Lincoln MKX

2016 Lincoln MKX

The 2016 Lincoln MKX is an all-new vehicle. Completely redesigned, this second generation of Lincolns luxury crossover SUV is intended to compete with the Lexus RX and Audi Q5. To do that, the 2016 MKX promises refinement throughout and a quiet, effortless ride underway.

Attractive new sheetmetal helps separate the Lincoln MKX from the mechanically similar Ford Edge. Externally, the new MKX bears little resemblance to the less-costly Edge.

Bodyside sculpting on the Lincoln looks softer, more graceful, though in profile it looks more like a wagon than before. Blade-shaped headlights help widen front-end appearance. In some trim levels, theyre full-LED. New reflectors add width to the low-beam headlight pattern.

Inside, the cockpit resembles Lincolns smaller MKC, but an array of pushbuttons has replaced the conventional shift lever. We consider the pushbuttons gimmicky, but others might welcome the change. Seeking distinctive interior trim, Lincoln offers a choice of Black Label design themes: Modern Heritage, Indulgence, 1920s Paris, and a fourth influenced by thoroughbred horse racing. Lincoln has been investing a great deal of effort into what it calls personalized luxury.

The standard engine is a 3.7-liter V6, rated 303 horsepower. A newly available 2.7-liter twin-turbo V6 develops 335 horsepower. Teamed with the standard 6-speed automatic transmission, the 2.7-liter can reach 60 mph in 6 seconds.

Front-wheel drive is standard, all-wheel drive is optional.

New Lincoln Drive Control lets you choose Normal, Sport, or Comfort mode on all-wheel-drive MKXs. Adaptive shock absorbers help the MKX ride with impressive composure, even in Sport mode on harsh pavement.

Five occupants get plenty of legroom, with abundant cargo space. Some trims get 22-way power front seats with an active motion feature to reduce long-trip fatigue. Front seats now have thigh bolsters that deflate for easier entry/exit.

Revel audio systems are available, including a 13-speaker system. Three-mode, 19-speaker audio is included in Black Label versions, claiming home-theater quality. Also available is an embedded modem.

During 2016, the outdated MyLincolnTouch infotainment interface is being phased out and replaced with the more intuitive Sync 3, so be sure to get the latter.

Adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, and pre-collision warning systems are available, along with surround-view cameras and automatic parking assistance. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has given MKX five stars overall, with four-star rollover resistance. Good scores were reached in major tests by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), but not the small-overlap test.

2013 Lincoln MKX

The Lincoln MKX brings high-tech safety, solid value, and a unique Lincoln look to a crowded field of luxury compact crossovers.

The Lincoln MKX competes with the BMW X5, Cadillac SRX, Buick Enclave, and Lexus RX 350. The $39,545 base price of the MKX slips just below the mathematical average for this group, yet MKX offers value with standard leather seats, heated and cooled front seats, remote starting, and a power liftgate. Those features are all extra-cost options on the competition. Not only does it offer horsepower near the top of this group, the Lincoln MKX also delivers class-leading fuel economy from the EPA of 19/26 mpg City/Highway.

New for 2013 is an expanded voice-activated SYNC system. The 2013 Lincoln MKX now comes standard with Curve Control. Launched as a 2007 model, the MKX was thoroughly revised for 2011.

Curve Control helps you keep the wheels on the pavement and the shiny side up should you misjudge a curve and try to round it too quickly. Lincoln says that trying to take a curve too fast contributes to 50,000 crashes in the U.S. annually. And while no electronic widget can change the laws of physics, features such as curve control can help compensate for human error. Curve Control is integrated into Lincoln's AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control.

MyLincoln Touch is both an improvement on and companion to the Sync voice-activated communications technology. It uses twin five-way thumb switches mounted on the steering wheel spokes, plus two 4.5-inch LED display screens flanking the speedometer in the instrument cluster, and an 8-inch LED display screen at the top center of the instrument panel with a four-zone color-coding system. The MKX has a unique panel of flat touch buttons and lighted slider switches below the sound system to control volume and temperature functions. The thumb switches, and the touch-screen control climate, sound system, telephone, navigation and an enormous variety of information functions including turn-by-turn directions, sports scores, local fuel prices, movie listings, dining, and even horoscopes. The system uses a list of up to 10,000 voice commands, making it relatively easy and intuitive to use. To start a search for a restaurant, for instance, all you have to do is tell the car you're hungry.

Like most vehicles in this class, the Lincoln MKX comes with a choice of front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. The AWD version gets one more gallon of fuel capacity in its tank, and a slightly lower axle ratio, 3.39:1 versus 3.16:1, but otherwise the two vehicles are identical in specification. That shorter gear ratio, and the 180 pounds the AWD system adds, reduces highway fuel economy by 3 mpg, dropping from 26 mpg for the front-drive MKX to 23 mpg with all-wheel drive.

We recommend getting the all-wheel drive, because it is a very good computer-controlled part-time system that puts the torque where it needs to be, whether you're cornering fast in dry weather, or dealing with rain, snow, ice or mud. It's worth the bump in price the first time you get into messy conditions and every time thereafter.


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