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Since its founding in 1936, Consumer Reports has become the go-to source for shoppers. From new refrigerators to bottles of wine, Blue-ray players to homeowner’s insurance, if it’s on the market it’s likely the non-profit organization has scientifically tested it. Of course the consumer watchdog is probably most famous for its vehicle reliability ratings.
AutoGuide Five-Point Inspection
This week’s subject for AutoGuide’s Five-Point Inspection is the Lincoln MKT. It comes standard with a 3.7-liter V6, but our tester came equipped with Ford’s EcoBoost twin-turbo V6, which is EPA rated at 16 mpg city and 23 mpg highway. The base price is $45,285, while a fully loaded version can reach up to $50,780.
Read on to find out what is good and bad about the Lincoln MKT.
Courtesy of Eastern European publication AutoForums.cz, we can now report that the upcoming MKZ has little changed from the concept car released at last January’s Detroit Auto Show.
The side-view mirrors got a little bigger, as did the headlights, though most of the styling stayed the same. An interior shot also reveals that much of the concept was accurate to the production model, with scant wood–stlye accents with mostly black and chrome trim throughout.
Smaller alloy wheels also seem to be a part of the production model, though the key feature we’re most curious about isn’t detailed in the shots.
That means we’ll still have to wait until April 4 to find out about the fully-retractable panoramic roof which has been confirmed for the sedan despite few specific details being available. We do know that it will feature 100 spf UV protection to keep occupants from getting sunburned, but we’re still not sure how much it will cost as what we’re assuming will be an option.
Check back during our live coverage for more details on the flagship vehicle of what will be a refreshed Lincoln lineup.
GALLERY: 2013 Lincoln MKZ leaked
Lincoln is brewing up some more interest for its upcoming LA Auto Show debuts. Recently we were teased with a single photo showcasing the new design of the 2013 MKS and MKT, and now the Ford luxury brand has released a couple more. This time it’s clearly showcasing the new MKS sedan’s LED taillights and a new dashboard featuring FoCoMo’s configurable instrument panel LCD screens.
It’s still not a whole lot to go off of, but clearly Ford is taking a page out of its own marketing book to hopefully generate more interest for their newly redesigned MKS and MKT. Let’s just hope when the full unveil happens, we’re not disappointed.
GALLERY: 2013 MKS, MKT Design Teasers
Just as industry analysts and veterans are convinced that the Lincoln brand will share a similar fate to Mercury, Lincoln is determined to prove the naysayers otherwise. According to global product chief of Ford, Derrick Kuzak, Ford promises no fewer than seven new or improved vehicles in the Lincoln lineup by 2014, a mere three years time.
With introductions staggered between 2012 to 2014, Lincoln is scheduled to begin their launch with a restyled Navigator for its 2012 model year. Expect to find the same 3.5 liter EcoBoost V-6 found in Ford’s F-series line of pickups.
Also in development is a new compact crossover based on Ford’s next generation Ford Escape, which will be based on a Ford Kuga chassis, a product that’s currently a foreign market exclusive. Another compact car is also in talks but it probably won’t be introduced until 2016, if at all.
Next, the Ford Fusion based Lincoln MKZ will be revised for 2013. However, expect to see the MKZ’s introduction to be slightly behind that of the Fusion as Ford Motor Company will focus much of their efforts in refining, and further separating, Lincolns with a more upscale interior.
The larger MKS sedan is expected to receive a facelift for 2013 as well. Cosmetic enhancements include a freshened grill and side in order to achieve a more streamlined appearance. Moreover, the MKS may also be available with an efficient 2.0-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost engine expected in the Taurus at the same time.
As far as Lincoln’s current crossovers are concerned, the big daddy MKT will get new grill and taillight treatments, not to mention a gussied up interior. And finally, don’t expect a redesign for the midsize crossover MKX until 2014.
Although it remains to be seen whether these efforts would place Lincoln back on the map, it is a positive sign to see Ford Motor Company at least try.
GALLERY: Lincoln Line-up
For 2012, Lincoln has lowered the price of its not-so-successful EcoBoost MKT three-row crossover by $3,000. There are no equipment of styling changes for this model year, but Lincoln is hoping the lower price will make the car more desirable to consumers. For 2012, the MKT will no longer have the all-wheel drive model with the naturally aspirated 3.7-liter V6. Instead, the AWD model with the 355-hp 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 will cost $46,295 with the price reduction.
The price will remain the same for the entry level front-wheel drive MKT with the non-turbocharged, 270-hp 3.7-liter V6 costing $44,300. The entry level model is rated at 17 mpg city and 24 mpg highway for a combined fuel rating of 20 mpg. The EcoBoost model is rated at 16 mpg city, 23 highway for 18 mpg respectively.
Lincoln sales have been slipping and so far are down 8 percent this year. The automaker has sped up redesign plans for the full-size MKS and three-row MKT as sales have dropped by 40 percent this year for the sedan, and 38 percent for the crossover. The redesigned MKS and MKT will debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November.
The redesign will also feature a technological overhaul. Lincoln is planning to introduce noise-canceling technology as well as upgrade the MyLincolnTouch system. Computer-adjustable steering and suspension capability is also a go ahead for Lincoln’s redesign.
Ford global product chief Derrick Kuzak said seven new Lincolns are on the way over the next few years. Lincoln will be taking pointers from the success of its MKZ Hybrid, introduced late last year, which experienced tremendous success because this car represented the first-ever entry-level luxury hybrid.
[Source: Left Lane News]
Lincoln has been hard at work refreshing its lineup over the past few years and the luxury arm of Ford has chosen to display three of its newest vehicles at the 2009 SEMA Show: a 2010 MKZ, a 2009 MKS and a 2010 MKT. But before the two luxury sedans and one crossover made their way to Las Vegas, Lincoln shipped them out to different tuning shops across the country to have each car individually stylized.
“Lincoln as a brand is continuing to attract younger customers to the showroom with products like the MKS, MKZ and the new MKT luxury crossover,” said Amy Marentic, Ford Car and Crossover marketing manager. “These customers place huge importance on style, design and technology, and these are areas where Lincoln plays well. SEMA gives customizers the opportunity to push the boundaries of design, while still focusing on the core strengths of the Lincoln brand.”
Ford’s SEMA Designer Melvin Betancourt echoes Marentic’s thoughts stating that, “Customization is about individuality and reflecting who you are. That is particularly true about the new generation of people who are buying cars. The vehicles at this year’s SEMA show prove that Lincolns have great personalization potential.”
See more on each of the three SEMA Lincolns after the jump:
The T in MKT stands for Touring
Lincoln can’t seem to get enough of its own grille design. First they extended it until it enveloped the headlights and now they’ve come up with a significantly-sized crossover – presumably because that was the only other way to increase the surface
area on the front of a Lincoln.
The rear of the seven-passenger MKT isn’t much better as it seems to fade-off into a point.
Lincoln’s designs may be controversial but according to company execs the Ford luxury brand continues to out-sell Infiniti and Lexus in certain segments.
The new MKT, set to go on sale in the summer of 2009, features a standard 3.7-liter V6 engine with an optional 355hp EcoBoost twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6. Both engines come with a standard six-speed automatic transmission with steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
Technological highlights on the new MKT include adaptive cruise control and a blind-spot monitor system.
The MKT will also feature Ford’s new revolutionary Active Park Assist system.
For 2010 the EcoBoost V6 engine will also be available in the MKS, where it will make 355hp, get 10 percent better fuel economy than a V8 and offers more power and torque than the Lexus GS460 and Infiniti M45.
Official release after the jump:
Active Park Assist uses ultrasonic waves
The new Lincoln MKS and upcoming Lincoln MKT crossover will feature an innovative new computer-controlled auto-park system that, says Ford, is far superior to existing competitors’ systems.
The Active Park Assist system will use ultrasonic waves, rather than video cameras to position the vehicle for parallel parking, calculate the desired steering angle and quickly steer the vehicle into position. The driver will still control the gears, throttle and brake and can take control of the situation at any time by grasping the steering wheel.
Direct from the Ford Press release, HERE’S HOW IT WORKS:
1. The driver activates the system by pressing an instrument panel button, which activates the ultrasonic sensors to measure and identify a feasible parallel parking space.
2. The system then prompts the driver to accept the system assistance to park.
3. The steering system then takes over and steers the car into the parking space hands-free. The driver still shifts the transmission and operates the gas and brake pedals.
4. A visual and/or audible driver interface advises the driver about the proximity of other cars, objects and people and provides instructions.
5. While the steering is all done automatically, the driver remains responsible for safe parking and can interrupt the system by grasping the steering wheel.
This new innovation is possible because of the use of Ford’s new Electric Power Assisted Steering (EPAS) system, an advancement from hydraulic systems. Ford claims the EPAS system alone accounts for an improvement in fuel economy by five percent.
Official release after the jump: