New MKZ turning Lincoln brand around
HALIFAX, NS: It’s time for a change at Lincoln and the 2017 MKZ is leading the way.
Conceived in the 1930s as a counter to Cadillac, the brand has had moments of glory, but never quite the greatness of its GM nemesis.
The Lincoln brand was bought by Ford in 1922 and has had its ups and down ever TJODF TVDI BT UIF lSTU $POUJOFOUBM JO
which resulted in 1956 Continental Mark 11, still to my mind, one of the loveliest designs of the post WW11 period.
After that, Lincoln receded into the luxury car shadows with products such as the Town $BS XIJDI GVFMFE UIF MJNP mFFU NBSLFU GPS
years but did little to heighten the brand image.
The harbinger of change is the 2017 version of the MKZ which comes with a number of improvements, starting with the grille that does away with the previous buttermZ EFTJHO JOTQJSFE CZ UIF QSF XBS -JODPMO
First seen earlier this year on the Lincoln Continental Concept, the grille is an ovoid shape, not unlike the Jaguar XKF, but with a prominent Lincoln badge in the middle, similar to the Maserati Quattroporte.
Another problem was the slider controls for the climate and audio controls, which were impossible to use with gloves on and required taking your eyes off the road to lOE
Now it has proper knobs and toggles it works far better and I rarely had to avert my attention from the road ahead during the drive.
In the interior, the stitching on the leather seats and door panels is laser straight plus lOJTIFT XFSF DIPTFO UP CMFOE XJUI UIF BMVminum trim. The seats have Bridge of Weir leather from Scotland that is brand mark, and imperfection, free.
A knockout optional feature is the segment exclusive fully retractable panoramic sunroof.
There are two models, the MKZ and the MKZ Hybrid and two trim levels – Select and Reserve.
Interestingly the MKZ and MKZ Hybrid 4FMFDU NPEFMT BSF CPUI QSJDFE BU BOE
the MZZ and MKZ Hybrid are both priced at XJUI B TIJQQJOH GFF The MKZ is powered by a 2.0-litre single UVSCP JOMJOF GPVS DZMJOEFS QSPEVDJOH IQ
and 275 lb/ft of torque, which is almost the same torque as the 3.7-litre V6 in the outgoing model.
With transmission all-wheel-drive with and manuala six-speedshift mode,automatic GVFM DPOTVNQUJPO JT SBUFE BU -
The Hybrid is equipped with a 2.0-litre Atkinson Cycle inline four-cylinder producing 129 hp and 188 hp when combined with the electric motor/battery. Available in frontwheel-drive and a CVT transmission, fuel rating is 5.7/6.1L/100 km.
Coming later will be a twin turbo 3.0-litre 7 XJUI "8% BOE B QPUFOU IQ BOE
lb/ft of torque. $BSHP WPMVNF JT MJUSFT DV GU PO UIF .,; BOE MJUSFT DV GU PO UIF )ZCSJE Driving from Halifax up to the Northumberland Strait was done in the rain and what * OPUJDFE XBT UIF MBDL PG UJSF hTJ[[MFv TPVOE
which comes from tread on a wet paveNFOU TIPXJOH UIF -JODPMO FOHJOFFST SFBMMZ
worked on audible intrusion into the cabin. This is partly due to active noise cancellation technology.
A segment of Lincoln Drive Control is an adaptive suspension damping that measures speed, steering angle and body movement to continuously adjust damping to requirements. 8FJHIJOH JO BU LH MC UIF )Zbrid Reserve’s performance was more than adequate, but passing had to be well planned.
However, on the way back with the AWD, the MKZ Reserve tracked well on the combination of two-lane blacktop and Trans Canada Highway with plenty of power for all surfaces.
Sight lines are good in spite of the highish
windowsill line. 5IF RVBMJUZ PG UIF QBOFM lU JOTJEF BOE PVU
Both testers had the optional 20-speaker Revel Ultima Audio System that has to be heard to be appreciated. I noted the doors were specially designed to house the speakers.
Standard on the MKZ is the SYNC 3 infotainment system with optional voice-activated navigation.
Newly available to SYNC 3 are the Multicontour front seats with Active Motion. These heated and cooled seats has customizable air cushions adjustable for changing seat and back shapes or – get this – a gentle lumbar massage and dialed in by using the SYNC 3 centre touchscreen.
There is no doubt Lincoln is on the road to SBJTJOH JUT QSPlMF UP UBLF JUT QMBDF XJUI PUIFS
premium luxury sedans with the 2017 MKZ and MKZ Hybrid leading the way.
The 2017 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid (Reserve model shown) is indistinguishable from the standard MKZ.
The centre stack has been redone on the 2017 MKZ with knobs and toggles for the climate and audio controls replacing the sliders in the outgoing model.