2024 Lincoln Corsair

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Lincoln – Ford’s luxury line – used to specialize in luxury cars, just like just about every other luxury car brand – excepting luxury brands like Land Rover that have always specialized in luxury SUVs. 

Lincoln stopped selling the last car it still made – the Continental – three years ago. It currently sells only SUVs – and crossovers, which are SUV-looking things but closer (mechanically) to being cars than the trucks most SUVs are closely related to. 

The Lincoln Navigator, for instance, is closely related to the Ford Expedition and both share an underlying structure with the Ford-F-150 pick-up.   

The Lincoln Corsair looks like a smaller-scale version of the Navigator  – and the Nautilus and Aviator, which are in between the two – but it’s related to the Ford Escape, which is a compact-sized crossover that (like most crossovers) is similar to most cars in that it is based on a light-duty, front-wheel-drive layout, with AWD available. 

So what makes the Corsair different from rival-brand luxury crossovers like the BMW X3 and the Audi Q5?

What It Is

The Corsair is Lincoln’s smallest crossover – as distinct from its largest SUV (the Navigator).

It is based on the Ford Escape, which is Ford’s smallest crossover – but it does not come standard with the 1.5 liter three cylinder engine that is standard int he Escape. It comes standard with the 2.0 liter four that’s optional in the Escape – as well as luxury features and other equipment that aren’t available in the Escape, including Bridge of Weir leather and a Smoked Truffle interior theme.

Prices start at $40,125 for the Premiere trim and top out at $55,320 for the Gran Touring trim, which comes standard with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain that can propel the vehicle for 28 miles on battery power alone, all-wheel-drive, an adaptive suspension and a panorama sunroof.

What’s New for 2024

A partial self-driving system called BlueCruise is available and all trims get a larger (digital) main instrument cluster and secondary touchscreens.

What’s Good

Hybrid model’s “city” driving range is nearly 400 miles – and you don’t have to stop (and wait) for a recharge.

Softer feeling (and riding) than rival crossovers that lean more toward sport rather than luxury.

Standard 10 speaker audio system; a 14 speaker Revel system is available.

What’s Not So Good

Hybrid’s “highway” mileage is only 355 miles.

Some desirable options – such as rain sensing wipers, the hands-free rear liftgate and heated steering wheel – are only available “bundled” with expensive “collections” rather than as individual options.

Under The Hood

All Corsair trims except the Grand Touring come standard with the same 2.0 liter, turbocharged four cylinder engine that’s the Escape’s top-of-the-line engine. It is paired with an eight speed automatic (not a CVT) and makes 250 horsepower – which is a lot of power out of just 2.0 liters.

As recently as the 2020 model year, a Mustang GT’s 4.6 liter V8 only made 10 more horsepower (260) and it was a V8 more than twice the size of the Corsair’s four.

Ok, so 2020 was 23 years ago – so not very recently – but the point stands. Today’s small engines make big horsepower numbers – and they don’t have as big an appetite. The 2000 Mustang GT’s 260 horsepower 4.6 liter V8 rated 15 city, 23 highway. The ’24 Corsair’s 2.0 liter, 250 horsepower four rates 22 city, 30 highway.

To put a finer point on it, the Corsair goes almost as far in city driving on a gallon of gas as the ’00 GT Mustang did on the highway.

Usually, a vehicle gets its best mileage on the highway.

Excepting hybrids – which brings us to the Grand Touring iteration of the Corsair.

This one comes standard (and uniquely) with a larger, 2.5 liter four cylinder engine that isn’t turbocharged – teamed up with a  plug-in hybrid drivetrain. This combination makes more horsepower (266) than the ’00 GT’s 4.6 liter V8 and kicks up the city mileage to 34 (a 12 MPG uptick) and the highway mileage by 2 (to 32 MPG).

Interestingly, the hybrid’s highway range  – 355 miles – is less than its city range – 377 miles – but this is usually true of hybrids generally, because the gas engine is typically running all the time to maintain highway speeds (as opposed to being off much of the time, as when the hybrid isn’t moving, as when it is stuck in city traffic) and because the gas engine in a hybrid has to work harder, because the hybrid is usually heavier (4,588 lbs. in this case vs. 3,983 lbs. for the non-0hybrid Corsair) and because the gas engine in a hybrid is usually less powerful.

On the other hand, a plug-in hybrid like this one can go about 30 miles without burning any gas at all – and if you can plug it in when you get where you’re going, you may be able to get back to where you started from without using any gas at all.

Or at least, not much.

There is also no more waiting with a hybrid than there is with any other car that isn’t an electric car.

When the Corsair runs out of range, you don’t have to stop. The gas side of the hybrid will keep you going – and pump some charge back into the battery, as you go – until you have time to stop for gas. And then you’ll only have to wait the 3-5 minutes it takes to pump 11 gallons into the thing, which will give you a full tank and 100 percent of your driving range (on electric and gas) back again.

You can stop – for a charge – whenever it’s convenient. Something no EV offers.

The hybrid isn’t going to save you money – the cost of the thing being such that it’s unlikely you’ll ever claw back sufficient savings in fuel to make up for it. But it will save you time – vs. an electric car.

And it may save you something else, if we get to the point that the government bans cars that aren’t at least partially electric. If that happens, you will still have a vehicle you’re allowed to drive.

On The Road

Most luxury brands are luxury-sport brands and specifically advertise this duality, which is a little weird when you think about it because the two attributes are at opposite ends of the spectrum. What you often end up with is a luxury vehicle that tries to be “sporty” – but isn’t, really.

Lincoln focuses on luxury – and style.

This isn’t to say the Corsair will chuck its wire-wheel covers into the bushes if you drive it faster than 25 MPH in a corner. It doesn’t have wire wheel covers, of course. It is to say that Lincoln’s object as a brand is to offer the yacht club elegance of movement the names of its vehicles are meant to suggest. The Corsair can hustle, if you need it to. In the corners, too. But that is not what this unit is all about. It is about relaxing – and enjoying the ride, a thing increasingly forgotten in our time.

You will find the ride is softer-than-most, as are the seats. Everything around you is meant to convey ease, including the push buttons for engaging Drive, Park and Reverse. These bring back a feature Lincoln offered back in the JFK era but work much better now than then because back then, electronic controls were primitive relative to today.

The idea looked great, back then. It functions better, now.

The hybrid is almost silent-running, like an EV – but without the worry. It is liberating to not be tethered to a cord. To be able to just drive wherever you need to go, however far away – without having to worry about whether you’ll make it to there.

This is extremely relaxing.

And that’s just another way of saying luxurious.

At The Curb

Though this is Lincoln’s smallest crossover, it feels (and looks) larger than Ford’s smallest crossover, probably because its length is accentuated by the different Lincoln bodywork.

And glasswork.

Viewed from the side, the Corsair looks like it might have a third row – because it has more glass behind the second row. The Ford’s tapers into the small rear quarter glass that’s now as commonplace as the absence of an ashtray in new crossovers. The Lincoln’s continues upright almost to the liftgate, giving the impression of more than meets the eye. The front and rear ends of the Lincoln also project just a little bit farther from the axle centerlines. The result is about an inch of increased length (181.4 inches vs. 180.5) which may not sound like much, but makes all the difference in terms of what you think you’re seeing.

There are some other interesting differences, too.

The Corsair has 43.2 inches of driver and front seat passenger legroom – an inch more than in the Escape. But the Escape has more backseat legroom (40.7 inches vs. 38.6 in the Lincoln) as well as significantly more cargo room, both behind its second row and with its second row folded (37.5 cubic feet and 65.4 cubic feet, respectively, vs. 27.6 cubic feet and 57.6 cubic feet).

Also interestingly, the Corsair comes standard with a 3,000 lb. tow rating (vs. 2,000 lbs. for the Escape) so it can pull a small trailer while the Ford can’t.

These differences are manifestations of different priorities. The Escape is the more utilitarian of the two crossovers. It’s a great crossover for young families with small kids. The Corsair is for parents whose kids are off at college. Its Bridge of Weir leather seats and other surfaces – including its dual LCD touchscreens – are not for sticky fingers.

The Rest

Because it is a Lincoln, the Corsair comes standard with amenities that aren’t even offered with the Ford – such as the already mentioned dual LCD touchscreen displays. There is also the standard 10 speaker audio system, which out-speakers the Escape’s standard six speaker stereo.

And you cannot get the Corsair’s available 14 speaker Revel audio system in the Escape.

However, you also cannot get several desirable options – in the Corsair – except as part of a “collection” of additional equipment, some of which you may not want and which require you to buy them all. For example, if you’d like to have a heated steering wheel and a wireless charging pad, you can’t just tick off those options, individually. They are part of the $3,595 “Collection II.”

Similarly, if you’d like to have the BlueCruise semi-self-driving feature, you must buy a subscription as well as the option.

This is not just a Lincoln thing, by the way. It is a common thing. It is one of the reasons why the average price paid for a new vehicle – not necessarily a luxury vehicle – is now close to $50,000.

Options add up.

Especially when you buy a dozen of them, bundled together.

The Bottom Line

Lincoln doesn’t sell luxury cars anymore. But it does sell crossovers that are still Lincolns.

. . .

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32 COMMENTS

  1. As noted, one rival-brand crossover is the BMW X3.
    Not sure the BMW would be considered a standard
    “crossover” since it’s rear-wheel drive.

    Big difference also, the M40i version is available as a
    performance vehicle – 382hp 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder.

    Auto enthusiasts would favor the BMW X3 M40i.
    I’m considering an M40i before electrics totally rule.

    • Hi libertyx,

      The X3 is definitely the one to get if you want sharper reflexes, higher limits, etc. But the I like that the Lincoln isn’t trying to emulate that. It’s a cruiser – and that’s an alternative!

      • To: eric
        What I miss are choices: In the past
        it was possible to buy a “cruiser”, as in
        a Pontiac Tempest, or a GTO, from
        the same brand. A Chevy Chevelle
        or an SS396.

        Where’s that Hot-Rod Lincoln?

  2. The Corsair doesn’t sound much different then the Nautilus, other than size. One thing, Lincoln doesn’t stray far from their roots. I’m sure either the Corsair or the Nautilus would be excellent on long road trips, for around town driving, probably not so much. I know the MKX we own is phenomenal on road trips. We’ve driven it back and forth across the country numerous times. Four hours of highway driving non-stop seems more like 2-3. Even our 12 year old version is more comfortable than the few new cars I’ve test driven.

    The L100 looks interesting. Probably the ultimate in virtue signaling, EV technology. No steering wheel, instead, a ‘bejeweled chess board inspired controller,’ with intuitive everything. They claim (ha ha) that the L100 breakthrough battery tech will cure the range issue, thus eliminating EV hesitancy. Cant imagine how they could ever make more than a few hundred a year. Probably reserved for loyal high ranking party members, and only operable by pairing with the unique digital ID chip in the owners hand. Hope you get to review/drive one, without the ID chip

  3. I love it! I didn’t think about a Mercedes G320. I also like the Toyota Hilux Surf or the FJ Cruiser. Just looking at interior with no IPADs or cameras (so nice). I actually follow Maple Motors in Hendersonville, TN. They have a lot of beautiful cars, but they are usually older, muscle cars. I need something that I can put 100K miles on. It is hard to beat a good Japanese or German engine.

    Thanks for the link. It opened up some new possibilities after I get rid of this hunk of junk from GM.

    • The FJ Cruiser rocks! I love the analog gauges & almost zero gizmoes. (I did a tweek to permanently turn off the door buzzers -forever! – but it can be done with just a few easy steps). Our 2007 has only needed basic maintenance since we bought our one & only ever new vehicle. It is a tad, shall we say, for a younger body to get into & out of,… & you’re not gonna feel like you’re sitting in a Lazy Boy recliner when you’re driving,… other than that… well, the flat windshield is a bit of a bug magnet, not the sorta thing to have when driving thru those (love?) bug clusters I’ve read about in Florida,… but that’s par for the course for all FJ’s, J40’s I mean. Those are cool, wish I had one.
      The back seats are not the easiest to get stuff into or out of, the trade off is, in snow, it’s fun & …secure/confident/glad to be in it.

      Another big plus is, the driver doesn’t rub elbows with the passenger. A downside is, …. I can’t imagine being a teenager & trying to kiss a girl in one.
      Are all new cars & trucks anti-kissing? I imagine so.

      Eric’s review:

      https://www.ericpetersautos.com/2007/07/09/2007-toyota-fj-cruiser/

      I want to buy a full sized pickup with a real full sized bed,… someday. The Hi-Lux would be real nice to have, too. (Does it come with a full sized bed?) If I had the money, I’d buy the pickup And a second FJ. …You guys got me dreaming now.

      ..Also, fjcruiserforums is a magnificent place to learn about FJ’s and do… mods. …Wish I had the money for those.

      • Oh wait. I forgot. One thing did go bad on the FJ, this year a gas tank strap rusted through & left the tank partially dangling.

        From what I’ve heard, this is getting to be a common thing to go bad on all newer-ish vehicles.
        I guess they don’t make gas tank straps like they used to?

        Anyway, & regardless, the car dealership undercoating turned out to be worth every Penny.

  4. ‘[Corsair] comes standard with the 2.0 liter four that’s optional in the Escape [std. 1.5 liter three] – as well as luxury features including Bridge of Weir leather and a Smoked Truffle interior theme.’ — eric

    Bridge of Weir leather, comrades: it’s the next level up from the fabled Corinthian leather which heretofore only was available to the prideful nomenklatura in their Zils and Ladas.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E0diMFShiUU

    A Smoked Truffle interior is a treat for the eye, but a temptation for the family dog who is likely when unattended to leave great teeth marks in it: Mmmmm! Truffles! BACON!!

    Getting upgraded (for thousands of colorful paper dollars) from a 1.5L three to a muscular 2.0L four makes me laugh. It’s like getting the only luxurious Adirondack chair when everyone else is perched on folding canvas camp chairs … then wondering if they enthroned you there cuz you’re so frickin’ old. 🙁

  5. $55,320 for an escape? Sure it has a bigger engine & is a hybrid, but wow.

    I remember when the escape came out, it was essentially a “SUV” for those who couldn’t afford an explorer.

    2001 XLT top MSRP $21,360. Inflation calculator shows that is $38,084 today. Does lincoln’s comfiness provide another $20K of value?

  6. Are there any cars built today that don’t spy on their occupants? Just curious. When a car has six cameras to view the external perimeters of the car we know they have just as many inside to do likewise.

    I feel bad for teenagers today. Mom and Dad (and the NSA) tracking your constant whereabouts on your phone and then you have car manufacturers filming you getting busy in the backseat.

    • Morning, RG !

      I feel bad for us… because as these kids, habituated to being spied on, grow up, they will become the majority and then the majority will consider it No Big Deal to have no privacy, as well as no room to exercise one’s own judgment. Ever.

      • Agreed, Eric.

        This is one of the few issues that hubby and I don’t see eye to eye on. His attitude is we are constantly being monitored and we just need to live our life. I, on the other hand, am fighting tooth and nail for some measure of control of what information, data, pics, etc. are being used and reviewed without our consent.

        I don’t want my car (or my phone) listening to personal conversations. I don’t want me being recorded. I don’t want to have to go through life constantly on edge that something I said or did will show up on the Internet somewhere. I don’t understand people who don’t see this is as being detrimental to society.

        • I 100 percent agree with you on this. Of course, the pecking order for me is that I use cell phones and google servers every day. You can’t put the technology in the bottle, but you can prohibit the information from being used. The US and China have the laxest rules on what government and corporations can do with that information and data. Europe is slightly better in that regard, though China has a back door to them, I’m sure.

          I draw the line on letting my car spy on me. Reason: they can actively stop you from operating your vehicle. This has been possible since 2004 when On-Star became standard on GM automobiles. It has become only 10x as pervasive now as it was then.

          When Gen Z or whatever they call themselves will wake up is when the government or corporations bare their fangs and stop them from having their weird drag parties or some other of the odd reflections of their hormonally challenged microbiome.

          I’m tired of the whole thing. That’s why I drive a 2006 Honda Pilot and a 2012 Acura TL. They are disconnected from teh automotive bee hive.

    • RG,
      I work in the tech industry & the more I see how it is being utilized, the more I want things with just enough technology to make things work better & reliable, and no more.

      It sounds like a dystopian tale, but these things are/are going to be used to subdue us.

      • Hi Dan,

        I don’t see it being utilized for any good. Mozilla Foundation recently conducted a survey about today’s auto manufacturers and the data they are collecting on us. All 25 manufacturers interviewed collected an obscene amount of personal data while we were in our cars (although I should say “their” cars). This ranged from the songs we listen to, to our phone’s contents, pictures of our children in the back seat, our conversations, how we drove, where we went, etc.

        There is no doubt that this data is being sold, but the question is to whom? What are they doing with it? Why are they collecting it? Apparently, Tesla is the worst. Not only are you being filmed, but the recordings go back to Tesla and are watched by Tesla’s own engineers. It is sick and creepy, but I have no doubt that they are all doing it.

        I have an older car, but I think a Faraday Cage would probably be money well spent.

        • “I have an older car, but I think a Faraday Cage would probably be money well spent.”

          Well, you can Faraday Bag your phones, laptops, etc. But if there is a way to “Faraday-ize” a car that’s rolling down the road…..I have not heard of it. Probably going to need an older vehicle (early 2000s latest.)

          • Hi Mike,

            I see an excellent business opportunity here. About a car cover made of aluminum foil? 😉

            Or better yet, a car manufacturer produces a car that has a decent engine, solid brakes, and four good tires. I also need a good radio. No Sirius though and forget about a Garmin/Google navigation system. Cup holders would be as crazy as I would get. I don’t need WiFi or Blue Tooth. There isn’t anybody I need to talk to you that bad.

            Well, is Isuzu when you need them?

            • Hi RG,

              There is a car dealer in my area that imports/sells right-hand-drive models of vehicles we’re not allowed to buy here – such as the Toyota Hi Lux diesel. I keep my eye open for one with a manual. And nothing else!

              • Are they new or used vehicles? Isuzu was making a D-MAX (truck) and MU-X SUV (overseas, of course), but the safety features are freaking ridiculous…speed assist, lane assist, etc. If they would do way with this stuff (and the dumb IPAD) I would be very happy.

                It is sad, but I would pay good money for a very simple automobile. Now, if I could just find a 2004 Isuzu Rodeo with no miles. 🙂

              • Eric, just an idea – you should perhaps mention a privacy / freedom rating on all the cars you review, and state what cars / car makers you think are better on the cars you see. How much it watches you. and how much shit you can switch off or otherwise disable.

                Was also wondering if you have a view on navigation systems – which are better for privacy? While I love waze and the ability to warn fellow road users of cops, I find it hard to trust given Google owns it…. Believe it or not I still own an old tomtom which relies on their old network of speed cameras, camera warnings and traffic reports.

            • I”I see an excellent business opportunity here. About a car cover made of aluminum foil? 😉”

              Just as long as they remember….”shiney side OUT!”

        • In so far as the cameras go, that’s what they make tape for! Kind of like covering the camera on your laptop to thwart spying….if there are microphones I’m sure they can be blocked or disabled as well. Of the two vehicles I own, only one has a camera – a backup camera in my 16′ Honda CRV. I would never tolerate any cameras (or mics) inside any vehicle that are pointed at me or any other occupant.

      • Okay, that was depressing. I just put in the VIN for that Cadillac thing and apparently everybody – Cadillac, their affiliates, the friends affiliates, insurance company, government, and my next door neighbor has access to anything and everything in it.

      • I think this Site only looks at the Year, Make of the Vehicle and if it is Canada or the US. I put in my VIN which is European (positions 4,5 and 6 are ZZZ) and the Site said it collects certain Data the car is not capable of reporting. My car is a 2018 but has no Driving Aids other than ABS and Traction Control.

        • That site also reported that my car is reporting data it isn’t able to collect.

          I think that site just tells you what the company’s privacy policy is. Toyota’s stinks.

          Maybe I’ll plug in my 67 Chevelle’s VIN and see what comes back.

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