production version looked nothing like it, the Lincoln Aviator Concept looked pretty close to what was to become the Lincoln MKX, I thought the MKT Concept was nice as well and well look how that turned out, and most recently the Lincoln MKC Concept was beautiful, but again the Concept was wider and a bit longer than the production version, and of course the Continental. They should design the Concept on the actual platforms they plan to produce them as that extra width and length make a huge difference. I am not a Lincoln hater if I sound like one but I get frustrated on how the designers WOW us with these concepts and then they don't deliver. That is a big disappoint to me and I believe to alot of potential customers Lincoln loses by changing the production versions.

  18. #18
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    The car sales for April have slowed among the Detroit 3 as well as for several others such as Toyota and Nissan. In addition to the airbag problem facing Lincoln this lack of car sales isn't helping improve the picture. If you go into a showroom shoppers are looking at the SUVs more so than sedans. Maybe the Chinese market is enjoying cars and haven't got into the SUV world but the American market is not looking at cars. I've already heard friends talking about the Lincoln Navigator. Another SUV?

  19. #19
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    To put the 2017 Lincoln Continental excellent sales into context with some large "luxury" car competitors sales starting Sept 2016 through April 2017 the criteria is a large and relatively expensive car; so Mercedes E class, BMW 5 Series do not count since they are not large cars. The Mercedes S class, BMW 7 Series and Audi A8 and S8 are classed as large cars. The automotive pundits with their reviews seem to confirm the Continental's place with the following cars:

    #1 Mercedes S class sales from Sept 2016 are 6,829 and for 2017 are 5,139 for a total of 11,968;

    #2 2017 Lincoln Continental sales for 2016 are 5,261 and for 2017 are 4,212 for a total of 9,473;

    #3 2017 Cadillac CT6 (sales started in March 2016 not counted thru Aug) sales for 2016 are 5,121 and for 2017 are 3,382 for a total of 8,503;

    #4 BMW 7 Series sales from Sept 2016 are 4,880 and for 2017 are 3,097 for a total of 7,977;

    #5 2017 Volvo S90 (sales started in June 2016 not counted thru Aug) sales for 2016 are 2,295 and for 2017 are 1,525 for a total of 3,820;

    #6 Audi A8/S8 sales from 2016 are 1,533 and for 2017 are 1,084 for a total of 2,617;

    #7 2017 Hyundai Genesis G90 for 2016 are 782 and for 2017 are 1,519 for a total of 2,301.

    So the 2017 Lincoln Continental is selling very well, #2 behind the S class according to this site http://carsalesbase.com/us-car-sales...ntinental-new/ where I got the info from.

  20. #20
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    The sales for May are:

    #1 Mercedes S class sales for May 2017 are 1,275;

    #2 2017 Lincoln Continental sales for May 2017 are 1,061;

    #3 2017 Cadillac CT6 sales for May 2017 are 1,001;

    #4 BMW 7 Series sales for May 2017 are 524;

    #5 2017 Volvo S90 sales for May 2017 are 473;

    #6 Audi A8/S8 sales for May 2017 are 216;

    #7 2017 Genesis G90 sales for May 2017 are 397

    So the Lincoln Continental continues to climb in sales compared to its competitors, excepting Mercedes S class. Seems Continental sales are doing well in the large luxury category.

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    Wow, this is really great! Thank you, Town. But one correction - the Genesis G90 (Continental competitor) sold 397 in May of 2017. The "Hyundai Genesis" doesn't really "sell" anymore. It's a left over model. There's a G80 and G90 right now. The G80 replaced the "Hyundai Genesis". The G90 replaced the "Hyundai Equus". Would you mind if I updated your post?
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sal Collaziano View Post
    Wow, this is really great! Thank you, Town. But one correction - the Genesis G90 (Continental competitor) sold 397 in May of 2017. The "Hyundai Genesis" doesn't really "sell" anymore. It's a left over model. There's a G80 and G90 right now. The G80 replaced the "Hyundai Genesis". The G90 replaced the "Hyundai Equus". Would you mind if I updated your post?
    Yes, please do. Sorry for my mistake.

  23. #23
    Pasadena Lady is offline Senior Member My Lincoln(s): 2017 Continental
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    Just returned from a visit to my Lincoln dealer. Asked the sales manager if he heard from his Lincoln rep recently. He was expecting him later. I asked how the sales of the Conti were going. He said the sales were very slow. He said there is not as much interest as was expected. I said there were ads in magazines but very little on TV. Another person at the dealership said the sales were being encouraged with deals and incentives to boost sales. Everyone there was waiting for the Navigatir and hope that the TV ads will also boost the Conti. The SUV sales were much more than sedans. That is what they believe is hurting the Continental. In general sales are up almost 5% for May for Lincoln.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Town View Post
    Yes, please do. Sorry for my mistake.
    Oh, no problem at all. I also dropped the S-Class down to 1,275 - making things even better for the Continental. Now, of course, the Continental is a much less expensive car. But I still feel this demonstrates that Lincoln is making an impact on the industry. It's not going to be forever that the Continental is sold as such a discount. Especially considering the next generation will likely be rear wheel drive based...
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