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New York LIVE: 2020 Lincoln Corsair continues the brand's renaissance

by Ronan Glon

It's based on the Escape, but you can't tell by looking at it.

Lincoln continued its line-up overhaul by unveiling the 2020 Corsair ahead of its public debut at the 2019 New York auto show. It's based on the recently-introduced 2020 Ford Escape, but you wouldn't know that by simply looking at it. Badge-engineering is no longer the order of the day at Ford's luxury division.

Launched to replace the MKC, the Corsair was developed with an eye on comfort and quietness. Inside, horizontal lines emphasize the cabin's width, and stylists grouped the buttons and switches on a single panel to achieve a clean, uncluttered look. The infotainment system's touchscreen sits on top of the dashboard, while the driver faces a digital instrument cluster.

Active Noise Control technology keeps cabin noise down. The Detroit Symphony Orchestra recorded chimes that replace the various electronic warnings and alerts normally made by cars. Buyers seeking a fully-loaded SUV can select 24-way power-adjustable seats, and a 14-speaker sound system. The second-row seats slides by six inches to clear up additional leg room, or more cargo space.

Phone As a Key technology lets owners lock, unlock, and start the Corsair without a key fob. Motorists can also create individual profiles via an app. By identifying the smartphone used, the Corsair knows whether it's the owner or their kid that's about to slip behind the wheel and modifies a number of parameters -- like the position of the seat, the mirrors, and the pedals -- accordingly. Phone As a Key can be deactivated quickly if the owner loses his or her phone, Lincoln added, and an exterior keypad lets the passengers access the car if their device's battery runs out

The Corsair's standard engine is a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder rated at 250 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque. Buyers who want more power can select a 2.3-liter turbo four that makes 280 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. Both engines spin the front wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission, but all-wheel drive is available at an extra cost.

Automatic high beams, lane-keeping assist, and pre-collision assist with automatic braking come standard. The list of options includes a head-up display, adaptive cruise control, and evasive steering assist, among other driving aids.

Made in Kentucky, the 2020 Lincoln Corsair will begin arriving in American showrooms in the fall. Pricing information hasn't been released yet.

Live photos by Brian Williams.

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