For decades, American car shoppers have typically gravitated toward European and Japanese brands for entry-level luxury sedans. Lincoln has been trying to chip away at the market with the Ford Fusion-based MKZ for years now but with limited success.
Last year, Lincoln restyled the MKZ's front end with a new look first introduced by the brand's new Continental sedan. Available LED headlights and a Jaguar-esque grille add character to the car's sleek lines. Lincoln also introduced a new turbocharged V6 engine good for up to 400 horsepower, which is an impressive output for this class of car. A base turbocharged four-cylinder engine and the MKZ Hybrid continue to round out the MKZ's powertrain lineup.
Inside are plenty of standard luxury features and the MKZ's Sync 3 infotainment interface, which is quick and easy to use. In other aspects, however, you'll find that the MKZ comes across as pretty average. Interior materials quality isn't as rich as you'll find in other cars in this class, for example, and the rear seat isn't particularly accommodating for adults.
If you're shopping for a luxury sedan that gives you a lot of features for your money, or if high fuel economy is a priority, we think the 2018 Lincoln MKZ is worth checking out. Otherwise, you might find some rival luxury sedans are more appealing overall.
trim levels & features
The 2018 Lincoln MKZ is available with three powertrains — a four-cylinder, six-cylinder and hybrid — and four trims. The Premiere comes fairly well-equipped, but go with the Select to get additional interior and technology options. The Reserve offers the most flexibility with options and packages. Finally, the Black Label is just as much about ownership experience as a stand-alone a trim, providing owners with free washes and a higher level of roadside assistance and maintenance.
For all trims, a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four (245 hp, 275 lb-ft) is standard, and is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive. All-wheel drive is available as an option. For the Select, Reserve and Black Label trims, a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 (also with a six-speed automatic) is optional, and can be equipped with front-wheel drive (350 hp, 400 lb-ft) or all-wheel drive (400 hp, 400 lb-ft). A hybrid powertrain is also available, and uses a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine combined with an electric motor to produce a combined 188 hp.
The Premiere base model comes well-equipped with features such as 18-inch wheels, an adaptive suspension, adaptive xenon headlights, heated mirrors, rear parking sensors, keyless entry and ignition, dual-zone automatic climate control, simulated leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats with heating, driver-seat memory settings and a 60/40-split folding rear seat with pass-through. Standard technology features a rearview camera, Bluetooth, Lincoln's Sync 3 infotainment interface, an 8-inch touchscreen display, Sync smartphone app integration, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and an 11-speaker sound system with a CD player, satellite radio and two USB ports.
Stepping up to the Select model gets you an auto-dimming driver-side mirror, leather upholstery, genuine wood trim, front seats with four-way power lumbar adjustment, a power-adjustable steering wheel, enhanced interior ambient lighting, a 110-volt household-style power outlet and two rear-seat USB charging ports.
Optional for the Select is the Select Plus package, which adds a navigation system, power trunklid, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.
The Reserve trim level has those features as standard, plus 19-inch wheels, ventilated front seats and enhanced connectivity functionality. A 14-speaker Revel audio system with HD radio capability is also standard.
There's also the Black Label trim. It comes equipped similarly to the Reserve but has an upgraded interior (upgraded and extended leather upholstery and a simulated suede headliner, most notably) and a choice of three unique themes. The Black Label also offers a host of special services, including a mobile showroom, remote vehicle delivery, pickup and drop-off of your car for service work, an extended premium maintenance plan and more.
Most options are grouped into packages. The Climate package bundles automatic high-beam control, automatic wipers, a windshield wiper de-icer, a heated steering wheel and heated rear seats. The Technology package has adaptive cruise control, a forward collision warning system with pre-collision assist, lane departure warning and intervention, and an automated parking system (both parallel and perpendicular parking).
The Reserve model can be had with a Luxury package that contains LED headlights and a premium Revel Ultima audio system with 20 speakers and HD radio. There's also a Driver's package with 19-inch polished alloy wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, torque vectoring (with the turbo V6 and AWD), painted brake calipers, multi-contour front seats, and distinctive interior and exterior trim details. The Climate and Technology packages are available with the Reserve as well.
Major stand-alone options include the choice of 19-inch polished alloy wheels, a traditional sunroof or a panoramic moonroof, a power rear sunshade and inflatable rear safety belts.
noise & vibration
ease of use
getting in/getting out
child safety seat accomodation
audio & navigation
edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.