Lincoln unveils new MKX midsize SUV
Lincoln Motor Co. on Tuesday will unveil the next-generation MKX midsize SUV in hopes it will strengthen the brand's SUV lineup and continue its new product momentum.
Ford's luxury brand said the new SUV will showcase more features and technology than its predecessor, including the first high-end Revel audio system.
"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 SUV is powered by a standard 3.7-liter V-6 engine that produces 300 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. A 2.7-liter Ecoboost V-6 is available.
Lincoln Motor Co. on Tuesday introduced the MKX midsize SUV at the North American International Auto Show
"The new 2.7-liter EcoBoost adds a new level of performance to the all-new Lincoln MKX," chief program engineer Elaine Bannon said in a statement.
The latest MKX is the first Lincoln to offer adaptive steering, a 360-degree camera and LED headlamps that use reflectors to add to visibility during acceleration. It comes standard with electric power-assisted steering, and has features like pre-collision assist which helps lessen the severity of frontal crashes by warning the driver if it detects other cars or pedestrians nearby.
The vehicle will launch in 2015's third quarter, Galhotra said. Pricing hasn't been announced.
"It's probably the best Lincoln design yet," said Dave Sullivan, manager of product analysis at AutoPacific Inc. "It's a really good-looking crossover. If I were Lexus, I'd be quite nervous."
Galhotra said they're hoping to attract younger buyers — families with older kids who want a little more room than the MKC.
Lincoln is coming off a strong 2014 in which sales rose 16.5 percent, thanks mostly to its new introductions. The automaker introduced a new MKZ sedan, MKC crossover and a refreshed Navigator, which helped drive sales.
"Ford's luxury division is showing signs of life, spurred mostly by the hot-selling MKC compact crossover," said Karl Brauer, senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com. "A bigger MKX brother, sporting much of the MKC's design theme, while offering more interior space and more advanced technology, will continue Lincoln's rebuilding process. The MKX is part of the growing SUV segment, making it a key component in Lincoln's long-term mission."
SUVs helped drive the auto industry to its best sales year since 2006, and Galhotra said Lincoln is well-positioned in the segment.