First Drive: 2020 Lincoln Corsair goes quietly amid the noise and haste

I will tell you the mechanics of the car anyway (or I should say, I, a “Festering Typist” will “embrace” you with “effluviam” on its “motivation.” See? I can do it, too). First of all, the Corsair is NOT just a tarted-up Ford Escape. Yes, it shares the basic platform and drivetrain with the Escape, but there are enough serious upgrades that it stands on its own and Lincoln should be proud of that.
OK, true, the powertrain is at least partly Ford Escape, with your choice of two transverse-mounted turbocharged four-cylinder engines: a 2.0-liter from the Escape that makes 250 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque, but Corsair also gets a more powerful 2.3-liter making 295 hp and 310 lb-ft. Each engine is mated to a new eight-speed automatic. You can get them in front- or all-wheel drive.
Beyond that, an entirely separate development team worked on the Corsair, completely apart from the Escape team, according to chief engineer John Jraiche. What did they do? Let’s start underneath it. The unique rear Integrated Bush Suspension transfers fewer road jolts into the Sanctuary, while the Escape gets an SLA rear setup, or short- long-arm suspension. When an SLA suspension hits a bump, it goes up and forward, according to Jraiche. The Corsair’s IBS goes backward, “…so it’s smooth.”
The Corsair also gets adaptive dampers you can’t get on the Escape, again for a smoother ride.
What used to be called the firewall is now a “dual-wall dashboard” in the Corsair, made of sheet-molded composite material with an “air-gap” in between to help muffle out the engine sound. “Some of our competitors want you to hear the engine; we want you to feel the power,” said Jraiche.
Active noise cancellation further quiets the Sanctuary, while those irritating buzzers you’ll hear in competitors’ rigs are replaced by “unique symphonic chines” recorded by (I am not making this up) the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. The DSO did not record anything for the Ford Escape.
For the sounds that you do want to hear there’s a 14-speaker Revel premium audio system tuned to the Corsair’s unique “sanctuary for the senses.” (Get your DSO recordings here) (The season opens Oct. 4 with Beethoven’s 5th, so get tickets now)