Lincoln debuted a new concept at the Monterey Car Week, which is meant to show us what the brand imagines it will look like in roughly twenty years. The concept, called simply the Anniversary, is one of four that came from students at ArtCenter College of Design. The Anniversary went from being a design study, to starring in its own animated short, to being a full-sized replica for display at the Quail Motorsports Gathering.
Lincoln asked the students to contextualize the concepts as part of its Quiet Flight 2040 campaign, the goal of which was to create a “beautiful gliding human sanctuary,” according to the carmaker. The twist was that the cars designed by the students have to be both autonomous and electric.
So, the Anniversary concept is something like Audi’s Skysphere, a possible self-driving EV that shows us what carmakers think their cars could look like in the mid- to long-term. In fact, the Skysphere and Anniversary strike a similar pose, with their long, swooping profiles and comparable sight lines. The two even claim to be rooted in the history of their respective marques.
The Audi is strictly a two-seater, though, while the Lincoln is designed to carry four passengers. It’s not exactly a sedan as you can tell from the single sliding door per side, but it’s Lincoln’s take on the four-seater of the future. (A call back to this?)
Lincoln kept the specs of the theoretical EV undisclosed for now, presumably because it will detail all of that information at the unveiling later this week, but the carmaker provided a brief look of the Anniversary concept in its Quiet Flight 2040 showcase.
In that presentation, the Anniversary belongs to a couple celebrating their wedding anniversary and screens on the dashboard show a collage of photos. That’s fine in an advanced AV sedan, I think. In the year 2040, Lincoln assumes your car will be able to sign into FaceBook or Instagram — maybe even your TikTok — and show you a gallery. If that’s true, I hope there are no privacy concerns in the future, or that we sorted out the problems with car’s having access to our data by then.
I think that the design students did a good job imagining what a Town Car could be like in two decades. This is just a less boxy land yacht. OK, maybe more speedboat than yacht, but it’s still a design that says its function is primarily to cruise comfortably. And I’m unsure if it’s the color palette or something else, but this concept definitely feels like a throwback while looking futuristic at the same time, if a little serious. It looks like something Bruce Wayne would drive in Batman: The Animated Series, and that’s high praise.