With the MKZ Hybrid, Lincoln has set its sights set on its direct competitor, the Lexus ES 300h, and just scored major points in the fuel-economy department. The EPA gave the 2013 MKZ Hybrid a rating of 45 mpg across the board: city/highway/combined. The ES 300h is rated at 40/39 mpg city/highway.
For model-year 2013, the Lincoln's midsize sedan gets a fresh face, more features and new powertrains for the regular and hybrid models. The hybrid uses a version of the 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid's powertrain: It teams a 141-horsepower, 2.0-liter four-cylinder with a 47-hp electric motor for a total of 188-hp. The ES 300h, however, offers 200-hp from a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and electric motor.
Rather than pay a price premium for the hybrid model, which is common, the 2013 MKZ starts at $36,800, including destination. This is also the base price of the MKZ lineup. The 2013 Lexus ES 300h starts at $39,745, including destination, which is $2,750 more than the 2013 ES 350.
The MKZ Hybrid goes on sale later this year.