Lincoln flagship MKS is a delight to drive
THE RIDE: Four-door, five-passenger 2009 Lincoln MKS full-size AWD sedan. DOWN THE ROAD: This all-new flagship from Lincoln is a delight to drive, thanks to a powerful engine that results in an outstanding performance. Clinching the deal are luxury and creature comforts that coddle the driver and occupants. TECH & PERFORMANCE: Power is derived from a 3.7-liter V-6 engine, which puts out a healthy 275 horsepower at 6250 rpm and 276 pounds-feet of torque at 4500 rpm. It is mated to a slick 6-speed automatic transmission, which also offers SST sport mode for lively driving. Worth mentioning is all-wheel drive, which distributes torque between front and rear wheels to ensure that there is no wheel slip. Suspension falls up to a MacPherson strut and rear-facing L-shaped lower control arm with isolated sub-frame in the front. An independent multilink suspension of coil-over shocks, stamped steel lower control arms and cast upper controls takes up the rear. Front 12.25-inch and rear 12.75-inch brake discs are plentiful to bring the car to a slowdown or stop with ease. LOOK & FEEL: You can tell that this is far from your run-of-the-mill ride. A chrome Lincoln star sits amid a double-wing grille, which sweeps into jewel-like horizontal HID headlights. Also grabbing even more attention is the sculpted hood, fast-raked windshield, polished stainless-steel window surround and stainless-steel strips along the length of the car. We liked the vertical white light strip running along the edge of the deck lid with LED tail lights at the corners. The cabin is awash with luxury amenities you would expect from a Lincoln. An ebony wood strip along the instrument panel and dashboard looks elegant. The four-spoke leather steering wheel with wood atop also is stylish. Signature cool-white lighting gives the interior a rich ambiance and character. The driver and front passenger are coddled with 12-way power cooled and heated leather seats. And there is 105.9 cubic feet of interior volume, which is deserving of praise.SAFETY FIRST: Dual front and side airbags, side curtain airbag for both rows, four-wheel antilock brakes, brake assist, antiskid system, stability and traction control, tire pressure monitoring system, daytime running lights and rear-obstacle detection system are standard. OUT THE DOOR: $39,105, plus tax, tag, delivery and destination charges. BY THE NUMBERS: Tires, P235/55R18; wheelbase, 112.9 inches; length, 204.1 inches; weight, 4,276 pounds; fuel capacity, 19 gallons; city, 16 mpg; highway, 23 mpg. WHY DIG IT: Lincoln has taken the right step with the introduction of the MKS as its flagship sedan. The car is sized just right, performance, appearance and convenience wise, with numerous standard safety features. It's a winner all the way.
Nitish S. Rele is an advertising staff writer for The Tampa Tribune.