Ford Motor Co.'s luxury Lincoln brand will post its first sales increase in three years in 2003, driven by demand for sport utility vehicles, an executive said Dec. 19, according to the Associated Press (AP).
This week, Lincoln's total sales for 2003 exceeded those for all of 2002, said Lincoln-Mercury general sales manager Al Giombetti, according to AP.
Business has been driven by the brand's two SUVs, the full-size Navigator and mid-size Aviator, sales of which have nearly doubled this year, AP said.
Through November, Lincoln's total U.S. sales were up 5.9 percent from a year ago. Among Ford's other brands -- Ford, Mercury, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo -- only Volvo has seen sales rise so far this year, according to AP.
Navigator volume through November was up 23 percent from a year ago with 33,753 sales. Dealers sold 26,598 Aviators for the same period. The Aviator was introduced late last year.
According to AP, Giombetti said the luxury SUVs have helped attract customers who in the past have driven import brands, "and we've been able to capitalize on it."