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2016 Lincoln MKC EcoBoost AWD Review

Certain cars on the road always have an air of class and sophistication around them. Dressed to impress, they cruise the streets in 3-piece suits. Lincolns are just such cars, kind of like Cadillacs (without as much prestige). There’s no denying these cars look great, and slip behind the wheel and those good looks continue, along with a few other bonuses. 

The compact crossover market has been exploding as of late. Every manufacturer and their brother wants to sell the No.1 compact crossover, and Lincoln is no different. Their entry into the game is the lovely-to-look-at 2016 Lincoln MKC.

Suited up 
From the outside, the 2016 Lincoln MKC is a real looker. With its split-wing linear grille in the front, and strong shoulder line that reaches to the rear where Lincoln’s signature bar taillights finish off the luxury compact crossover perfectly. 

Wearing White Platinum Metallic paint, sitting on 18” wheels and with just the right amount of LED accent lighting and chrome bits, my particular 2016 Lincoln MKC was handsome to say the least. This is an eye-catching crossover; I found myself stealing glances as I walked away. And passersby on the street often did double takes of the MKC as I drove by. It’s just that attractive. 

That attractiveness travels straight into the cabin where you’ll fine comfortable, plush, leather-appointed seats for all. Soft-touch materials abound, stitching and two-tone colour schemes coupled with would inserts ensure the 2016 Lincoln MKC maintains that air of sophistication and class while you’re seated behind the wheel. 

My tester featured the available Panoramic Vista Roof, which really opened up the cabin in the MKC. Not that it’s cramped or small, but this luxury compact crossover really feels expansive with the addition of the vista roof. My son loved the openness of it all, and the amount of light that’s let into the vehicle makes for an enjoyable time, regardless of which seat you choose. 

And there’s room for five in there, as well as 712 litres of cargo space in the trunk. So, the 2016 Lincoln MKC doesn’t just look good, it gets the job done, too in terms of practicality and being a decent family vehicle. 

Maybe a bit too technologically advanced
New for 2016 is an updated SYNC3 system. Now, I understand the need for gadgets and technology in today’s cars. We want our vehicles to be as “smart” as our smartphones, but sometimes it all gets to be a bit much. 

I’ve never been a huge fan of Ford/Lincoln’s SYNC system. In the older generation the four-corner set-up was tedious to use while behind the wheel, requiring exact and precise button pushes (on small sections of a large screen). In this latest generation of SYNC, the screen is much more user-friendly, with swiping action and all, but it’s still so loaded to the brim with functions that it really is all a bit too much. I understand that living with the system for more than a week will eventually make it almost second-nature to use (at least that would be the hope), but I just can’t get behind it. 

And while we’re on the subject of gadgets, let’s talk about the gear selection buttons next to the touchscreen. Yes, buttons. Of course, this isn’t the first time a button gear selection has been present in a car, but it’s one of the first times I’ve experienced it, and I hate it. 

I can’t tell you how many times my hand went down to the barren space where the shifter should have been. Stabbing at a button with your finger for D, R, and S just doesn’t feel right, and it’s odd. I also don’t particularly like the location of the buttons and feel they’re too close to the infotainment system. 

It doesn’t help that the buttons are directly related to a transmission that’s just as disappointing. The 6-speed SelectShift automatic isn’t horrible in open-road highway conditions. In fact, it’s quite smooth. However, get stuck in stop-and-go traffic and the tranny drops into first unnecessarily and quite abruptly. It’s unpleasant and makes the otherwise smooth Lincoln ride uncomfortable and annoying. 

Drives like it dresses 
That is, it drives smart; and not because it’s so uber fuel-efficient, but because the engine performs well. The 2.0L EcoBoost with 240 horsepower and 270 lb-ft is plenty powerful and sounds rather good, too. I was impressed with the engine play and liked using the steering wheel mounted paddle shifters to play with the transmission (that is good outside of traffic situations). 

It’s not a wildly exciting ride and drive, however, it’s alive enough to keep you awake at the wheel and enjoy your time behind the wheel. 

Of course, the turbocharged EcoBoost engine is there to help save fuel (and give you a boost) and the 2016 Lincoln MKC averaged in the 11L/100km range while I was behind the wheel. That’s a pretty good rating for a compact crossover with a decent amount of power and with AWD. 

With a starting price in the $40k range, the 2016 MKC might be a bit too pricey for some. However, considering what the Lincoln comes with (design/drivability/interior amenities and materials) it’s worth the price of entry. Lincolns are cruisers and built for luxury and comfort and the MKC is just that: luxurious and comfortable. 

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2016 Lincoln MKC
lincoln mkc 2016
2016 Lincoln MKC
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Photos:S.D'Amour
2016 Lincoln MKC Ecoboost AWD pictures