New Lincoln products will begin to be sold in China in the second half of 2014 through an independent dealer network. The company begins meeting with dealers interested in being part of Lincoln’s growth in China in the fourth quarter of this year.
“Lincoln is an important part of our plan, and introducing Lincoln in China marks the next step in our expansion in Asia and our commitment to serving customers in the luxury market,” said Ford Motor Company president and CEO Alan Mulally.
“We recognize the growth potential for Lincoln in China, building on the growing appeal of our new Lincoln products and unique, personalized customer experience in North America.”
The luxury segment in China is forecast to surpass the luxury segment in the United States by 2020. In China, luxury vehicle sales are expected to more than double – from 6 percent of the market today to nearly 9 percent by the end of the decade, according to HIS – says Ford Motor Company.
It says annual sales of luxury cars are forecast to be approximately 2.7 million units by then.
Lincoln, named after U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, was founded by Henry Leland. Lincoln was acquired by Ford Motor Company in 1922 when it saw the potential in the brand and identified with its purpose to serve luxury customers uniquely.
Ford Motor Company is building five new plants in China, including in Chongqing, which is home to the largest manufacturing location for Ford outside southeast Michigan. Once completed, the plants will double the company’s capacity in China to 1.2 million passenger vehicles a year.
The expansion, the largest by Ford in 50 years, will help the automaker realize an increase in global sales by around 50 percent from 2010 to about 8 million vehicles annually by mid-decade.
In the picture above: (from left to right) Joe Hinrichs, president of Ford Asia Pacific and Africa; Alan Mulally, president and CEO of Ford Motor Company; Jim Farley, group vice president for sales and marketing of Ford Motor Company; Dave Schoch, chairman and CEO of Ford China.