by: Mike Ginsca,
The 2019 Lincoln MKC is in a crowded SUV market with competition like the Lexus NX, BMW X3, Acura RDX, Audi Q5, Infiniti QX50, and so on. So now that it’s 4 years old, can it still keep up?
Engine – Two engines are available with the Lincoln MKC. The usual 2.0L Turbo that produces 245hp and 275 lb-ft of torque or the more powerful 2.3L turbo with 285hp and 305 lb-ft of torque as equipped in this demo vehicle. The bigger engine delivers a healthy amount of power for everyday needs with not much fuss when accelerating hard. The powerband does taper off at the top end but barely anyone is going to be revving their Lincoln MKC’s right up to the redline. One thing to note is that the engine warms up quite quickly which means that the climate control can blow warm air much more quickly than in other vehicles. Usually I don’t notice these things in the summer but during the winter we’ve had here in Vancouver, I really noticed this trait.
For such a powerful engine it’s also relatively economical. It is rated at 9.5 L/100km (24.7 mpg) on a highway and 13.1 L/100km (17.9 mpg) in a city. During my week with it, I averaged around 10 L/100km (23.5 mpg).
Transmission – A 6-speed automatic is the only transmission available with either engine. A bit odd in today’s fuel conscious society especially since Lincoln’s parent company, Ford, already has 8 and 10 speed transmissions available. But a benefit to not having so many gears is better turbo response because the transmission keeps the engine rpms in the sweet spot for the turbo to spool up quickly.
Braking – The brakes on the Lincoln MKC can stop the almost 1,800 kg body with ease but brake pedal feel is a bit on the softer side. Forward collision alert and automatic braking are available but only with the Technology package.
Handling – Like many other Lincoln models, the 2019 MKC focuses on luxury rather than sportiness. It’s not going to crash around a corner or anything like that but there’s no immediacy as to how quickly it can go around a corner. For a sporty luxury SUV, look no further than a BMW. For luxury, the MKC is one of the best.
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Ride Comfort – The Lincoln MKC comes with adaptive suspension which aids in the overall comfort of the SUV. In the Comfort setting, the overall ride is borderline “floaty” but in the Normal setting, it’s perfect.
Interior Space – Front occupants have a good amount of space in the plush seats. The rear seats however are tight both in terms of leg and headroom. It’s the same story in the trunk with only 712L (25.1 cu-ft) of space; less than the competition from Europe or Japan.
Noise, Vibration, & Harshness – With Active Noise Cancellation & a lot of sound insulation, the cabin of the MKC is very quiet as one would expect from a luxury SUV. Even when coming to a stop, it’s hard to really notice the engine shutting off as the Auto Start/Stop feature kicks in to save fuel. The only complaint I have is that the engine can get a bit noisy when accelerating hard past 3,000 rpms. But for most of the time, you hardly ever need to accelerate that hard.
Interior Design – The inside of the MKC is modern day Lincoln. An 8” touchscreen is in the center of the dash with gear selector button on the left and other vehicle feature buttons on the right. The material quality used in the cabin are good but on the lower parts of the center console, cheap feeling plastics are used. Overall though the interior is reminiscent of other, more expensive Lincoln models such as the MKZ or Nautilus.
Odds and Ends
Gadgets – With the Reserve trim, there’s really only one package to select when you build your MKC. The Technology package adds all of the advanced safety features to the MKC such as active park assist, adaptive cruise control, collision alert & braking, lane keeping system, pedestrian detection and so on. At less than $2,500 CAD, it’s definitely worth adding on. ON the base Select trim, these options are not available expect for the blind spot sensors. But you can customize it a bit more by adding navigation or the panoramic sunroof, or heated steering wheel, and so on.
Exterior Design – The MKC received a fresh new face for the 2019 model year which makes it more in-line with other Lincoln models. The only Lincoln left to get the new signature grille is the MKT… if it doesn’t get discontinued first. But the MKC looks very fresh with the new style however I just would’ve liked to see a bit more changes to the back in addition to what was done to the front.
In all, the 2019 Lincoln MKC is not for everyone. For a more all-round luxury compact SUV, the Audi Q5 or Volvo XC60 would be better bets but they’re more expensive. For someone that’s a more sporty SUV, the BMW X3 or Afla Romeo Stelvio are better bets but again, more expensive. Realistically, the MKC competes more with the Lexus NX and Acura RDX as they are more in the same price points. But the Lincoln is much more comfortable than both.
Thank you to Lincoln Canada for providing the vehicle. www.LincolnCanada.com
Editor at large and gearhead. Can drive anything on 4 or 2 wheels... sometimes 3 wheels too.