Five stars is the highest rating.
On sale now at Lincoln dealerships, the 2016 MKC received four stars in the front crash test, five stars in the side crash test and four stars in the rollover crash test.
The rating applies to front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive versions of the MKC.
The 2016 Lincoln MKC comes standard with stability control, antilock brakes, a rearview camera, front-seat side airbags, a driver knee airbag and side-curtain airbags.
Also standard is MyKey, which allows parents to set electronic parameters (such as maximum speed and radio volume) for when teenagers are behind the wheel.
Blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-departure warning, lane-departure intervention and a frontal-collision warning system with emergency brake priming are optional.
The 2016 MKC is partially rated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, earning "good" scores in the side and moderate overlap front crash test. The forces in that test are similar to those that would result from a frontal offset crash between two vehicles of the same weight, each going just under 40 mph.
Edmunds says: Car shoppers keeping score should note that the 2016 Audi Q5 earned a four-star overall safety rating from NHTSA, while the 2016 Cadillac SRX earned the highest five-star overall safety rating. The 2016 Lexus RX 350 has not been rated.