The Lincoln Blackwood Was Ahead of Its Time
A look back at Lincoln’s swanky luxury pickup for the new millennium.
Commuting in pickup trucks is a uniquely American phenomenon, with many used as daily drivers by people who may never haul anything more substantial than a latte. With consumer demands transforming pickup truck cabins from utilitarian rubber and cloth rattleboxes to tech-laden cushy mobile offices, it’s surprising to think of a time when the idea of a luxury pickup was a novelty.
Enter the Lincoln Blackwood. Ford, riding a wave of success in the late 1990s, was willing to try anything, and the decade or so from the early ’90s brought forth some seriously cool cars and trucks from the Blue Oval.
Based on the best-selling Ford F-150 platform, the Blackwood was designed to offer truck buyers a luxurious alternative. Only available in two-wheel-drive crew cab configuration, the interior was trimmed out in the finest luxury materials Ford had at their disposal in the early 2000s. The stately front end was lifted straight from the Navigator.
The bed, featuring artificial, dark-stain burl wood bed sides that granted the truck its name, was equipped with a powered tonneau cover, uniquely hinged tailgate, and a fully carpeted cargo area. This reduced the utility and limited its appeal, even to the sort of people who would never use the truck for its intended purpose anyway.
Production of the bed was farmed out to Austrian supplier Magna Steyr, whose production delays and supply issues meant that the first trucks weren’t completed until October, 2001 — one month after the September 11 terrorist attacks that rocked the economy.
Due to these factors, reduced utility and reduced consumer confidence, the Blackwood was only sold for the 2002 model year, with just 3,356 being produced over 15 months. To date it stands as the shortest production run of any Lincoln vehicle ever. Even with the low production run, several examples can be found on eBay, most of which are under ten thousand dollars. The original purchase price was over $50k.
Even though it could have had better execution, the concept of a luxurious pickup truck was a good one. Perhaps, it was even a bit ahead of its time!