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Lincoln MKX Performance

Most auto journalists think the 2015 Lincoln MKX has composed handling, a comfortable ride and sufficient engine power. However, several critics note that it lacks the nimble handling and authoritative acceleration that is characteristic of other SUVs in the class.

  • "Its biggest frailty concerns performance. Both acceleration and braking are merely mediocre -- a notable deficiency in a segment dominated by models that can snap your head back with a tap of the pedal." -- Edmunds
  • "The 2015 MKX's road manners are similar to its personality in general: It's not jaw-dropping in any particular category, but it also doesn't fail in any of them. Acceleration, handling and comfort are above average, though not best in class." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "MKX doesn't rocket forward, but the engine has plenty of grunt for everyday driving and worry-free highway passing and merging." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Acceleration and Power

The 2015 MKX is powered by a 3.7-liter V6 that produces 305 horsepower. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard. The base MKX gets an EPA-estimated 18/26 mpg city/highway, which is normal for the class.

Most reviewers say the MKX has sufficient power in most situations, but doesn’t feel particularly fast. Some mention that the transmission is smooth and responsive, but a few comment that it is sometimes reluctant to downshift when more power is needed.

  • "Meanwhile, the MKX's 3.7-liter V6 engine provides adequate acceleration, but nothing more. The automatic transmission isn't exactly eager to downshift either, so a firm stomp on the gas pedal may be required when you need to make a quick pass or merge swiftly into highway traffic." -- Edmunds
  • "The 305-hp V6 delivers excellent performance, and the SelectShift 6-speed automatic makes quick work of gear changes, though we weren't impressed with the manual shift mode, which seemed slow to take orders and not all that fun to play with." -- AutoTrader (2014)
  • "In terms of horsepower, 305 seems like a lot, but with a curb weight exceeding 4,500 pounds, the Lincoln MKX isn't what you would call sprightly. What you can call it, however, is smooth. Throttle response is very linear, making it easy to dial in exactly the amount of power you need in any situation. The 6-speed automatic transmission's upshifts are virtually imperceptible, and downshifts are prompt." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Handling and Braking

The Lincoln MKX comes with standard front-wheel drive or optional all-wheel drive. Most test drivers say the MKX has composed handling through turns, but does not feel especially athletic. Although they think it rides comfortably, several comment that the optional 22-inch wheels make the ride uncomfortable on imperfect pavement.

  • "Also notable are the MKX's secure handling and precise steering, both of which make it easy to maneuver. Opting for the 22-inch wheels, however, can introduce some unwelcome ride firmness on rough pavement." -- Edmunds
  • "Lincoln's premium crossover SUV is most happy at highway speeds where it cruises effortlessly and quietly. The bigger wheel and tire options (20 and 22 inches) somewhat improve handling but also return a firm ride that we don't think is worth the trade-off." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "While the MKX impresses on straightaways and can hold its own on twisty roads, its suspension is tuned more for comfort than for agility." -- Left Lane News
Review Last Updated: 3/31/15

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