And while the concept impresses with sculpted haunches and a rakish profile, the answer lies in the space at the bow. While the dash-to-axle ratio of the concept is just long enough to suggest room for the 3.0-liter EcoBoost to be mounted longitudinally, the intentional understatement of this proportion is clear: The production Continental will be front- or all-wheel drive.
The full-width rear taillamps, a Lincoln signature, have a similar fade-on sequence, which, like the pulsing ignition button, are meant to give life and warmth to the concept.
Large swaths of chrome run around the car at rocker level, giving the appearance that the lower body was partially dipped in chrome. This brightwork accentuates the horizontal and breaks up the volume of the sides, which you many notice are devoid of door handles.
The replacements are four chromed wings sprouting from the beltline that are elegant in look and operation. Lincoln calls the system "E-latch," and the doors release via a push button under each upturned wing. Rear ingress is further facilitated by door hinges that open to nearly 90 degrees. Yes, rear-opening suicide doors were evaluated, but the Lincoln team had other plans.
The Rhapsody Blue really leads us from the exterior to the interior. It's 'tone-on-tone,' or monochromatic modernism, an incredibly modern way to do luxury these days.
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Push a few buttons, and the front passenger seat slides forward as the rear seatback reclines and a lower leg support rises up. Push a few more, and a thick-mirrored tray the size and shape of a King James Bible rises up from the center console and rotates over your thigh as if by magic. Opening it reveals a small touchscreen for watching movies or controlling the climate and infotainment systems. Just behind your left elbow is a champagne refrigerator and a cubby for the thick-stemmed, custom flutes, matched to two different sets of cupholders: one for when the vehicle is parked and another for when it's moving. Two leather-bound, zippered compartments on the front seatbacks pop off lugs and hidden magnetic clasps to become slim attaché cases.
The electrochromic sunroof, attaché cases, and hideaway computer are all for show, but the spiral-drilled mesh speaker covers are not. They're part of the 19-speaker Revel Ultima audio system, installed on the concept to kick off the 10-year exclusive deal between Lincoln and Harman, the makers of Revel.
Lincoln Continental Concept Luxury Car
- New flagship drops MKS name for storied Continental name that dates back to Edsel Ford's one-off personal car in 1939.
- New face of Lincoln includes a grille with the logo replicated in mesh. Gone is the horizontal split grille.
- Deep pile carpet and silky headliner (for the show car only)
- Reclining rear seat with footrest and briefcase integrated into the seat back. Adjustable 30 ways, seats are heated, cooled, massaging and have 50 patents pending.
- Power to come from a new 3-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine unique to the Lincoln brand
- Expected to remain front-wheel drive with available all-wheel drive
- Goes on sale next year, likely as a 2017 model