CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

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Should post-1957 Continental Marks be classified as Continentals and not as Lincolns?

Poll ended at Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:32 am

Yes, without a doubt.
8
35%
No. The only true Continentals were 1956 and '57 Mark IIs. They are Lincolns.
12
52%
It could be argued either way.
3
13%
I'm not sure.
0
No votes
 
Total votes : 23

CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby rmbb » Thu Oct 28, 2010 6:57 pm

CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

NOR SHOULD THE 1982-1985 CONTINENTAL

By Richard Bergquist

On Reclassifying the 1968-1985 Continental Mark III/IV/V/VI/VII and 1982-1985 Continental.

These cars are as of now classified as Lincolns, however their make is Continental. They shall therefor not be classified as Lincolns. There has been much confusion over time about this, in automotive litterature as well as among automotive enthusiasts in general. Indeed the confusion existed even at the get-go, something many non Lincoln-Mercury published advertisments bear testiment to. However it is clear in advertisments printed by Lincoln-Mercury that the 1968-1985 Mark automobile is not a Lincoln, nor is the 1982-1985 Continental. The Lincolnization of these cars came about with the 1986 year model.

Certainly most Lincoln-Mercury enthusiasts today will agree that the 1955-1957 Mark II was indeed by make a Continental. However many if not most will vehemently disagree that the Continental name as make reappeared in 1968, claiming that the Continental name as make disappeared with the end of the Continental Mark II in 1957 never to reappear again. This however is incorrect. The Continental division of Ford might, by all means, have closed in 1957, the name as make however did not seize to exist indefinitely. With the 1968 launch of the Mark III the Continental name as make reappeared and continued to be the make of the Mark automobiles until the 1986 Lincolnization of the by then, Mark VII and mid-sized sedan Continental. From 1986 the former Continental Mark VII became the Lincoln Mark VII and the Continental became the Lincoln Continental.

Ford Executive and Ford employee since 1963, automotive historian and automotive expert witness to the United States Government in the case of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Versus The United States, James K Wagner, will attest to this fact. His 1987 Crestline Series book The cars of Lincoln-Mercury is one of the most comprehensive, precise and respected accounts of Lincoln-Mercury history. In his book James K. Wagner speaks of this confusion between the Continentals as a model and as a make, Marks and the 1982 introduced Continental often being confused as Lincolns before they were branded as Lincolns in 1986.

The Continental Mark and the Continental were ”Lincolnized” for the 1986 year-model. It was not until 1986 when the Continental name as make was removed entirely from the Mark automobile and degraded to model status for the Continental that became the Lincoln Continental. The Mark became a Lincoln and so did the Continental.

Lincoln-Mercury felt that even though it would have been effective in relating the Marks with its past to include the Continental name as a model-name after the cars in 1986 had been Lincolnized they felt it would be a too long and too intricate name leaving the car as Lincoln Continental Mark VII, hence for 1986 it simply became the Lincoln Mark VII.

Advertisments published by Ford/Lincoln-Mercury never mention such a thing as a Lincoln Continental Mark. However, to further the confusion, the Continental name was for many model-years used as a model-name as well as a brand name. For instance the 1970s Lincoln Continental Sedan, the Lincoln Continental Town Car, the Lincoln Continental Coupé and Lincoln Continental Town Coupé. Even the 1980 all-new down-sized full-size Lincoln luxury sedan was a Continental-model. Marketed Lincoln Continental and Lincoln Continental Town Car. The 1980 Lincoln Continental changed name for 1981 when the Town Car moniker for the first time became a model and not just a package and so for 1981 it was marketed as the 1981 Lincoln Town Car and Lincoln Town Car Signature Series.

To further confuse the public the 1980 all-new Lincoln Continental was virtually identical to the all-new Continental, the Continental Mark VI, shy of interior and exterior details, ornamentation and for Mark special optional head lamps known as Touring Lamps. The 1980 Lincoln Continental and Lincoln Continental Town Car shared mold with the 1980 Continental Mark VI and the 1980 Continental Mark VI Signature Series. The confusion with the public and even with Mercury-Lincoln dealerships was monumental and continue to this day.

However commercial videos produced by Lincoln-Mercury are testaments to the nomenclature principles of the Lincoln and Continental automobiles. In the video-link I post below each car is introduced with its entire name, make and model. When introducing the Lincoln, we hear the speaker state ”Lincoln Continental Town Car”, when introducing the Marks we hear ”Continental Mark VI”. Furthermore the speaker continuously mention Lincoln when the Lincoln car is showing. When the Mark is showing the Lincoln name is never mentioned, only Continental. Referring to the different automobiles in this fashion is applicable to all by Mercury-Lincoln published advertisments. See Hans Tore Tangeruds website for a wealth of Lincoln-Mercury published advertisments. All Lincoln-Mercury brochures head the Marks as Continental Mark and the Lincoln Continentals and Lincoln Continental.

Realizing that pointing these facts out would raise some controversy with the members of this board and website I have been reluctant to posting this article however I feel that the facts do not deserve to be so blatantly overlooked and it is, in my opinion, high time to issue a reclassification of all cars classified as Lincoln Continental Marks (1968-1985) to Continental Marks and those classified as Lincoln Continental (1982-1985) to Continental.

From 1981 cars are designated a 17-character VIN-number. The third character is the Make Identification. Lincoln=N. Mercury=E. Continental=R. All Lincoln automobiles are marked N, all Continentals are marked R. Hence are all Mark automobiles (Mark VI 81-83, Mark VII 84-85) from 1981-1985 marked R. Continentals from 1982-1985 are marked R since they are Continentals.

From 1986 all Marks (by then VII) and Continentals are marked N since they are from 1986 by make Lincolns.

Pay attention to the third character in the example. R=Continental N=Lincoln

1982 Continental=1MRBP98F2CY627349
1983 Continental=1MRBP97F4DY678774
1984 Continental=1MRBP97F7EY671657
1985 Continental=1MRBP97FXFY758518
1986 Lincoln Continental=1LNBP97F5GY704124
1987 Lincoln Continental=1LNBM97F7HY711540

1981 Continental Mark VI=1MRBP96F4BY658149
1982 Continental Mark VI=1MRBP96F4CY683893
1983 Continental Mark VI=1MRBP98F4DY619450
1984 Continental Mark VII=1MRBP98F7EY637233
1985 Continental Mark VII=1MRBP98F8FY654205
1986 Lincoln Mark VII=1LNBP98M0GY671286
1987 Lincoln Mark VII=1LNBM91F9HY667713
1988 Lincoln Mark VII=1LNBM92E9JY815600
1989 Lincoln Mark VII=1LNBM92E9KY713313
1992 Lincoln Mark VII=1LNCM93EXNY640489

1981 Lincoln Town Car=1LNBP93F2BY639487
1985 Lincoln Town Car=1LNBP96F6FY735107
1986 Lincoln Town Car=1LNBP96F5GY685902
1987 Lincoln Town Car=1LNBM82F8HY682597
1988 Lincoln Town Car=1LNBM83F0JY708744
1989 Lincoln Town Car=1LNBM82F4KY792263

There is not only substantial but incontrovertible evidence to the fact that the 1968-1985 Marks were Continentals and not Lincolns as is there to the fact that the 1982-1985 Continental was a Continental and not a Lincoln.

To summarize, there have been Continental model designations and there have been Continental make designations. The 1968-1985 Marks were Continentals and not Lincolns. 1982-1985 Continental was a Continental and not a Lincoln. The Mark and the Continental Sedan became Lincoln makes with the 1986 year model.


Lincoln-Mercury Commercial Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Thqe8r2F9mY

Lincoln-Mercury advertisments: http://www.lov2xlr8.no/lincoln.html

Album of Continentals and Lincolns (note lack of Lincoln emblems on pre-1986 Continental Marks and on the 1982-1985 Continental):

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2 ... 3bc316664e

Pictures from the 1987 Crestline Series Lincoln-Mercury Cars

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... 3_copy.jpg

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... y_copy.jpg

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... 9_copy.jpg

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... 7_copy.jpg

Further commercials on Youtube only mentioning Marks as Continentals

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3IwXrPIpr0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bx_uVAdz ... re=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mqgCTfDH7cU

1969 Lincoln-Mercury Catalog brochure pictures (note how the cars are presented)

Lincoln Continental:
(heading is Lincoln since this car is a Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... 08-09.html

Continental Mark III:
(note that the heading is Continental and not Lincoln since this is not a Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... 02-03.html

Presenting the Lincoln Continental and the Continental Mark III:
(Continental not labeled Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... II-01.html

1971 Lincoln-Mercury Catalog brochure pictures
(note how the cars are presented)

The Lincoln Continental:
(marked Lincoln since this car is a Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... %2010.html

The Continental Mark III:
(not marked Lincoln since this car is not a Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... %2012.html

1976 Lincoln-Mercury Catalog brochure pictures
(note how the cars are presented)

The Continental Mark IV:
(not marked a Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... IV-01.html

The Lincoln Continental:
(marked Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... al-01.html

1984 Lincoln-Mercury Catalog brochure picture

The Continental:
(not mentioned as a Lincoln as it is not yet a Lincoln)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... ln-15.html

The Lincoln Town Car:
(mentioned as a Lincoln since it is a Lincoln. Compare with Continental above):
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... ln-23.html

Continental:
http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/lincoln/84_17.html

Lincoln Town Car:
http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/lincoln/84_21.html


1986 Lincoln-Mercury Catalog brochure picture

The Lincoln Mark VII:
(note that the Mark has now become a Lincoln and is now mentioned as such)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... II-04.html

The Lincoln Continental:
(has now become a Lincoln and is mentioned as such)
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... 04-05.html

1981 Continental Mark VI with optional Touring Lamps

http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/N ... ncoln.html

An account of the Lincoln-Mercury heritage
Cars of Lincoln-Mercury
George H. Dammann; James K. Wagner
ISBN 10: 0912612266 / 0-912612-26-6
ISBN 13: 9780912612263
Publisher: Crestline Pub Co
Publication Date: 1987

Examples of available models for various years

1970 Lincoln
Lincoln Continental Sedan
Lincoln Continental Coupé

1970 Continental
Continental Mark III


1975 Lincoln
Lincoln Continental Sedan
Lincoln Continental Coupé

Lincoln Continental Town Car
Lincoln Continental Town Coupé

1975 Continental
Continental Mark IV


1979 Lincoln
Lincoln Continental 4-Door Sedan
Lincoln Continental 2-Door Coupé

Lincoln Continental Town Car
Lincoln Continental Town Coupé

1979 Continental
Continental Mark V


1980 Lincoln
Lincoln Continental
Lincoln Continental Coupé

Lincoln Continental Town Car
Lincoln Continental Town Coupé

1980 Continental
Continental Mark VI four-door
Continental Mark VI two-door

Continental Mark VI four-door Signature Series
Continental Mark VI two-door Signature Series


1981 Lincoln
Lincoln Town Car four-door
Lincoln Town Car two-door

Lincoln Town Car Signature Series four-door
Lincoln Town Car Signature Series two-door

1981 Continental
Continental Mark VI Luxury Group four-door
Continental Mark VI Luxury Group two-door

Continental Mark VI four-door Signature Series
Continental Mark VI two-door Signature Series


1982 Lincoln
Lincoln Town Car four-door
Lincoln Town Car two-door

Lincoln Town Car Signature Series four-door
Lincoln Town Car Signature Series two-door

1982 Continental
Continental (new for 1982)

Continental Mark VI Luxury Group four-door
Continental Mark VI Luxury Group two-door

Continental Mark VI four-door Signature Series
Continental Mark VI two-door Signature Series


1986 Lincoln (http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... olns_2.jpg)
Lincoln Town Car
Lincoln Mark VII
Lincoln Continental

1986 Continental (discontinued for 1986)

Excerpts from Cars of Lincoln-Mercury (1987)

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... rk_III.jpg

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... incoln.jpg

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... incoln.jpg

http://www.geting.se/viewimage/image/26 ... incoln.jpg
Last edited by rmbb on Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:33 am, edited 7 times in total.
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby Barry Norman » Thu Oct 28, 2010 7:52 pm

And where do the 1958-1960's fit in ?
57 Premier conv
58 MK III conv
60 MK V conv
61 Continental conv
66 Continental conv
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby ContiFan » Fri Oct 29, 2010 9:15 am

While these may have been marketed as just “Continental” what about the fact, for example, that early Fox-platform Continentals also had “Lincoln” or “Lincoln Continental” badging?
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One cannot simply declare it to make it true.

Postby Dan Szwarc » Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:20 am

What's on the title for the make?

Didn't Ford market the Marks as "Continental Mark III by Lincoln"?

One cannot simply declare Marks to not be Lincolns and make them Continentals. One cannot reclassify a model as a new make because of advertising. There are rules for registration with the state governments on what is the make and model of a car.
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby Joe Nemec » Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:40 am

rmbb, I would agree with the 1956 and 1957 Continental Mark II not being a Lincoln. different division and different plant from Lincoln. However,you can't say that about Lincoln's fleet of Lincoln Continental's after that.
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'71 Mark III
'73 Mark IV
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby LINC400 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 11:17 am

The 1958 Mark III, 1969-71 Mark III, 1972-76 Mark IV, and 1977-79 Mark V were Continentals. The Lincoln name appears nowhere on the car, any brochures, literature or advertising. Whether it can be argued that no seperate division was formed as far as government registration is another issue. However the seperate Continental division still existed for 1958 from the original formation from the Mark II, maybe that still existed into the 1970's, but probably not.

However, the 1980's and later Mark VI, VII, VIII, and Continental as well as the 1959 and 1960 had Lincoln badging, advertising, literature, etc. You cannot argue that they are not Lincolns if Ford themselves badged them as such.
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby Dan Szwarc » Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:06 pm

The lack of a Lincoln badge do not mean that they are NOT Lincolns.

Can a make exist with a named, operating division? There never was a Mercury division at Ford, just at dealers.

I guess the better question what defines the model of a car? Advertising? Official published service documents? The service [parts industry?

I know that Ford deliberately did not market the Mark series as Lincolns. It wasn't until the Mark VIII that the Continental portion of the name was dropped.

Heck, wasn't the Mark VI known as the Mark VI Continental?

Ford did refer to the 58s as Continentals and Lincolns, but the Lincoln was just a strip-down of the Continental vehicle. One couldn't say they were different makes when they were 90% the same (although some say that Fords and Lincolns are now more the same than ever).

I was just at Autozone.com and they don't even consider the Mark IIs to be Continentals. They are listed under "Lincoln -> Continental". At RockAuto.com, Mark IIs are listed as Lincolns.
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby Dan Szwarc » Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:09 pm

Didn't James K. Wagner die a few years ago? Or was it Dammon?
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby Bob Hubbard » Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:26 pm

LINC400 wrote:The 1958 Mark III, 1969-71 Mark III, 1972-76 Mark IV, and 1977-79 Mark V were Continentals. The Lincoln name appears nowhere on the car, any brochures, literature or advertising. Whether it can be argued that no seperate division was formed as far as government registration is another issue. However the seperate Continental division still existed for 1958 from the original formation from the Mark II, maybe that still existed into the 1970's, but probably not.

However, the 1980's and later Mark VI, VII, VIII, and Continental as well as the 1959 and 1960 had Lincoln badging, advertising, literature, etc. You cannot argue that they are not Lincolns if Ford themselves badged them as such.



I had my 59 mark IV for over four years, and never saw the Lincoln badge anywhere on the car,
The Continental scriopt was placed in numerous spots in, and on the car.
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby ContiFan » Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:32 pm

Dan Szwarc wrote:The lack of a Lincoln badge do not mean that they are NOT Lincolns.
Agree.

Dan Szwarc wrote:Can a make exist with a named, operating division? There never was a Mercury division at Ford, just at dealers.
I thought there was a Mercury division until the mid 1940s when it was "merged" with Lincoln. No?

Dan Szwarc wrote:Heck, wasn't the Mark VI known as the Mark VI Continental?
Hmmm...didn’t think so. However, the "Continental" name (although still badged on the car and considered part of the name) didn’t consistently appear in promotional items especially during the latter part of the Mark VI model run. It would sometimes be marketed as just "Mark VI."

The joys of branding!
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby Joe Nemec » Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:50 pm

This factory spec sheet FOR 1959 states "Lincoln Continental Mark IV" is it a misprint from Lincoln?
http://cgi.ebay.com/1959-LINCOLN-CONTIN ... 2ea8bfbafa
'76 Mark IV
Previously owned:
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'71 Mark III
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby 79TownCoupe » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:12 pm

I had no idea there was so much controversy on whether or not Lincoln Contintentals are officially Lincolns.... but considering pretty much everyone calls these cars (except the legit Continentals that really did have their own marque) Lincolns, does it really even matter?
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby Joe Nemec » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:18 pm

Interesting, I think someone should let Ford know that The Mark III,Mark IV and Mark V were not in there Lincoln line.
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby LINC400 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:23 pm

If Mercury was supposedly not a seperate division then why aren't they called Lincoln Mercury Marquis or Cougar? This seems to be an argument in the wrong direction if you are going to claim Continental wasn't a division.

Even for a Mark II, you usually will have to look under Lincoln for classified ads, parts, etc.

The same is true for Imperial which was a seperate division from 1955-75. You won't find anything if you don't look under Chrysler.

For Edsel you sometimes have to look under Ford as well.

The problem is both Chrysler and Lincoln tried to use the names both with and without the seperate division.

So I would agree that 1958, and 1969-79 would be Continentals, but you won't ever find anything for them without using the Lincoln name.

The 1980's and later, however, where they were even badged Lincolns, are indeed Lincolns. I don't see how anyone can argue they are not when the badge is right on the car and advertising.
Last edited by LINC400 on Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: CONTINENTAL MARKS MUST NOT BE CLASSIFIED AS LINCOLNS

Postby LINC400 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:25 pm

Joe Nemec wrote:Interesting, I think someone should let Ford know that The Mark III,Mark IV and Mark V were not in there Lincoln line.


I think they are aware of that since they seemed to go out of their way to make sure the Lincoln name appeared nowhere on the cars, brochures, ads, repair manuals, etc. I highly doubt it was accidental that it was left off everything. Especially since the brochures stated "Lincoln Continental & Continental Mark III, IV, or V.
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