Test Drive: Elegance par excellence
Published: 14/06/2017 12:00 pm
The new Lincoln Continental exudes class, comfort and a high level of sophistication.
At first glance, the distinctive grille of the new Lincoln Continental captures the attention. As does the LED headlamps that consist of five chrome bordered rectangular bodies that also mimics the grille’s design. The uncluttered front only starts to show the sleek body of this car. Smooth lines are abundant and well crafted into the cars design. The Continental's chrome belt-line seamlessly incorporates the E-latch door handles and increases the cars smooth look. The 20” polished aluminim wheels with dark tarnish painted pockets simply enhances the cars looks. The rear brake cluster is neatly arranged and uses chrome along with the rear exhaust pipes to complement the rear. The brake lights that run across the back boot for maximum visual effect only completes this unmistakably Lincoln flagship.
The Continental's interior is completely covered in the finest leather and wood trims, along with high grade materials that looks and feels good. A comfortable and relaxed atmosphere is what will greet its occupants. The front seats are flexible with its 24 way adjustable options to get the perfect seating position that feel secure and very cosy.
Tri-zone electronic automatic temperature control works wonders to keep the interior very well aerated and cool in this heat. The option of cooling the individual seats is an appreciated added bonus for the coming summer months.
This is a big saloon and so has very spacious rear seats that can also be adjusted individually. A lot of thought has gone into making the rear passengers feel very comfortable, secure and in total control over their own well being. Controls for the climate is available in the middle arm rest, door mounted controls adjusting your seating position is easily changeable. And when there is no passenger in the front seat, you are able to move that seat forward to give more leg room if needed.
Adjusting the rear window blind or cooling the seats are all done in the rear. Drivers knee airbags, glove box door integrated knee airbags, front seat airbags, side curtain airbags and the inflatable rear outboard safety belts only adds to the safety features the car has.
Visibility is very good and with all the necessary controls in easy reach makes driving the car an easier affair. With almost no outside noise seeping in, the excellent Revel Ultima audio system with 19 speakers can be fully enjoyed. Voice activated touch screen SYNC 3 connects you to audio, phone, navigation and other functions and are clearly visible on a full colour LCD screen. Real time view from the 360 degree camera enhances the area around the car and makes reverse parking very easy.
Forward and reverse sensing systems with collision assist with pedestrian detection is a very useful tool to have and gives enough warning to the driver to react in time. So to does the BLIS – Blind Spot Information System with cross traffic alert. Lane keeping system and driver alert system adds to Lincoln's added commitment to safety.
The Continental is a big saloon that has intelligent AWD and Dynamic Torque Vectoring that team up to send 100 per cent of available rear axle torque to one outside rear wheel while cornering to give a smooth and seamless driving experience. Coupled with the adaptive steering that offers great performance and responsiveness in both low speed and higher speeds, making the Continental feel very agile for its size. Brake feel is excellent and perform very well to slow down or stop the car with very little fuss.
With an impressive 3 liter GTDI V6 engine that is turbo charged to give 368 hp and a nice chunk of 575 Nm of torque @ 3,500 rpm. This is a very capable saloon that performs and handles like a smaller sports saloon does. With lots of torque at very low rpm, the engine response to small inputs on the gas peddle is quite instant and very easily accessible.
Normal driving mode is comfortable and the ride feel is very communicable to express the road conditions but also keeps the ride very comfortable.
Driving the Continental is enjoyable and very smooth as the gear changes are hardly noticeable. And with lots of power on hand, changing up speed is very quick, so is decreasing the speed.
On normal driving conditions, it is a great cruiser to drive or be in as a passenger. With great comfort with lots of creature comforts and packed with safety features. And a large boot space that can handle a great deal.
And if needed, a simple press of the Sports mode will fully utilise the engines power and stiffen the ride for better control and handling. Body roll is hardly noticeable and changing direction on twisty roads is done with ease.
The Continental is a luxury saloon that is very capable and achieves its goals of being a great flag ship saloon for the executive that wants to drive or be driven in. It show cases its abilities and refinement with all the latest options on offer and does so with its own Lincoln class and sophistication.