Combining the functionality of a full-size pickup truck, the luxury and refinement of Lincoln and the bravado of the state of Texas, the 2006 Lincoln Mark LT makes its production debut at the State Fair of Texas in Dallas.
The Lincoln Mark LT is a key part of Lincoln’s plan to broaden the showroom and build momentum and profitable growth by introducing 11 new Lincoln Mercury products in six segments within the next four years. On sale in early 2005, the new Mark LT is one of five new Lincolns that will be introduced in that time.
The Lincoln Mark LT is designed for customers who want equal amounts of luxury and capability. It has indisputable truck credentials with outstanding payload and towing capacity and adds an additional level of style and sophistication beyond high-end pickup trucks on the road today. The Mark LT offers four full doors, front captain’s chairs and a full rear seat, all providing ample comfort for five adults.
The Lincoln Mark LT is available in 4x2 and 4x4 configurations with a 5.5-foot box plus standard bed extender.
"The Mark LT takes luxury to a place it has never really been before - the truck market," said Darryl Hazel, Lincoln Mercury president. "This is a Lincoln designed for two different types of customers. First, it’s for people who need a truck, but want all of the trappings of a luxury vehicle. Second, it’s for those who don’t necessarily need a truck, but need to make a bold statement that can only be made by a few unique vehicles in today’s market.
"Lincoln created the full-size luxury SUV segment with the launch of the Navigator six years ago, and we believe there is growing market appeal for a truck with luxury and elegance but with absolutely uncompromised truck capability," Hazel adds.
Creating Lincoln elegance and understated luxury from such a solid foundation was key to crafting the new Mark LT. Mark LT incorporates contemporary yet timeless design, indulgent comfort and the unique use of materials to meet the standards expected of a luxury vehicle.
Hazel is confident the new vehicle provides the opportunity to introduce a new customers to the Lincoln family.
The Customer and the Market
"This Mark LT is for consumers who appreciate recognition and look for new ways to express their personal style," says Hazel. "The Mark LT is their reward and it tells everyone else that this is one self-assured person who has arrived."
During the past decade, buyers flocked to the traditional pickup truck segment, more than doubling annual volume from 1.1 million to 2.3 million units. Lincoln’s customer research predicts continued growth in the high end of both the truck and SUV segments.
"Our dealers loved the Mark LT from the minute they saw it," says Hazel. "And we knew intuitively that this was a winner and we expect that to translate to the market when it goes on sale in early 2005."
Lincoln’s customer research shows that there is a core group of buyers who don’t believe current pickups offer a true luxury choice, and that some vehicles labeled as "luxury trucks" aren’t authentic trucks.
While the target customer for the Lincoln Mark LT leans toward men in their mid-40s to mid-50s, great interest is expected among younger buyers who view their vehicle as a status symbol and spend their money on vehicles and vehicle accessories and sound systems.
Capability Meets Elegant Design
Although the Mark LT is an authentic pickup with superior power and driving dynamics, what makes it a true fit for Lincoln is its unique elegance. The exterior design sets the truck apart from other pickups offering refined appearance cues of the Lincoln family of vehicles.
Mark LT’s exterior features a theme of chrome accents, asserting the vehicle’s status and enhancing its appearance. Its dominant signature waterfall grille, wide taillamps and thick-spoked wheels give it an unmistakable family resemblance to today’s Lincoln Aviator and Navigator SUVs.
"The Mark LT’s confident use of chrome draws attention to its presence," said Patrick Schiavone, design director, North America Truck and SUV. "With a strong stance and bold lines, the chrome accents incorporate seamlessly into the vehicle’s design, completing it without taking over."
The Mark LT’s face displays a dominant grille that combines traditional Lincoln lines with a new solid center that features a prominently anchored, Lincoln star as the showpiece.
Unique to the Mark LT is a hefty band of chrome that wraps around of the vehicle, highlighting its toughness. The chrome theme continues with 18-inch chrome-plated wheels that display the Lincoln star at the center, adding an uptown sophistication to the vehicle’s stance.
The Lincoln design theme continues at the rear with taillamps that wrap into the tailgate for a broadened appearance, similar to Aviator and Navigator. The tailgate of Mark LT finishes the exterior design with an inset appliqué that features a Lincoln star at the center.
Additional chrome exterior elements are found on the front and rear bumpers, side mirrors, door handles, lower cladding, running boards, and the rolled tip of the tail pipe. Optional box rail moldings adorned with chrome round out the appearance enhancements inherent to the Mark LT.
"There’s a $28 billion aftermarket out there for automobile customization, parts and service," says Hazel. "A good chunk of that market is people who customize pickups turning them into highly polished luxury vehicles. The Lincoln Mark LT is aimed at those buyers whose discretionary income is spent on their cars and trucks."
Interior Luxury for Those Who Travel Well
The first impressions of a luxury vehicle are made by its appearance, use of fine materials and array of amenities. But the true test of luxury comes when the vehicle is on the road and is measured by decibels. A luxury vehicle must offer an exceptionally quiet, comfortable cabin environment. The Lincoln Mark LT does just that thanks to its solid foundation built upon the Ford F-150 chassis, body design, and sound insulation measures, which translate well into a luxury vehicle.
The Lincoln Mark LT benefits from a fully-boxed frame, liquid-filled engine hydomounts, thick window side glass, inset doors with double-layer seals, and more to help limit unwanted road, tire, wind and engine noise in the cabin.
Lincoln vehicles have a rich heritage of interior environments that combine the height of style, elegance and romance. The Lincoln Mark LT offers a modern design interpretation of the brand’s heritage with luxury enhancements such as real Ebony wood accents, soft Nudo leather seating surfaces and an indulgent level of standard equipment. Another ongoing Lincoln trait is attention to detail, depicted in the Mark LT with a special French-styled pleating in the seats. The front and rear seats also incorporate a unique quilted pattern insert, which communicates comfort and high style. Further detail is depicted by applying the unique sew style and contrasting color stitching to the brow of the instrument cluster.
The Lincoln Mark LT uses contemporary finishes and warm colors that result in an environment that is both inviting and stimulating.
"It’s important to find the right combination of materials," said Marek Reichman, director, Interior Design. "This vehicle has a harmonious balance of materials, while providing enough contrast to be visually interesting."
Two interior environments are available: Pebble with Light Parchment seats and Black with Dove Gray seats.
Because Lincoln represents elegance without compromising comfort, the Mark LT features lavish use of premium leather. This velvety Nudo leather covers the steering wheel, seating surfaces, and center console, while plush carpet completes the opulence of the interior.
The steering wheel features a Lincoln star and is trimmed in a tone-on-tone contrasting leather to coordinate with either interior environment. The Mark LT instrument cluster continues the luxury theme of the truck’s interior, with a unique font and elegant chrome trim with a Lincoln theme.
Luxury and Power
The full-sized luxury vehicle buyer wants to travel well, even when hard at work. The Mark LT delivers on this promise with a standard 5.4-liter, 3-valve Triton™ V-8 engine that produces 300 horsepower at 5,000 rpm and 365 foot-pounds of torque at 3,750 rpm.
The Mark LT’s 5.4-liter Triton engine uses a 3-valve head design to enhance power and torque and an advanced electronic throttle control system that improves power response and modulation. The engine is particularly well suited for a luxury truck due to its engineered-in refinements in sound quality. Engine noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) is limited by use of a tuned intake resonator and low-restriction exhaust system.
A Solid Frame and State-of-the-Art Suspension
Essential to meeting the driving dynamics expected of a pickup truck worthy of the Lincoln nameplate, the Mark LT is built on a stable hydroformed frame that forms a closed "box" section, as opposed to the traditional "C" frame rail design. The result is increased stiffness and er attachment points for the body and suspension for excellent handling and a quiet, composed ride.
A substantial contributor to the new Mark LT’s driving feel - plush, yet connected to the road - is a front suspension that reacts to absorb bumps but stands against steering forces. Both 4x2 and 4x4 models use a coil-over-shock, long-spindle double wishbone front suspension.
For increased handling and a more aggressive stance, the front track is 67.0 inches wide, which helps increase control while braking, reduce tire wear and enhance handling and steering precision.
Mark LT’s Hotchkiss-design rear suspension has been optimized with rear shock absorbers placed outboard of the frame rails - a pickup truck segment trait shared only with Ford’s new F-150. The outboard rear shocks are positioned to maximize their effect at reducing body lean, particularly during lane changes. Because of this massive leverage advantage, the shocks can be tuned for a smoother ride.
The new Mark LT combines a comfortable, isolated and well-supported ride with balanced communication between the vehicle and driver. Mark LT’s superior frame stiffness, advanced body mounts and carefully tuned suspension work together to deliver a quiet and composed ride.
Precise Rack-and-Pinion Power Steering, Powerful Brakes
The rack-and-pinion steering system used in the Mark LT is the largest, est and most rugged ever used by Lincoln. The predictable, linear steering response comes from careful tuning by engineering experts to help ensure that steering effort builds naturally with steering angle.
In addition to its dynamic performance, the new Mark LT’s steering system also makes for a relatively tight 46-foot turning circle.
State-of-the-art standard four-wheel disc brakes are large and powerful. A four-wheel anti-lock braking system (ABS) and electronic brake force distribution (EBD) are standard. EBD actively manages the brake force between the front and rear wheels, helping to reduce braking distances and maximize rear-wheel braking, particularly while towing. The system also uses sensor data to compare wheel speed more than 100 times during each rotation.
Overall, the ride is plush, yet controlled, braking is assured, and the cabin is quiet. The result is a fully functional luxury pickup truck that is an unqualified pleasure to drive.
A key point for many pickup buyers is towing capability and the Lincoln Mark LT delivers trailer hauling as well as it delivers on its luxury attributes. The Mark LT’s chassis and powertrain are designed for work. The laterally stiff new rear suspension helps resist side loads and the outboard rear shocks and wide leaf springs help reduce overall axle motion. Precise steering combined with a stiff frame and body contribute to confident, stress-free trailering, while powerful brakes enhanced with standard anti-lock control and electronic brake force distribution maximize stopping power.
The 5.4-liter, 3-valve Triton™ V-8 engine has ample low-end torque, and the sophisticated electronic throttle control is designed to provide seamless, instant response and consistent transmission shift quality at various altitudes and vehicle loading. With a towing capacity of 8,900 lbs. and payload capacity of 1,620 lbs., Lincoln’s Mark LT can tow anything from a horse trailer to a small yacht and carry all the gear needed to arrive in style.
A Safe Journey
For safety, the Mark LT offers outstanding occupant protection with a structure designed to absorb and dissipate crash energy before it can reach the reinforced passenger compartment. Features such as Ford’s Personal Safety System™, occupant classification sensing and BeltMinder™ safety belt reminder system also help provide enhanced protection.