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2020 Lincoln Continental Review

The 2020 Lincoln Continental lands in the bottom half of our luxury large car rankings. It has powerful optional engines and a spacious interior, but it suffers from an unrefined transmission, poor fuel economy, an oddly shaped trunk, and some build-quality issues.

Pros & Cons

  • Low base price for the class
  • Expansive, comfortable seating
  • Long list of standard features
  • Powerful optional engines
  • Poor fuel economy
  • Little steering feedback
  • Unimpressive build quality
  • Oddly shaped trunk

Rankings & Research

The 2020 Lincoln Continental's #5 ranking is based on its score within the Luxury Large Cars category. Currently the Lincoln Continental has a score of 7.6 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 32 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.

7.6

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 7.0
Performance: 7.2
Interior: 6.9
Safety: 9.9
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Is the Lincoln Continental a Good Car?

Yes, the Lincoln Continental is a good luxury large car. Rear-seat legroom is so abundant you may wonder why every NBA player doesn't use one for his personal limo. Tech features are user-friendly, and the ride is comfortable.

On the downside, the standard V6 engine is tame, though the two optional twin-turbocharged variants are much more powerful. Also, while the Continental has a large trunk, its odd shape limits its usefulness. Finally, neither the steering nor handling offer much feedback.

Should I Buy the Lincoln Continental?

In a class full of expensive rivals, the Continental offers real value. It retails for just over $46,000, but it comes with a long list of infotainment and driver assistance features. The base model is available with several packages that let you add luxury and convenience features while keeping the total cost of the car around $50,000.

For a luxury large car with better all-around performance and an impeccable interior, however, you’ll want to look elsewhere. Direct your consideration to well-appointed luxury cars such as the Genesis G90 and Lexus ES.

Compare the Continental, G90, and ES »

Should I Buy a New or Used Lincoln Continental?

If you're open to a pre-owned vehicle, we recommend buying a used Lincoln Continental. The Continental has a long history. Following the 2002 model year, Lincoln stopped making it. Production resumed for 2017, and there have been few changes to the car since. The most notable change came for 2019, when Lincoln added several previously available advanced safety features to the standard features list. These include blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and automatic emergency braking. Your best bet is to find a used 2017 or 2018 model equipped with these features.

It is worth noting that Lincoln produced a special Coach Door Edition for 2019, albeit in limited numbers and by special order only. This model, with its rear-hinged doors, returns for 2020.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2017 Continental, 2018 Continental, and 2019 Continental reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts you can find on used cars.

Compare the 2018, 2019, and 2020 Continental »

We Did the Research for You: 18 Reviews Analyzed

We analyzed 18 Lincoln Continental reviews – along with reliability ratings, fuel economy estimates, and more – to help you decide if the 2020 Continental is the right new car for you. This full review of the 2020 Lincoln Continental incorporates applicable research for all model years in this generation, which launched for 2017.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. To remain objective, we don't accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team manages the advertising on our site.

How Much Does the Lincoln Continental Cost?

The 2020 Lincoln Continental starts at $46,305, which is one of the lowest base prices among luxury large cars. The midrange Lincoln Continental Reserve starts at $59,870, and the range-topping Continental Black Label retails for $70,205.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great deals at your local Lincoln dealer.

Lincoln Continental Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Lincoln Continental or Genesis G90?

The Genesis G90 sits near the top of our luxury large car rankings. The G90 and the Continental both offer a cavernous rear seat, but the G90’s interior is plusher than the Continental's, and the Genesis delivers better overall performance. The latter is due to the G90's two potent engine options, smooth transmission, and balanced handling. Not surprisingly, you’ll pay more for the G90. It starts at around $69,000, or about $23,000 more than a base Continental.

It's worth noting that the G90 is scheduled for a full redesign for the 2020 model year. Read our features article to discover All You Need to Know About the Redesigned 2020 Genesis G90.

Which Is Better: Lincoln Continental or Lexus ES?

The Lexus ES is a highly ranked luxury midsize car. It may be slightly smaller than the Continental, but it has the same size trunk, a comparable list of standard active safety features, and ample seating space. The ES also returns much better fuel economy than the Continental, and it has a better predicted reliability rating. And with a starting price just under $40,000, the Lexus costs several thousand dollars less than the Lincoln. The ES' highest trim comes in under $45,000.

The Continental has one advantage over the Lexus: Its infotainment system is much more intuitive than the ES' confounding interface. Regardless, the choice here is clear: Go with the Lexus.

Compare the Continental, G90, and ES »

Continental Interior

How Many People Does the Continental Seat?

The Lincoln Continental seats five people comfortably. The second row has expansive legroom, even for tall riders, though they may find headroom a little lacking.

The front seats have standard 10-way power adjustments that help you find an ideal position, and you can upgrade to 24- or 30-way multicontour front seats that you may never want to get out of. The cabin generally feels spacious, but there's not as much front legroom as you might expect.

An optional package enhances the already sumptuous rear seats. Fully outfitted, the second-row seats are heated and ventilated and have power-reclining and power lumbar adjustments. Also, the center armrest has controls for seat, audio, and climate settings.

Continental and Child Car Seats

There are two full sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats. The rear middle seat has a tether anchor and the ability to borrow lower anchors from both sides.

The tether anchors are easy to find, and while the lower anchors are set deeply in the seats, there's enough room to move your hands around and attach the car-seat straps with little effort.

Continental Interior Quality

This Lincoln generally has a nice interior. Most materials are of high quality, and the cabin design is sleek and modern. However, there are some lower-grade plastics that are unimpressive for a vehicle at this price point. Critics also note some build-quality issues and a less-than-satisfying fit and finish.

Continental Cargo Space

The Continental's trunk measures 16.7 cubic feet, which is pretty good for a luxury large car. By comparison, the Genesis G90 has 15.7 cubic feet, and the Kia K900 has just 15.3 cubic feet.

This Lincoln's trunk opening is large and wide, but the cargo area isn't that tall. It's easy to load in heavy items thanks to a low lift-in height.

Continental Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The Continental's standard SYNC 3 infotainment system is user-friendly and features a simple menu structure and clear, basic graphics. The 8-inch touch screen is quick to respond to your commands, and there are physical knobs and controls elsewhere on the dashboard for common adjustments such as volume and temperature.

SYNC 3 comes standard with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, giving you easy access to many of your smartphone apps. Other standard features include satellite radio, a 10-speaker stereo, dual-zone automatic climate control, proximity keyless entry, and remote start. The list of options includes navigation, a 13- or 19-speaker Revel premium stereo, a household-style power outlet, tri-zone automatic climate control, two rear USB ports, and a twin-panel moonroof.

Read more about interior »

Continental Performance

Continental Engine: Twin-Turbos Are Better

The 2020 Lincoln Continental's standard powertrain features a 3.7-liter V6 engine that puts out 305 horsepower. While that may sound like a lot of muscle, it translates to merely OK acceleration on the street. It'll get you where you need to go without drama, but it doesn't offer much excitement.

Two twin-turbocharged V6 engines are available: a 2.7-liter that makes 335 horsepower and a 3.0-liter that's good for 400 horsepower. Both deliver forceful acceleration and have more power on tap for high-speed passing and merging maneuvers.

A six-speed automatic transmission is standard throughout the lineup. It shifts abruptly and usually struggles to find the right gear. Overall, it feels inconsistent and unrefined.

Continental Gas Mileage: Fill Up Often

The 2020 Continental gets poor fuel economy for a luxury large car. With the base V6 engine, the Continental gets an EPA-estimated 17 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. Models with the 2.7-liter twin-turbo V6 are a little more efficient, with ratings of 18 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway.

Models with the 3.0-liter V6 return the worst ratings in the lineup: 16/24 mpg city/highway.

Continental Ride and Handling: Well-Mannered

The Continental provides a comfortable ride, though harsher pavement causes some bumps and noises to intrude into the cabin.

Body movements are well-controlled around corners, but there's a distinct lack of steering response and feedback from the road. Despite its size, this large car is pretty maneuverable in tight spots.

Read more about performance »

Continental Reliability

Is the Lincoln Continental Reliable?

The 2020 Lincoln Continental has a slightly above-average predicted reliability rating of 3.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Lincoln Continental Warranty

Lincoln covers the Continental with a four-year/50,000-mile basic warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Read more about reliability »

How Much Does It Cost to Insure a Lincoln Continental?

The cost of insuring a Lincoln Continental will depend on a variety of factors, including your deductible, the level of coverage that you want, and the type of insurance that you choose. Your age, gender, location, credit score, and driving record can also have an impact on your insurance rates. Check out our car insurance guide to find the best policy for you.

Continental Safety

Continental Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2020 Lincoln Continental an overall crash test rating of five out of five stars. The car earned five stars in frontal and side crash tests and four stars in the rollover test.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety hasn’t yet tested the 2020 Continental.

Continental Safety Features

The Lincoln Continental comes standard with adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, rain-sensing windshield wipers, automatic high-beam headlights, forward pre-collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, adaptive headlights, and a rearview camera. Some of these are part of the Lincoln Co-Pilot360 bundle of driver assistance features. The standard MyKey system lets you set volume and speed limits on the car and monitor the behavior of secondary drivers.

Optional driver assistance features include automatic parking assist, a head-up display, and a surround-view parking camera system.

Read more about safety »

Continental Dimensions and Weight

The Lincoln Continental is 16.8 feet long. It has a base curb weight of 4,233 pounds.

Where Is the 2020 Lincoln Continental Built?

Lincoln builds the 2020 Continental in Michigan.

Which Lincoln Continental Model Is Right for Me?

The 2020 Lincoln Continental is available in three trim levels: Standard, Reserve, and Black Label. The Standard comes with a 3.7-liter V6 engine, while Reserve and Black Label models feature a 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged V6. Each has standard front-wheel drive. All-wheel drive is available for as little as $2,000. Continental Reserve and Black Label models are available with a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6.

Unless you want the additional power, opt for the base model. It’s well-equipped, and you can add many of the features found in higher trims, like navigation and leather seats, by purchasing options or packages.

Lincoln Continental Standard

The 2020 Lincoln Continental Standard starts at $46,305. Features include synthetic leather upholstery, 10-way power-adjustable and heated front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a universal garage door opener, dual-zone automatic climate control, proximity keyless entry, and remote start.

The standard SYNC 3 infotainment system consists of an 8-inch touch screen, satellite radio, a 10-speaker stereo, Android Auto, and Apple CarPlay. Standard driver assistance features include adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, rain-sensing windshield wipers, automatic high-beam headlights, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, adaptive headlights, a rearview camera, and the MyKey driver monitoring system.

A twin-panel moonroof is optional for $1,750. For $795, the Elements package comes with heated rear seats and a heated steering wheel. The $1,500 Convenience package adds a hands-free power trunk lid, soft-close doors, and voice-activated touch-screen navigation. If you get the Convenience package, you can also add the $3,450 Premium package, which includes leather upholstery, a 13-speaker Revel audio system, HD Radio, and unique wheels.

Lincoln Continental Reserve

Starting at $59,870, the Lincoln Continental Reserve comes with leather upholstery, 24-way power-adjustable and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, a hands-free power trunk lid, tri-zone automatic climate control, two rear USB ports, a 13-speaker Revel stereo, HD Radio, navigation, a twin-panel moonroof, automatic parking assist, a head-up display, and a surround-view parking camera system.

Thirty-way power-adjustable front seats are optional for $1,500. The $4,750 Luxury package comes with upgraded wheels, LED headlights, and a 19-speaker Revel stereo.

For $3,000, the Rear Seat Amenities package includes a household-style power outlet, ventilated rear seats, four-way power lumbar adjustments, power-reclining seats, inflatable seatbelts, a center armrest control console, and rear window sunshades.

Lincoln Continental Black Label

The Continental Black Label retails for $70,205. It adds upgraded Venetian leather upholstery, 30-way power-adjustable multicontour front seats, a 19-speaker Revel stereo, LED headlights, and a household-style power outlet.

You can personalize this model’s interior by choosing one of three design themes. The Rear Seat package is also available for the Black Label.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Lincoln dealer.

See 2020 Lincoln Continental specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2020 Lincoln Continental is a fine luxury large car that stakes a claim as the value-oriented vehicle in its class. Few rivals can top its passenger space, but this Lincoln comes up a little short in handling prowess and interior luxury. Additionally, the base engine isn’t as strong as critics would like. Give the Continental a look, but before signing a contract, check out some of its more fun-to-drive rivals that offer more-sumptuous interiors.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "The Lincoln Continental out-luxuries a number of high-end sedans with bold styling, a stunning interior and some of the most technologically advanced features ever to grace a car. If you're shopping the big sedans from Cadillac, Lexus, Jaguar or Mercedes-Benz, the 2020 Continental also deserves a shot." -- Autotrader
  • "The Lincoln Continental has style that lives up to its heralded past. But a lack of refinement and overall value hinder the sedan in a crowded luxury segment." -- Edmunds
  • "The Continental comes into sharp focus as a larger, better-equipped alternative to premium-midsize sedans from Germany and Britain (the Jaguar XF), yet still with a classy design and an emphasis on comfort." -- Kelley Blue Book (2019)
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2020 Lincoln Continental

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