The Lincoln MKT is a weird looking, tall Ford Taurus wagon that nobody’s buying. And that’s kinda sad, because it’s actually a good value. What do you need to know before you buy a Lincoln MKT? Don’t worry, we’ll tell you everything right here in our Buyer’s Guide.
I asked some Jalopnik staffers for the first words that came to their minds when they saw a picture of a Lincoln MKT. Responses include: “Sadness,” “They still make that?,” “I used to see a lot of those as NYC taxis,” and “They’re so comfortable.”
You might find a Lincoln MKT in use as an airport shuttle, or at a hotel or resort. But where you won’t find a brand new MKT is in a living, breathing human’s driveway, because Lincoln has sold fewer than 5,000 MKTs each year, and many of those are probably fleet sales. Those sales figures put the MKT in the same ballpark as the Infiniti QX50, and that’s not a good thing.
What is a good thing is how many features come standard on the MKT and how comfortable the MKT is. We’re talking magic-carpet comfortable. Sitting in the six or seven-passenger Lincoln wagon as it glides down a bumpy road is like falling down a set of steps, except that the steps are made of clouds, bunnies, marshmallows and other fluffy things.
But don’t think this thing is just a big, cushy CUV. We reviewed it all the way back in 2010 (yes, it’s that old), and the MKT’s engine and chassis wasn’t actually a total snoozefest:
...by golly, the MKT actually handles. Well even. Drop it into manual mode, pop it in third and it drives like it isn’t a huge crossover. Even plowing it through rough roads and heaves the car is well behaved. Body roll and wheel control are surprisingly good, jounce and rebound are damped for a nice mix of smooth ride, and good road feedback. We might even say this traditional suspension is better behaved than GM’s active system in the 2010 Cadillac SRX. And did we mention the EcoBoost? It powers the 4,924 lb car out of corners with real urge
While that review was six years ago, and there are significantly better options out there these days, the MKT has gotten cheaper, and it might just be a bargain.
What’s New About The 2016 Lincoln MKT
Built on the Ford Flex’s D4 platform, a modified version of the D3 platform on which the Taurus is based, the Lincoln MKT launched for the 2010 model year after appearing as a concept car at the 2008 North American International Auto Show.
The “T” in MKT stands for “touring,” and Lincoln referred to the MKT concept as the “ultimate Touring vehicle Concept” and “a Learjet of the road.” We don’t disagree, as the MKT would make for a fine, comfortable road trip-mobile.
Way back in 2008, Ford was showing off their first EcoBoost engine in the MKT concept, saying the 3.5-liter “boasts the power and torque of a V-8 engine with the fuel efficiency of a V6.”
Today, you can find an EcoBoost engine in nearly the entire Ford Lineup. Clearly, the MKT has been around for a while.
Lincoln launched the production version of the MKT as a 2010 model, and it hasn’t changed much since. In 2012, the all-wheel drive naturally-aspirated model got the axe, leaving only the EcoBoost model with available power to all four wheels. Then in 2013, Lincoln redesigned the front fascia, updated the interior, revised the infotainment system and made Lincoln Drive Control active damping standard on EcoBoost models. Changes since 2013 have been few, though SYNC 3 is now standard for 2016.
Which One We’d Buy
The Lincoln MKT comes in two versions: a 3.7-liter FWD model or a 3.5-liter EcoBoost all-wheel drive version. All models get electric power steering, a MacPherson Strut front suspension, a multilink rear setup, 13.9-inch vented front rotors and 13.6-inch rear discs.
We can’t imagine a situation that might bring us to buy the Lincoln hearse, but if we were to spend a week at a fine resort in Puerto Rico, and we had to be shuttled between wild booze-fueled parties in a Lincoln MKT, we’d want that MKT to be the EcoBoost model.
The base $43,210 MKT 3.7-liter comes surprisingly well-equipped. Standard features include: leather seats for first two rows, heated and cooled seats up front, dual-exhaust, fog lamps, glass roof, HID adaptive headlamps with auto high beams, LED taillamps, 19-inch alloy wheels, adjustable pedals with memory, three-zone automatic temperature control, rearview camera, keyless entry, 10-speaker audio system, push-button start, SYNC 3 with eight-inch LCD touchscreen and two 4.2-inch configurable screens in gauge cluster.
For another $1,995, you move up to the 3.5-liter all-wheel drive model. That adds not just the extra two driven wheels and 62 horsepower, but also Lincoln Drive Control with continuously controlled damping. If you care about comfort, that last option will mean a lot to you.
All in, the seven-passenger EcoBoost-equipped MKT will run us $46,130. But as of this writing, Ford is offering substantial incentives, which, considering all the standard content, makes the MKT a surprisingly good value.
Important Facts At A Glance:
MSRP: $43,210-$45,205 [3.7L-3.5L (2005 MY)]
Top Speed: 120 MPH (estimated)
Acceleration: 6-8s to 60 MPH [3.7L FWD-3.5L turbo AWD (estimated)]
MPG (CTY/HW/CMB): 15-16/23-25/18-19 [3.5L turbo-3.7L]
Engines: 3.7-liter V6, 3.5-liter turbo V6
Horsepower: 303-365 HP [3.7L-3.5L turbo]
Torque: 278-350 lb-ft [3.5L-3.7L]
Curb Weight: 4,702-4,942 pounds [3.7L FWD-3.5L turbo AWD]
IIHS Rating: Top Safety Pick
Transmissions: Six-speed automatic
Drivetrain Layout: Front engine, RWD/AWD
Photo credit: Lincoln