AUGUST 2011 LCT ONLINE & IN PRINT: With LCT now fully immersed in the digital era, the idea of previewing each month's issue has become a bit passe. Since the launch of LCTmag.com, we now gradually post all magazine content online throughout the month. The only exceptions are the Limo Scene and Buscene news sections, which are exclusive to the magazine and complementary to LCT E-News.
This month marks the third cover this year of the Lincoln MKT, the next generation luxury limousine vehicle to be readied by next Spring. LCT Magazine has cornered the exclusive story on this vehicle, with the August cover story on David Bastian and the Towne Livery dealership in Buffalo, N.Y. We featured the MKT stretch limousine from DaBryan Coach Builders on the cover of the June/July issue, and of course, the entire Ford Fleet Limousine & Livery Vehicles team on the cover of the January issue with an MKT prototype. There's no doubt which publication owns the biggest industry story of the year.
No single industry story has garnered more hits, feedback, opinions, and anticipation than the impending final production exit of the 2011 Lincoln Town Car Executive L and the coming of the 2013 Lincoln MKT Town Car. The vehicles are markedly different, and limousine operators nationwide will render the final verdict through road tests, client feedback, and vehicle experiences. As to future vehicle purchases, there is a lot of demand and cash on the sidelines. Operators now are waiting and seeing: What new vehicles will their affiliates buy? Their competitors? The major farm-out players, such as Empire CLS, Carey, Boston Coach, Music Express, Tristar and Commonwealth?
Listing such names of course evokes our annual 100 Largest Fleets List, which normally would garner the most attention this time of year, but is clearly being overshadowed by industry gyrations over the Lincoln vehicle drama and an anticipated Cadillac announcement this year. GM has confirmed that the new limousine livery vehicle will be built on the Cadillac XTS-platform, to succeed the Cadillac DTS sedan, which wrapped up production in May. The 100 list will be posted online next week, as we want to allow enough time for the print version to be the first look.
Getting back to my digital theme, with the completion of our web presence, we are starting a new department in the magazine with the September/October issue called Social Media. We no longer need a Web Table of Contents, since our home page is a 24/7 table of contents in itself. The Social Media page will present a "Best Of" round-up of your comments from the LCT Facebook Page, LCT E-News articles,LCT Blog posts, and from feature articles posted on LCTMag.com. We welcome non-libelous comments that say something spicy, pithy, snarky, icy, juicy. . . and we'll choose the best ones from each issue.
Finally, my favorite industry event is coming up, the 2011 LCT Leadership Summit in Miami Beach. It's limited to 100 operators, so be sure to sign up ASAP. Meanwhile, our assistant editor, Michael Campos, will be off to BusCon in Chicago. We'll duly report on both events. . . online and in print.
-- Martin Romjue, LCT editor
Don't let your guests down. Here are some things to think about before the event starts.
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On my trip to Chicago last week for the 2012 BusCon Expo, I had the pleasure of experiencing a new ride — the 2013 MKT Town Car.