Lincoln unveiled Thursday during Monterey Car Week its vision for future electric vehicles – while also commemorating its centennial – with the debut of the Lincoln Model L 100 Concept, a battery-powered, self-driving electric grand tourer that pays homage to the company’s first luxury vehicle. mark, the 1922 Model L.
The futuristic, massive concept has an aerodynamic, low body that includes a panoramic glass roof that opens and reverse-hinged doors that lift up to give a “sense of ceremony” and provide the “Lincoln Embrace”, the company said. society. Taking this “Lincoln Embrace” theme even further, luxury brand Ford notes that hubcaps use lighting and sensors to “communicate motion, battery life and human presence.”
The vehicle’s “cool, open air blue” exterior color mixes metallic paint and frosted acrylic. This futuristic design dotted with a few 1920s art deco touches like the hood ornament as well as a Kammback, or K-tail, rear that drops down and then cuts sharply for improved aerodynamics to complete the look.
Inside, the cabin is trimmed with amethyst recycled suede fabric. One of the most striking features is the configurable cabin, in which the front seats flip up to face rear-seat passengers, and “a center console interactive chessboard” is placed where one would expect at a steering wheel. The console features “a jewel-inspired chess piece controller that captures light and depth by redefining vehicle controls inside the cabin,” according to the company.
Lincoln also said the car will have a “digital floor,” but didn’t elaborate on what that means beyond that it combines interior lighting to “transport passengers to the sanctuary of tomorrow.”
Outlandish concepts like the Lincoln Model L 100 are often presented as design or research exercises that allow a company to explore what its future portfolio might look like. For Lincoln, this is a process that will likely be used to determine interest in certain features or designs as it moves forward with plans to fully electrify half of its offerings by 2050.
The Lincoln Model L is also part of an emerging trend among newly revealed concepts that signal where the entire industry is heading. Several American automakers, including Lincoln, released concept cars this year that hark back to early 20th-century nostalgia.
Chrysler unveiled a Chrysler Airflow crossover concept named after the original Chrysler Airflow at the New York Auto Show in April, which design director Ralph Gilles called a “catastrophic failure” of the mid-1930s. Chrysler said the concept can travel up to 400 miles on a single charge and comes with fast-charging functionality as well as a long list of tech, including the automaker’s STLA AutoDrive system, which it is developing with BMW to provide Level 3 automated driving capabilities.
Then there’s Cadillac InnerSpace, the electric, self-driving concept that debuted earlier this year and is inspired by the two-seat runabouts the brand made in 1902. The concept includes a two-seat loveseat, screen wraparound digital and a built-in ottoman, but no pedals or steering wheel.
The Lincoln Model L 100 takes a similar route back in time, though it features a sleek, forward-looking design.
The main inspiration for the concept is the 1922 Model L, a vehicle designed by Lincoln and Cadillac founder Henry Leland. The Model L spent a year in production before Ford purchased the bankrupt company in 1922. The 81 horsepower Model L V8 ran for 10 years before being replaced in 1930 by the Lincoln Model K.
The question is, of course, will Lincoln take a few pieces of this concept or go all in? While the reverse-hinged doors and the glass roof that can open might get the most comment, the fact that it’s a low-slung grand tourer deserves more attention.
Today, Lincoln only sells crossovers and SUVs in the United States. Its latest sedan, the Continental, was discontinued in the US in 2020. Much of Lincoln’s focus these days is China, which may mean that grand touring concept – or something like that – will head overseas as a vehicle inspired by the Lincoln Star Concept crossover that debuted this spring is launched in the United States