Targeted at a younger, luxury-minded audience, Lincoln's least-expensive sedan received suspension revisions aimed at improving noise, vibration and harshness for the 2004 model year.
Power-adjustable pedals join the options list for 2005. Side curtain-type airbags and extended rear parking assist are now optional for all series. Lincoln claims the automatic transmission has been improved to produce smoother shifts.
Introduced for the 2000 model year, the rear-wheel-drive LS sedan is based on the same platform as the Jaguar S-Type. Competitors include the Acura TL, Audi A6, BMW 5 Series, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, and the Lexus ES 330, GS 300 and GS 430.
Like Lincoln's larger Town Car sedan, the LS has a vertical-bar grille with a full-perimeter chrome surround. Unlike the rounded, sweeping shape of the S-Type, the LS has a gentle slope to its roof pillars and a slight wedge profile overall. High-intensity-discharge headlights are optional.
Riding a 114.5-inch wheelbase, the LS is 194.3 inches long overall, 73.2 inches wide and 56.1 inches tall. The Town Car is nearly 22 inches longer. Sedans with V-6 power get 16-inch tires, while 17-inchers accompany V-8-powered models. An optional LSE Appearance Package for the V-8 Sport model includes chrome wheels, unique front and rear fascias, and a rear spoiler.
The LS sedan has front bucket seats and a floor-mounted gearshift lever. The interior is trimmed with satin nickel and a choice of real American walnut, aluminum or black lacquer finish. The front seats have ample space for tall occupants, and the driver gets an eight-way power seat while the front passenger enjoys six-way adjustment. A power tilt/telescoping steering column helps tailor the driving position. Backseat passengers also have adequate room, but the middle rear position is higher, harder and impaired by the tall drive shaft tunnel.
Split, rear seatbacks fold down for additional cargo space. The trunk has a long, wide floor and is easy to load, but it holds a relatively modest 13.5 cubic feet of cargo.
Standard features on the V-6 Luxury model include dual-zone automatic temperature control and a cassette/CD stereo. Heated and cooled front seats are installed in the V-8 Ultimate sedan. Heated rear seats and a navigation system are optional.
Under the Hood
Two engines are available in the LS. A 3.0-liter V-6 develops 232 horsepower, while a 3.9-liter V-8 cranks out 280 hp. Both engines require premium fuel and team with a five-speed-automatic transmission.
Side-impact airbags for the front seats, antilock brakes, electronic brake assist and all-speed traction control are standard. An AdvanceTrac electronic stability system and side curtain-type airbags are available.