Face-off: 2019 Lincoln MKC Boldly Goes Where Several Lincolns Have Gone Before

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
face off 2019 lincoln mkc boldly goes where several lincolns have gone before

As part of its effort to align all of its products under the same general styling umbrella, Lincoln’s smallest crossover, the MKC, undergoes a significant facelift for 2019. Well, significant when viewed from a head-on angle.

The mid-cycle refresh, available to customers next summer, sees the baby Lincoln’s split waterfall grille jettisoned in favor of a corporate, Continental-esque opening (though the smaller MKZ sedan’s nose seems a direct match). Improvements in safety equipment round out the updated package.

Lincoln claims there’s changes to be seen in the rear design, but both a quick and lengthier glance at the new and outgoing model fail to rustle up anything different. Odd, that. Up front, the LED headlights flanking the one-piece grille have undergone some reshaping.

The same front end styling change awaits the larger MKX in the near future, and we’re likely to see both of these updated models paraded around on the looming U.S. auto show circuit. Besides the addition of pedestrian detection to the model’s available Pre-Collision Assist, convenience and safety technology remains pretty much unchanged for 2019. Rialto Green joins the color palate for top-spec Reserve trim.

Inside, the story remains the same. However, going back to that grille — while the new one-piece hole blends well with the MKC’s sculpted sides, it does appear that the MKZ transplant left this higher-riding vehicle with a lot of extra real estate below its nose. (See below for comparison.) It would be pleasing to see a slightly taller opening, but that would require a more significant fascia reconstruction. Just our two cents.

In case you’re wondering whether there’s even a 2018 model to consider, there is. With an entry MSRP of $34,280, the 2018 model adds $475 to the base price of the 2017 MKC. The only change appears to be a slight power bump for the base 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine. From 2018 onwards, that motor makes 245 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque, up 5 hp and 5 lb-ft.

The same 285 hp, 305 lb-ft 2.3-liter EcoBoost four serves as an upgrade for 2018 and 2019 models, mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Front- and all-wheel drive carries over, as well.

Despite not being top-of-mind to every premium buyer, the MKC remains an important gateway vehicle for the Lincoln brand. The automaker claims over half of MKC buyers are women, and over half of the crossover’s customers are poached from other brands.

Sales of the MKC rose 10.3 percent in the U.S. in October, with year-to-date volume up 8.7 percent.

[Image: Ford Motor Company]

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3 of 23 comments
  • Tonyola Tonyola on Nov 21, 2017

    Now change the name from MKC to something else - like a real word.

  • Detroitguy Detroitguy on Nov 21, 2017

    Why does every Lincoln have to have a single rear tail light? This one actually looks better than most or their efforts, but it always strikes me as cheap. I've always thought Ford tail lights are the worst in the business. Case in point, the previous generation Fusion with the "snakeskin" rear tail lights. The only thing worse was when GM tried to cheap out on tail lights for the Traverse. They thought they were mimicking the Camaro's, but they came out looking like two behinds.

  • Bob65688581 Small by American standards, this car is just right for Europe, and probably China, although I don't really know, there. Upscale small cars don't exist in the US because Americans associate size and luxury, so it will have a tough time in the States... but again Europe is used to such cars. Audi has been making "small, upscale" since forever. As usual, Americans will miss an opportunity. I'll buy one, though!Contrary to your text, the EX30 has nothing whatsoever to do with the XC40 or C40, being built on a dedicated chassis.
  • Tassos Chinese owned Vollvo-Geely must have the best PR department of all automakers. A TINY maker with only 0.5-0.8% market share in the US, it is in the news every day.I have lost count how many different models Volvo has, and it is shocking how FEW of each miserable one it sells in the US market.Approximately, it sells as many units (TOTAL) as is the total number of loser models it offers.
  • ToolGuy Seems pretty reasonable to me. (Sorry)
  • Luke42 When I moved from Virginia to Illinois, the lack of vehicle safety inspections was a big deal to me. I thought it would be a big change.However, nobody drives around in an unsafe car when they have the money to get their car fixed and driving safely.Also, Virginia's inspection regimine only meant that a car was safe to drive one day a year.Having lived with and without automotive safety inspections, my confusion is that they don't really matter that much.What does matter is preventing poverty in your state, and Illinois' generally pro-union political climate does more for automotive safety (by ensuring fair wages for tradespeople) than ticketing poor people for not having enough money to maintain their cars.
  • ToolGuy When you are pulled over for speeding, whether you are given a ticket or not should depend on how attractive you are.Source: My sister 😉