2011 Lincoln MKT

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$44,300

starting MSRP

2011 Lincoln MKT
2011 Lincoln MKT

Key specs

Base trim shown

Overview

The good:

  • EcoBoost V-6's performance and fuel economy
  • Interior materials quality
  • Lots of standard features
  • Second-row comfort

The bad:

  • Third-row headroom
  • Looks a bit bloated from the back

2 trims

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

Wondering which trim is right for you?

Our 2011 Lincoln MKT trim comparison will help you decide.

Notable features

  • Seating for six or seven
  • Optional 355-hp, twin-turbo EcoBoost V-6
  • FWD or AWD
  • Optional refrigerator

2011 Lincoln MKT review: Our expert's take

By David Thomas

The verdict:

Versus the competiton:

The MKT is an impressive combination of performance, utility, technology and even affordability among its competition — and I want one in my driveway.

When I reviewed the MKT when it debuted for 2010, I was smitten with the massive, pseudo-luxury people-hauler. Sure, its looks are beyond polarizing. Considering I’m one of the only Cars.com editors who likes the styling, I’d say you have a one in 10 chance of finding someone of a similar mind. Good luck getting your spouse to sign up.

Not much about the MKT has changed for 2011, but that’s typical just a year after a new car debuts. To check out the few changes, go here.

Driving

Equipped with an optional EcoBoost turbocharged V-6 engine and all-wheel drive, the MKT hustles through town and carves up interstates like a sushi chef does tuna. It’s a thrilling experience, mainly because you’re piloting a vehicle that you could accurately call a boat. At 207.6 inches long, it’s huge; it might not fit in your garage. It doesn’t feel nimble on the road, meaning it doesn’t take corners easily — you have to take the long wheelbase into account — but all that power comes on perfectly, without any turbo lag.

Looks

Whether it’s the hearse-like black, the eggplant-purple or the dark red one I ogle at my local Lincoln dealership whenever I drive by, I think the MKT is a breathtaking design.

Others might say it takes their breath away in another manner, however.

The drooping fangs of the giant grille and the narrow headlights give it a slightly sinister face, while the rear is a tad bulbous and art-deco inspired.

On the whole, though, it’s hard to make something this large look all that bad, but everyone has an opinion. If you’ve made it this far into this review, maybe we’re of like minds on the styling.

Interior

The problem with the MKT is that it’s a Lincoln, and Ford’s luxury brand is still a work in progress when it comes to interior materials. Everything is fairly nice, but compared with a Lexus or Acura, it’s a step or two below in certain areas. Luckily, versus the Acura MDX you get much more space in the MKT for nearly identical dollars. Against the new Lexus GX I recently tested, you get a vastly better driving experience and save thousands on the MKT’s sticker.

Despite a slightly chintzier button here and a clunkier plastic door panel there, I’ll still take the MKT.

The driver’s seat is comfortable for shorter drivers, but many editors who are 6 feet and taller had a hard time getting it to go far enough back, which hurt the MKT in a recent Faceoff against the MDX and Buick Enclave.

The one difference between my 2011 tester and the 2010 you see in the video on the right was the inclusion of optional second-row captain’s chairs and a center-mounted refrigerator. Not only do you lose the capacity to carry an extra person, the added cargo area seems useless, especially the small refrigerator. I also didn’t find the seats all that comfortable; they’re not a huge upgrade from the bench. Save $995 and go with the bench seat — and save yourself another $895 by not adding that refrigerator.

The third row is uncomfortable in terms of headroom. The sloping rear design aesthetic on the outside means your head will butt the ceiling inside, unless you’re a small child or teenager. Adults over 5-foot-5 or so will never want to be placed there. It’s unfortunate, because the smaller MDX and Enclave have somewhat comfortable third rows despite being considerably shorter than the MKT. The Ford Flex, upon which the MKT is based, doesn’t have the headroom issue either because of its boxy design. 

Cargo

When the third row seats are up, there’s a nice, deep well, similar to what you find in a minivan, delivering 17.9 cubic feet of storage. The seats fold flat to expand to a very usable 39.6 cubic feet of volume behind the second row. Once all the seats are folded, maximum cargo space is 75.9 cubic feet.

Safety

The Lincoln MKT is a Top Safety Pick from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which means it scores the top grade of Good in front, side and rear crash tests, as well as a new roof-strength test for rollovers. The only other luxury three-row crossover to receive this score is the Volvo XC90, and the non-luxury winners with three rows (besides the MKT’s Ford Flex sibling) — the Dodge Journey, Subaru Tribeca and Toyota Highlander — are smaller.

The MKT can be equipped with an optional blind spot warning system, adaptive cruise control and a collision warning system.

Lincoln MKT in the Market

Sometimes the luster fades off an all-new model when you revisit it a year later. Newer designs come along to woo you, and often the love you once felt for it just doesn’t seem as alluring. And sometimes it does.

I’m glad the MKT returned to my clutches for 2011, because I still love this ungainly looking crossover. I also, however, am a realist who understands that the world doesn’t always share my tastes.

Send David an email  

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.9
  • Interior design 4.9
  • Performance 4.9
  • Value for the money 4.4
  • Exterior styling 4.0
  • Reliability 4.0

Most recent consumer reviews

4.7

This car meant business

I loved this car for the comfort and luxury. It lasted only 4 years for me but it was a great car. Being a ford engine it doesn’t last long at 125000 miles the timing chain needed replaced and the engine wasn’t far behind. Not a ford fan but these cars are great for style and comforts!

5.0

WHO COULD ASK FOR ANYTHING MORE!!

Power, performance, luxury and all the room you would ever need. Step on the gas & it goes, goes, goes. Step on the brakes & it stops on a dime. Put in AWD & there is no place you cannot go. Keep your foot out of the gas and your mileage increases surpringly well. Fold down 2nd & 3rd row seats & you can transport an amazing amount of cargo. All seats up & 7 fit more comfortably than you can imagine.

5.0

Most comfortable car I've ever owned.

This car has all the bells and whistles expected from a luxury car. AWD is excellent in the snow! 7 passenger seating with tons of leg room. Priced well below similar cars.

See all 8 consumer reviews

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