It’s been nearly nine years since Lincoln debuted the MKX nameplate, attributed to a midsize SUV developed to replace the Explorer-based, boxy Aviator model. After receiving a mid-cycle facelift in 2011, which didn’t help Lincoln move significantly more SUVs, the MKX received a thorough makeover for the 2016 model year, the results of which have been showcased at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. As with most newly unveiled Lincolns, the redesigned MKX is represents a significant departure from its predecessor in terms of styling, with the SUV receiving the brand’s new corporate look. Highlighted by the split-wing grille, blade-like headlamps and a more elegant silhouette, the 2016 Lincoln MKX sports well-balanced proportions and an overall premium feel.

The crossover is also sportier than its predecessor, a sign that Lincoln learned a thing or two from its German competitors. The dynamic side of the MKX is most noticeable in its sloping roof, muscular rear fenders, wraparound taillights and revised rear apron, which now incorporates larger, nearly rectangular exhaust outlets. Most of these features come from the 2014 MKX Concept, which now poses as an almost production-ready study.

The interior is Lincoln business as usual, with refined details and soft leathers, as well as updated safety and technology keeping the MKX up to date as a luxury SUV. Acres of high-grade leather cover everything that’s not wood or metal, with optional 22-way power front seats and a premium Revel audio system enhancing its convenience side. A 360-degree camera system, automatic parallel and perpendicular parking, pre-collision assist and cross-traffic alert are among the features drivers will benefit from once in the MKX. The only downside of the 2016 MKX is that Lincoln didn’t bother much while redesigning the interior, with most of the revisions being more of the facelift variety.

Under the hood, the MKX can be equipped with a choice of two engines and either two- or all-wheel-drive. Engine options include the familiar 3.7-liter V-6 rated at more than 300 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque and a 2.7-liter, EcoBoost V-6 that promises to crank out at least 330 ponies and 370 pound-feet. Both mills mate to a six-speed automatic transmission. Stay tuned to TopSpeed for a full review of the 2016 MKX.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Lincoln MKX.

Why it matters

The Lincoln MKS, essentially a dressed-up Ford Edge, has been doing rather well in its first years on the market — at least compared to the Aviator — but sales have dropped below the 25,000-unit mark in the last couple of years, and 2015 doesn’t look very promising. With the new MKX, Lincoln renews its hopes toward becoming an important player in the luxury segment, although it continues to cut corners to keep development and production costs down. Granted, Lincoln doesn’t stand a chance against the likes of Cadillac in North America, but the new MKX will indeed help the brand move more SUVs both in the United States and China. If only Lincoln would aim higher...

2016 Lincoln MKX

2016 Lincoln MKX Unveiled in Detroit High Resolution Exterior
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Ciprian Florea
Senior Editor and Supercar Expert -
Ciprian's passion for everything with four wheels (and more) started back when he was just a little boy, and the Lamborghini Countach was still the coolest car poster you could hang on your wall. Ciprian's career as a journalist began long before earning a Bachelor's degree, but it was only after graduating that his love for cars became a profession.  Read More
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Press Release

The all-new Lincoln MKX, debuting today at the 2015 North American International Auto Show, is designed to attract a wide range of customers in the United States and beyond by offering more technology, engine choices and personalization options.

2016 Lincoln MKX Unveiled in Detroit High Resolution Exterior
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Lincoln MKX offers the first high-end Revel® audio system in a vehicle, an available advanced 2.7-liter EcoBoost® engine and two all-new available Lincoln Black Label limited-edition designer themes.

“We are focused on delivering engaging and refined luxury vehicles with innovative and thoughtful technologies,” said Kumar Galhotra, president of Lincoln. “The all-new Lincoln MKX reflects that focus.”

The all-new Lincoln MKX goes on sale first in the United States this fall, followed by other markets including China, Canada, the Middle East, Mexico and South Korea.

The Lincoln MKX further strengthens Lincoln’s position in the global midsize premium utility segment, which represents 11 percent of the global automotive luxury market and is expected to grow to 12 percent by 2018.* It is the one of the largest luxury segments in the United States, representing about one-quarter of the retail luxury automotive market.

More power, greater agilityAutomatic word wrap
Leading the engine choices for the new Lincoln MKX is the available advanced 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged Ti-VCT EcoBoost V6. It is projected to deliver more than 330 horsepower and more than 370 lb.-ft. of torque, based on preliminary test data.

The standard engine is a 3.7-liter V6, projected to deliver 300 horsepower and 280 lb.-ft. of torque, based on preliminary test data.

2016 Lincoln MKX Unveiled in Detroit High Resolution Exterior
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Both engines are mated to a six-speed automatic transmission with push-button shift and SelectShift®. Front-wheel drive is standard, with Intelligent All-Wheel Drive optional.

The addition of the integral link rear suspension, upgrades to the body structure and chassis components, make the new model the best-handling, best-riding and quietest Lincoln MKX ever.

Available Lincoln Drive Control, a suite of ride-enhancing technologies, optimizes performance and offers three distinct modes: Normal, Sport and Comfort.

The Lincoln MKX has standard electric power-assisted steering and is the first Lincoln to offer adaptive steering.

“The new 2.7-liter EcoBoost adds a new level of performance to the all-new Lincoln MKX,” said Chief Program Engineer Elaine Bannon. “The focus is on delivering a total personalized luxury experience for our client: performance, quiet ride, power and technologies that make life easier, all in an environment wrapped in rich materials.”

A host of helpful driver aids and technologies are available, including adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping system, blind spot information system, cross-traffic alert and a height-adjustable hands-free power liftgate.

360-degree camera, enhanced park assistAutomatic word wrap
Several available technologies, starting with the 360-degree camera, a first for Lincoln in the MKX, help make all kinds of low-speed parking situations easier.

The available front camera deploys from behind the Lincoln Star badging between the two front grilles. The camera system also offers a 180-degree split view, which can be helpful in looking out in cross-traffic situations. The 360-degree view shows up to 7 feet all around the vehicle.

Lincoln MKX has an ultrasonic sensing system with 12 sensors enabling the full range of available parking-assist features: front rear side sensing, perpendicular and parallel parking assist and park out assist.

Key driver assist and safety innovations addedAutomatic word wrap
The all-new Lincoln MKX adds pre-collision assist, which may help avoid or lessen the severity some frontal crashes with another vehicle or pedestrian in certain situations and conditions. If the system detects another vehicle or pedestrian, the system will first provide a collision warning and then the system will automatically apply braking if the driver has not taken any corrective action.

Also new is the Auto Hold feature, which relieves the driver from having to press the brake pedal continuously to keep the vehicle stationary in traffic. Auto Hold releases the brakes when the accelerator pedal is pressed.

2016 Lincoln MKX Unveiled in Detroit High Resolution Exterior
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First for Lincoln, to enhance driver visibility, available LED headlamps include a feature that adapts when accelerating from 0 to 35 mph by adding width to the low-beam pattern through the use of additional LED reflector elements.

Elegance in motionAutomatic word wrap
The exterior design is dramatic, with a modern, contemporary silhouette and well-balanced proportions. Available adaptable full-LED front headlamps are subtly executed as blades, rather than projectors, aligned with the horizontal orientation of the split-wing grille.

The interior design language creates an open yet cocoon-like environment that is as quiet as it is beautiful. The push-button gear shift creates a dramatic open suspension bridge that flows from the instrument panel to the center console, providing two tiers of open space.

Elevated personalized luxury experiencesAutomatic word wrap
New available 22-way adjustable front seats with active motion help reduce muscle fatigue in the upper legs and lower back through six adjustable air bladders in the cushion and five adjustable air bladders in the lower seat back.

Further adjustments can be made through the four-way power head restraint and the power thigh extender. The thigh bolster deflates to make exit easier and reinflates after entry to the previous setting.

Always-on, built-in connectivity is provided through an available embedded modem. Via a smartphone app that communicates with the vehicle, the available MyLincoln Mobile™ app gives owners the ability to start, lock, unlock and locate their vehicle, as well as schedule a remote start.**

Exclusive Revel sound systemAutomatic word wrap
Uncompromising acoustics and award-winning home theater audio quality comes to the Lincoln MKX through the available Revel audio system.

The Revel Ultima system is standard on Lincoln Black Label editions and available on Reserve models. It features 19 speakers with point source architecture, positioning the tweeter and midrange speakers close together for superior audio quality.

Further performance and refinement is provided by QuantumLogic® Surround Sound technology, which offers three listening modes – stereo, audience and on stage; patented Clari-Fi™ technology offering advanced, real-time music reconstruction for all compressed audio sources; and a 20-channel high-voltage hybrid amplifier for class-leading dynamics and optimized transparency.

A 13-speaker Revel system designed for the ultimate audio quality experience is available on the all-new Lincoln MKX Select and Reserve.

Two new Black Label themesAutomatic word wrap
Lincoln Black Label will be available at launch with four designer themes – two of which are all-new. One is inspired by the fashion, lifestyle and art scene of 1920s Paris, while the excitement, passion and pageantry of high-stakes thoroughbred horse racing create the vision for the second new theme.

Modern Heritage and Indulgence also will be available on the new Lincoln MKX.

2016 Lincoln MKX Unveiled in Detroit High Resolution Interior
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Upgraded Lincoln ExperiencesAutomatic word wrap
When the driver with key fob is within approximately 9 feet, the lower LED daytime running lights gently brighten, while “welcome mat” is projected on the ground from the folded mirrors. Door handles are illuminated, too, tuned to the exterior color.

Interior sequential lighting begins at the footwell, then illuminates the cupholders, pass-through, instrument panel, front door handles, front map pockets and rear doors. The lighting goes off in reverse order.

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