The 2016 Lincoln MKC Black Label 3

There is no sophomore slump following this luxury, compact SUV’s impressive debut

In 2015, the boom of the compact SUV—a five-door vehicle that is considerably smaller, more economical, and less expensive than the larger versions—has increased competition between automakers in a new segment. However, due to its sleek, distinctive tell-from-a-block-away exterior, defining push-button gear shift, smooth ride, responsive four-wheel maneuvering, and posh interior, the all-new 2015 Lincoln MKC Black Label AWD successfully made a bold entrance into the market. The 2016 version promises to maintain its momentum and erase any mention of a sophomore slump.

The Black Label is the top-tier edition of this five-passenger automobile; the other three trims are Premiere, Select, and Reserve beginning at $33,260. MKC’s impressive standard features include a panoramic Vista roof with a powershade cover; hands-free liftgate (starting with the Select); MyLincoln Mobile App with Embedded Modem to operate functions from your mobile phone; extensive airbag placement including curtain and driver’s knee; three driving modes; and a “concierge” to chat with.

On the optional side, the 20-inch painted aluminum rims; parking assist; a gorgeous Chroma Couture Premium Metallic (rich purple-brown fusion); theater-esque THX sound system; and Active Park Assist deserve mention, but with the prestigious Black Label upgrade, owners can enjoy free car washes anytime, a yearly car detail service, and an interior owners can customize with various exotic materials and color schemes. But the major differences between the 2015 and 2016 version is the latter’s increase of towing capacity in the 2.3-liter engine to 3,000 pounds and the inclusion of the new signature Lincoln Sync 3 touchscreen interface, enabling voice command for phoning, entertainment and navigation.

Lincoln has always been a brand that emphasizes the importance of driving in luxury since its inception almost a century ago. As its spokesperson—revered actor Matthew McConaughey—says while seemingly in bliss driving the 2016 MKC Black Label in recent television commercials, “Sometimes you’ve got to go back, to actually move forward.” This compact SUV surely adds validity to this statement.

2016 MKC 
Base Price: $46,455

Fuel Economy: 20 city/29 highway

Horsepower: 240 to 285 horsepower

Engine: 2.0L 4-cylinder, 2.3L 4-cylinder

Photos courtesy of Lincoln.

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