2011 Lincoln MKX
Date Posted: May 26, 2011
By Zack Spencer
Built on the same platform as the Ford Edge, the new 2011 Lincoln has finally started to have its own appeal
It's a good time to be a Ford or Lincoln dealer. With almost an entirely new lineup of cars and trucks to sell, dealerships have done brisk business putting people in some of the best products the company has ever made. The Ford Edge has been a huge hit ever since it was introduced in 2007. Made in Oakville Ontario, the Ford is made along side the Lincoln version called the MKX. Both vehicles have received major updates for 2011, including styling, advanced electronics and engines. The first generation of Edge/MKX vehicles were so similar in styling and content that it was hard to justify buying the more expensive Lincoln version over the comparable Ford model. For 2011 Lincoln has done a better job of differentiating the MKX from the cheaper Edge version.
The latest version of Lincoln's ''waterfall'' grille was first introduced on the larger Lincoln MKT crossover, also made in Oakville Ontario. The deep vertical grooves provide a similar chunky front design that has been so popular with Audi and others over the last few years. In fact, most automakers have adopted this oversized front design and on the MKX it looks good. The MKX is only sold with AWD, unlike the base Edge model that is available with FWD. That Ford product is sold with 17-inch wheels all the way up to 22-inch wheels on the sport model. The Lincoln in comparison is sold with 18-20-inch wheels. With a starting price of $53,928, the MKX comes with a power lift gate and 18-inch wheels. To get the panoramic sunroof and 20-inch wheels requires the Limited and Sight and Sound packages for an additional $5000.
The Edge and MKX share a similar interior design, it's the small details that make the Lincoln more upscale. Standard features like memory heated and power operated leather seats, heated memory steering wheel, keyless start, auto-dimming rearview mirror and voice activated air conditioning make this a luxury ride. The Limited package for just $1300 includes ventilated seats and includes the larger 20-inch wheels seen here. Good value. The more expensive Sight and Sound package includes voice activated navigation to full out the already impressive My Lincoln Touch system, for $3700, is the same as Ford's My Ford Touch information and communications powerhouse. The Limited package also includes bronze tint on the seat surfaces and dash trim, helping to provide a unique look.
The biggest difference between the Edge and MKX is the standard 3.7L V6 over the 3.5L unit found in most Edge models. Yes, the Edge Sport comes with the larger engine but it is the only one. The 3.7L motor pumps out 305hp compared to 285hp for the 3.5L. In reality there is little difference in day-to-day use. It might only be in full throttle applications that the 3.7L shows its muscle. All MKX trim levels come with AWD and a six-speed automatic transmission for sure-footed handling and efficient use of the engines power. The ride on the optional 20-inch wheels is a nice balance of handling and comfort. Forget about the mushy, soft Lincolns of old, this new breed of products mimics European cars more closely. In fact, I received and email from an Edge owner who found the 18-inch wheels and suspension setup a bit too bumpy. Maybe he liked the older softer style?
After having a chance to drive both the Ford Edge Sport and the Lincoln MKX back-to-back over a two week period, the Lincoln has a few interior tweaks over the Sport but not enough to justify the $5000-$8000 premium for a comparably equipped unit. On the plus side, the Edge Sport has stunning 22-inch wheels, yet the Lincoln has a slight advantage in the trim department and longer warranty. Automakers have for years, taken lower level brands and re-packaged them as luxury cars, and Ford is no different. What any buyer has to decide is whether the Lincoln badge and brand has enough weight to justify the price. Regardless, either product is very well designed and I'm always pleased to drive one and would be happy to have one as my family vehicle.
The Good, The Bad
J D Power and Associates ranks Lincoln number one in three-year dependability.
May still be too similar to the Ford Edge.
Power: 285hp 3.5L V6 or 305hp 3.7L V6
Fill-up: 12.2L/8.8L/100km (city/highway)
Sticker price: $53,928