Ford has its hands full when it comes to remaking Lincoln into a world-class luxury car maker…but they’re certainly trying, that’s for sure. While much of the Lincoln lineup lacks excitement, hybrid fans can get excited for the 2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid, which will offer 45 mpg across the board when it hits dealerships.
Based on the 2013 Ford Fusion, which has a 47 mpg rating in both the city and highway, it is a little odd that the Lincoln MKZ Hybrid falls 2 mpg short of its cheaper cousin. That could be due to the extra weight from the various luxury features on the Lincoln model, that the 45 mpg rating still makes it the most fuel efficient luxury sedan on the market.
The next closest competitor, the Lexus ES300h, get as 40 city/39 mpg while the more-powerful Infiniti M35h gets a 27 city/32 highway rating. As far as luxury hybrids go, the 2013 Lincoln MKZ hybrid is without peer.
Yet more importantly, the new Lincoln hybrid will carry the same sticker price as its gas-only counterpart, offering customers a clear choice of power-versus-efficiency. Sales of the old MKZ Hybrid surprised even Ford, and the new Lincoln sedan is by every metric a better vehicle. But is that enough to revive the Lincoln brand?
This writer thinks…no. While the wealthy have proven that they don’t mind paying a premium for efficient, green vehicles, there is not enough diversity between the Ford and Lincoln brands to really cipher customers from other automakers. Someone like me is more likely to go for the cheaper Fusion hybrid, especially since it gets better mpgs.
Don’t get me wrong; the 2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid is a step in the right direction, but what Ford really needs is a Lincoln model that is bold, powerful, yet efficient. A rear-wheel drive hybrid or plug-in hybrid that utilizes both Ford’s hybrid technology and their fabulous line of EcoBoost engines, a luxury compact that offers style and poise, and a big, bold sedan made for the explicit purpose of cruising America’s massive highways. Those are the vehicles Lincoln needs, not another gussied-up Ford Fusion.