Monday, November 5, 2012

1995 Lincoln Sentinel Concept

The luxury brand of Ford Motor Company, Lincoln was founded in 1917 by Henry M. Leland and was acquired by Ford in 1922. Since the 1920's, Lincoln had manufactured vehicles, Leland named the brand after his longtime hero, Abraham Lincoln. The Sentinel Concept was a ‘startling expression of Ford's edge design ethos'; a high waistline, ultra-clean, flat shapes and elegant proportions. Huge in design, the Sentinel Concept featured wonderful sculpted lighting, and was even made into a runner on a lengthened Jaguar platform. The concept was created in 1995, and by 1996 it was debuted at the Detroit Auto Show. Looking like a 1961 Continental, reinvented, the concept caused quite a large stir on the circuit during the mid 1990's. America's automotive industry saw a major awakening during the 1990's in the direction of vehicle styling and conceptual cars. This was all tied to fuel economy and environmental concerns. The Lincoln Sentinel was a full-size four door sedan that was created to be powered by a modern engine up front with and drive to the rear wheels. The inside was also opulent enough to give the ultimate comfort to both driver and passengers. The Sentinel also merged several elements of earlier Lincoln design styles, like a new interpretation of E.T. 'Bob' Gregorie's fine-bar textured grille from the old school Continentals of the early 1940's and landmark designs of the 1960 from Elwood Engle's revolutionary designs with slab-side sharpness and not much use of chrome. The wheels were massively set at 20 inches, and were designed to be mounted flush to the body that were used and fitted so to ensure a minimum of body overhang, both front and rear. The flush mounted glass also surrounded the greenhouse to the vertically-stacked projector head lamps and tail lamps that only added to the Sentinel's sparse, beautiful look and design. The Sentinel had an overall length of 218 inches from bumper to bumper, which happened to be merely one inch shorter than the current Lincoln Town Car of the time. Just a ‘static showpiece', the Sentinel is constructed on a rolling chassis without either an engine or a proper interior with a half-interior beneath the smoked glass and simulated doors. The engine-less sedan would up in Hardeeville, SC where a dealer is now looking to sell it for $80,000. A fairly significant showcar for its time, the Sentinel was priced quite steeply, but it also featured the bodywork laid on top of a Panther chassis transforming into the ‘best looking Town Car' in years. The front end style was reminiscent of Renault's Vel Satis luxury model introduced in 2001. When it was first set on the auction block in April, the hefty pricetag of $80k wasn't touched, so the concept almost better suited for RoboCop was drastically reduced to the ‘buy-it-now' price of $31,500. Even though the Sentinel didn't actually work, its rolling shell does closely resemble a piece of modern art. The Sentinel was due to be auctioned on January 22, 2010 with an estimated U.S. price of $50,000 to $70,000. By Jessica Donaldson The Lincoln Sentinel, a new full-size, four-door, rear-wheel-drive luxury concept car that blends classic Lincoln styling themes wîth the Ford-inspired 'New Edge' approach to automotive design made its world debut at the 1996 North American International Auto Show. Lincoln has a long heritage of design elegance. From the first Continental to the Mark series and today's Town Car, Lincoln has throughout its history been identified as a symbol of refined and graceful design. The new Lincoln Sentinel luxury concept car retains many of the most recognizable elements of traditional Lincoln exterior styling, such as classic proportions, a crisp silhouette, simple, unadorned bodysides and high, linear beltlines. But it also fuses these design qualities wîth the 'New Edge' design idea of creating a series of shapes which overall produce an exterior wîth sharper corners and lines. The result is a fresh interpretation of established Lincoln design traits. First seen on the Ford GT90 concept sports car, 'New Edge' is the name Ford gave to its latest experimental approach to design. Though its origins can be traced back over many years, 'New Edge' design is now gaining increasing interest among auto designers who perceive it as being a possible alternative to the more rounded and fluid design shapes which have come to prominence over the past decade. 'Ford has always been at the vanguard of new directions in automotive design,' said Tom Scott, director, Advanced Design. 'We set the trend in the more rounded exterior shapes of the past ten years when Ford first introduced the original Taurus, so it's only right that we should now be setting the pace in this new design philosophy which we have called 'New Edge' design.' However, 'New Edge' design is still in its early stages and at this time it is purely experimental. It does not necessarily follow that cars and trucks will inevitably follow this new approach to design in the years ahead. But what the Lincoln Sentinel does show is that 'New Edge' can be applicable to other kinds of concept vehicles and not just advanced sports cars, such as the GT90,' commented Scott. Lincoln traditionalists will recognize set in the Sentinel's metallic black exterior a new interpretation of a 1940s-style Continental grille wîth its fine bar texture. The clean side profile, blade fenders and high belt line wîth minimal chrome trim are typical Lincoln design themes which are reminiscent of early 1960s Lincolns and are still clearly visible in today's Town Car. Flush glass all round and compact, vertically-stacked projector headlamps add to the uncluttered look of the exterior. The flush to the body, massive, 20-inch wheels, placed to ensure a minimum of body overhang both front and rear, add to the Sentinel's clean lines. The car's overall length of 218 inches is just one inch shorter than a 1996 Lincoln Town Car. 'The Lincoln Sentinel is an exploratory look at keeping Lincoln's traditional styling themes fresh for future generations,' said Scott. 'But the Sentinel is also helping us to identify important issues in auto design, such as whether an 'New Edge' approach has any other benefits other than aesthetic. Improved road holding and interior space are just two areas which may benefit from this kind of design approach in the future.' Source - Lincoln