mobile-menu-icon
Ford Authority

Ford Wants To Eliminate 200 Lincoln Dealers Via Buyouts

Back in 2019, Ford opted to launch the Lincoln Commitment Program, which required Lincoln dealers to dole out substantial investments to upgrade their showrooms – which didn’t exactly go over well with select sellers of those luxurious vehicles. However, that move did pay off with shoppers, prompting The Blue Oval to open more boutique Lincoln dealers in 2022. Part of this plan also involved shrinking the Lincoln dealer network in order to focus on specific markets where that brand already does well, and just a few months later, Lincoln CEO Dianne Craig revealed that the brand was planning on halving its existing network. Now, that process is seemingly underway, according to Automotive News.

After cutting around 100 Lincoln dealers in 2023, FoMoCo reportedly plans on slashing another 100 from its network this year, according to this new report, meaning that by the end of 2024, it would be left with around 400 stores. That’s roughly 40 percent fewer than the number of Lincoln dealers that existed as recently as 2021, too. However, by comparison, Lexus operates around half as many, and Cadillac has around 73 fewer stores as well, though both of those brands beat Lincoln in sales last year. The idea is to boost profitability, and Lincoln plans to offer existing dealers buyouts to reach this goal, though terms of those deals will vary by location and could include offers for more Ford-branded inventory and incentive plans.

“For us to have a healthy and competitive premium franchise, we need to make sure our retailers have competitive throughput, and we need to make sure our clients have a wonderful experience when they go into our brand-exclusive stores,” Craig said. “We have many, many dealers who were only selling one or two Lincolns a month, almost all of those out of a dualed facility. That’s not right and ultimately not good for the Lincoln business if we’re going to compete with the premium brands.” Regardless, Craig was also quick to note that the brand isn’t going away entirely, in spite of these cuts and lagging sales.

“You certainly can’t base the last few years on the future of Lincoln,” she said. “2023 was not where we wanted to finish. ’24 is going to be a breakout year for Lincoln. By the end of this year, we’re going to have a freshened portfolio. That’s why we’re so excited about what’s to come for Lincoln.”

We’ll have more on these changes soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for more Lincoln news and ongoing Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

Subscribe to Ford Authority

For around-the-clock Ford news coverage

We'll send you one email per day with the latest Ford updates. It's totally free.

Comments

  1. JE

    Lincoln doesn’t need many dealerships when their lineup is incomplete and doesn’t come not even close to the brands against it intends to compete. With a bunch of boring cookie cutter SUV’s and crossovers, no flagship sedan, no sports coupe and no EV Lincoln is not even the shadow of the luxury brand it once was. “What a luxury car brand should be” read their publicity 30 years ago. Today Lincoln is what a luxury car brand should NOT be.

    Reply
  2. Thurston Munn

    The problem with the current Lincoln brand is it’s just modified and rebadged Ford models. Back in the 60s and 70s when it was its own chassis and bodies, they were unique and good quality vehicles with a great following.

    Reply
    1. Greg

      You clearly don’t understand the costs of manufacturing. If everything had their own chassis the cars would cost 20-30k more than they are now. Then you would be complaining about the price of the car.

      Reply
  3. JE

    With an incomplete line composed of only boring cookie cutter SUV´s and crossovers, no flagship sedan, no sports coupe/representation automobile like the Mark series and no EV, doesn´t need many dealerships as it is way behind the brands agaist it intends to compete. 30 years ago, Lincoln publicity read “what a luxury car brand should be”. Today, Lincoln is exactly what a luxury car brand should NOT be.

    Reply
  4. Gibson

    What’s this all about ? We have two cars that very seldom get over 30 miles per day.

    Reply
  5. Mike

    They should eliminate all dealers and sell directly to customers. Middleman dealers are obsolete parasitic entities of the past. They just cause higher prices.

    Reply
    1. Gregg

      I agree. That old style sales practice is a pain. Awkward, intimidating and unnecessarily stressful.

      Reply
    2. Greg

      LMAO you think you will pay less by going direct? They will just inflate the cost just like dealers do.

      Reply
  6. Ryan

    I’ve had several Lincolns over the years. Every time I need service work it is a nightmare! The 2 dealers within a reasonable distance from me are terrible, people in the service department don’t really care to be helpful, at all. Very, “whatever” type attitudes. I miss the days where I felt valued, especially since spending an awful lot of money on a fancier Ford. I’ll buy another one still, but I may have to travel at least an hour or so for the next close dealer. Even called Lincoln concierge , they said I could “Try a Ford dealer”. Just a disappointed loyalist.

    Reply
  7. Robert

    If I was in charge of Lincoln. I would redesign the vehicles and bring back to classic name plates. I bet I would out sell the competition.

    Reply
  8. Kevin

    We LOVE our luxurious ’21 Aviator so much that I traded my pickup for a ‘21 Navigator. Both are our 1st FoMoCo vehicles we’ve owned and I’m impressed with both. Our dealer is a bit of a disappointment though as appointments are an absolute pain with long waiting periods. And this is the largest dealer in the state of TN too! I’m can’t imagine how much worse it’ll get if they close any other dealers in the area. The closest other dealer is a good hour away!

    Reply
  9. Ryan

    I take my Lincoln to the Lincoln dealer. Ford dealers don’t even compare service wise. If Ford takes over the Lincoln dealers, I’m selling mine and buying a Chevy.

    Reply
    1. 2019Bullitt

      I remember when Ford, Lincoln and Mercury were all one dealer. Most those dealers are just Ford now.

      I am looking for a new car and no way ill buy a Lincoln. They are literally just trumped up Fords. The fact they will sell you a rebadged Ford Escape for 66K and not even give you option for a 2.3l Ecoboost in it blows my mind.

      Reply
      1. Fred

        Guess what…they’ve always been trumped up Fords.

        Reply
        1. John

          Not my 2019 MKZ 3.0TT AWD!
          It’s definitely not a trumped up Ford– in or out, or under!

          Reply
          1. Shelbykl

            That was a nice car they should have not stop building it.

            Reply
        2. Greg

          Sounds like a guy that drives a ram.

          Reply
    2. Greg

      You realize there is absolutely no difference in a Lincoln service department and Ford service department. They are getting their mechanics and techs from the same places. I’m not sure you realize Ford and Lincoln are the same company.

      Reply
  10. Pamela Miller

    I’m a long time Lincoln owner, most recently MKX and Nautilus. However now that the Nautilus is being manufactured in China , my current Lincoln will be my last one.

    Reply
  11. ThomasT

    I guess it makes it easier when the Lincoln brand joins Mercury.

    Reply
  12. C

    They should’ve shut it down in 2010 building. All the proceeds from Jaguar Range Rover, Volvo sales flittered Away on rebuilding a hopeless brand.

    Reply

Leave a comment

Cancel