[UPDATED 1/17/13, 1:20 p.m. ET/10:20 a.m. PT w/additional comments/info on extended version]
DEARBORN, Mich. — Lincoln Limousine & Livery Vehicles notified its dealership network on Wednesday that the 2013 Lincoln MKS sedan will be offered as part of its limo/livery vehicle fleet program.
Operators will be able to buy the MKS sedan with the same warranty, support and pricing incentives that apply to the other vehicles in Lincoln’s limo/livery program: Lincoln MKT Town Car, Lincoln MKZ Hybrid, and the Lincoln Navigator.
2013 Lincoln MKS luxury sedan will be offered as part of Lincoln Motor Company's limo/livery vehicle fleet program.
Craig Hall, specialty vehicle account manager at Lincoln and the head of the limousine/livery program, announced the MKS addition in a memo Wednesday afternoon to all Lincoln limousine and livery dealers.
The MKS will officially debut to the chauffeured transportation industry on Feb. 5 at the opening of the 2013 International LCT Show at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas.
“In meetings with our livery partners we recognize that there remains a segment of the market that would like to provide their clients a sedan offering to complement the MKT Town Car in their fleet,” Craig Hall wrote in the memo distributed to dealers and salespeople nationwide. “To assist these customers we are pleased to announce that customers will now be able to order the 13MY MKS sedan as part of our livery offerings.”
The MKS will be available in AWD and FWD versions in three different types of product packages that include Lincoln’s 4-year/150,000 mile extended service plan. The fleet incentive for the MKS is $3,000 per vehicle, the same as on the MKT Town Car. Systems programming for the MKS will be set up for dealers the week of Jan. 21.
In an interview Thursday with LCT, Hall said the loyal devotion to the former Town Car sedan left a sizable client base who wants a Lincoln livery sedan larger than the MKZ Hybrid. "We are responding to the wants of our customers," Hall told LCT. "A lot of people have interest in it right now."
Hall told LCT that Lincoln will allow QVM-certified manufacturers to extend the MKS sedan up to 4-6 inches based on Ford engineering recommendations, but the automaker will not build a formal limo chassis for the MKS like it has for the MKT. The MKS being sold to the limousine market has the exact same mechanical specifications as the MKS sedans available to the retail consumer market, Hall said.
Lincoln also plans to include the Ford Transit van in its floor display at the International LCT Show. “The all new Transit represents an outstanding opportunity to expand our portfolio of products further to meet the needs of the industry," the memo states. "Transit’s multiple roof heights and body lengths provide the industry a vehicle that can be ordered in a variety of configurations that will enable our customers to further support their clients requests.”
Although the Lincoln MKT Town Car is the official successor to the retired Lincoln Town Car Executive L, the MKS option allows operators to offer both the roomy and comfortable MKT cross-over model along with a sedan model for clients who prefer one. But Hall makes clear that the MKT Town Car is still the primary, standard-bearer, livery-engineered luxury vehicle being offered by Lincoln Motor Company.
“Since its launch, the MKT Town Car has gained acceptance by the limousine and livery market due to its advanced technology, all-wheel drive capability, spacious and luxurious second row package and exceptional luggage capacity,” Hall wrote. “The MKT Town Car was selected as the replacement for the Executive L as a result of positive feedback received from extensive market research with owners, operators, dealers and most importantly the end user customers. Significant investment was made in the MKT Town Car to ensure it exceeded the capabilities of the outgoing Executive L in reliability, durability, fuel efficiency and amenities/functionality for the passenger. We believe that the MKT Town Car represents the best vehicle for the limousine and livery market now, and for the long term, and our investment in this vehicle is a reflection of our commitment.”
Click here for: 2013 MKS specifications
— Martin Romjue, LCT editor