24350 W 12 Mile Rd.
Directions Southfield, MI 48034

  • Sales: (888) 337-6151
  • Service: (888) 356-1278
  • Parts: (888) 379-2802

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Lincoln MKX vs Lexus RX 350


Star Lincoln

24350 W 12 Mile Rd.
Directions Southfield, MI 48034

  • Sales: (888) 337-6151
  • Service: (888) 356-1278
  • Parts: (888) 379-2802


  • Monday 9:00AM - 9:00PM
  • Tuesday 9:00AM - 6:00PM
  • Wednesday 9:00AM - 6:00PM
  • Thursday 9:00AM - 9:00PM
  • Friday 9:00AM - 6:00PM
  • Saturday 10:00AM - 3:00PM
  • Sunday Closed

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The luxury division of Toyota, Lexus has been producing luxury vehicles for almost three decades. While Lexus touts itself as Japan's largest-selling make of premium cars, how does that translate outside of Japan?

 Lincoln has helped to define American luxury for almost a century, with famed models such as the Continental, the Mark series, and the Town Car making an imprint on the American car-buying public. These are cars that were built for presidents, businessmen, and other luminaries, but still affordable to the general public.


The latest generation of luxury vehicles has also brought with it new styles, most notably, the rise of the luxury crossover SUV. The Lexus RX350 is the crossover flagship for Japan, while the Lincoln MKX has been the premiere luxury crossover SUV built in America. Matched up head to head, there is one clear winner.

Power on Demand

Lincoln loves to provide options for the driver. Two engines are available under the hood of the Lincoln MKX, both of which can be equipped with front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. The base engine, a 3.7-liter V6, provides 303 horsepower and 278 lb-ft of torque. All trim levels can be upgraded to the enjoyable, powerful turbocharged 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine, which ups the output to 335 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque.


In the RX350, meanwhile, you only get one engine, an underpowered 3.5-liter V6 that produces 295 horsepower and 267 lb-ft of torque. While this supplies the same 3,500-pound maximum towing capacity of the MKX, it does so with less confidence, particularly if you need to get around slower traffic. The RX350 takes 7.7 seconds to reach 60 miles per hour from a standing start, compared to the Lincoln MKX only needs 6.2 seconds to reach 60 MPH. This means slower of the line, and slower to get around in the overtaking lane. While the RX350 may offer slightly better gas mileage, we'd rather have the extra confidence when we need to make a move.

Convenience is Key

Every feature and function in the Lincoln MKX is aimed at making your experience enjoyable and comfortable. This runs from the standard 10-way power-adjustable front seats and available 22-way multicontour front seats, to the heated rear outboard seats, to the available hands-free liftgate. Your vehicle needs to meld into your everyday life, and the MKX does just that.


While the RX350 does offer a touch-free rear door, it still requires that you use an elbow or hand to trigger the sensor - a lot more difficult than the wave of a foot underneath the bumper, particularly if you have your hands full of luggage or groceries.

User-Friendly Interior

Limiting distractions and improving convenience is the key to a successful interior design and technological options. Both the Lincoln MKX and the Lexus RX350 provide infotainment options that are powerful, but the Lexus is stuck in the past. The SYNC 3 system is intuitive, highly advanced, and easy to control. Called one of the most user-friendly and powerful units available in any vehicle, it helps to make everything more convenient. The Lexus, while it can be upgraded to a large screen, uses a distracting, sensitive Remote Touch controller that is difficult to learn and draws the driver's attention from the road ahead - not a safe choice on busy roads.


The RX350 is a little lacking for audiophiles as well. The Lincoln MKX provides a standard 9-speaker audio system, with a 13-speaker HD Radio-equipped Revel system or a 19-speaker Revel Ultima system with Clari-Fi technology both available. While the base Lexus system is also nine speakers, the upgrades are to a 12- or 15-speaker system, a bit less impressive.

 Materials can make all the difference as well. In the Lincoln MKX, leather upholstery is standard on all but the base trim, while for the Lexus, leather is only available on the highest trim level. Lincoln utilizes high-quality wood trims and aluminum accents to compliment soft-touch surfaces, while Lexus still allows some of its Toyota roots to show through with decidedly non-luxurious hard plastics.


"The Lincoln MKX checks all the mid-size, two-row luxury crossover boxes and is better than the standard-bearer that launched this segment, the Lexus RX" - Automobile Magazine


"It's tough to recommend the Lexus RX 350... There are luxury crossovers that do a better job of pleasing the enthusiast driver, like the Audi Q5 or the BMW X5. Add to that the finicky Remote Touch system and polarizing styling and you're better off searching for your dream nimble hauler elsewhere." - Roadshow by CNET

Style to Go Along With Substance

The Lincoln MKX looks like an SUV, with a regal, upright bearing and a high, clean roofline. The graceful front winged grille is subtle. With the Lexus, it's hard to look past the gaping maw of the front grille, which looks like it was designed by a child. It is outlandish, and without any subtlety. While the MKX has a look that will please the eye for years to come, you'll get tired of the slack-jawed appearance of the Lexus quickly.


Giving You More

Lincoln consistently provides some of the longest services of any car maker, from in-car subscriptions to vehicle coverage. This includes 6 years of SiriusXM subscription, a year longer than what is offered in the Lexus RX350. Warranty-wise, the Lincoln MKX comes with 6 years of roadside assistance and 2 years of paid maintenance. The Lexus only offers 4 years of roadside assistance and only a single year of maintenance.

Lincoln continues to shine, and to be the beacon for American luxury well into the 21st century. While upstarts such as Lexus continue to try to unseat them, the difference in experience shows in the interior design and functionality of Lincoln products.