Lincoln Motor Co. is adding a new small crossover to its flight of large vehicles: the 2020 Corsair. The entry-level five-seater replaces the outgoing MKC.
The luxury automaker revealed its newest addition at the 2019 New York International Auto Show on Wednesday.
The Corsair will slot below the Nautilus and Aviator midsize SUVs as well as the full-size Navigator. It will compete with the Lexus NX and Acura RDX, according to John Jraiche, the Corsair’s chief engineer.
The crossover comes at a time when Lincoln sales are starting to grow. Ford’s luxury brand has sold 24,975 vehicles so far this year, an 11 percent gain from the same period a year earlier and fueled by its crossover and SUV sales. But that is still far behind other luxury nameplates. Lexus has sold almost 67,000 vehicles during the same period. Both Mercedes-Benz and BMW have sold about 75,000.
In the Corsair design, Lincoln engineers focused on building a quiet, isolating cabin. A dual-wall dashboard in the engine compartment muffles outside sounds and vibrations.
The Corsair offers two 4-cylinder turbocharged engine choices: the standard 2-liter engine with 250 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque and a larger 2.3-liter that delivers 280 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque.
An all-wheel-drive system is available with both engines. It switches between front and AWD depending on variables such as road conditions, speed and weather. The system also has five drive modes: Normal, Excite, Slippery, Deep Conditions and Conserve.
The drive modes are designed for conquering on-road hurdles. The ground clearance of the vehicle is just shy of 8 inches, the minimum required for even light trailblazing. The vehicle’s design and engineering prioritized comfort over adventure.
That serene personality is especially evident in the Corsair’s exterior and interior styling.
Designers found inspiration in the silhouette of a dancer’s body to sculpt s-shaped curves in many areas of the crossover including the hood, door panels and rear profile. They also placed an emphasis on horizontal lines to evoke a sense of relaxation.
Inside the cabin, a floating console adds openness as well as legroom to the front seats. The design of the A-pillar as well as a panoramic roof that stretches to the back seat brings in light, adding a feeling of openness. The back seat of the crossover boasts 38.6 inches of legroom, which beats the larger Tesla Model X, Lexus RX and Mercedes-Benz GLS, according to Lincoln.
The Corsair comes in two trim levels – Corsair and Corsair Reserve.
The seat, mirror and pedal position in the Corsair can be set for different driver profiles. The profiles extend to features such as how many car lengths the driver likes when using adaptive cruise control, one of the many driver-assistant technologies available.
Lincoln made its Co-Pilot360 – which includes precollision assist with automatic emergency braking and pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring, lane-keeping alerts and auto high-beam lighting – standard. Buyers can opt for the Co-Pilot360 Plus package, an upgrade that adds adaptive cruise control with stop and go, lane centering and speed sign recognition that adjusts the cruise setting based on the posted speed limits. Evasive steer assist helps drivers steer away from potential front collisions with a slowed or stopped vehicle. Reverse brake assist and active park assist – hands-free parking with the push and hold of a button – also are included.
The Corsair offers keyless entry. Drivers can use a key fob or download key information onto their smartphone so the crossover will lock, unlock, remote start and drive using an identified device that’s in or near the vehicle. It also triggers the driver profile settings upon entry. If the phone’s battery dies, a key pad on the door of the vehicle will accept a code.