2017 Lincoln MKZ: A worthy underdog luxury sedan

| | , ,

Four years after its last redesign, the 2017 Lincoln MKZ received an interior refresh and an exterior facelift. The five-seat luxury sedan debuted in 2006 as the Zephyr and was renamed the MKZ the following year.

2017 Lincoln MKZ: A worthy underdog luxury sedan 1

Regardless of the badge, the underdog Lincoln is still seeking a better market share. It’s positioned among the most competitive automotive segments. Since its debut, the vehicle gas-only trims have sold more than 34,000 units in the United States in a year only twice. Sales the last two years were slightly more than 30,000.

Available with gas-only or hybrid engines, the Lincoln MXZ has four trim levels. The standard letter or number sequences many manufacturers use has been dispatched for Premier, Select, Reserve and the top-line Black Label. The interior changes include updated radio and climate controls and a simplified console. The exterior tweaking resulted in a new front grille, new headlights and a sleeker body.

A 2.0-liter turbocharged, four-cylinder engine with a six-speed automatic transmission and 245 horsepower is standard. A 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 is optional. The hybrid model has a 2.0-liter engine, an electric motor and a continuously variable transmission. Gas mileage averages are 21 miles per gallon in the city, 31 miles per gallon on the highway.

The luxury sedan segment is chock-full of superior choices, some sports-oriented, others dutiful. The Lincoln MKZ can’t compete with BMW-oriented buyers. Volvo rules the segment for mountain dwellers seeking ruggedness in their vehicles.

But the MKZ is a less expensive (starting MSRP of $36,095) cruiser than the Lexus ES350, Cadillac ATS or Mercedes-Benz C-Class. It delivers a smooth, quiet ride as a suitable companion for comfortable long highway hauls from the Bay Area to Southern California or anywhere else.

As an homage to sedans from the 1950s, the Lincoln’s transmission is a vertical column of buttons positioned to the left of the dashboard infotainment center. There’s no shifter. Instead, the area between the front seats is clean and open. A recessed, nearly hidden and flat storage platform offers plenty of room for accessories and a pass-through area.

The push-button system has a learning curve, but it’s a refreshingly simple approach with the options “S” for sport mode and the logical choices for driving or stopping: “P, R, N and D.”

Many manufacturers have increased and varied standard equipment lists. The MXZ’s offering is plentiful: An 11-speaker audio system, Bluetooth, USB ports, satellite radio, an 8-inch display, dual-zone automatic climate control, a proximity key, push-button and remote start.

A rearview camera, rear parking sensors and a built-in garage door opener are also standard. The upscale Reserve trim also features 19-inch wheels, a power trunk lid and ventilated front seats.

Additional safety features include: blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, forward collision warning with automatic braking and pedestrian detection.

And there are front and rear parking sensors, parallel and perpendicular parking assistance, lane keep assist and a driver alert monitor.

Additional equipment: A household power outlet, rear-seat USB charging ports, side view mirrors that automatically dim and fold, a glass panoramic roof and adaptive LED headlights.

There’s no exact definition of luxury, but the new Lincoln has one additional classy touch: Doors handles are backlit at night and the Lincoln logo is projected below the driver and passenger front doors.

Smooth, quiet, comfortable ride.
Powerful acceleration.
Spacious trunk.

Push-button transmission requires a learning curve.

Facts & Figures: 2017 Lincoln MKZ

Acceleration: 0-60 mph, 8.0 seconds
Airbags: 6.
Fuel economy: 21, mpg (city), 31 mpg (highway), 26 mpg combined, six-speed automatic transmission.
Horsepower: 285
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price: $36,095 (starting price).
Manufacturer’s Website: www.lincoln.com.
Price As Tested: Not available.
Warranty: Bumper to bumper, 4 years/50,000 miles; Powertrain, 6 years/70,000 miles; Corrosion, 5 years/100,000 miles; Roadside Assistance, 6 years/70,000 miles; Free maintenance, 2 years/24,000 miles.

What Others Say:

“Few entry-level luxury sedans are loaded straight out of the box. Not so with the 2017 Lincoln MKZ. Every model in the lineup has a long list. — Edmunds.com.

The Weekly Driver’s Final Words:

“The 2017 Lincoln MKZ isn’t as plush or performance-oriented as some of its competitors. But it doesn’t have the high prices of the status brands, either. And that’s one major reason to consider it a worthy luxury sedan.”

Subscribe For Latest Updates

Sign-up for the free Weekly Driver newsletter for new car reviews, news and opinion

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Support independent journalism. Many of us are undergoing pay cuts and decreased hours. Shop on Amazon using this banner, and The Weekly Driver receives a small commission at no cost to you.

Advertising Disclosure: TheWeeklyDriver.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.


Keep your car love alive with Valentine’s Day gifts

Buying a car with flood damage can be trouble


Leave a Reply