Developed under codename D472, the vehicle shares its platform with the Ford Flex, despite a considerably different appearance. In fact, the two vehicles do not share a single piece of sheet metal, making the only commonality the platform hiding underneath.
The standard features list is extensive: A six-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, rear view camera and eight-inch touch screen monitor, 20 GB music hard drive, Intelligent Access with push-button start, HID headlamps and a Vista glass sunroof are all standard.
Ford exec Mark Fields previously described the MKT concept as having “the comfort of a luxury sedan, the spaciousness and flexibility of a full-size utility, and the performance of a sporty roadster.”
A 3.7-liter, 24-valve variation of the Duratec engine family is standard. Delivering 268 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 267 pound-feet of torque at 4,250 rpm, this engine has been tuned to provide smooth power delivery with minimal vibration and harshness.
Fuel-saving technologies include a two-speed fuel pump, Aggressive Deceleration Fuel Shut-Off (ADFSO), and optimized transmission and final drive gearing. Milage is rated at 17 city, 23 highway mpg for both engines, which Ford says is 3 mpg better than the MKT’s nearest rivals, the Audi Q7 and Acura MDX.
For customers looking for more performance, the Lincoln MKT also offers a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6. The engine provides the power of a normally-aspirated V8 with V6 fuel economy, according to the automaker. This motor delivers 355 horsepower at 5,700 rpm, while generating 350 pound-feet of torque at 3,500 rpm. Pressurized direct injection helps eliminate the “turbo lag” associated with earlier turbocharged engines.
Lincoln’s MKT is equipped with a six-speed SelectShift automatic transmission, which offers the driver a choice between fully automatic operation and manual control. In addition, paddle shifters are integrated into the steering wheel. All-wheel-drive is optional in the Lincoln MKT with the 3.7-liter V6 and standard with the EcoBoost model.
With three rows of seating, the MKT’s unique suspension system promises a comfortable ride for up to seven passengers. Key elements of Lincoln MKT suspension development and tuning included minimizing front end lift on acceleration, offering stable steering and handling characteristics, and maintaining a luxury-oriented ride.
A new rear suspension system features a one-to-one shock absorber leverage ratio. The resulting linear response gave engineers a stable base line for suspension tuning, allowing the team to “deliver a better balance between responsive handling and control as well as a smooth ride,” Ford claims. The suspension design also improves rear isolation and enables the use of 20-inch wheels.
Lincoln MKT with EcoBoost features Electronic Power Assisted Steering (EPAS), which enables the optional self-steering Active Park Assist. This automatic parallel parking system employs ultrasonic sensors, as opposed to competing offerings that use cameras, which are more susceptible to dust and dirt. In addition to completing a parking maneuver quickly, Active Park Assist is also the first system to operate in uphill parking situations.
Other features include: Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), which monitors traffic and adjusts speed accordingly; Push Button Start; the SecuriCode Keyless Entry Keypad integrated into the B-pillar; Adaptive Headlamps, which change direction based on steering angle; Automatic high beams; the EasyFuel Capless Fuel-Filler System; the MyKey driver preferences system, which allows parents or other concerned owners to restrict certain features; Blind Spot Information System; Reverse Camera System; SYNC; Cross Traffic Alert, which watches for vehicles during reversing; and the Collision Warning with Brake Support, which provides the driver with a “heads-up” display that flashes on the windshield when the system senses slower moving traffic ahead. If the driver doesn’t respond, the system will pre-charge the brakes to prepare the vehicle for a more aggressive stop.
The available Navigation Package includes an internal hard-drive for map and point-of-interest information storage, and THX II Certified 5.1 Surround Audio System with 14 speakers.
Other Luxury SUVs to Consider
For buyers who need space for seven and want lots of high-tech features, the Acura MDX is a good choice. Though its third row doesn’t have as much legroom as the MKT does, and it can’t match the MKT’s fuel economy rating, the MDX has a lower starting price and standard all-wheel drive. Plus, the base engine on the MDX makes 300 horsepower, while the base engine on the MKT only makes 268.
If you want to beat the MKT’s fuel economy, you’ll have to give up some size. The Lexus RX 350, though it only seats five, gets better fuel economy than the MKT and costs over $6,000 less. It also has a high-tech and luxurious interior, but lacks some available features, like a self parking system, that reviewers really like on the MKT.
If you need the space in the MKT, want the power but can’t swing the price, you can get the Ecoboost engine in the Ford Flex and save about $5,000. The Flex provides three rows of comfortable seats and similar safety features, but it’s a much less luxurious vehicle than the MKT.
Details: Lincoln MKT
The 2011 MKT comes in two trims – the base and EcoBoost. It seats up to seven and is available with front- or all-wheel drive. The 2011 MKT is little-changed from the 2010 model. As a result, you may be able to save some money by going taking a 2010 off a dealer’s lot.
“We’re looking forward to a more extensive test, but we don’t need track numbers and hundreds of miles to know that this is one of the most surprisingly competent Lincolns we’ve sampled in a long time.” — Car and Driver
“MKT has distinctive styling and a comfortable interior. While the Ford Flex, on which it is based, has a form-follows-function flair, Lincoln sacrifices 3rd-row room for rakish lines. The EcoBoost engine boasts strong performance with decent fuel economy for a vehicle this size. Although not quite as refined as some of its like-priced competitors, MKT is a fresh face in the premium-SUV market.”–Consumer Guide
“Quick, nimble and able to carry six or seven people to and fro, the MKT provides lots of luxury, high-tech features and excellent driving capabilities. It’s a practical luxury vehicle that might give the Audi Q7 and BMW X5 a run for the money.” — Detroit News
“With its sheer amount of tech features and comfortable ride, the  Lincoln MKT was a car we enjoyed driving, and is one that we wanted to spend more time in. And as we drive a lot of cars, that’s a big testament to the MKT’s quality.” — CNET
source: leftlanenews, rankingsandreviews.
Category: SUV Car Reviews
There are no comments yet. Why not be the first to speak your mind.