2016 Lincoln MKT Driving Impressions

Performance with the 3.7-liter V6 engine, generating 303 horsepower and 278 pound-feet of torque, is sufficiently strong if not stimulating. The base model comes only with front-wheel drive.

All-wheel drive is standard with the optional EcoBoost 3.5-liter turbocharged V6. Developing 365 horsepower and 350 pound-feet, that’s the logical choice for drivers who like to extract the most vigorous responses from a large vehicle. Acceleration is surprisingly lusty, yet smooth, and the EcoBoost emits a slightly sporty sound. More important, it mates neatly with the 6-speed automatic transmission, which includes paddle shifters.

Ride and handling are well-balanced and appealing. In fact, the MKT is among the best large crossover vehicles for confident travel down twisting rural byways. Because of its body length, switchback turns can be challenging. On the other hand, the highly capable suspension can cope with plenty of activity on harsher pavement. EcoBoost models incorporate a three-mode, continuously controlled damping suspension, which responds rapidly to variable pavement conditions.

Fuel economy, as expected, lags behind the MKT’s merits, EPA-rated at 16/24 mpg City/Highway with the base engine and 15/21 mpg in EcoBoost guise.

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