IRVINE, CA - Lincoln Mercury opened the doors to its new world headquarters here, the first marketing division of a domestic auto company to call California home. "This move is not only physical, it is symbolic," says Mark Hutchins, the division's new general manager. "It is not only geographical, but physical. With a bold, independent point of view, we've begun a journey that will influence everything we do, from the design of our products to how we participate in the community." More than 70% of Lincoln Mercury's workforce elected to make the move to Irvine, the first wave of which arrived in town July 7.

The division is leasing its new headquarters. In about two years it is expected to move into a new complex to be built not far from Mazda's North American base, also in Irvine. That building also will house the Lincoln Mercury Concept Center, currently in Valencia, CA.