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 |  Oct 31 2011, 3:27 PM

Amid grand plans to turn the brand into a true Audi/BMW competitor Ford stated, that in addition to Lincoln being given greater autonomy, it had put in place plans to introduce a raft of new models, including a “premium” compact car, the MKC, designed to compete with the likes of the A3 and 1-Series.

Well now it appears those plans have been axed, Lincoln deciding that a better use of resources would be to introduce a compact crossover, since according to inside sources at Dearborn it was believed said small car (shown above in concept C form) could cannibalize sales of Lincoln’s bread and butter sedan, the MKZ, slated for a major redo.

However, it also appears, that the updated 2013 MKZ has now been delayed; with a launch date set for late next year instead of early summer 2012.

Getting back to Lincoln’s new compact crossover, rumored to be called the MkD, it will likely be spun off the new Ford Escape, and possibly feature standard EcoBoost power, in order to make it a worth contender against the likes of Audi’s Q3.

As for Lincoln’s other plans, rumors continue to persist about a rear-wheel drive flagship, though what architecture it will be based on remains to be seen, especially as Ford currently doesn’t have any large rear-drive cars, certainly in North America.

Nevertheless, a high-zoot flagship; using either modified Mustang or Australian Ford Falcon underpinnings could really pave the way for a Lincoln renaissance, reviving the brand as a true alternative to the likes of the popular German marques. And if a bit of that polish rubs off on said flagship’s smaller stablemates, so much the better.

[Source: Ford Inside News]