2019 Lincoln MKC

By October 9, 2019

The 2019 Lincoln MKC is a luxury crossover SUV that was new in the 2015 model year. It shares a platform with the Ford Escape. It’s due to be replaced in 2020 by a new vehicle, the Lincoln Corsair.

For the 2019 model year, Lincoln has given its MKC a handsome facelift, led by a revised front end. With its more modern and refined look, the MKC has moved further upscale visually. Pre-collision warning with pedestrian detection is newly available. 

Lincoln offers the MKC in base, Select, Reserve, and Black Label trim levels.

Two engines are available for 2019. The standard 2.0-liter turbo-4 develops 240 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque. Select trim level and up can be equipped with an optional 2.3-liter turbo-4, generating 285 horsepower and 305 pound-feet. All-wheel drive is standard with the 2.3-liter engine. Otherwise, front-drive is standard, with all-wheel drive optional.

Each 4-cylinder engine mates with a 6-speed automatic transmission, controlled by a pushbutton gear selector.

Crash-test ratings by the two testing agencies are somewhat contradictory. The NHTSA gave the MKC a four-star score overall and for frontal-impact, with five stars for side-impact. The IIHS said the MKC is “Good” for side-impact and moderate front overlap collisions. 

For the 2019 model year, Lincoln offers forward-collision warnings with automatic emergency braking. Blind-spot monitors and rear cross-traffic alerts also are available. 

Many features on higher trim levels are available individually on less-expensive models. Navigation, a dual-pane sunroof, and adaptive shocks can be added in Select and higher trim levels.

Model Lineup

Prices do not include $995 destination charge.

Standard ($33,995 with front-drive, $36,405 with all-wheel drive) comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, 10-speaker audio, dual-zone automatic climate control, synthetic leather upholstery, power liftgate, automatic LED headlights, 8.0-inch touchscreen with Ford’s Sync 3 infotainment system, wi-fi hotspot, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.

Select ($36,750 with FWD, $39,160 with AWD) gets leather upholstery, ambient lighting, painted 18-inch alloy wheels, power tilt/telescopic steering column, 12-way power front seats, wood trim, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

Reserve ($40,625 with FWD, $43,035 with AWD) adds navigation, machined 18-inch wheels, heated/cooled front seats, panoramic sunroof, hands-free power liftgate, and blind-spot monitors.

Black Label ($47,200 with FWD, $49,610 with AWD) comes with an adaptive suspension, 19-inch wheels, upgraded leather upholstery, heated rear seats and steering wheel, and automatic high-beam headlights. Three designer color themes are available.

Exterior

A fresh design for 2019 gives the MKC a greater sense of luxury. The reworked front end highlights the new, more defined look. The MKC’s styling now comes closer to that of Lincoln’s sedans, as well as its bigger SUVs.

Heavily chromed, the well-sculpted grille is flanked by mildly reshaped LED headlights above a tasteful chrome-accented lower bumper. Viewed from the side, differences between the 2019 model and its forerunner are few.

Interior 

Based upon its solid, high-quality cabin alone, the smallest Lincoln crossover warrants consideration as a serious luxury contender. Woodgrain and brushed-metal trim elements are tastefully positioned.

Refined materials throughout the quiet cabin carry on and amplify Lincoln’s luxury heritage. Even the base model, upholstered in synthetic leather and cloth, conveys a luxury aura. Reserve trim steps up to Bridge of Weir leather.  Black Label MKCs go the extra mile, available in any of three designer themes: Heritage (white leather and Argento wood), Indulgence (brown leather with Ziricote wood), and Center Stage (black leather with Alcantara seat inserts).

The front seats are supple and spacious. They’re good for long-distance cruises. So are the rear seats, though they’re more shy on leg and head room. A panoramic sunroof cuts into headroom as well. Still, 36.8 inches of rear-seat leg room should be enough for most adult passengers. 

Folding down the rear seat backs expands 25.2 cubic feet of cargo volume to 53.1 cubic feet.

The simple dashboard and center console look lovely. Outward vision from the front seats are wide-open, and Ford’s Sync 3 infotainment setup is easy to use.

Driving Impressions

Performance remains a strong point for the 2019 MKC. Satisfying turbocharged engines meld with refined road manners.

Most drivers will be pleased with the 2.0-liter turbo-4, which delivers more than adequate acceleration. If anything, the optional 2.3-liter turbo-4 provides more power than is needed in this category. Offered only with all-wheel drive, the bigger engine promises 0-60 mph acceleration in less than 7 seconds. Either 6-speed automatic handles its task effectively, helping to yield an enjoyable experience.

Lincoln’s signature virtue has long been a quiet ride. That trend continues with the MKC, except in Sport mode, where the ride gets much more firm.

Handling talents match those of European rivals from Audi and BMW. Even so, an MKC behaves best when cruising serenely on largely straight highways. Optional adjustable dampers can keep the ride under control in most conditions.

Reserve and Black Label trim levels are especially quiet The base engine, in particular, tends to fade into the background while cruising.

With either engine, an MKC can tow up to 3,000 pounds. Fuel economy in the 2.0-liter MKC is EPA-rated at 20/27 mpg City/Highway, 23 Combined. All-wheel drive reduces each estimate, to 19/25/21 mpg.

Models with the 2.3-liter turbo-4 and all-wheel drive are a bit less thrifty, EPA-rated at 18/25 mpg City/Highway, 20 Combined. Premium gasoline is recommended.

Final Word

Well-equipped in base trim, the updated 2019 MKC looks the part of a luxurious Lincoln. In Select trim, this compact crossover feels more expensive than its cost suggests. In Black Label editions, the MKC has luxury touches and themes absent on anything in its class and price range.

 

Driving impressions by The Car Connection. James M. Flammang contributed to this report.