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2012 Lincoln MKZ Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2012 Lincoln MKZ was new.


Interior: 7.7

Lincoln intends for the 2012 MKZ to rival the Lexus ES and similar comfort-oriented midsize luxury cars. While critics generally applaud the MKZ’s user-friendly controls, large trunk and comfortable seats, many say that the interior materials fall short of the competition. Additionally, some note that all of the MKZ’s electronic bells and whistles are available on the Ford Fusion at a much lower price.

  • "Some interior bits still feel cheap." -- Car and Driver
  • "Many interior surfaces are textured and padded, though most look and feel little different than a comparable Fusion. The optional Executive Package includes trim that improves the interior ambiance. We would recommend it." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The 2012 Lincoln MKZ's passenger cabin gets some nice feature upgrades and better materials than those found in its Ford Fusion cousin. That said, the interior seems more like something you'd find on a top-of-the-line mainstream sedan than a car meant to compete with European luxury marques like Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz." -- Edmunds
  • “The upgraded interior is now more of a contender for best-in-class with its abundance of soft-touch materials and excellent leather seats." -- Autoblog


Reviewers say the seats of the Lincoln MKZ reflect the car’s laid-back character. They’re comfortable and covered in soft-grade leather that’s more luxurious than many similarly-priced cars. But drivers who attempt sporty driving likely won’t find enough supportive bolstering. The rear seats of the MKZ are particularly impressive, offering more leg-, hip- and headroom than the Lexus ES. This makes the MKZ one of the best upscale midsize cars for those who routinely travel with four adults.

  • "Headroom and legroom are adequate for six-footers. MKZ's seats are designed for soft comfort rather than sporty bolstering. In that light, this car succeeds as a comfortable highway cruiser, though some testers find the seats too flat for optimal long-drive support." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The seats are comfortable and both front and rear seat passengers enjoy a good amount of head- and legroom." -- Edmunds
  • "I was more impressed by the leather seats, which are quite richly detailed. Our test car had steel gray leather with wide, cream-colored piping, and it was very, very nice - a welcome change from the overly plasticized, overly homogenous leather treatments we see everywhere these days." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "The bucket seats are now wrapped in premium Bridge of Weir leather and have just the right amount of bolstering. We could easily spend hours inside the MKZ and never feel uncomfortable." -- Autoblog

Interior Features

Reviewers find the MKZ’s climate and entertainment systems easy to use, which gives it a leg up against other cars in its class. Many upscale midsize cars now feature a single user interface that controls all climate and audio functions, such as BMW’s iDrive, but Lincoln still offers separate controls for each, which means buyers should be able to understand its controls quickly and easily.

The standard Lincoln SYNC system allows drivers to use voice commands to control almost all of the car’s audio functions, as well as any Bluetooth-enabled cell phones and music players inside the car. Reviewers have overwhelmingly positive things to say about SYNC and it’s something no competitor can match. However, the same system is available on the Ford Fusion. Reviewers disagree on the value of the optional THX sound system, so you might want to test it out yourself before you spend the extra money.

  • "The main gauges are clearly lit and easy to read. The controls are self-evident, with most audio and climate functions separate from the navigation system. Redundant steering-wheel and touchscreen controls are helpful as well." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The MKZ's range of available technology is another positive here, especially the navigation system's Sirius Travel Link service. Audiophiles will also want to make sure to give the excellent THX surround-sound system a listen." -- Edmunds
  • “The instrument panel is pretty nicely turned out, with some aluminum or aluminumlike trim and FoMoCo's superb new navigation and audio system interface. Part of the pricey Ultimate Package, the screen is intuitive, crystal clear, and bright. The THX audio system is also quite impressive." -- Automobile Magazine


The Lincoln MKZ has one of the largest trunks in the upscale midsize car class. While sportier rivals like the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class offer fewer than 13 cubic feet for cargo, the MKZ has 16.5 cubic feet of trunk space.

  • "A decently sized glovebox and center console offer good small-item storage." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Out back is an equally generously sized trunk." -- Edmunds

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