click above image to view high-res pics of the 2007 Lincoln MKZ AWD This review won't be as long as most since we had the opportunity to test the 2006 Lincoln Zephyr just last year. For 2007, the Zephyr becomes the MKZ (pronounced Em Kay Zee) and gains improvements that should have been present last year when the car debuted. Items like a more powerful 3.5L V6 and all-wheel drive have been added, along with the most mild of tweaks to the front end. So the question that arrived along with our Lincoln MKZ AWD tester is whether or not what's been added for 2007 has improved the car's appeal. %Gallery-2067% We concluded last year that the Zephyr relied on style to set it apart from its platform mates, the Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan. Where those two less expensive cars are about as different as the old Taurus and Sable were, the Lincoln brand got a car with divergent styling that on the outside is unremarkable and on the inside striking. We favored the Zephyr's unique interior that used symmetry of lines and deep depressions to good effect. Though some find it garish, we found it interesting and a welcome relief to the flush waterfall designs of so many modern day dashes. Thus, we're pleased that virtually nothing was changed inside the car during its transition from Zephyr to MKZ. The comfy and supportive seats, top-notch nav system (love those digital breadcrumbs!) and excellent sound system return to make the new MKZ an excellent decompression chamber during the commute home. Likewise, the MKZ's exterior design hasn't changed much at all from the Zephyr's. When the MKZ first debuted, Lincoln did boast about the car's revised front end, but we hardly consider tweaking the lower air intake and adding chrome surrounds to the driving lights a proper revision. The only real change to this car's exterior is the addition of MKZ badging, so if you loved it or loathed it last year, you'll likely feel the same way about it now. We were fond of the Amethyst Clearcoat Metallic paint that coated our tester this time around, though was disturbed to learn while refueling that the gas cap had no where to hang except against the purple paint job. The main reason we were eager to get this Lincoln back in the Autoblog Garage is the new 3.5L V6 that lies underhood. Replacing the Zephyr's underpowered 3.0L V6 that produced 221 horsepower and 204 ft-lbs. of torque, the new powerplant offers a substantial increase in power -- up to 263 horsepower and 249 ft-lbs. of torque. What's more, the new 3.5L is destined to play a large part in Ford's future powertrain plan, ending up in 20% of Blue Oval-badged vehicles by 2010. For 2007, however, the new 3.5L V6 engine stands as the primary distinguishing feature between the MKZ and less expensive Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan, which are still only available with the 3.0L V6. Whereas it was …
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|MPG||19 City / 27 Hwy|
|Transmission||6-spd auto w/OD|
|Power||263 @ 6250 rpm|
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