Luxury SUV: Lincoln MKX vs Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class
Lincoln MKX vs Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class: Hello everyone, in this article we are going to discuss and compare the two (Lincoln MKX vs Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class) beautiful as well as luxuries SUVs. Firstly, the MKX (“X” stands for “crossover”) which is a luxury SUV, division of Ford, marketed by the Lincoln and in production since 2007. Secondly, the GLE-Class which is a sport utility vehicle (SUV), developed and manufactured by the German car manufacturer Mercedes-Benz.
So, without wasting any more time, let’s start Lincoln MKX vs Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class: Luxury SUV.
Lincoln MKX vs Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class
Overall, we recommend the MKX’s Select trim level. It’s just above the base Premiere trim level and adds a few creature comforts. More important, it’s the key to getting desirable options packages such as the Climate package and the Select Plus package. Get the optional 2.7-liter turbocharged V6 for its enhanced power.
The MKX is related to the Ford Edge SUV. There are many similarities, but overall we like how Lincoln has upped the MKX’s luxury credentials. It’s quiet on the highway, the seats are very comfortable, and the suspension ably soaks up bumps as well as ruts. Basically, the 2018 Lincoln MKX checks all the extravagance SUV boxes.
European SUVs indeed have more prestige attached to them. But if you’re looking for a high-class way to transport your family, the MKX is a solid pick.
Lincoln MKX Models
The 2018 Lincoln MKX is a five-traveler hybrid SUV. It comes in 4 trim levels such as Black Label, Reserve, Select, and Premiere. Feature content grows as you work your way up the trim-level ladder, but the MKX has a decent amount of equipment at the base level.
All MKX models come standard with a 3.7-liter V6 (303 horsepower, 278 pound-feet of torque) paired to a six-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard as well, with all-wheel drive optional. A turbocharged 2.7-liter V6 (335 hp, 380 lb-ft of torque) is an optional upgrade offered on all four trims.
Standard equipment highlights for the Premiere trim level include adaptive suspension dampers (all-wheel-drive models only), 18-inch wheels, xenon headlights, remote engine start, keyless ignition as well as entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, simulated leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, 60/40-split second-row seat with power-folding seatbacks, driver-seat memory functions, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.
Standard interior tech includes Lincoln’s Sync 3 infotainment system coupled with an 8-inch touchscreen display, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, two USB ports, and a 10-speaker audio system with a CD player and satellite radio.
The Select model adds LED daytime running lights, power-folding side mirrors (with driver-side auto-dimming), a hands-free liftgate, leather upholstery, and also a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel.
A couple of optional packages available for the Select are worth considering. The optional Select Plus package adds a navigation system plus blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert systems. The Climate package adds heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, automatic windshield wipers, and automatic high beams.
The Reserve trim level adds 20-inch wheels, adaptive headlights, a panoramic sunroof, ventilated front seats, mobile app compatibility, as well as the contents of the Select Plus package.
Finally, the Black Label variant builds upon the Reserve’s features with trim-specific 20-inch wheels, LED headlights, upgraded leather upholstery, rear parking sensors, a simulated-suede headliner, the contents of the Climate package and a 19-speaker Revel Ultima surround-sound audio system with HD radio. Each Black Label MKX gets a choice of three design themes (Indulgence, Modern Heritage and Thoroughbred), each of which alters the trim and the color of the upholstery, headliner, as well as carpeting. This trim also grants access to Lincoln’s Black Label program, which offers vehicle maintenance, detailing, and some travel perks.
The Reserve and Black Label versions offer several separate packages, such as Technology (front parking sensors, a 360-degree camera system and automated parallel parking), Driver Assistance (adaptive cruise control, adaptive steering, lane-keeping assist, forward collision warning, and mitigation) and Luxury (adaptive LED headlights and the Revel Ultima audio system).
Stand-alone options such as 21-inch wheels, 22-way-adjustable front seats, a trailer tow package, a 13-speaker Revel audio system (Select and Reserve), inflatable rear seat belts, and a rear-seat video entertainment system with dual displays.
Every vehicle normally comes in numerous variants that are on a very basic level comparative. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the 2016 Lincoln MKX Black Label (turbo 2.7L V6 | 6-speed automatic | AWD).
The optional turbocharged engine gives the MKX impressive acceleration. While it isn’t the fastest of its group, you’ll appreciate the power up an on-ramp. Our test vehicle had optional performance-oriented tires that helped improve braking as well as handling results.
The optional twin-turbo 2.7-liter V6 makes the MKX one of the most powerful vehicles in the segment. It may feel fast, but its 5.9-second 0-60 mph acceleration isn’t quicker than other performance-minded competitors.
The MKX returned consistent emergency braking stopping distances during testing with no detectable pedal fade or odor. The front exhibits only minor nosedive and stopping power is easy to modulate through the brake pedal for routine driving.
The grip from optional performance-orientated all-season tires imparts agility and accuracy back through the steering wheel. It builds effort naturally right off-center. But road feedback is nonexistent.
The optional performance tires on our tester do their job well, allowing the MKX to turn harder and faster than you’d expect. Stability control intervenes smoothly, As a result, making this SUV feel composed and confident on curvy roads.
This SUV feels powerful and smooth. Controlling the gas pedal is fulfilling and low-speed gear changes are almost subtle. Adaptive cruise control smartly slows the MKX down and also can be easily changed to nonadaptive mode, too.
While available with all-wheel drive, the MKX has tight clearances that limit its off-road ability. However, drivers can’t lock the power split between axles, and also hill-start and downhill assist features are not available.
The MKX delivers what you’d expect from a compact luxury SUV, provided you option it. The front seats offer massage, heating, ventilation, as well as multiple adjustments. The ride is well-controlled despite the large-diameter wheels, and the cabin stays quiet in town and on the freeway.
Soft front seats limit long-distance fatigue, while heating and cooling functions work quickly. However, wide-ranging adjustments in the optional seats fit different body types.
The MKX’s ride quality is balanced between the firm and soft. As a result, you’ll feel bumps, but it’s never harsh.
Noise & vibration
The cabin mutes wind, tire, and road noise to a minimum. The V6 is quiet around town, but it lets itself be heard when you’re accelerating up to freeway speeds.
The MKX is pretty easy to get in and see out of, and the front and rear legroom are spacious. But the headroom is only average, and the driving position could be better.
Ease of use
Minor annoyances add up and hurt the luxury experience. Your elbows sit at slightly different distances and heights, and the button-style gear shifter just isn’t as convenient to use as a traditional lever or stalk.
Getting in/getting out
A tall roof, large door openings, and narrow door sills mean there are few obstructions while getting in or out. The seats are at a just-right height so you can slide right in.
The headroom is segmenting competitive until you order the panoramic sunroof. It cuts rear headroom to the point where passengers of average height will brush their hair against the roof. The front and rear legroom are spacious.
A tall seating position and large windows make it easy to see your surroundings. A standard rearview camera and the optional 360-degree camera aid parking.
The Black Label interior trims add a premium feel, but our tester exhibited some quality issues that were decidedly unexpected in luxury Japanese cars: The sunroof creaked over driveways, and foam on the driver seat worked itself free of its cover.
Cargo capacity is better than most. The interior has numerous cubbies and storage options, including a deep center console. A cubby with a USB port has a cover to secure items when parked.
The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE-class weds a lavish lodge and a strong powertrain in a roughly attractive bundle. It’s the latest in a long line of luxurious off-roaders from Mercedes-Benz that started back in the late 1990s with the introduction of the M-class. This new GLE also a huge improvement compared with the version it replaces. That’s not to say it’s perfect. In its quest to out-tech key rivals such as the BMW X5, Lincoln Aviator, and Volvo XC90, Mercedes has overlooked a few important details, namely interior ergonomics and ride comfort. While a slope-roofed “coupe” model surely joins the lineup soon, the GLE-class offered only with a quarterback SUV body at the moment.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
Models wearing the GLE350 badge powered by a 255-hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine with either rear- or all-wheel drive (4Matic in Mercedes parlance) or nine-speed automatic transmission. Stepping up to the GLE450 brings standard all-wheel drive and a 362-hp hybrid powertrain that consists of a turbocharged inline-six and a novel 48-volt electrical system. The 2020 GLE350 required 6.6 seconds to reach 60 mph at our test track, and the six-cylinder GLE450 managed a 5.3-second time.
While the souped-up Mercedes-AMG GLE53 (reviewed separately) brings even more heat, the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE580 represents the most powerful and expensive non-AMG model. The 48-volt system combines with a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 to make up to 504 horsepower. Every GLE-class can be outfitted with a cutting-edge air-suspension system that can lean into corners and even wiggle itself loose if the driver gets it stuck in sand or mud. The standard setup is traditional steel springs and anti-roll bars.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
Unsurprisingly, the four-cylinder GLE350 earns the highest fuel-economy estimates from the EPA at 20/27/22 mpg city/highway/combined for the rear-wheel-drive model. Adding all-wheel drive reduces both the highway and city figures by 1 mpg. The GLE450 earns ratings of 19/24/21 mpg city/highway/combined. The GLE580 burns gas at a faster rate and earned 17/21/19 mpg. On our 200-mile highway fuel-economy test route, an all-wheel-drive GLE350 4Matic returned 25 mpg, and the GLE450 4Matic delivered 23 mpg. The GLE450 goes head to head with the six-cylinder X5 xDrive40i, but the BMW wins in our fuel-economy testing with its 28-mpg result.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Fine materials such as genuine leather, woods, and metals impart a sense of true luxury, but they also add a pretty penny to the bottom line. Not only can the front seats be heated, but the armrests and center-console lid can, too, quickly take the chill out of a frigid winter morning. The spacious interior can now be outfitted with an optional third row of seats and features modern Mercedes technology found in the company’s latest luxury sedans. With the optional third row of seats stowed, we fit 11 carry-on suitcases in the cargo hold. With all seats folded to their flat positions, the GLE-class offers room for up to 26 carry-ons. The GLE-class’s rival, the X5, matches the Mercedes in both metrics, but other competitors such as the more coupe-like Audi Q8 held far fewer.
Infotainment and Connectivity
Dual 12.3-inch infotainment displays stretch nearly the length of the dashboard and offer several ways to interact with the system, including the MBUX voice-recognition system. Like Apple’s Siri or Google’s virtual assistant, MBUX can respond to many commands, thus enabling the driver to keep his or her hands on the wheel but still turn up the heat, switch on the ventilated-seat function, or tune to a specific radio station. A touchpad on the center console allows for tactile interaction with the infotainment system, and the screen also touch-sensitive, but the menus all logically structured. Navigating them better done when the GLE-class parked. Apple CarPlay/Android Auto integration and a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot are all standard, which makes keeping up with calls, texts, and other communications while on the go a little easier.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) hasn’t released crash-test results for the new GLE-class, but the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) named it a Top Safety Pick+ due to its good performance in that agency’s testing. A standard suite of driver-assistance features also makes the GLE-class a good pick for families.
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