Lincoln, Road Test Reviews, Vehicles

2014 Lincoln MKZ 3.7L AWD – Road Test

Road-Test.org, Lincoln, Flagworld.com/roadtests

Based on the same platform as the Fusion, the Lincoln MKZ is night-and-day different. With Lincoln’s Concierge Service thrown in – what’s not to love? The grill is interesting and according to Lincoln designers it’s supposed to evoke the look of ‘ a bird’s wings’ I suppose they’ve accomplished that. For what I used to consider an “older” guy’s car, I have to report – THIS Lincoln is not your father’s car, and I think if Ford could get more people to drive this one, they’d make some serious in-roads on the mid-size luxury car market. Ford recently announced they were ploughing $5 billion into making Lincoln a true player in the near-luxury and luxury market.

What Is It? 

  • Premium, mid-size luxury sports sedan
  • Luxury without being ostentatious
  • If you want the comforts of luxury without drawing undue attention to how much you spent on your car – this is the one for you

 Road-Test.org, Lincoln, Flagworld.com/roadtestsHow Does It Look?               

  • The front grill was quite polarizing: People either loved it or hated it – and said so right away. As for myself, initially I viewed it with complete indifference, however, after a couple of days I did change to the ‘like’ category.
  • Sleek and very stylish – turned more than a few heads – people of all ages seem to really like it
  • The optional Panoramic Glass Roof  is unique to the segment and lifts and slides outside, over the rear window
  • LED lights in the front and rear make it an eye-catching vehicle any time of the day

Road-Test.org, Lincoln, Flagworld.com/roadtestsWhat’s It Like Inside?       

  • The centre dash is quite unique. At the top is the push-button start, and then PRND and S are chosen using buttons instead of a shifter or dial – very different.
  • One word describes the seat: Fabulous!
  • Seats are extremely comfortable, once I’d set it I never had to adjust it again – driver memory is standard
  • The driver and front passenger get standard leather heated 10-way power-adjustable with 2-way power lumbar.
  • Test vehicle had the phenomenal massage feature. You have to feel it to believe how good it is!
  • The cooled front seats were used practically the entire time we had the car
  • Everything is close to hand and easy to reach, but you can also use…the
  • Standard – SYNC® with MyLincoln Touch – Combined with an 8-inch touch screen, you connect your Bluetooth Smartphone, and MyLincoln Touch will read incoming text messages aloud, send and receive hands-free calls, stream your favourite music, and let you personalize your driving experience with simple voice commands
  • The Adaptive Cruise Control is a nightmare waiting to happen. It insisted on leaving 7-8 car-lengths between me and the car in front. If you’ve ever driven behind someone that insists on leaving landing room for a Jumbo Jet, then you know how big a space this is. I’d be coming up behind someone and before I could even change lanes to go around them, the car slowed down – in some instances quite dramatically. Imagine this scenario: You’re driving along the highway at 110 km/h and someone else enters doing 60 km/h – happens all the time in Ontario – the MKZ would slam on the brakes to make sure I left 7-8 car lengths between me and the on-coming speed-bump. Can we say rear-end collision? This isn’t safety – this is dangerous. Thankfully you can choose to turn this option off.
  • Absolute silence at all speeds, even with the panorama roof open
  • Storage space inside the cabin is extremely good – better than average glove-box, large door pockets and a large area under the centre console. Trunk size is more than generous, almost cavernous at 66L
  • Split fold rear seat with Ski hatch – very comfortable according to rear passengers

Road-Test.org, Lincoln, Flagworld.com/roadtestsSo How Quick Is It & How Does It Handle?           

  • 3.7L Ti-VCT V-6 Turbocharged engine with all-wheel drive and
  • 6-speed SelectShift Automatic Transmission with Paddle Shifters
  • Horsepower: 300 @ 6,500
  • Torque: 277 @ 4,000
  • 0-100 km/h: 6.5 Seconds
  • The electric power steering is perfectly weighted and responds instantly
  • The 80-120 km overtaking maneuver is actually closer to 150 km/h – this thing flies!!
  • The beauty of the all-wheel drive is that it just goes – no squirming about.

Road-Test.org, Lincoln, Flagworld.com/roadtestsNoteworthy Extras

  • While the Technology Package is not unreasonably-priced at $2,450 (includes: Active Park Assist; Adaptive Cruise Control; Lane Change Keeping) I’d give it a miss…simply because, in my opinion – If you can’t parallel park, you shouldn’t be driving a car – Ditto for staying between lanes…and don’t get me started on the Adaptive Cruise Control!
  • The huge Panoramic Roof is great – it takes up the entire roof area of the car, so when the shade is open it feels very bright and airy. Fully open there was no buffering even in the rear at speeds up to 100 km/h

Noteworthy Standard Features

  • Adaptive Suspension – can adjust the suspension on Luxury as well as Sport
  • Adaptive LED Headlamps – As you turn, the adaptive LED headlamps follow the angle of the wheel and vehicle speed to allow a greater field of vision.
  • Lincoln Drive Control: With Continuously Controlled Damping the MKZ uses an advanced suite of sensors that constantly monitor suspension motion, body movement, steering, and braking, with up to 46 inputs every 2 milliseconds.
  • Rear-view camera
  • Rear Park Sensors
  • SecuriCode Keyless entry

What Does It Cost?
To Buy…

As tested: $47,700
+ Smoke Quartz Metallic Paint: $600
+ Technology Package: $2,450 – Active Park Assist; Adaptive Cruise Control; Lane Change Keeping
+ Panoramic Roof: $3,450
+ Multi-Contour Seats: $750
+ Interior Satin/Nickel/Aluminum Trim: $225
+ Destination/Delivery: $1,650
Total: $55,275 (plus government taxes and add-ons)

NOTE: The hybrid and 2.0L Eco-Boost versions start at $40,125 (including Destination & Delivery).

To Operate…

  • Fuel economy was quite good and better than expected considering the power and fun-to-drive factor, I averaged between 6.9 and 8.7 L/100 km during 2-lane highway driving at speeds of around 80 km/h
  • Fuel economy is rated at: HWY – 7.8 L/100 km /  CITY – 11.6 L/100 km / Combined- 9.9 L/100 km
  • 2.0L Ti-VCT I-4 EcoBoost – CITY 9.2 / HWY 5.9 / 7.7 Combined  (Hybrid: CITY 5.3 / HWY 5.1)

The Competition
BMW 3-series, Hyundai Genesis, Kia Cadenza, Lexus ES350, Mercedes-Benz C-class, Volvo S60

 The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

  • Push-button shift is quite unique
  • The massage and cooled front seats – LOVED them!
  • The standard all-wheel-drive – on the 3.7L model, optional on the hybrid
  • Gobs of power and near-silent ride put this car high on the must-have list.
  • The bad … really disliked the Adaptive Cruise Control.
  • No OMG bars – how are the passengers going to hang on while taking sharp corners at excessive speeds?

 What’s The Verdict? 
Although I didn’t love the front grill, over the week it did become less offensive to my eyes. One thing for sure is it wouldn’t stop me from buying/leasing this car. All the other attributes pale in comparison to the grill making it a non-issue for me. This is one sweet ride and I’d recommend it highly to anyone in the market for this type of car. It far exceeded my expectations, and with the hybrid version available at the same price – no-brainer, you get to have your cake and eat it too.

Road-Test.org, Lincoln, Flagworld.com/roadtests


Copyright © 2014 by Iain Shankland. All rights reserved.
Text / Images: Iain Shankland

Also published on Flagworld.com