Caraganza First Drive Review 2019 Lincoln MKC: Escape to subtle luxury



I’m not big into luxury stuff; I like my coffee black, eggs over easy with the yolks and all the cholesterol thank you very much.  It’s not that I haven’t ever been exposed to such things; I grew up in an upper middle class family, while not wealthy, not exactly poor, but my mom still shopped at K-Mart even though she didn’t have to, and despite living on five acres in a 28 room house with a master bathroom larger than some apartments I lived in as an adult, my dad mowed those five acres with a push mower; until  came of age of course, then, well you can guess the rest.

So no, there were no caviar snacks and my mom didn’t wear a fur coat. But there was a Lincoln in the driveway or parked inside the 8-car garage.

I’d like to think that’s because Lincoln kind of reflected our family; subtle luxury without being pretentious.

And that holds true with Lincoln today.  Perhaps the Ford luxury brand has survived all the turmoil in the auto industry simply because of what it is; a well-built vehicle with enough luxury and elegance to satisfy most without being conceited.

My thoughts raced back to my childhood when Lincoln send me an MKC for a recent week. The smallest crossover in the lineup, the MKC is based on the Ford Escape but stands all on its own.

I had an MKC back in 2016 and liked it very much.  So then there was little doubt I would enjoy this latest model.

And I was correct.

For 2019 the Lincoln MKC got a new grill, a closer match to the newer models in the lineup like the Continental and Navigator, and like those vehicles give the MKC a much-needed fresh look. Safety features have also been updated, adding pedestrian detection to the forward-collision mitigation function.

The 2019 MKC comes in Premiere, Select, Reserve and Black Label trim levels.



The base Lincoln MKC Premiere has a powered tailgate, heated front seats with driver’s-side memory settings, Wi-Fi, two USB ports, satellite radio, rearview camera, rear parking sensors, reclining rear seats, and active noise control. MKC Select replaces Leatherette/aluminum cabin appointments with Bridge of Weir leather and premium wood, while adding ambient lighting, 10-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, and power-folding side mirrors. The MKC Reserve brings heated/cooled front seats, panoramic glass roof, navigation, the MyLincoln Mobile app for remote-vehicle access, blind-spot monitoring, and a power-adjustable tilt/telescope steering column. The Black Label model has an adaptive suspension, higher-quality leather, and more trim options. The Black Label also adds a few cool concierge services with perks like a personalized shopping experience, no charge car detailing and washes, and a longer warranty. There are also reservations and a special menu at a small group of partner restaurants.

One thing that every Lincoln owner enjoys, and something that helps them stand out from the crowd, is that every 2019 Lincoln, including the new MKC, comes with complimentary vehicle pickup/delivery for all service and maintenance. A loaner car is also part of the deal.

My tester for the week was the Black Label.  I immediately liked the new classier look. And the elegant interior with its attention to detail, styling flair and comfort was just as I remembered.

The modern interior design uses soft-touch materials, intelligent ergonomics and plenty of tech anchored by a right-sized 8-inch touchscreen.  Despite this being a small crossover, the max cargo space 53.1 cubic feet seemed to be enough for a small family for everyday use.

Under the hood, the MKC shares its base 245-hp turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder with the Escape. My Black Label tester had the turbocharged 285-hp 2.3-liter four-cylinder that’s optional in the lineup. Power is transferred to the road by a six-speed automatic in all models. All-wheel-drive models get an adaptive suspension, an option on front-wheel-drive models. The Black Label tester had the AWD.

On the road the cabin is indeed a very nice place to be. The sound from the 14-speaker THX II Certified Audio system is superb and the ride while nestled in the cushy comfortable seats inside the quiet interior is a very satisfying and pleasant experience.

A 6.6-second run from zero to 60 mph isn’t exactly thrilling or all that fast, but this isn’t a sports car. My tester had the optional Continuously Controlled Damping setup with modes ranging from Comfort to Sport so dialing in the suspension is easy and the ride can go from crisp to almost marshmallow.

Not being a crossover fan, I would still prefer the Continental, but the MKC is still filled with all the goodness Lincoln has always been known for.  I still like my eggs over easy, and my coffee black, and I still mow my own grass.  And if I was looking for vehicle with quiet, unpretentious luxury, there’s little doubt I would look no further than Lincoln.

The 2019 Lincoln MKC Black Label AWD
MSRP: $49,610
MSRP (as tested): $55,750
Engine: 2.3-liter turbocharged inline-4, 285 hp @ 5500 rpm, 305 lb-ft of torque @ 2,750 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed shiftable automatic
Fuel Mileage (EPA): 18 city, 25 highway, 20 combined
Fuel Mileage (as tested, mixed conditions): 22 mpg
Base Curb Weight (lbs) 3823

Interior Dimensions
Front Head Room (in) 39.6
Second Leg Room (in) 36.8
Passenger Capacity 5
Front Hip Room (in) 54.4
Front Leg Room (in) 42.8
Second Shoulder Room (in) 55.3
Passenger Volume (ft³) 97.9
Second Head Room (in) 38.7
Front Shoulder Room (in) 56
Second Hip Room (in) 52.8

Exterior Dimensions
Height, Overall (in) 65.2
Wheelbase (in) 105.9
Track Width, Front (in) 62.4
Width, Max w/o mirrors (in) 73.4
Track Width, Rear (in) 62.5
Cargo Area Dimensions
Cargo Volume to Seat 3 (ft³) 25.2
Cargo Volume to Seat 1 (ft³) 53.1
Cargo Volume to Seat 2 (ft³) 25.2

Basic Miles – 50000 miles
Basic Years – 4 years
Corrosion/Rust Through Miles – Unlimited miles
Corrosion/Rust Through Years – 5 years
Powertrain Miles – 70000 miles
Powertrain Years – 6 years
Roadside Assistance Miles – 70000 miles
Roadside Assistance Years – 6 years

Greg Engle