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2019 Lincoln Continental Review: The Enigma

In 2015, Ford unveiled the concept version of what would become the newest iteration of the Lincoln Continental. The setting was the New York auto show, and by general consensus the car was a show-stopper. For many, it announced the return of the legendary luxury brand.

Wind the clock back further, and the first Continental appeared in 1939, as a new nameplate stuck on the Lincoln Zephyr. Edsel Ford, son of Henry, returned from a trip to Europe with ideas of producing a modern, stylish car like he’d seen on the Old Continent. From the outset, the early Continental was a success, that first generation lasting until 1948. After a short hiatus, it returned in 1956 as a high-prestige personal saloon car, but that experiment lasted but two years.

The Continental name stayed active, however, being attached to the highest-end Lincoln variants. In 1961, The Continental was presented with modern contours that were surprisingly modest; absent was the overt exuberance that marked several of the model’s competitors. This new iteration came to be known as the “Kennedy Lincoln”, the model being the favored choice of the American president.

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