Drawing upon the brand’s history to chart a path for the future, the all-new 2017 Lincoln Continental is a modern interpretation of Lincoln’s flagship sedan. A luxurious tech-filled cabin, retro styling and a trio of powerful and efficient engines make the Continental a worthy alternative to the German best sellers.
The 2017 Lincoln Continental is a luxury sedan that seats five. Both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive are available, and all models use a six-speed automatic transmission.
The Continental is all-new for the 2017 model year, and it replaces Lincoln’s MKS. The Continental name rejoins Lincoln’s line up after a 15-year hiatus. Lincoln’s flagship sedan is available in four different trim levels: Premiere, Select, Reserve and Black Label.
Big, bold and beautiful, the all-new Lincoln Continental makes a powerful visual statement. From the bright honeycomb grille to the dual exhaust outlets, the Continental is commanding on the road, attracting attention wherever it goes. Signature E-latch electronic door handles set the Continental apart. The design element replaces traditional handles with an attractive molded chrome pull concealing a push button that activates the door latch.
The base Premium model rides on 18-inch painted aluminum wheels. Select and Reserve trims include 19-inch alloys, and the top Black Label trim is fit with 20-inch polished aluminum wheels.
Lincoln’s Continental comes standard with HID headlights, LED daytime running lights, heated power-folding side mirrors and LED taillights. Active grille shutters increase fuel economy, and a capless fuel filler adds convenience. The Select model adds a hands-free power trunk lid, and top-trim Black Label models include LED headlights and unique exterior colors. A panoramic sunroof is offered as an option.
As Lincoln’s flagship sedan, the Continental’s interior is designed to provide an inviting experience that pampers occupants. The space is open and comfortable, providing plenty of room for cross-country road trips thanks to an oversized rear seat and spacious trunk. Lincoln’s goal is to set the new sedan’s cabin on par with competitors from BMW, Mercedes and Audi, and the Continental’s interior meets or exceeds expectations in many key ways. The use of real wood accents and high-quality soft-touch materials elevates the sedan’s premium experience, and the comfortable, highly adjustable seats can be configured to fit almost every driver and passenger.
The Continental’s limo-style rear seats are family-friendly, providing ample room for two or three adults. Executives will find the environment perfect for long trips across town, providing plenty of space to work or sit back and relax between meetings. Cargo space is also excellent, with 16.7 cubic feet available for groceries and luggage.
The base model features heated 10-way power-adjustable front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a power-adjustable tilt-and-telescoping steering column, dual-zone automatic climate control, rear seat vents and ambient lighting. The Select trim adds leather upholstery, a wood-accented steering wheel and illuminated doorsill plates.
The Reserve model adds 24-way power-adjustable heated and ventilated front seats, tri-zone climate control and a rear power sunshade. The top-trim Black Label includes an Alcantara headliner, upgraded leather upholstery, power-adjustable rear seats and a heated steering wheel. Black Label models can be customized to meet individual tastes with a wide range of colors and trims.
An optional Rear Seat package that is available on Reserve and Black Label trims includes a 40/20/40-split rear seat with reclining heated and ventilated outboard seats that offer four-way lumbar support.
Additional optional features include an auto-dimming rearview mirror and 30-way adjustable front seats with a massage feature.
The 2017 Lincoln Continental is available with three different engines. The base Premiere uses a 3.7-liter V6 engine that creates 305 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. Optional engines include a 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged V6 that generates 335 horsepower and 380 pound-feet of torque and a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 that creates 400 horsepower and 400 pound-feet or torque. A six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive are standard. All-wheel drive is available on all models and standard with the 3.0-liter V6.
The base 3.7-liter V6 earns an EPA-estimated 17/26 mpg city/highway with front-wheel drive, while the 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged V6 offers the best fuel economy in the lineup with up to 18/27 mpg.
The Lincoln Continental is a comfortable highway cruiser with excellent road manners. The suspension is soft and forgiving, and road noise is kept to a minimum. Steering is precise and braking is excellent, especially considering the size of the vehicle. However, those looking for a sports car in luxury-sedan sheet metal will want to investigate options from Cadillac, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Audi. While the top-tier twin-turbocharged V6’s 400 horsepower is fine for strong straight-line acceleration and highway passing, the gentle nature of the Continental’s chassis falls short of delivering a true sports-sedan experience.
The base Continental arrives with two USB ports, keyless entry and ignition and an 8-inch touch screen with Lincoln’s Sync 3 infotainment system. Sync 3 includes Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone mirroring, satellite radio and 10-speaker audio. Lincoln’s infotainment system offers intuitive controls, and we found the interface to be user friendly.
Select models add two charge-only rear USB ports. Reserve models include navigation and the ability to connect with the vehicle through a smartphone app. The top-trim Black Label adds a 19-speaker premium sound system.
All Continental models include a rearview camera and a post-crash alert system.
Blind spot monitoring is available. A Technology package adds forward collision warning, a surround-view camera system, active park assist, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and lane keeping assist.
The base 2017 Lincoln Continental Premier starts at $44,720 plus a $925 destination charge. The Select trim starts at $47,675 plus destination, and the Black Label at $63,075.
Our as-tested mid-tier Reserve model starts at $54,075. Our test model was equipped with the 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 and all-wheel drive ($5,265), the Technology package ($4,215), the Luxury package ($5,000), the Rear Seat package ($4,300) and 30-way power front seats ($1,500).
The Continental’s base price is competitive, but its lack of leather seating leads us to recommend the Select trim, which is the value leader for the model. Moving into the higher-tier models will add considerable expense, especially when additional equipment packages are added. A top-trim Black Label Continental can easily reach $80,000, which is pricey, even for this segment.
The Continental is back, and the all-new 2017 model is a worthy successor for the role of Lincoln’s flagship sedan. The attractive styling and Lincoln’s trio of powerful engines are noteworthy, but it is the sedan’s luxurious cabin that steals the show.