2015 Lincoln MKC Test Drive Review
Whenever I see a new compact CUV model, I ask myself this question: what is this new model’s purpose? What problem does it solve?
For the Lincoln MKC, from my point of view the most important factor for people who buy it instead of a similar size sedan is simply the look of the SUV shape.
Logically speaking the 2-row-seat MKC neither provides fundamentally larger interior space, nor does it has serious offroad capability which can distinguish itself from other sedans. But I understand car consumers always make decisions not based on logical reasoning, but emotionally. This is the reason why I said in the above that the styles and shapes is the most appealing factor for the market.
Let me walk you around the MKC’s interior features.
Compared to a sedan, one major difference in the MKC’s seating is you can sit more upright thanks to its larger headroom.
However the legroom for the front seats is a little bit limited, I need to move the seat backwards, to the extent that the backrest is parallel to the B-pillar.
This shows how the driver seat footwell looks like, you can clearly see the OBD II diagnostic socket is fully exposed without anything covering and protecting it.
This photo shows the interior environments around the driver’s seat.
The front passenger seat.
Because the MKC is based on the front-wheel-drive platform, the engine and transmission are all hosted within the engine bay in front of the passenger cabin, the width of the center tunnel in the cabin can be optimized to allow maximum transverse space for the driver seat. Despite than some RWD cars, you do not need to “bend” your right leg towards the left to reach for the gas pedal.
I am not sure how Ford designs MKC’s underbody, but it looks like there are some mechanical/electrical parts that sit under the floor deck, because there are some small bulges on the floor here and there in the front seats. The carpet does not lay flat on it. Even though this does not affect how the MKC drives, this does give me an impression that the design of this CUV was not carefully planned and executed, which leads to lots of “surprises” or late-phase patches that causes such bulges need to be made in the floor.
The rear seat legroom is between the size of a compact sedan and a mid-size sedan, but the thickness of the interior door panels makes it less easy to access the rear cabin.
This photo should give you an accurate feel of the space of the second row.
Center armrest is covered with leather, but the stitching quality is not on the same level as other luxury cars.
Center console box is not large, you can put cellphones in it but definitely not something with the iPad-size.
Cupholder location is good, you do not have to lean forward, or twist your arm backwards to reach it.
The trunk of the MKC has reasonable volume. The height is good, but the width can be done better – it can barely fit a folded baby jogger. The depth is worse than a mid-size sedan, but this is typical for a compact CUV.
There is no space left under the trunk – the spare tire and all necessary emergency tools occupy all the space under the trunk cover.
Our test car comes with the Panoramic Vista Roof, so you can make the whole cabin bright on a cloudy day.
The overhead control panels: lights, moon roof open/close, power shade of the panoramic roof etc.
Window control buttons on the driver door armrest, it is the same as those ones that in other Ford vehicles such as the Fusion.
Our MKC test car also has the upgraded THX audio system, adding another 5 speakers and better amplifier. It costs you another $995, pretty expensive.
The door sill plates with the “Lincoln” letters.
Now we will focus on the center console and dash. The layout of the MKC center console is very similar to other Lincoln products such as the MKZ.
It has an odd design: there is no transmission shifter, instead the P/R/N/D selection is in the format of buttons, placed on the left hand side of the center LCD screen. The control and button layout is good and easy to use, however you can not tell the quality of the plastic material are different than those non-luxury Ford vehicles such as the Focus/Fusion/Escape etc.
There are some portions of the dash using the “stitched leather wrapped” effect (it’s not real leather, just soft-touch plastics with stitching effect).
There is a lot of soft plastic on the dash, console and interior panels, this is better than using the hard plastic; however the quality and the visual effects of its surfaces does not look like a luxury car at all, it is just like other Ford cars. The main problem is its surface texture and how it reflects lights is too artificial, you know it wants to imitate genuine leather, but the effect is rather fake.
The woodtrim in our test car looks like unprocessed, with a raw appeal. From my personal taste, it looks too exaggerated and too overwhelming when you are surrounded by them in a long-distance road trip. Since the woodtrim has a higher quality feel, it does not blend into the other parts inside the cabin. Below photos are these woodtrims in different locations.
New cars within the past 1 – 2 years have paid attention to in-car connectivities. The MKC has several USB sockets, one Micro SD card slot. Of course, Bluetooth is also available as well.
The MKC’s interior uses some upscale materials, but generally speaking it has relatively low build quality, and for some parts there are even some design issues. Following I will point out some.
1. What is that little plastic piece extended from the leather? Even a $100 sofa in IKEA wouldn’t have material issues like this.
2. Some plastic panel trims are not properly installed, with large and uneven gaps.
3. See this AC vent under the driver seat? I am talking about the low-quality plastic it uses. The design of this vent is pathetic: it even does not clear the electronic wires/motors under the driver seat.
So if you move the seat forward, it will trap the upper side of that vent and pull the whole plastic parts out.
But don’t worry, the vent didn’t break, you just need to connect it back to the underfloor pipe. That AC vent is just loosely attached to the air pipes and it rattles once your car hits a speed bump.
The build quality of the MKC is quite laughable considering our test car carries a price tag of more than $45k. Its build quality simply ruins the luxury image – instead it’s hard for me to consider it to be luxury.
In the next sections I will review the electronic features and mechanical part of the 2015 MKC.
Feel free to leave a question or share an opinion in the comment box below.