2011 Lincoln MKZ Sedan Review | Edmunds.com

2011 Lincoln MKZ Sedan

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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 MKZ Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.5 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 263 hp @ 6250 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 18/27 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2011 Lincoln MKZ

  • The 2011 Lincoln MKZ is a perfectly competent midsize premium sedan, but it does not represent enough of an improvement over the similar Ford Fusion in order to warrant its Mercedes-like price.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Excellent infotainment features; comfortable seats and driving position; responsive steering.

  • Cons

    Non-premium feel; not enough differentiation from Ford Fusion; rough ride with sport suspension.

  • What's New for 2011

    The optional navigation system gains HD radio for 2011.

Full 2011 Lincoln MKZ Review

What's New for 2011

The optional navigation system gains HD radio for 2011.


The 2011 Lincoln MKZ offers loads of available features, smart electronics integration, sufficient power, a spacious cabin, comfortable seats and surprisingly nimble handling. The MKZ's problem, though, is that it just doesn't feel as solidly engineered, sophisticated and luxurious to drive as a proper luxury sedan should be.

Maybe it's too much to expect, as this car has its origins in the stretched platform from the previous-generation Mazda 6 that it shares with the Ford Fusion. While other brands take the platforms of regular family cars and significantly augment them for luxury duty to the point of being unrecognizable, the MKZ's roots are readily apparent. So the MKZ shares the 263-horsepower V6 from the Ford Fusion Sport and drives in a very similar fashion.

Yes, there are some improved materials within the interior like real aluminum trim and Bridge of Weir leather upholstery, yet otherwise most everything is much like the Ford Fusion. This level of polish is impressive when you're paying $28,000 for it. But at $40,000, it's another story.

At this price point there are many other cars we'd suggest, like the 2011 Audi A4, 2011 BMW 3 Series, 2011 Cadillac CTS, 2011 Hyundai Genesis, Infiniti G37, 2011 Lexus ES 350 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, all of which exhibit a greater level of engineering excellence and attention to detail that cannot be quantified by feature lists or specification sheets. The 2011 Lincoln MKZ is a good car; it's just not good enough.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2011 Lincoln MKZ is a midsize entry-level luxury sedan available in a single trim level. Standard equipment includes 17-inch wheels, foglamps, full power accessories, a keyless entry pad, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated and ventilated eight-way power front seats with driver memory functions, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, leather upholstery, auto-dimming rearview mirror, Sync (voice controls, Bluetooth, navigation assistance, 911 assist and iPod interface) and a nine-speaker audio system with six-CD changer, auxiliary audio jack and satellite radio.

The Navigation package includes a rearview camera, a blind spot warning system and a navigation system that includes a touchscreen, single-CD/DVD audio player, 10GB of digital music storage, HD radio and Sirius Travel Link. A THX-certified premium surround-sound system can be added to the navigation package or obtained within the Ultimate package, which further adds 17-inch chrome-clad wheels, a sunroof (also a stand-alone item), adaptive xenon headlights, rain-sensing wipers, ambient lighting and all Navigation package items.

The Sport Appearance package adds 18-inch polished alloy wheels, a sport-turned suspension, contrasting seat piping, aluminum interior trim and a unique darkened exterior trim. The Executive package adds upgraded leather upholstery and interior trim.

Powertrains and Performance

The 2011 Lincoln MKZ is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that produces 263 hp and 249 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic is the only available transmission, but it includes a manual shift control. Front-wheel drive is standard, while the optional AWD system is notable because it can transfer power from side to side as well as front to rear.

In performance testing, an all-wheel-drive MKZ went from zero to 60 mph in 7.2 seconds, which is competitive in this premium class. Fuel economy is also fairly impressive with an EPA-estimated 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined for the front-drive model and 17/24/19 with all-wheel drive.


Standard safety features include stability and traction control, blind spot mirrors, front-seat side airbags and side curtain airbags. The 2011 Lincoln MKZ also comes standard with Ford's programmable MyKey system, which allows parents to specify limits for vehicle speed and stereo volume for their teenage drivers.

In government crash testing, the MKZ's mechanical twin, the Ford Fusion, achieved a perfect five stars for front protection and driver side protection. It earned four stars for rear side protection.

Interior Design and Special Features

The MKZ is spacious compared to most of its similarly priced luxury sedan competitors, and it benefits from comfortable seats, a widely adjustable driving position and a big trunk (16.9 cubic feet). In order to get the most out of the MKZ, we recommend loading up with the Navigation package and its wealth of handy, user-friendly technologies like navigation and Sirius Travel Link. The optional THX-certified sound system is also quite strong.

Nevertheless, the MKZ is let down by its interior. Although the materials are a bit nicer than those in the Ford Fusion Sport, the MKZ still feels more like a premium family sedan than something that should be competing with Audi or Mercedes-Benz. Though it boasts things like ventilated seat upholstery and fancy-sounding Bridge of Weir leather, the MKZ falls short of being considered a true luxury car.

Driving Impressions

The base 2011 Lincoln MKZ feels like a Fusion Sport minus the "Sport," which should be fine for most buyers seeking a quiet and comfortable luxury vehicle. Yet once you add the sport-tuned suspension and 18-inch wheels of the optional Sport Appearance package, the MKZ is suddenly transformed into an agile, fun-to-drive car that you wouldn't necessarily associate with the Lincoln brand. The steering in particular is communicative and well-weighted. There is a downside, though, because it comes with a rough ride that you also wouldn't associate with Lincoln. There are no complaints about the power from the MKZ's V6, but its soundtrack is less pleasing than other six-cylinders at this price point.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

What more do you really

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Lincoln MKZ 4dr Sedan AWD (3.5L 6cyl 6A)

I bought this 2011 Lincoln MKZ used with just over 23,000 miles for under $20k! Car has everything you could want in a luxury car, leather, 10 speaker surround sound, rear-back up, navigation with Sync and bluetooth, chrome, etc. For a car of similar size and quality in it's class you would easily be paying $7-12k more. Value is unbeatable. As for drive quality, I have test-drove an A4, TL, C300, and 328i as well as previously owned a Cadillac CTS. They all had their quirks and pros and cons. This car stands up to all of them. It may not be the best of the best, but the value in the package is unbeatable.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

3-20-2014 still a happy customer.

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Lincoln MKZ 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 6A)

My sister bought a 2010 Lincoln MKZ and took me to lunch the next day. I liked the car so much, I went to Lincoln the next day to trade in my Infiniti. I got a great deal on a 2011 Lincoln MKZ AWD and during those snow-filled roads in NY, that AWD was great! In fact, it was impressive and I didn't really think that much about it when I got the AWD vehicle. It drove through deep snow like an all terrain vehicle. The car is really solid. Comfortable on long drives. Clean interior design. DVD player. Navigation. Too much to mention. I just want to thank Lincoln for making a car for my taste: young.

3 of 7 people found this review helpful

Next time i'll look past

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Lincoln MKZ 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 6A)

I am sorry I did not drive this car for a few hours before we leased it. After the first road trip I knew I had made a mistake. Undersupported seats make for a miserable ride. You cannot get the air from dash vest off of you. The radio is rediculous and the wind and road noise is awful. The sloppy shifting transmission newer knows what gear it wants. The memory seats have a short memory. I sure don't see any value or luxury in this MKZ.

More than satisfied

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Lincoln MKZ 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 6A)

I have almost nothing but good things to say about this car. Base model comes very well equipped with virtually everything you would hope to have in a entry level premium sedan. As a technology junkie, the Microsoft-powered Sync interface (standard), is absolutely top shelf. The ride is quiet and supple, with the V6 supplying plenty of power as well as fuel economy. Handling is a tad underwhelming, but that is really my only beef. The cabin is well laid out, and both fit and finish and interior materials are very good. I find the seats to be very comfortable, and rear legroom is satisfactory. Even without A or Z plan, my sign and drive lease payment was under $400 a month. Recommended!

Luxury sports car

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Vehicle: 2011 Lincoln MKZ 4dr Sedan AWD (3.5L 6cyl 6A)

I have had my MKZ for 6 months now and overall it is a great car. I was looking for a comfortable car that kept me connected to the road and the MKZ did that better then CTS, BMW or Mercedes for the dollar. If you spend allot of time in the car as I do 8500 miles already and you are 6'4" this is a great vehicle. I am getting 21 MPG. The car is also very quiet. Navigation is also accurate and speech access makes it easy to use wile driving. Plenty of power both off the start and passing however transmission gets rough when you get on it. Trans is smooth during normal driving. You have to pull out the headlight switch to turn on driving lights this is poor placement as your knee turns it off.

The good. bad, the ugly

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Lincoln MKZ 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 6A)

At last a Ford product that doesn't need four acres to turn around. Peppy adequate engine with and excellent handling. Blind spot warning great, as is backup monitor. Interior is very quiet. Some road noise but the OE tires are not the quietest in the world. Front seats from hell. Probably OK for fat, obese people but anyone lesser needs a pillow for sit comfort if going over 50 mies. The remote trunk opening switch is perfectly located to bump with your knee when the driver enters at least 3 our of four times. Rear head restraints block out part of rear view vision. Good fit and finish.

Talk About The 2011 MKZ

2011 Lincoln MKZ Discussions See all Started By

Two months ago bought a CPO 2011 AWD MKZ with moon roof, chrome package, and premium paint. Had 38k miles and was in great shape. I bought it at Lincoln of Wayne in NJ and the experience was great. ...

Ford/Lincoln had a disastrous launch on the MKZ, that's for sure. Couldn't have come at a worse time for them. I had no problems with my 2011 MKZ hybrid purchase, or since. Hope Lincoln gets back o...

I had my 2011 MKX serviced the other day and started talking to the sales guys about the MKZ. They're telling me that there's equity in my MKX, but haven't shown a number yet. Is there a general cal...

Read more about the 2011 Lincoln MKZ

Gas Mileage


  • 18
  • cty
  • 27
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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