2017 Lincoln MKZ 3.0T AWD

Somewhere in the recent past, Lincoln devolved into the afterthought division of the Ford Motor Company. Once the last Town Car passed into the hands of some livery service, Lincoln’s inventory was reduced to a slew of remade Fords in search of a market niche to fill. And here’s the 2017 Lincoln MKZ, an updated version of the second-generation sedan that has been on sale since the 2013 model year.

While the 2013 MKZ appeared wholly generic, the 2017 model, thanks to a new grille and headlights, now looks like a Jaguar XJ that’s been squished in a panini press—yet one more Lincoln that kinda sorta looks like it’s trying to be something else. The redo is an improvement, but it’s the first example of yet another new Lincoln “design language” that’s probably doomed to be replaced in two years.

Underneath, the MKZ is still a Ford Fusion with flashier tailoring. It rides on the same 112.2-inch wheelbase as the Fusion and uses the same basic chassis. In base form the MKZ is powered by the 245-hp 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that’s optional in the Fusion. Both cars are available with either front- or all-wheel drive and are produced alongside each other at Ford’s Hermosillo, Mexico, assembly plant.

Enter the 400 Club

Yet, despite the preceding sarcastic bluster, there’s some new mechanical substance under the newish MKZ skin. That’s in the form of a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 with direct injection and variable valve timing that, at least for now, is exclusive to Lincoln. Related to the 2.7-liter EcoBoost turbo V-6 used in the 2017 Ford Fusion Sport, this V-6 (labeled 3.0 GTDI, as Lincoln doesn’t say “EcoBoost”) gains displacement via an increase in cylinder bore from 83.0 millimeters to 85.3 and a stroke lengthened by 3.0 millimeters to 86.0. Also, whereas the 2.7’s block is cast iron, the Lincoln’s 3.0 is aluminum. Read more...

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30 Dec 2016