2012 Lincoln MKX SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2012 Lincoln MKX SUV

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Lincoln MKX Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.7 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 305 hp @ 6500 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 19/26 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2012 Lincoln MKX

  • The 2012 Lincoln MKX is a respectable choice for a luxury crossover thanks to its well-rounded performance, well-trimmed and roomy cabin, and generous list of standard features.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Lots of standard features; ample passenger space; innovative technology; quiet cabin; comfortable ride.

  • Cons

    Difficult-to-use MyLincoln Touch; little dynamic advantage over the related Ford Edge; occasionally stubborn transmission.

  • What's New for 2012

    For 2012, the Lincoln MKX sees no changes of note.

Full 2012 Lincoln MKX Review

What's New for 2012

For 2012, the Lincoln MKX sees no changes of note.


Although it got off to a shaky start when it first debuted, the Lincoln MKX is now a pretty respectable choice in the luxury crossover SUV segment. Thanks to last year's revamped recipe that brought significant improvements in performance, driving dynamics and cabin quality, there's plenty of substance beneath the MKX's eye-catching looks. The 2012 Lincoln MKX sees no changes after that metamorphosis, and this doesn't bother us at all.

Though it shares its underpinnings and most of its sheet metal with the Ford Edge, the MKX sets itself apart via Lincoln's now-signature split grille and unique fenders and front/rear lights. The cabin has a more upscale vibe via a different dash/console design and more wood- and metallic-tone accents. The MKX also comes standard with the 305-horsepower V6 and generous amounts of standard equipment.

The 2012 Lincoln MKX does have a couple downsides, the most notable being the MyLincoln Touch electronics interface that's drawn criticism from consumers and our editors alike for being difficult to figure out and frustrating to use. It will be worth looking at the Audi Q5, BMW X3, Cadillac SRX, Lexus RX 350, Mercedes-Benz GLK350 and Volvo XC60. You might also check out the related Ford Edge Sport; while it's not been badged with a premium label, the ownership experience is going to be pretty similar. But with the substance to back up its style, the Lincoln MKX is a solid choice.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2012 Lincoln MKX is a five-passenger crossover SUV available in one trim level.

Standard equipment includes 18-inch alloy wheels, keyless ignition/entry, rear parking sensors, auto-dimming interior and driver-side exterior mirrors, the MyKey system (allows owners to limit a vehicle's top speed and radio volume), a power liftgate, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated and ventilated power front seats, driver memory functions, a tilt-and-telescoping steering column, MyLincoln Touch and Sync electronics interface systems (includes Bluetooth and iPod interface), and a 10-speaker sound system with a CD player, satellite radio, a USB port, an auxiliary audio jack and an SD card reader.

The Premium package adds 18-inch polished alloy wheels, adaptive xenon headlights, rain-sensing wipers, a rearview camera, interior mood lighting, a heated power-adjustable steering wheel, upgraded leather upholstery and heated second-row seats.

The Elite package includes all the above plus 20-inch chrome wheels, a panoramic sunroof, a blind-spot warning system, a 14-speaker surround-sound audio system, HD radio and a hard-drive-based navigation system that features 10GB of digital music storage and Sirius Travel Link (real-time traffic, weather and other information). Many of the Elite's upgrades are also offered as stand-alone options. A Limited Edition package features 20-inch polished alloy wheels, bronze leather upholstery with black accents, unique textured metallic trim and monogrammed floor mats.

Separate option highlights include adaptive cruise control and a rear-seat entertainment system with dual displays.

Powertrains and Performance

The 2012 Lincoln MKX is powered by a 3.7-liter V6 that makes 305 hp and 280 pound-feet of torque. There is a choice of front- or all-wheel drive. A six-speed automatic transmission with manual shifting capability is standard. In Edmunds performance testing, an all-wheel-drive MKX went from zero to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds -- an average time among similarly priced luxury crossovers.

Fuel economy ratings are 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined with front-wheel drive and 17/23/19 for all-wheel-drive models. When properly equipped, the MKX can tow up to 3,500 pounds.


Standard safety equipment for the MKX includes antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. The MyKey system that allows owners to limit a vehicle's top speed and radio volume is also standard. A blind-spot warning system is optional.

In Edmunds brake testing, an MKX with the available 20-inch wheels came to a stop from 60 mph in 134 feet. This is a long distance for the class.

In government crash tests, the Lincoln MKX received an overall rating of four stars (out of five). Within that rating, it earned three stars for frontal protection, five stars for side protection and four stars for rollover protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the MKX its highest rating of "Good" for frontal-offset and side-impact protection and a second-best "Acceptable" for roof-strength integrity.

Interior Design and Special Features

The 2012 Lincoln MKX boasts a well-trimmed cabin with handsome stitching, real aluminum accents and quality materials throughout. The standard MyLincoln Touch interface consists of three new display screens and the ability to input commands for various audio, phone and navigation functions via voice, touch controls or buttons on the steering wheel. It's a smart idea in theory, but the reality is that it just doesn't work very well. The learning curve is steep, the system can be slow to respond and the touchscreen's small black icons on a black background make it difficult to use on the move. The touch-sensitive volume control you slide your finger across is pretty much unusable. If you test-drive an MKX, make sure you spend plenty of time with MyLincoln Touch to determine if it's something you'll be OK with.

In terms of practicality, the MKX fares better. Both rows of seats offer plenty of space -- particularly in back, where three people can fit comfortably. This is one area in which the MKX beats out smaller models like the Q5 and X3. Behind the seats there are 32.3 cubic feet of available cargo space. Flip down the second row and capacity expands to 69 cubic feet, which is again a competitive advantage. However, crossovers like the Acura MDX and Lexus RX 350 hold more.

Driving Impressions

The MKX's 3.7-liter V6 is smooth and furnishes brisk acceleration, though the transmission can sometimes be reluctant to downshift unless you nearly floor the throttle pedal. The steering effort is decently weighted, while handling -- if not as sporty as the athletes of this class -- is certainly competent, with a buttoned-down demeanor through the curves. The ride quality is comfortable, though opting for the 20-inch wheels brings about some added firmness that might not fit with your expectations of a Lincoln. At highway speeds, the MKX's cabin is notably quiet.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Worst bang for the buck

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Vehicle: 2012 Lincoln MKX 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A)

I purchased this vehicle brand new loaded. At 5K miles I had to have the thermostat changed due to vehicle having a short and not starting. At 10K miles the power steering went out and took the vehicle to "Lincoln dealership for repairs and they had to fix the "power steering" over 6 times but would not classify the vehicle as a LEMON as they have experienced Lincoln advisors at the disposal of the service techs. well my car in the shop yet again for the same thing and they had my car for over 2 weeks and I just received a call that I will just have to live with the slight whining noise in the vehicle. Are you kidding me. Lincoln doesn't stand behind their products so please stay away.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

I love it!

by on
Vehicle: 2012 Lincoln MKX 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A)

Ok, I bought my 2012 MKX used with 18k miles. I've had it 3 weeks now and I am so very happy! I traded a fully loaded Tahoe (which I dearly loved, but was getting up there in miles) and the transition has been a breeze. I rated the car mostly 5's. To me, everything is awesome and I only gave 4's because of 2 superficial reasons. For interior design, it seems perfect besides the radio volume control and the a/c level control. They are a bit funny to operate. Aesthetically, beautiful, but functionally, not perfect. You are supposed to glide your finger across the panel to find your perfect setting and it doesn't function very well. No big deal, really, since there are 2 other options

Love my lincoln hate navigation

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Vehicle: 2012 Lincoln MKX 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A)

I bought a 2012 Lincoln MKX last year and every time I get in this car, I just love it. Great design, easy to drive. The Lincoln SYNC system isn't bad (although designed by Microsoft) as far as my Iphone and blue tooth is concerned but it truly sucks with the Navigation. Most of the time that stupid woman doesn't understand what I'm saying (Calgary). Because she doesn't understand I want to type it in myself and then the battle begins. I would much prefer to use my iPAD and not Lincolns Sync system - much easier to use. The engineers should drop Microsoft and embrace Apple

"learning" to love my lincoln...

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Vehicle: 2012 Lincoln MKX 4dr SUV (3.7L 6cyl 6A)

Traded my ML350 Benz for this little jewel in April. Drove it off showroom floor. Loaded. All options. Its my second car. The first few months, I did not like this car. I wouldnt drive it. I couldnt figure out how anything worked and was constantly having to actually pull over, and get out the owners manuals and learn how to turn on this or that option. It was very frustrating. However, in time, and after 6000 miles, I have, indeed fallen in love with this car. I find myself chosing to drive it more and more. IT has a learning curve for sure, but with some patience and teaching the old dog new tricks, its a great, fun car, that turns heads, and a real treat to drive,you will learn to love.

What a rip off

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Vehicle: 2012 Lincoln MKX 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A)

I traded my Lincoln Navigator for the new MKX due to the gas mileage it advertised. 20 city and 29 hwy. I drive hwy miles 90% of the time and never ever once got over 20mpg. I actually did 65mph for over a month to see if it was my driving and it never changed. I hate the car from every aspect. I wish I had never traded in my Navigator since I got an average of 15mpg and it was a much better vehicle. I feel like I was taken advantage of by Ford. Every manufacturer to step up and do what Hyundai is doing and to reimburse owners and correct their estimates. I am stuck with this car for another two mieserable years. Hate it!

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

Unbeleiveable value

by on
Vehicle: 2012 Lincoln MKX 4dr SUV AWD (3.7L 6cyl 6A)

the MKX is a bit of a sleeper - we test drove MB, Audi, BMW, Volvo before buying. Simply put to get teh same level of equipment in the equivalent import would push the price into the $70k range IF it is even available. For under $5ok the MKX gives you heated front AND rear seats, cooled front seats, Nav, blind spot and cross traffic warning system, adaptive cruise, HUGE sunroof, adaptive HID headlams, rear view camera, remote start, rain sensing wipers, adaptive cruise control, heated and telescopic steering whee and collision controll. Try pricing and Audi, Volvo or BMW with all of those

Talk About The 2012 MKX

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Gas Mileage


  • 19
  • cty
  • 26
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

Identifix Reliability Ratings

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