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#9

in 2010 Luxury Midsize SUVs

Avg. Price Paid: $21,373 - $23,078
Original MSRP: $44,200 - $49,200
MPG: 17 City / 23 Hwy
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2010 Lincoln MKT Performance

This performance review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.

The 2010 Lincoln MKT surprises test drivers with its spirited, sedan-like performance. Not only is it fun to drive, but the V6 EcoBoost engine makes it extremely quick, which is all the more impressive considering the MKT weighs nearly 5,000 pounds.

  • "Instrumented testing and real-world impressions will have to wait until our next rendezvous with the big Lincoln (it's a half-foot longer than the Flex), but on Ford's undulating ride-and-handling course and five-mile banked oval, the MKT exhibited reassuring composure and had more than enough grunt to outrun the V-8-powered Audi Q7 on hand for comparison." -- Car and Driver
  • "Most unexpected from the MKT is its precise steering and confident handling. Its smooth ride is firmly plush, yet without the head toss and general upper body workout so common in taller crossovers and SUVs. All told, we enjoyed driving the MKT on twisty roads better than Lincoln's flagship MKS sedan, which doesn't offer the same midcorner stability and accurate tracking of the MKT." -- MSN
  • "One look at the 2010 Lincoln MKT's substantial size and you'd likely scale back your expectations of what this new Lincoln people mover is like to drive. But the Lincoln actually drives quite nicely. Handling is surprisingly lively and the steering feels pretty responsive, even if it's a little light." -- Edmunds
  • "The EcoBoost makes the MKT feel light and lively. Still, it's a traditionally cushy Lincoln. When pushed, the electric power steering feels too light, and needs corrections on crowned or bumpy roads. You'll also find the MKT's bump stops on crusty roads, although the damping rebound is excellent and keeps everything in proper control." -- Motor Trend
  • "We found the Lincoln MKT particularly comfortable to drive, so much that we didn't want our various journeys to end. It handled well enough for its size, but the big draws were the effort-saving gadgets. Our MKT came equipped with adaptive cruise control, which is still novel enough that we marvel at its capability to match our speed with the car ahead." -- CNET

Acceleration and Power

The MKT's base engine is a 3.7-liter V6 that makes 268 horsepower, but most test drivers say there's no reason not to opt for the new twin-turbocharged V6 EcoBoost powertrain, which makes 355 horsepower. The engine is unique because it boasts the power of a V8 while achieving the fuel economy of a V6. It adds about $5,000 onto the MKT’s base price, but every reviewer says it’s well worth it.

According to the EPA, the FWD base model achieves 17/23 mpg city/highway, while the AWD model with the EcoBoost engine achieves 16/22 mpg. These ratings are quite good for the MKT’s class, especially considering the EcoBoost’s staggering horsepower rating.

  • "All the torque from the EcoBoost engine makes passing maneuvers at highway speeds a snap." -- Car and Driver
  • "We'd advise buyers to reach for the EcoBoost version for anything more than around-town shuttling. And while this most versatile of Lincolns beckons strongly, if the EcoBoost version is simply too much, consider the Ford Flex SEL, which offers the same mechanicals and much of the same functional luxury for about $12,000 less." -- MSN
  • "There is no turbo lag. None. Zilch. Zero. Nada. The EcoBoost's two turbos are truly tiny and they apparently spool up quicker than any driver's perception of speed." -- Popular Mechanics
  • "The EcoBoost's fat and flat torque curve gives the Lincoln a response that is almost diesel-like, albeit without the attendant soundtrack. A light squeeze on the go pedal results in a seamless sweep of the speedometer needle clockwise around the dial, even without a kick-down of the transmission. Simply put, it's just a rush of acceleration." -- Autoblog
  • "This thing is a rocketship. The MKT launches hard off the line and you're bumping up against the 120 MPH speed limiter before you can say ‘EcoBooooooooooost!' It's been a long wait to get behind the wheel of an EcoBoosted car and the MKT was a strange pick for first ride, but man, this engine is a gem." -- Jalopnik

Handling and Braking

The MKT doesn't drive like a big, heavy SUV, which is a huge plus for reviewers. In fact, most are quite impressed with its nimble handling. However, a few reviewers say it can't compare to German competitors like the Audi Q7.

  • "In short, the Flex drives like a vehicle much smaller than it is, and the same is true of the MKT in spite of its luxury ambitions. You can manhandle the MKT hard into a corner, and the combination of well-tuned mechanical bits and seamless stability control intervention allow it to just track through at speeds that are surprisingly high for a CUV." -- Autoblog
  • "We hit the twisty stuff at Ford's Michigan Proving Grounds and, by golly, the MKT actually handles. Well even. Drop it into manual mode, pop it in third and it drives like it isn't a huge crossover. Even plowing it through rough roads and heaves the car is well behaved." -- Jalopnik
  • "As a post-modern prairie schooner, the MKT's chassis isn't quite up to the task of meeting the engine's potential." -- Motor Trend
  • "Our only dynamic complaint after this early drive is that the electronically boosted steering system is super light and has a large dead zone around center. This likely won't bother experienced Lincoln drivers at all. But anyone coming out of a German vehicle will find it disconcerting." -- Edmunds

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