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Consumer Reports


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51 replies to this topic

#21 OFFLINE   walkabout

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Posted 23 October 2017 - 02:26 PM

But that's the point.  Humans will always be biased whether it's intentional or not.   It's human nature.   Everybody is biased to some degree.  It doesn't mean CR is more biased than anyone else.  It just means you have to take all reviews and opinions with a grain of salt - including CR.

 

 

The original Tesla model S review (which got a 103 out of 100) up to and including the 2017 update made no mention of the touchscreen being distracting.

 

The 2018 version does mention it, yet still gives the vehicle a perfect 100 score.   How can you give something a perfect 100 when it has such a big safety flaw (based on complaints against other brands)?

 

At best it's inconsistent.

 

There are other cases as well - rating some new Toyotas as reliable even though they had no data - while other models from other brands had to wait.   And they turned out to be wrong on one of those Toyotas so they no longer do that.

One of my complaints about CR has always been that they generate a "score" and then don't tell you how it is calculated.  So, we really know little about how they derived the score for the Tesla or how much things like interface goes into things.

 

I will say, having driven the old Fords with no buttons and those goofy slides and having ridden in the Tesla - the old Fords are not even in the same league as the Tesla in terms of usability.  So, part of the reason they may not have harped on the Tesla so much is that he layout just works a lot better there.

 

And, human error is different from bias.  For years, I've seen owners of cars that CR does not rate high scream that CR is unfair and is biased toward Toyota and Honda.  And, yet I've seen them lambast Toyota and Honda vehicles over the years and then rate other vehicles higher. I certainly don't see a bias against Ford at CR because they constantly note that Ford vehicles (like the Fusion) are very competitive when it comes to on road performance. 

 

The real bias at CR is that they assume all drivers value the same criteria they do.  For example, I've never cared much about ride quality but I weigh handling very highly.  And, I'm less concerned about MPG than I am about visibility (I hate the way you can't see out of modern vehicles). So, I do read their road tests but I rarely pay attention to the numerical score.  That's why I agree with your "grain of salt" comment.  It's one source of data, not the bible.

 

As for the MKX, they love the on road performance, and they say so - in fact, they rated the MKX higher in that regard than any of the car enthusiast mags (Motor Trend, C & D, etc) or online sources (like EDMUNDS). They give Sync 3 high marks, which it should get.  They also note that many owners of the MKX report reliability problems - and they list the specific areas of concern.   They did a fair and balanced job - and unlike other reviewers did not write the MKX off because of Lincoln's stodgy image.   

 

I just don't think the first few waves of vehicles coming out of that Canadian factory are doing well in terms of initial QC. 

 

Road tests may or may not be biased, but data don't lie.  MKX owners are reporting more problems than owners of some of the competing vehicles.  And, that is pure fact, not interpretation. 


Edited by walkabout, 23 October 2017 - 02:29 PM.

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#22 OFFLINE   akirby

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Posted 23 October 2017 - 02:50 PM

Don’t disagree at all on the MKX QC issues. I also don’t disagree that the Tesla setup may work better - but that’s not what they said about MFT. They specifically complained about having to find a button on the touchscreen instead of by touch and that it was distracting.

The main point is still to take any review with a grain of salt and make your own decisions.

#23 OFFLINE   walkabout

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Posted 23 October 2017 - 02:54 PM

Don’t disagree at all on the MKX QC issues. I also don’t disagree that the Tesla setup may work better - but that’s not what they said about MFT. They specifically complained about having to find a button on the touchscreen instead of by touch and that it was distracting.

The main point is still to take any review with a grain of salt and make your own decisions.

Hard to fault that last sentence. I totally agree. 



#24 ONLINE   Cosmos36

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Posted 23 October 2017 - 04:05 PM

Re: the last sentence of post #21. I haven't visited lately, but during the early months of 2016 production and periodically afterward I viewed social media postings of Oakville MKX workers and articles in the local union's newsletters. Very informative of the issues & work environment from the very differing perspectives of workers, supervisors, and union management vis-a-vis corporate overhead. There's no way to address all the complexities of the Oakville situation, perhaps common to many assembly & production entities including expanded hiring, overtime stresses, new product familiairzation, pending union contract negotiations, supply line shortages, shipping carrier backups, etc. In any event, it appeared to me that the 2016 MKX intro might have been plagued a bit with a bundle of issues affecting QC.


Edited by Cosmos36, 23 October 2017 - 04:07 PM.


#25 OFFLINE   fredluke

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 03:46 PM

Yes line 22 is accurate. I don't want to say too much about the initial production of the re designed Edge and MKX. I don't want to implicate anyone at the plant. But Cosmos and Line 22 gives you a tale of a multitude of issues. Remember, my vehicle was built Nov 15 and it was one of 100s that were housed to correct numerous faults. Some assembly and some supply and supplier defects. I drove by a few times during initial builds and couldn't believe the scale and numbers of MKXs filing every sq inch of outside space.

 

They had a number of challenges. They opened the line with a re-designed Edge for NA market, along with a European model with different engine options (diesel) RH drive etc. Without much time to smooth out the kinks with that change they dropped in the totally new MKX. They all run on the same line, same workers, same everything. So that one line is building Edge, MKX, Flex. There were air bag shortages, electric steering defects from the supplier, A-pillar leaks, power control issues draining batteries etc. Train allocations dried up due to rail car shortages. My friend said every day had a new issue. Pressure was extreme due to the sales of the Edge globally and MKX for NA and China. The plant was a bees nest 24 hrs a day. My friend practically sleeps at his post to this day. Never saw his family at Can Thanksgiving (Oct). 

 

I'm not sure where the MKC is built but have to wonder if they went thru similar teething.

 

Any quality complaints with the first batch of vehicles is probably justified. Like my friend said one day he was building years of unchanged Edges, MKX, and Flex and the next day except for the Flex a new breed of vehicles both in design and technology. It's no excuse but it happened. 


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#26 ONLINE   Cosmos36

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 05:02 PM

Fred...many thanks for a candid review of the early MKX production scenario at Oakville from an insiders perspective. Frankly, from reading some of the line employees narratives on social media during the early startup months, I couldn't help but feel both some anger and empathy. Many of them were sadly expressive, but humor and resolution under the circumstances was present also. Your last sentence says it all.



#27 OFFLINE   akirby

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 05:46 PM

MKC production is in Louisville

#28 OFFLINE   walkabout

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 06:53 PM

Yes line 22 is accurate. I don't want to say too much about the initial production of the re designed Edge and MKX. I don't want to implicate anyone at the plant. But Cosmos and Line 22 gives you a tale of a multitude of issues. Remember, my vehicle was built Nov 15 and it was one of 100s that were housed to correct numerous faults. Some assembly and some supply and supplier defects. I drove by a few times during initial builds and couldn't believe the scale and numbers of MKXs filing every sq inch of outside space.

 

They had a number of challenges. They opened the line with a re-designed Edge for NA market, along with a European model with different engine options (diesel) RH drive etc. Without much time to smooth out the kinks with that change they dropped in the totally new MKX. They all run on the same line, same workers, same everything. So that one line is building Edge, MKX, Flex. There were air bag shortages, electric steering defects from the supplier, A-pillar leaks, power control issues draining batteries etc. Train allocations dried up due to rail car shortages. My friend said every day had a new issue. Pressure was extreme due to the sales of the Edge globally and MKX for NA and China. The plant was a bees nest 24 hrs a day. My friend practically sleeps at his post to this day. Never saw his family at Can Thanksgiving (Oct). 

 

I'm not sure where the MKC is built but have to wonder if they went thru similar teething.

 

Any quality complaints with the first batch of vehicles is probably justified. Like my friend said one day he was building years of unchanged Edges, MKX, and Flex and the next day except for the Flex a new breed of vehicles both in design and technology. It's no excuse but it happened. 

 

 

Per Consumer Reports, the rate of problems for 2017 MKX is about on par with the 2016.  So, its not related to the early teething problems - its the fundamental design of the vehicle (which, btw, is not to say that it won't improve during the model run).  

 

The MKC, which has been in production for a longer period, has an abysmal reliability record. 

 

I will say, anecdotally that I have been soundly unimpressed by the build quality on the MKC, MKZ, and MKTs I had as loaners.  Every single one of those cars had at least one trim piece that was loose, broken, or otherwise compromised.  In fact, I've never seen that kind of consistent poor QC in any line of cars I've ever driven. And, again, as a brand, Lincoln had an atrocious reliability record over the last three years. 



#29 OFFLINE   elijahbird7

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 08:19 PM

My '14 MKX was never taken to the dealer for anything but oil changes. My '16 has been back far too many times for different reasons. But, regardless, I still love the '16 style, 2.7 engine, tech package, 22 way seats, 21" Polished Wheels, adjustable suspension, trailer tow, Revel system, etc. I suppose if I weren't retired, going back to the dealer so many times would likely have been more of an issue. Lincoln only dealer, so interesting loaners including a Continental and a 400 HP MKZ. I will still buy a Lincoln next time I decide to trade anyway.
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#30 OFFLINE   akirby

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 08:49 PM

I think the platform is partly to blame. Fusion went from flawless (06-12 Mazda based CD3) to terrible for the 2013 model (Euro EUCD based CD4). Escape/MKC did the same moving to the Euro Kuga C platform. I think Edge/MKX has the same issue. Not to say that the factory itself doesn’t have its own issues, but Hermosillo where Fusion/MKZ is built certainly wasn’t to blame.

#31 OFFLINE   walkabout

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Posted 25 October 2017 - 12:41 AM

It's a shame, because I still maintain that the drivers experience is in part with vehicles costing thousands more. The mkx is an absolute pleasure to drive.

#32 OFFLINE   Grillmaster75

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Posted 31 October 2017 - 11:51 AM

there is a lot that can be read into any third party rating system.  input directly from owners is what I look at as most relevant, I like Edmunds.  For me I am disappointed in the overall quality.  I bought it #1, for the ride, #2 ease of use of controls and #3 the Revel sound system.  Acura MDX was what I thought I was going to buy but for me it didn't ride as nice, controls with the dual screens was not a plus and the sound system was not even in the same sip code as the MKX.   I was worried I was rolling the dice with Ford quality and longevity as I keep cars to 150,000.  To date I have had both rear windows fixed because on their own they would drop down and would not go back up unless you turned the car off.  this from week one.  One was due to a bad solenoid the other was pinched wiring.  there is a whole back story to how badly service handled this, including returning the car with the door panel not entirely put back in place, but quality of the service department is not the cars fault.  Next was the peeling wheels issue , another topic on this forum.  Next was both rear tail light assemblies came loose and needed to be replaced.  Literally the point of the taillight on the side quarter panel was sticking out.  at the same time the left front bumper assembly came loose - same story; broken clips, - replace the clips though there was a time they thought the entire front bumper might need to be replaced.  again there are interesting back stories as how they couldn't find my car on the lot, never completed the oil change etc.  it got so bad the owner of the dealership gave me a $100 gift card.  Great people who I am in contact with but they have lots of issues running there service department and the actual service people aren't good in my opinion.  Another minor issues trailer hitch could have been installed differently, but that didn't bother me.

 

If the problems are cosmetic and not mechanical and they don't kill me with a thousand cuts I am ok with the MKX.  Its ride is top shelf, even with 29,000 miles on the tires. the info system, like all systems could improve, but still better than most that I have seen.

chris 



#33 ONLINE   Cosmos36

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Posted 31 October 2017 - 01:31 PM

Grillmaster/Chris...what was the production date of your MKX?

 

There's nothing like poor customer service to sour one's opinion of a vehicle brand, especially if the dealer is the only one in reasonable proximity to you. Your MKX appears to have suffered some assembly and/or materiel issues during its production. I continue to hope that LiMoCo has resolved such problems.



#34 OFFLINE   walkabout

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Posted 31 October 2017 - 11:35 PM

Chris- Crappy service is another complaint. I used to take my vehicle to a dealer nearby (Star Ford /Lincoln). They often did more damage them I brought the car in for to start.

#35 OFFLINE   Grillmaster75

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 11:56 AM

Grillmaster/Chris...what was the production date of your MKX?

 

There's nothing like poor customer service to sour one's opinion of a vehicle brand, especially if the dealer is the only one in reasonable proximity to you. Your MKX appears to have suffered some assembly and/or materiel issues during its production. I continue to hope that LiMoCo has resolved such problems.

 

not sure what the production date is, but if it on the sticker on the drivers side jam then 2-16 - my birthday!.  I can tell you that I took ownership May of 2016.  started looking in February of 2016 and the car was on the showroom floor.  Anymore falling apart issues and I might go straight to Lincoln just because.  I have everything documented, including some interesting conversations with the body shop.  But let me re-iterate - I love driving the car. Prior car and service experience was a MB E350.  night and day based on the quality of work and none of these falling apart issues.  

Chris 



#36 OFFLINE   akirby

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 12:10 PM

You do understand that you can use any dealer for warranty work and service - you don't have to take it back to where you bought it.



#37 OFFLINE   Grillmaster75

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 03:27 PM

You do understand that you can use any dealer for warranty work and service - you don't have to take it back to where you bought it.

 

yea, but it is super convenient.  Because I've talked with every level of manager and the owner they know me.  I hope that is worth something when the time comes to dicker over a cost for a service.  when I had the MB and the warranty ran out I found a local German service center and saved 20-30% off dealer services like brakes. I was skeptical at first but basically they all drove MB's and BMW's and said they have the same equipment as the dealer just less choices of coffee and soda (:-).  there are more and more independent firms popping up who claim to be able to service American cars.  time will tell, and I haven't given up hope on the MKX or the dealer.  

Chris 



#38 OFFLINE   akirby

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 04:03 PM

I would argue that it's not very convenient if they can't fix the problem correctly and cause more issues with each visit.

 

I have a great salesperson at the local dealer who knows me.  I just call and tell him what I want and he gets it one way or the other.  He knows I use X plan.   But their service department screwed up twice in a row so now I refuse to do business with them.  

 

It's like my wife's grandmother used to say about her Curtis Mathes tv.   After it died for the 5th time and they came out and fixed it I asked her why she kept buying Curtis Mathes tvs?   She said because when they break they come out to the house and fix it.   I said well what if you bought a different brand that never failed in the first place?   It took her a few minutes to get it.



#39 OFFLINE   walkabout

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 08:14 PM

I know we disagree about this akirby (which is OK) but the lack of control Ford has over Lincoln dealers is part of the problem here.  Few people walk away from a Lexus or Infiniti dealer with these complaints.   One way or another, other companies maintain a much higher standard of customer support than Lincoln. Even the most arrogant of all companies, BMW, was a thousand times better to me than Lincoln. 

 

There are only TWO LIncoln dealers that are reasonably close to me (despite the fact that I live in the biggest car market in the country).  The first one kept my car for eight days without doing any work because they had a problem with a service adviser.  Eight days, while I paid on the lease.  I kept calling and calling and they wouldn't even return my calls or give me my vehicle back.

 

The second dealer has repeatedly broken parts of my car when taking for service.  The first time, they declared my Sync 3 needed to be replaced (which I still don't believe). They returned the vehicle with all USB ports deactivated and the front console with a nice gorge in it . In other words, vehicle came back in worse shape then in went in.  Second time, glove compartment kept spontaneously opening because plastic trim on dash failed.  After three separate trips (because they continued to argue the problems were caused by me kicking the glovebox out of alignment - something I somehow managed to do while sitting in the driver's seat), they finally replaced the plastic trim.  However, they cracked the wood trim on the console in three different places. They actually returned the car to me with multiple cracks in the wood. 

 

The above is not just bad dealer service. It grossly incompetent, reprehensible service.  Its embarrassing, especially to a brand that considers itself upscale. 

 

My take on the MKX remains the same.  On road, I still see it as one of the best (and maybe even the best) vehicle in the class.  I think Sync 3 IS the best infortainment system in the segment.  But, the materials quality and fit and finish are a bummer, the reliability questionable, and the dealer service is an unmitigated joke.  Lincoln got the hard parts correct, and then dropped the ball on the easier challenges. 


Edited by walkabout, 01 November 2017 - 08:15 PM.


#40 OFFLINE   akirby

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Posted 01 November 2017 - 09:26 PM

I know we disagree about this akirby (which is OK) but the lack of control Ford has over Lincoln dealers is part of the problem here.  Few people walk away from a Lexus or Infiniti dealer with these complaints.   One way or another, other companies maintain a much higher standard of customer support than Lincoln. Even the most arrogant of all companies, BMW, was a thousand times better to me than Lincoln. 
 


I don’t disagree that there is room for improvement with Lincoln corporate customer service. I’ve said that repeatedly.

Lexus, Acura and Infinit did not exist until the late 80s. Most Ford/Lincoln franchises date back to the 70s, 60s or even 50s and those franchise agreements did not anticipate the current luxury vehicle dealer experience. There are also far more Lincoln dealers than Lexus dealers.

I’ve often said Ford would have been better off to kill Lincoln and create a new brand with a new franchise agreement, new showrooms, etc.






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