Ahead of the New York International Auto Show, Lincoln invited us to take a look at the brand new Corsair.
Over the past few years, Lincoln has been steadily revitalizing their SUV lineup, making them more modern and luxurious. “Our transformation really began here, four years ago, when we really
started talking about our fiduciary position of personal and more human in the way we approached our products and services,” said Joy Falotico, president of the Lincoln Motor Company. Their
current lineup of the Navigator, Nautilus, and Aviator all share similar qualities of a comfortable and modern luxury vehicle. The Corsair, Lincoln’s latest entry into their SUV lineup emboldens those qualities. The Lincoln design team had four core themes they followed when conceptualizing and designing the Corsair: beauty, gliding, human, and sanctuary. They strived to create a car that was elegant, easy to drive, comfortable, and approachable.
On our tour of the tour, David Woodhouse, the design director of Lincoln Motor Company, took us through the design process, showing us rough sketches of the car in the early stages of conceptualization, to fully 3D models using virtual reality. The exterior of the Corsair was designed to convey a more modern feel and appeal to a younger and more explorative customer base, all while revolving around the mantra of “quiet flight”. “The fast falling roofline, the acute backlights, and the agile and fast silhouette conveying the gliding aspect of ‘quiet flight’” said David. It’s even designed to mimic the shape of a ballet dancer, with an S-shaped curvature on either side of the car, which plays with the light in a very intriguing way.
The interior is also very spacious and luxurious. Premium feeling leather is all over the interior, from the seats to the steering wheel to sections the door panels and dash. Alongside the leather, RGB ambient lights accent the car and create a sense of personalization. In the front, the Corsair features a 12.3-inch touch screen where you can control most of the car’s functions and interact with the standard features like navigation, audio, etc. It also features Amazon Alexa and Waze integration, so both of them can be used through hands-free voice activation. The center console is well designed with all of the physical controls residing on a cantilevered section, reducing the overall clutter of the center area. Even the transmission controls are electronic buttons, what Lincoln calls a piano key transmission. The gauge cluster is also now displayed on a 15inch screen instead of the usual physical dials, as well as a heads-up display that Lincoln says will even be visible while wearing polarized sunglasses. The driver and passenger seats both have customizable seating positions, with the driver seat capable of saving three seat profiles. Overhead is an expansive panoramic sunroof that makes the cabin feel more open and brings in a lot of natural light. In the rear, the trunk features a hands-free power liftgate and expandable storage space by pushing the rear seats forward. With the expanded space, you can easily fit four travel suitcases. However, the drawback of doing this is a significant loss in legroom in the back seats. I’m a tall guy and sitting in the rear was comfortable, but I definitely would not be able to fit in the back if the seats were pushed forward.
The Corsair also features several modern technologies. A big feature is their “Phone as a key” feature. With this, you are able to set up your smartphone as a key, where you can not only lock and unlock the car from anywhere but also start the car and drive away, eliminating the need for a key fob. Lincoln says the system is very secure and the car features a digital keypad on the exterior which can be used to generate a temporary code for valets to use. It also has several driver assist technologies like lane assist, pre-collision assist, blind spot detection, adaptive cruise control, and automatic parallel and perpendicular parking, adaptive suspension and adaptive power distribution. The Corsair has a 2.3 liter 4-cylinder turbocharged engine the produces 280 horsepower and 310 lb.-ft. of torque with all-wheel-drive capability. Even with an impressive engine for an SUV, Lincoln wanted to ensure a quiet ride, so they created a buffer between the engine and the cabin which damps the sound of the engine.
The Lincoln Corsair is an impressive new SUV with an intriguing and luxurious design. Lincoln has yet to release the pricing, but if they can price it competitively, this will definitely be a choice worth considering.