The inevitable has finally happened. Lincoln announced that production of the MKZ will come to a close this year, marking the end of the sedan’s 13-year run.
After the model spent one year badged as the Zephyr, it adopted the Lincoln MKZ name for the 2007 model year. It managed to elevate itself above its mainstream counterparts, the Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan, with more luxurious treatments. We even sort of like the newest version, too. Although it’s definitely showing its age, we’ve praised its quiet road manners, punchy 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6, and reasonably fuel-efficient hybrid option rated for 41 mpg in combined city and highway driving.
With the MKZ’s death also comes the welcome end of the reviled “MK” naming convention—thank goodness. Lincoln has replaced the MKC with the stylish Corsair, the MKS was killed off in favor of the Continental, the MKX was renamed the Nautilus, and the MKT was discontinued to make way for the Aviator.
The Hermosillo assembly plant that produces the MKZ sedan will be retooled to make the next-gen Ford Transit Connect. For the past few years, Ford has been transitioning away from sedans to crossovers, SUVs, and trucks. Is Ford’s new direction trickling down to Lincoln? Reports have hinted at the Lincoln Continental’s upcoming demise, but at this time, we don’t have any concrete information regarding the future of the big sedan (although the stretched factory coach-door model is kind of cool).
In other Lincoln news, Ford and Rivian are working on a Lincoln-badged electric SUV. Although we don’t yet know its name, this will be Lincoln’s first pure electric vehicle, and it ushers in an electric blue version of the brand’s badge.