2018 Lincoln Continental Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Electrical, structure and engine issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Luxury vehicles take on many shapes and sizes, but one that is highly recognizable is the 2018 Lincoln Continental. The newest lineup is supposed to help customers “meet the new face of Lincoln,” but it is causing people to jump ship to another brand instead. The defective electrical system, poorly built structure and malfunctioning engine are producing far too many problems for the average driver.

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NHTSA Complaints for the 2018 Lincoln Continental

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Back Over Prevention
Unknown Or Other
Electrical System
Exterior Lighting

Problems with the Electrical System

With a luxury model, the electrical system has to work much harder. With the addition of advanced safety tech and further amenities, this valuable set of components has a lot riding on it, but the Continental falls short of customer expectations.

One Edmunds user says, “Car was delivered (new-97 miles) 12/29/18. 1/7/19 – wouldn’t start, delivered with defective battery cell, replaced.  1/27/19 – wouldn’t start; ‘system shut down to protect battery’. 1/31-wouldn’t start again in shop. Had it since then, 2/13, told today that ‘Continentals have to be run less than every 3 days, as modules talk to one another, draining battery’.  I say:  BS.”

These aren’t the only concerns. In fact, Service Bulletin #SSM 47487 states that the front interior courtesy lamps can turn on uncommanded due to a fault in the circuit board. To correct this, either the overhead console equipment or the body control module needs to be replaced. In the meantime, drivers can receive instant illumination in the cabin without any warning. Wonder how they enjoy being a part of the spotlight while driving down the road?

Problems with the Vehicle Structure

No one can deny that the 2018 Lincoln Continental is an expensive model. It’s not a budget-friendly option, but is supposed to be distinctive and sleek. To create this persona, the structure must be built to last, but it’s not.

Here’s yet another Edmunds complaint that talks about structural-related worries among others. “No large American sedan choices so I ordered a Continental in March of 2018.  My husband picked all the bells and whistles he fell in love with from the TV commercials.  We waited until the end of July for the delivery.  Within the first few weeks, the ac went out.  Dealer probably goosed the Freon but it lasted until the weather changed.  Fourth month the trunk refused to respond, not to the fob, not to the dash button, not to the emergency pull in the trunk.  After TWO WEEKS in the shop and supposedly a latch change and a complete reprogramming of the car, dealer admitted that the car was ‘too new and no one knows much about it’… but they did get the trunk to work.  Month six, no more exterior sensor warning system or parking assist.  Decided to drive it from Virginia to Florida anyway and guess what we found in Florida, NO AC – again.  Dealer’s response, we verified the ac is not getting cold but couldn’t find a leak.”

It turns out that there is a lot more to worry than meets the eye. In fact, a massive recall was announced covering more than 27,000 vehicles. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V077000 states that the doors may open while driving because of a latch that doesn’t completely engage. Between the unexpected interior lights going on and doors opening while driving, this vehicle must look like a clown car when heading down the road.

Problems with the Engine

Beyond sexy style and high-end amenities, the motor is another aspect that must be looked at. After all, this vehicle needs to be reliable and dependable, considering the price point.

Yet, the engine is another top complaint. Here’s one from Edmunds dealing with the motor and much more. “I drove this from the selling dealer to my home, then directly to the repair shop!  My ‘new’ 2018 Continental Reserve was my worst new car experience out of 16 vehicles I have purchased! Very disappointed in its initial quality and multiple malfunctions which so far has the vehicle in the repair shop 3 weeks and counting to make it drivable. Switching from foreign to USA made vehicle seems to be a mistake!! My patriotic move to support USA made vehicles didn’t pan out!!  Very disappointed they did not replace the vehicle to make it right, rather was told I had to accept the extensively torn apart repaired vehicle!! Who knows what else I might find wrong with this ‘lemon!!!’ Drove a Continental from the selling dealer to the repair shop!! Pretty sad for a ‘luxury’ vehicle!!!.  Malfunctions/failures include Audio system malfunction, Speaker failure, Fuel system software, Oil pan leak, damaged drivers panel, Welcome lighting intermittent failure, Collision alert intermittent, Adaptable suspension iffy (drove similar Reserve and found much smoother).”

The customer comments don’t express the full gravity of what is going on with this model, but the manufacturer is happy to air all of its dirty laundry. With Service Bulletin #TSB 18-2255 it’s clear that the various engines made by the automaker are experiencing a dark black fluid leak coming from the right-side transfer case shaft seal. With this revelation, it’s clear that this is not a model that can be depended on. Even customers are calling the overpriced, malfunctioning vehicle a lemon.

Your Lemon Law Legal Rights

Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work out your lemon case at no cost to you. The law makes Lincoln pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you.

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Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones
  • Ken c

    Got my 2018 continental on new years eve.had 2 different tires on it,rode like a dam truck.got it back week latet,later, better.3 weeks ago,started car,put in reverse,sounded like an airplane was in rear window.noise didn’t stop until I drove forward a few hundred feet.also,trunk slams shut with loose,raggedy sound.i keep being told they are waiting on a new rear shade,bit 3 weeks??I do fear that this car has a serious electrical problem.

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