This Concept Was Lincoln’s Idea For A Thunderbird. Now You Can Own It

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Concept cars offer a glimpse of what automakers dream of making, even if there’s no business case for selling the product. These models rarely come up for sale, as they’re generally unique and not road-legal. Mecum Auctions is giving one lucky enthusiast a special opportunity to buy the one-off 2004 Lincoln Mark X concept at its March 8 sale in Glendale, Arizona.

The Lincoln Mark X concept debuted at the 2004 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. It’s an idea for a two-seat, premium convertible with a folding hard top. When in place, the roof has a large, clear panel to let light into the cabin. Power comes from a 3.9-liter V8 making 280 horsepower and 286 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed automatic gearbox drives the rear wheels.

The Mark X’s exterior is coated in a stunning shade Lincoln calls Atlantic Pearl. According to the company’s original concept announcement, the color subtly shifts between darker or brighter shades depending on the light. The full-grain leather upholstery is called Lime Sorbet. The name is a misnomer, though, as the shade looks beige to us, at least in these pictures.

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Looking at the Mark X from the side shows its similar proportions to the contemporary Ford Thunderbird. Makes sense, seeing as how the two models share underpinnings and engines. The Lincoln has a 108.8-inch wheelbase, versus 107.2 inches for the Ford. But the Mark X is slightly shorter overall, at 185 inches compared to 186.3 inches for the Thunderbird. 

The roof layout would have helped differentiate the two models. The Thunderbird had a folding soft top and a separate hard top that owners had to install whenever they wanted to use it. The Mark X’s retractable metal roof would have provided a more sophisticated setup for drivers, should it have been produced.

This isn’t the first time the Mark X has been for sale. Lincoln auctioned the car in 2010, according to Hemmings. James Powers, a stylist who worked on the concept, was the winning bidder. He kept it until he passed away in 2023.

Mecum’s Mark X auction comes with a bill of sale, not a title, so you’re not going to be able to take the convertible for a Sunday cruise. However, this is a Lincoln fan’s rare opportunity to own a unique concept from the brand. So if you’re interested, we suggest buying a plane ticket to Arizona ASAP.