Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.  
Lincoln Touts Electric Future, Hands-free Driving Tech

As Lincoln approaches its 100th anniversary, it is on the cusp of reinventing its brand through electrification, technology, and ownership experiences. (Lincoln Motor Company)

Almost one hundred years ago, Lincoln began manufacturing cars, making it one of the historic car brands in America. As Lincoln Motor Company celebrates its centennial, it’s looking toward the future and has announced that its entire vehicle lineup will be fully electrified by 2030.

To kick things off, Lincoln will take the wraps off of its first all-electric vehicle next year. Based on an all-new platform designed specifically for EVs, it will be the first of four electric vehicles Lincoln plans to introduce. Lincoln says that currently, only the Aviator and Corsair SUVs offer plug-in hybrid versions. But, by about 2025, half of the vehicles it sells globally will produce zero emissions.

Lincoln sees prospects beyond merely delivering electric vehicles. Ford’s luxury division hopes to reimagine the entire ownership experience with a new cloud-based Lincoln Intelligence System that will foster what the automaker characterizes as an “always-on” client relationship platform.

The company’s vehicles will also get better over time with Lincoln Enhance over-the-air software updates. For instance, if you purchase a new Lincoln vehicle before a planned new feature is ready for public use, an over-the-air software update can “unlock” the feature when it becomes available. This capability will allow Lincoln to match what many premium carmakers such as Mercedes-Benz, Tesla, and Volvo are doing.

Support our journalism. Subscribe today. →

An example of this situation is the company’s upcoming ActiveGlide hands-free highway driving technology. ActiveGlide works only on certain limited-access highways, and because it is a Level 2 semi-autonomous technology, the driver must remain vigilant and be ready to take complete control at any time. Lincoln buyers will specify and pay for the feature before it is ready, and then Lincoln will unlock it through a software update.

Lincoln will also expand the collection of connected services available through the Lincoln Way app. Examples include the ability to complete car sales online (Lincoln says it makes one-third of all of its sales digitally), schedule maintenance and repair services, and find and pay for electric vehicle charging through its charging station network partner Electrify America.

Lincoln envisions that drivers of its vehicles will enjoy a relaxing, resort-like ownership experience, with connected features delivering sensory delights that enhance the driving experience through lighting, climate, displays, scent, and massage features. The company is also testing a subscription-based mobile fuel and car spa in Houston, offering its owners services that come to them to make day-to-day maintenance effortless.

While many elements of Lincoln’s transformation remain vague, the company will offer more details as it approaches its centennial.