Rumors of the Ford Edge and Lincoln Nautilus demise are not new. In fact, over the last year it has largely been assumed both crossovers will eventually be axed by Ford. Now a new report seems to give further life to that notion, suggesting both will be axed in 2023.
Industry trade publication Automotive News took a deeper look into Ford’s future plans. The publication notes that both the Edge and Nautilus will die off in 2023, meaning there will not be a 2024 version of either crossover. These plans were recently validated in a new deal Ford struck with the Unifor Canadian union. The deal confirms the Oakville, Ontario assembly plant that produces both crossovers will be converted to an EV plant by 2025. The conversion process for the plant will take some time, so a lag of a year or so to retool the plant makes total sense.
Automotive News seems quite confident the Edge is dead for good. Given the number of two-row crossovers Ford already has in stable and now the Bronco lineup, a permanent death seems imminent. It’s also worth noting that the price difference between the Edge and larger Explorer is down to less than $500, making the Edge a fairly tough sale with keen buyers.
Ford has taken some steps to distinguish the Edge from the Explorer. For the 2021 model year the Edge received a new, massive vertical touchscreen display as standard equipment. In 2022 the Edge is going to be an all-wheel drive only model, further differentiating it from the Explorer.
As for the Nautilus, it’s still unknown if its death is permanent. Lincoln supposedly has two EV crossovers coming out in 2025. One of those crossover SUV’s could wear the Nautilus badge. Lincoln has already confirmed its first EV will be shown next year.
In the meantime, the larger Explorer and Aviator are getting some love in 2023. While the Edge and Nautilus are getting axed, the larger SUVs will get EV variants in 2023. Battery-electric versions of the Explorer and Aviator are set to be built at Ford’s Cuautitlan, Mexico plant. This is the same plant that builds the Mustang Mach-E. Expect to hear more about these EV’s sometime next year.