Lincoln MKS

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Lincoln MKS
ManufacturerFord Motor Company
AssemblyFord Chicago Assembly,
Chicago, Illinois, USA
PredecessorLincoln LS
Body style(s)4-door sedan
LayoutFront engine, front-wheel drive / four-wheel drive
PlatformFord D3 platform
Engine(s)3.7 L Cyclone V6
3.5 L Ecoboost V6
Transmission(s)6-speed 6F50 automatic
Wheelbase112.9 in (2868 mm)
Length204.1 in (5184 mm)
Width75.9 in (1928 mm)
Height61.6 in (1565 mm)
Curb weight4,127 lb (1,872 kg) (Front-wheel drive)
4,276 lb (1,940 kg) (All-wheel drive)
RelatedMercury Sable
Ford Taurus
Ford Taurus X
Ford Flex
Lincoln MKT
ManualsService Manual

The Lincoln MKS is a full-size luxury sedan from the Lincoln division of the Ford Motor Company. The MKS first appeared in concept form at the North American International Auto Show in January 2006 with the production version, a 2009 model, appearing later at the Los Angeles International Auto Show in November 2007. The MKS began production in May 2008 with sales beginning a month later. The Lincoln MKS continues Lincoln's three-letter nomenclature for new models, preceded by the MKZ and MKX. The purpose of the new nomenclature was to mimic the alphanumeric naming schemes used by other luxury automakers like Lexus and Acura. Interestingly, the MKS is the first Lincoln to use a three-letter name consistently in its development from concept to production (the MKZ's name was changed from Zephyr after its first model year while the MKX was called Aviator when it was still a concept).[1]

The MKS is based on Ford's D3 platform, which is shared with the current Ford Taurus and other vehicles. The car is front-wheel drive with optional all-wheel drive. The MKS is powered by a 3.7 L Duratec V6 mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. An optional EcoBoost 3.5 L twin-turbo, direct injection V6 is planned.[2] The MKS can seat up to five people. The MKS debuted with a base MSRP of $38,465 USD, ranging up to $48,835 USD when fully optioned.[3] The Lincoln MKS is built at Ford's Chicago Assembly plant in Chicago, Illinois.

2006 MKS Concept

The Lincoln MKS made its first appearance as a concept vehicle at the 2006 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan. The MKS Concept provided a preliminary view of the design direction that Lincoln was taking for their new, full-size flagship sedan of the same name. The exterior of the MKS Concept was sculpted to convey a strong sense of performance while maintaining traditional luxury-car elegance. Patrick Schiavone, design director of Ford North America, said of the car's design, "Lincoln MKS communicates power, motion and speed. It's athletic and muscular, yet elegant."[4] The MKS included Lincoln's signature waterfall grille with a crosshatching that was later used in the grille for the 2007-2009 Lincoln MKZ. The MKS' sleekly shaped headlight assemblies featured adaptive lighting which pivots the headlight projectors in concert with steering inputs to improve visibility in turns. Also housed in the headlight assemblies were a series of LEDs that would blink in sequence for turn indication. Side vents positioned aft of the front wheel wells were adorned with the Lincoln star and added character to the MKS' profile. On the top of the MKS Concept was Ford's Panoramic Vista Roof (a large sunroof and moonroof combination that takes the place of a conventional roof), which first appeared in production-form in the Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX. In the MKS Concept's rear were LED-based parking and brake lamps and dual chrome, trapezoidal-shaped exhaust tips. The MKS Concept rode on 20x8.5-inch, ten spoke five/five wheels which gave the unique appearance of a five spoke chrome wheel combined with an offset five spoke alloy wheel. The purpose of this was to blend the sportiness associated with five spoke wheel designs with the multi-spoke designs commonly associated with luxury cars.[4]

Inside the MKS Concept was an interior design that was modern and contemporary, getting away from the designs used in previous Lincoln concept vehicles, such as the 2004 Lincoln Zephyr Concept, that drew inspiration from classic Lincoln interiors. The MKS Concept's seats were covered in cream-colored Aniline leather while the doors and interior panels were covered in pearl-white suede. Contrasting with the lightly-colored suede-covered panels, the MKS' dash board was covered in dark grey suede. Instrumentation and controls featured satin nickel inserts and chrome trim with backlighting provided by white LEDs. An applique of real maple wood ran across the instrument panel, dividing it into upper and lower sections. Technological features in the interior included Bluetooth device connectivity, a DVD-based navigation system, a 14-speaker, 500-Watt audio system, a passive entry system that identifies the car's driver and allows him or her to start the vehicle by only carrying its key fob, and a push button ignition system. Safety was provided by dual front airbags, driver and passenger side airbags, and side curtain airbags to protect occupants in a rollover situation.[4]

The MKS Concept was based on Ford's natively front-wheel drive, Volvo-derived D3 platform which was already in use in the then-Ford Five Hundred, Ford Freestyle, and Mercury Montego (the version used for the MKS in particular was coded D385). The platform features a fully-independent suspension with MacPherson struts and rearward-facing lower L-arms with a stabilizer bar in the front and a multilink coil over shock setup with a stabilizer bar in the rear. Though it would be optional in the production MKS, the MKS Concept featured an active all-wheel drive system that could seemlessly transmit power to any wheel as needed to maintain traction in slippery conditions. Powering the MKS Concept was a Ford/Yamaha 4.4 L DOHC V8 producing 315 hp (235 kW) at 4500 rpm and 320 lb·ft (433 N·m) of torque at 3000 rpm. The engine was mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission.[5]

MKS (2009-Present)

The production version of the Lincoln MKS was unveiled to the public in November 2007 at the Los Angeles International Auto Show. The MKS went on to make its sales debut in the summer of 2008 as a 2009 model. A number of changes occurred to the MKS during its transition from concept to production vehicle. While the MKS' greenhouse and overall exterior shape was kept, the front fascia received a significant update in the form of a new, bolder grille. The new grille was a chrome, split-wing design inspired by the grille used on the 2007 Lincoln MKR Concept, which was in turn inspired by the grille design of the 1941 Lincoln Continental. In a smaller change, the dual trapezoidal-shaped chrome exhaust tips of the MKS Concept gave way to more common circular chrome tips in the production version.[6]

Inside the production MKS, many of the design elements seen in the MKS Concept were carried over, though with some revision. While much of the design and shape of elements in the production MKS' interior is shared with that of the MKS Concept, the production MKS differs in the types of materials used. The concept's Aniline leather, used in seating surfaces, is substituted with Scottish Bridge of Weir leather in the production version. The suede used to cover door panels, interior panels, and dashboard top in the MKS Concept is replaced with soft ThermoPlastic Olefin for the door and interior panels and leatherette for the top of the dashboard. The real wood instrument panel applique from the concept was kept but used olive-ash or ebony wood instead of maple. One of the only other obvious interior changes from the concept was the steering wheel, which was changed to a design similar to that of steering wheels in other, similar model year Lincolns.[6]

2009 Lincoln MKS in Tuxedo Black Metallic

Ford claims that the Lincoln MKS has the largest selection of technologies and comfort and convenience features in its class. Some of the MKS' key features include optional adaptive cruise control (which adjusts the car's speed based on the position of other vehicles on the road), a standard intelligent access system with a push button start (which was shown in the MKS Concept), a standard new generation keyless entry keypad that is mounted flush inside the driver-side B-pillar with buttons that only appear when touched, and optional adaptive HID headlights (also shown in the MKS Concept).[7] Other features that are standard in the MKS include automatic HID headlights, foglights, an Easy Fuel capless fuel filler, foldable power adjustable mirrors with memory, 18x7.5-inch machined aluminum wheels, a 6-speaker audio system with an AM/FM radio and 6-disc in-dash CD changer, Sirius satellite radio with a six month prepaid subscription, dual-zone automatic climate control, an auto-dimming rear view mirror with compass, 12-way, heated and cooled power driver and passenger seats, heated rear seats, a power tilt and telescoping steering wheel with memory, a universal garage door opener, and Lincoln SYNC. Safety features were similar to the MKS Concept with dual front airbags, driver and passenger side airbags, and side curtain airbags to protect occupants in a rollover situation. These and other features are available in or apart of three equipment packages. The Navigation Package includes a DVD navigation system, a THX II-Certified, 14-speaker, 600-Watt audio system with an AM/FM radio and six-disc in-dash CD player, and a rearview camera to aid in backing up. The Technology Package includes adaptive HID headlights, rain-sensing windshield wipers, a forward-sensing system, a power sunshade for the rear window, and the intelligent access system with push button start. The Ultimate Package includes everything in the Navigation and Technology packages and a dual panel moonroof, premium 19x8-inch painted alloy wheels, Ultimate seating trim with color-keyed seude strip in the center of the seat back, and a Lincoln Star logo embroidered into the front seat headrests. An Aluminum Applique Package, which includes an aluminum dash applique (in the place of wood) with a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, is also available but requires the Navigation, Technology, or Ultimate packages. Other features in the MKS that are optional and not attached to any of the aforementioned packages include all-wheel drive, 19x8-inch machined aluminum wheels, 20x8-inch polished aluminum wheels, adaptive cruise control, and a PowerCode remote starter.[8] Active Park Assist, a system which uses ultrasonic sensors (as opposed to a camera-based system used by Lexus) to find and measure a parking space, then operate the steering wheel to accomplish the parallel parking task, will be available in mid-2009 as an option on the 2010 MKS.[9]

Like the MKS Concept, the production MKS rides on Ford's D3 platform. The MKS features a fully-independent suspension with MacPherson struts and rearward-facing lower L-arms with a 26 mm (1.0 in) stabilizer bar in the front and a multilink coil over shock setup with stamped steel lower control arms and cast upper control arms in the rear. The car features four-wheel antilock disc brakes (12.25-inch (311 mm) rotors in the front and 12.75-inch (324 mm) rotors in the rear) with standard AdvanceTrac traction control and Roll Stability Control (RSC). Front-wheel drive (FWD) is standard while all-wheel drive (AWD) is optional. In a significant departure from the MKS Concept and past Lincoln flagship sedans, the production MKS does not offer a V8 engine. In the place of the 4.4 L Ford/Yamaha V8 found in the MKS Concept, the production MKS is powered by an all-aluminum 3.7 L Duratec DOHC V6, a larger bore derivative of the Duratec 35 and a member of Ford's Cyclone engine family. The engine was designed to accept either regular grade, 87 octane gasoline or premium grade, 91 octane gasoline. Using regular grade gasoline, the 3.7 L V6 produces 273 hp (204 kW) at 6250 rpm and 270 lb·ft (366 N·m) of torque at 4250 rpm. Using premium grade gasoline results in a small boost in output to 275 hp (205 kW) at 6250 rpm and 276 lb·ft (374 N·m) of torque at 4250 rpm. Power from the MKS' V6 is transmitted to the wheels via Ford's 6F50 6-speed automatic transmission. The transmission is equipped with SelectShift which simulates the operation of a manual transmission.[8] A road test by Car and Driver magazine revealed that an AWD-equipped MKS could accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds and complete a quarter-mile in 15.7 seconds at 90 mph (140 km/h). Though smooth in acceleration, testers noted that the main thing that prevented a faster performance was the MKS' heavy weight of over 4300 lbs.[3] To address the need for a higher performance engine, Ford intends on introducing their EcoBoost V6, an all-aluminum, twin-turbocharged, direct injection 3.5 L DOHC V6, in the MKS by the summer of 2009.[2]


  1. Lincoln Dealer Confusion Forces Model-Name Changes
  2. 2.0 2.1 Ford Motor Company. "Ford to Equip Half a Million Vehicles with EcoBoost Engine Technology for Up To 20% Better Fuel Economy." Ford Media. 6 January 2008.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Bedard, Patrick. "2009 Lincoln MKS AWD - Road Test." Car and Driver. October 2008.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Ford Motor Company. "2006 MKS CONCEPT Overview." Ford Media. 9 January 2006.
  5. Ford Motor Company. "2006 MKS CONCEPT Technical Specifications." Ford Media. 2006.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Ford Motor Company. "MKS Showcases Signature Lincoln Design Cues." Ford Media. 2008.
  7. Ford Motor Company. "2009 MKS Special Features." Ford Media. 2008.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Ford Motor Company. "2009 MKS Technical Specifications." Ford Media. 2008.

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