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Lincoln promises seven new or improved vehicles by 2014

Automotive News reports on Lincoln's model line-up through 2014.

Lincoln MKZ
The MKZ gets a new platform for 2013. This is the current model.
Lincoln MKZ
The MKZ gets a new platform for 2013. This is the current model. Lincoln

Lincoln will have seven new or improved products by 2014, Ford Motor Co. has promised Lincoln dealers. Ford's global product chief, Derrick Kuzak, has said Ford will show some new or refreshed Lincoln products this year.

As Lincolns are redesigned, they will be differentiated from Ford models not only by their technology but by sheet metal, their wheelbase, and the length of the front and rear overhangs. Some models will get unique power trains paired with eight-speed transmissions.

Here are highlights for Lincoln's 2012-14 model years.

Compact vehicles: Lincoln will get a small crossover based on Ford's next-generation Kuga from Europe, possibly by the 2013 model year. That vehicle would sit on the global compact car platform currently underpinning the Focus.

Ford also is considering a compact car for Lincoln, though that may not come before the 2016 or 2017 model year.

MKZ: The MKZ will get different styling from its sibling, the Ford Fusion, when the sedans are redesigned for the 2013 model year and move to Ford's global midsize platform.

The MKZ's launch could trail the launches of the Fusion and Mondeo by a few months as Ford refines MKZ interiors.

MKS: Ford is expected to restyle the MKS sedan for the 2013 model year. The biggest change will be in the appearance of the grille and sides, with a more streamlined design. But the MKS will keep the vertical orientation to the taillights, even as other Lincoln vehicles move to a horizontal look.

The MKS will continue to offer the 3.5-liter turbocharged direct-injection EcoBoost V-6 engine. It might get the 2.0-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost engine that Ford is giving the Taurus at that time, too.

But look for the MKS to have a dramatically differentiated style from the 2013 Taurus, with more premium materials used for the MKS's interior.

MKX: Ford reskinned the mid-sized crossover for the 2011 model year. Lincoln is expected to redesign the MKX for the 2014 model year on Ford's global mid-sized platform.

MKT: Lincoln is expected to freshen the MKT crossover for the 2012 or 2013 model year, with minor changes to the grille and taillights and possibly an upgraded interior.

Ford had considered replacing the MKT after the 2014 model year with a vehicle derived from the Ford Explorer that would have exclusive sheet metal and more off-road capability than the MKT. But now Ford is debating whether to add the new vehicle and keep the MKT, targeting the MKT to the limousine and livery markets.

Navigator: The Navigator likely will get a restyle for the 2012 model year. It will share powertrains with Ford's F-series pickup, getting a V-6 EcoBoost engine.

Ford has put on hold a redesign for the Navigator and Ford Expedition that had been planned for the 2012 model year.

The redesign likely will stay on hold until Ford can figure out what it wants to do with Lincoln's large SUV and decide if it will keep the MKT.

(Source: Automotive News)