Thank you for asking! I have about 1200 miles on the Bimmer. I will first share the things that I miss about the Continental or where I think it is superior.So, Brucelinc, you should be in your new Bimmer by now--any observations you would wish to share with us?
The BMW is very tight and the doors need a good push to close on the first try. I really miss the Lincoln soft-close doors. The BMW has no way to activate the heated seats when doing a remote start. The Lincoln did and that was very nice in Minnesota weather. The Lincoln cross traffic alert was MUCH more sensitive than the BMW. The BMW has more safety technology in general but the cross traffic alert requires you to nearly back into traffic before it provides a warning. The ergonomics were better for me in the Lincoln. Some of the BMW buttons for the climate system and seat adjustments are very small and difficult to see. The rear seat of the Conti was MUCH larger and had climate controls for the rear seat passengers. The BMW rear seat is much smaller and only has seat heating....no individual temp or fan controls.
Things about the BMW that I think are better:
The car is much superior mechanically in my opinion. It's 523 HP V8 far outperforms the 400 HP V6 in the Conti and also gets better highway fuel economy. The 8 speed ZF transmission in the BMW is much smoother. The BMW is remarkably quiet.....almost eerily so...much quieter than the Conti. The BMW brakes are much larger and provide better feel and stopping power. The ride is probably a tad firmer but there is less impact noise or drama when hitting bumps. I love the I-drive controller (sort of like a computer mouse) in the BMW. Even though you can operate the larger BMW screen by touch, the controller on the console is handier and you avoids fingerprints on the screen. Voice commands work very well but they also worked well in the Lincoln. About the only difference is that there is no need to press a button with the BMW. It responds by just saying "Hey, BMW" and telling it what you want.
I would say the following areas are equal: Fit/finish, build quality, material quality and seat comfort. The BMW offer some distinct mechanical advantages as you would expect, given the price. However, the Continental was a pretty darn nice car, too. If Lincoln had continued offering a large sedan and kept it updated, I would not have gone to a foreign manufacturer.