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Lincoln MKS

Refreshed not a moment too soon.

Lincoln has been floundering without a true flagship for years. Although the 2013 MKS still uses an aging platform, there are a number of mechanical changes that make it more competitive. Lincoln Drive Control offers three driver-selectable modes — Comfort, Normal, and Sport — affecting the steering, suspension, throttle, transmission, and active noise control. The biggest difference in the three modes comes from the adaptive dampers that noticeably change ride quality with each setting. Lincoln isn’t offering any new engines for 2013, but the standard 3.7-liter V-6 now offers 304 hp and up to a 2-mpg improvement over the 2012 EPA highway rating. Braking upgrades give the MKS much larger rotors front and rear, as well as better brake cooling, which should reduce brake fade during aggressive driving. Lincoln didn’t ignore the design of the to make the mechanical changes. The grille, the hood, the front fenders, and the front and rear fascias are all-new for 2013, but they don’t give the car a significant visual change. In other words, it’ll look different from a 2012 model if you park next to one, but we wouldn’t go so far as to call it beautiful on its own.

COMPETITORS

Audi A6

Infiniti M

Lexus GS

Mercedes-Benz E-class

new for 2013

Significant mechanical upgrades give the MKS more power, better fuel economy, and a much more composed ride over a variety of road surfaces. The Sync system is upgraded to include operator assist and in-car Wi-Fi hot-spot capability for passengers. A revised interior offers new color combinations and higher-quality materials.

SAFETY EQUIPMENT

ABS; front, side, and side curtain air bags; and traction and stability control are standard. Blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, parallel-parking assistance, programmable MyKey, lane-keep assist, collision warning, and adaptive headlamps are optional.

MPG

CITY 17–18

HWY 25–27

PRO

Much better handling

More powerful

CON

Still not attractive

MyLincoln Touch has a steep learning curve

Base Price Range: $43,685–$50,765

SPECIFICATIONS

DRIVE: Front-wheel, 4-wheel

TRIM LEVELS: MKS, MKS EcoBoost

BODY STYLE: Sedan, 5-passenger

ENGINES: 3.5L turbo V-6, 365 hp, 350 lb-ft

3.7L V-6, 304 hp, 279 lb-ft

TRANSMISSION: 6-speed automatic

PASSENGER VOLUME: 105.8 cu ft

CARGO SPACE: 18.7 cu ft

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