SPECS & VERDICT Model Engine
It’s been Lincoln-ised, of course. John Barnes, Lincoln’s engineering supervisor, swears the MKC has the quietest interior in its class – a class that, if you go by Locricchio, includes the BMWX3, the Audi Q5 and the Range Rover Evoque. Driving around Santa Barbara, I honestly can’t challenge his claim. It’s eerily silent in there and the seats are almost as comfortable as a Volvo XC90’s – there’s no higher praise than that. The Bridge ofWeir leather is unusually soft, too, thick and full; fleshy, for lack of a more Peta-friendly adjective. But the blocky slab of plastic centre stack in the middle of the dash almost spoils it all, if it weren’t for that natural grain wood. That said, the interior design is not like a driver-orientated BMW, or a precision-machined Audi, or glassand-aluminium Evoque.
Anyway, besides the comfortable interior, of more interest to me is the first industry application of the Ford Mustang’s 2.3-litre turbocharged four-cylinder producing 285 horsepower. That’s a lot of power – more than any of the MKC’s rivals offer in four-cylinder trim, but more importantly it’s smoothly and silently delivered. Then there’s 414Nm of torque, meaning gear changes are imperceptible because they’re largely unnecessary. On the move this thing is so finely tuned and relaxed, it’s hard to pin it with one descriptor. You could actually call it luxurious…
And it’s not even that the motor pulls from relatively early either – maximum torque twists in from 2,750rpm, but I’m certain the vast majority of it is available from basically idle. The base engine is a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-pot and you really can’t go much wrong with that either, because it’s worth 240 horsepower and 366Nm. For some context that’s just as much power as you get in the Evoque, but quite a bit more torque.
Another feature that stands out is the park-out assist technology working together with active park assist to help guide drivers out of tight parking spots.
This is a fine, fine crossover, almost perfectly suited for China’s roads. But
On the move this thing is so finely tuned and relaxed, it’s hard to pin it with one descriptor
it’s no Lincoln, nor is it a 1956 Continental Mark II. Yet the automotive landscape can change very quickly. It isn’t that long ago when Audis were just five-cylinder Volkswagens. We can still remember when Jaguar made a Mondeo, when Cadillacs were trash and Chryslers were a punchline. Just one great car can change everything.
Lincoln doesn’t need an alphabet soup of crossovers and front-wheeldrive saloons. Look at the range now – three crossovers and two saloons.
All Lincoln needs is two cars, really; a grand saloon and a grand coupé. It’s honestly not that hard. I mean, Kia’s basically doing it.
This MKC is a nice car. But if this is Lincoln’s saviour, someone pass me a shovel. I guess I’ll start digging.
MKC 2.3-litre four-cyl turbo Transmission
Max power There’s 414Nm of torque, so gear changes are imperceptible