Lincoln’s all-new 2017 Continental cabin feels wide and spacious as you’d expect from a full-size luxury sedan; coupled with the huge panoramic roof above that opens up the space. Sitting behind the driver’s wheel, the cockpit is surrounded by a plethora of buttons and dials.
But it’s a clean, logical layout that doesn’t feel cluttered or gaudy. To the left/right passenger along the doors, you’ve got all the seat controls (30 adjustments, to be exact), similar to a Mercedes-Benz setup.
Lending to the streamlined feel is a simple button door release (not your typical door handle), and gone is the conventional gear shifter hogging valuable centre space in lieu of the front-and-centre gear selector buttons located next to the screen.
Next to the dual cupholders below the centre stack is a long, deep slit perfect for housing your bigass mobile (honestly, it’s annoying when there’s nowhere to really put your phone without it flopping around; sorry Automakers, a couple cupholds alone don’t really work.)
Lincoln did a great job keeping the audio and climate controls in centre stack compact, smart yet within reach: a small, elegant dial for volume and direct tuning flank the audio control buttons. And below this, a large climate control dial with a few buttons inside, are flanked by both driver and passenger controls. So no phone-like finger swiping to toggle through functions as found in the other Lincoln products.
My tester found the Climate Control package, Cappuccino luxury leather throughout, rear heated seats, a handy windshield wiper de-icer and heated steering wheel which both actually came in handy in the cold, frosty winter mornings, making my kids early school drop off that much more bearable.
Love for the Rear Passengers
Often, the front passengers get all the love: reclining seats, heated cushions, various adjustments. That’s definitely not going to be an issue in the Continental, but it comes at a cost. This version got the Rear Seat Package (yes, that’s an actual upgrade), that adds a long list of items that’ll put a smile on any discerning passengers face. See pricing below.
Lincoln’s new Continental is definitely missing that nostalgia compared to my aunt’s old-school, early 1980’s Continental that commanded the road. But gas-guzzling V8 boats just won’t cut it these days. Style-wise, the all-new 2017 Continental retains that bold look with touches of luxury and elegance you’d expect. And it’s clear Lincoln didn’t hold back inside this luxury sedan; realizing that cabin comfort, convenience (and technology) are not things a Continental can compromise. And they certainly didn’t hold back here.
In the near $50k starting price point, and well over $60k with some upgrades, in my mind, this car caters to those discerning tastes familiar and loyal with the storied Lincoln namesake in North America, looking for uncompromised elegance (and perhaps powerful, massaging seats for that bad back pain?). Whereas the $35,000 Lincoln MKZ – the only other sedan in the Lincoln lineup – likely targets those new to the brand, the full-size Continental is perfect for those wanting to really step it up, but not keen on the sport utilities like the Navigator, MKX, or MKT.