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The 2004 Lincoln Mark X Concept Was a Lincoln Thunderbird

For many years, Ford, Lincoln and Mercury all had versions of the Thunderbird. The Ford model was, of course, the Thunderbird, the Lincoln was called the “Mark,” followed by a series of Roman numerals dictating which version we were on, and the Mercury was the Cougar.

That all ended with the most recent Thunderbird, which came out for the 2002 model year. At the time, the Mercury Cougar had already switched to a small, front-wheel-drive coupe, abandoning the Thunderbird underpinnings. And aside from its LS sedan, which rode on the same platform as the Thunderbird, Lincoln didn’t come out with a version of the T-Bird for itself. But it could’ve.

And, indeed, it was clearly considered. The 2004 Lincoln Mark X Concept, which debuted at the 2004 Detroit Auto Show, is very clearly just a 2002-2005 Ford Thunderbird, except Lincoln-ified, with a power retractable hard top and totally new front and rear ends, but the same general shape and proportions. The interior, too, had been updated for the Lincoln brand — but the hard points were all still there.

Unfortunately for lovers of full-size Lincoln models, it didn’t happen: the Thunderbird was a sales dud, and Lincoln didn’t bother doing its own version — though the Mark X Concept was a clear indication that it was considered. Of course, the Mark X shared the T-Bird’s engine, its wheelbase, and its rear-wheel drive architecture and drivetrain — but it never managed to make it out of the concept car realm. Find a Lincoln for sale

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  1. There was a small crowd that loved the 02 T-Bird, but when you are spending all of your marketing dollars explaining that being fast isn’t important (even a TV commercial showing your car is slow) you’ve screwed up. The T-Bird is not like the PT Cruiser, it’s the Ford version of the Prowler. Retro but not fun enough to sell. 

  2. Ford really missed the mark on the 2002 Thunderbird.  Did they really have data that said people wanted this?  I know this was in the PT Cruiser’s prime and the whole “retro is cool vibe” but it at least had backseats.  

    I doubt this would have sold well but at least relatively speaking, I think it would have sold better than the Thunderbird did.
  3. Interior looks a lot like the Zephyr that came out a couple years later. 

    I kind of like it, but I also liked the Thunderbird/LS/S-Type too. 

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Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More about Doug Demuro

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