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Lincoln MKX: Crossover is All-New for 2016

By Arv Voss, March 19th, 2016

The Lincoln MKX for 2016 is all-new, offering an optional transversely mounted 2.7-liter, twin-turbocharged Ti-VCT EcoBoost V-6 engine that cranks out 335 horsepower and 380 lb.-ft. of torque.

The 2016 Lincoln MKX is an excellent example of today's modern crossover utility vehicle genre: It is stylishly attractive, quite comfortable in terms of ride quality, pleasing in the acceleration department, with smooth shifts provided by the six-speed SelectShift automatic transmission that also allows for manual shifting. The handling characteristics are on par with those of many luxury sedans.

The 2016 MKX is the first Lincoln model to offer pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection, a feature that may help avoid or lessen the severity of some frontal crashes. Lincoln MKX earned an overall 5-Star crash rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and delivers a high level of luxury, innovative technology, and standard features.

The design form blends a sporty stance with an attractive appearance and a comfortable and versatile interior. The bold exterior styling signals Lincoln's modern design vision with a high beltline, broad shoulders, pronounced wheel arches, and short overhangs contributing to the MKX's wide, athletic stance. Black rocker panels with bright chrome trim accent gives the Lincoln a planted look, accentuated by 18-inch wheels; 20- and 21-inch wheels are available.

Lincoln MKX's distinctive lighting includes available adaptive front low beams that swivel around curves and the ability to illuminating a stretch of road up to 36 feet further than conventional headlights. An LED tailgate panel provides edge-to-edge illumination.

The interior design is defined by a swooping instrument panel that flows into a clean, well-organized, but sharp-edged, center stack. Wood and satin-painted nickel accents are carried to the door panels, and interior controls are bathed in a cool-white light offering a pleasing nighttime cabin ambiance.

The 60/40-split second row features comfortable reclining angles of up to 15 degrees, while also folding and pivoting in one simple movement, either by the seat-mounted lever or a unique Easy Fold remote switch accessible from the liftgate. MKX provides 68.7 cubic feet of cargo volume when rear seats are folded flat.

MKX's available all-glass Vista Roof seems to ease stress and offers both open-air freedom and a spacious view through its enormous expanse. Its large 27.3- by 29.4-inch forward sunroof features a one-touch-open switch for vent and tilt-and-slide operations, as well as dual power sunshades that operate concurrently to block out glare.

The 2016 MKX offers an available intelligent all-wheel-drive (AWD) system tuned with an emphasis on luxury performance and confident all-weather driving. Paired with available traction control, intelligent AWD can transfer torque front-to-rear and side-to-side as needed for optimal grip.

Four 2016 MKX trim levels are available, equipped with the standard 3.7-liter Ti-VCT naturally aspirated V-6: Premiere, starting at $38,260; Select, starting at $41,550; Reserve, starting at $45,315; and Black Label, starting at $53,745. All trims are available with either engine and with a choice of front- or all-wheel drive. Destination fees add another $925, and choosing AWD adds another $2,495. My Lincoln MKX was in Reserve trim in an all-wheel-drive configuration, powered by the 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V-6. The MKX luxury crossover boasts lots of technology, versatility and functionality. Is it a bargain? Perhaps, perhaps not, depending upon one's personal perspective. Fortunately, it has become more Lincolnesque, now providing what one generally anticipates or expects from such a luxury brand.

Taste is, of course, a personal thing, and the design is now indeed most attractive and very similar to the gorgeous Lincoln MKT, which is actually more wagon-like in form. The power liftgate has a power return button, and may be opened "hands-free" with a sweep of one's foot beneath the rear fascia. And, parallel parking is a breeze, as is exiting the parking space, thanks to the advanced active Park Assist.

strong>Areas that allow room for improvement: The manual hood prop rod for such a heavy hood lacks the assistance of gas strut assists found in most luxury vehicles. Because of my size, I also found the center stack's edge to be somewhat intrusive, though it isn't likely to be a problem for most drivers.

Specifications

Base price $49,650 (as tested: $58,740)
Curb weight 4,387 lbs.
Displacement 2.7-liter
Engine type Twin Turbo EcoBoost V-6 w/DI
Epa mileage rating 17 mpg city, 26 mpg highway
Fuel capacity 18.5 gal.
Horsepower (net) 335 at 5500 rpm
Overall length 190.0 in.
Torque (lb.-ft.) 380 at 3000 rpm
Transmission 6-speed automatic
Vehicle type 5/7-passenger AWD large CUV
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