The Star Concept is a Lincoln SUV we can’t help but like
Lincoln, Ford’s luxury sub-brand, has never officially made its way to the UK, and there’s very little chance it ever will. But the company has just unveiled the Star Concept, and it’s too funky not to take a closer look at.
“This is a shining example of what happens when we combine Lincoln luxury with flexible electrical architecture to create unimaginable experiences for customers,” said Ford’s president and CEO, and regular Goodwood racer, Jim Farley. In short, the Lincoln Star Concept is a whacky SUV that previews the design language of future Lincoln electric cars.
The company says its design is led by four core ‘tenets’, namely “beauty, human, gliding and sanctuary”. That doesn’t mean all that much to us, but it's what will guide the Lincoln design team as it looks to deliver three new EVs by 2025 and a fourth in 2026.
Ford’s chief design officer Anthony Lo told us how “electrification is removing many traditional vehicle design constraints”, which is an interesting statement, because at first glance the Star Concept looks very much like an SUV, albeit one that is very far removed from any Lincoln SUV on sale at the moment. But under the skin things are not as they first appear. Where an engine or in some cases an electric motor normally resides under the bonnet, there’s a front trunk. There’s no b-pillar, too, with frameless doors that open in the opposite direction to one another, and at the rear there’s a fairly conventional split-tailgate boot.
Lincoln has tried to use light in a new way for the Star, with lights across the front grille, the wheel-arches, the roof and at the rear end said to make the car glow like a jewel. In truth, though, it’s the interior that’s more interesting.
Lincoln’s president, Joy Falotico, said that the Star Concept is an example of how the company will turn the car “into a third space – a true place of sanctuary”. To that end there are two rows of seats with two reclined, wraparound seats with footrests in each. There’s even a storage space for slippers, says Lincoln, and a “luxurious glass beverage chiller” between the two rear seats. To maximise the feeling of light inside the cabin the entire roof is glass, with a digital shade, while the a- and d-pillars are made of a 3D printed metal lattice. Then there are lights all over the place – in the floor, behind the seats, in the doors and more.
Up front there’s a pretty two-spoke steering wheel, ahead of which rests a “coast-to-coast” curved display, beneath which there’s a smaller control panel with which you can select one of three “moods”, which tie together the in-car audio, scent and lighting. First of all, there’s ‘Coastal Morning’, which uses the sound of the ocean, the fragrance of sea mist and the “warm glow of the sun” to “replicate a stroll on the beach at sunrise”. Then there’s ‘Mindful Vitality’, which Lincoln says reenergises the senses, with “upbeat audio, dynamic abstract artwork” and soft, glowing lighting. Finally, you can enjoy ‘Evening Chill’, with a “calming night soundtrack coordinated with night sky video and an evergreen fragrance”.
Powering the Star Concept is a flexible electric architecture that offers either rear- or all-wheel-drive, but sadly there’s nothing substantial to go on.
As concepts go this is really quite a fun one. It’ll never be built, that’s for sure, but elements will make it to production models in the coming years. To us, the smell and sounds of a stroll along the beach sounds really rather nice.
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