2019 Lincoln MKC vs. 2018 MINI Countryman

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front and rear (child comfort guides) seat shoulder belts of the Lincoln MKC are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The MINI Countryman doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

The MKC Reserve/Black Label’s optional lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane. The Countryman doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The MKC (except Premiere)’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The Countryman doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

To help make backing safer, the MKC (except Premiere)’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Countryman doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

The MKC has standard SYNC®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Countryman doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the MKC and the Countryman have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, front parking sensors and driver alert monitors.

Warranty

Lincoln’s powertrain warranty covers the MKC 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than MINI covers the Countryman. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Countryman ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are over 7 times as many Lincoln dealers as there are MINI dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the MKC’s warranty.

Reliability

The MKC has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Countryman doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the MKC first among compact premium suvs in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The Countryman isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Lincoln vehicles are better in initial quality than MINI vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 7th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, MINI is ranked 12th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lincoln vehicles are more reliable than MINI vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 20 more problems per 100 vehicles, MINI is ranked 17th.

Engine

The MKC has more powerful engines than the Countryman:

 

Horsepower

Torque

MKC 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

245 HP

275 lbs.-ft.

MKC 2.3 turbo 4 cyl.

285 HP

305 lbs.-ft.

Countryman 1.5 turbo 3 cyl.

134 HP

162 lbs.-ft.

Countryman S 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

189 HP

207 lbs.-ft.

JCW Countryman 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

228 HP

258 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the Lincoln MKC 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the MINI Countryman turbo 3 cyl. (automatics tested):

 

MKC

Countryman

Zero to 60 MPH

7.6 sec

9.3 sec

Quarter Mile

15.9 sec

17 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

87.4 MPH

79.6 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the MKC 2.0 Turbo’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Countryman doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The MKC has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Countryman doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

The Lincoln MKC comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Countryman.

Brakes and Stopping

The MKC stops much shorter than the Countryman:

 

MKC

Countryman

 

60 to 0 MPH

111 feet

138 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the MKC has larger standard tires than the Countryman (235/50R18 vs. 225/55R17). The MKC AWD’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Countryman (255/40R20 vs. 225/55R17).

The MKC’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Countryman’s standard 55 series tires. The MKC AWD’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Countryman’s optional 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the MKC has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Countryman. The MKC AWD’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels optional on the Countryman.

Suspension and Handling

The MKC’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The Countryman doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

The MKC AWD handles at .84 G’s, while the Countryman ALL4 pulls only .79 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The MKC AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.6 seconds quicker than the Countryman ALL4 (26.7 seconds @ .68 average G’s vs. 28.3 seconds @ .58 average G’s).

Chassis

The front grille of the MKC uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Countryman doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The MKC uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Countryman doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The MKC has 2.4 inches more front legroom, 1.2 inches more front shoulder room, 1.2 inches more rear headroom and 1.3 inches more rear shoulder room than the Countryman.

Cargo Capacity

The MKC has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the Countryman with its rear seat up (25.2 vs. 17.6 cubic feet). The MKC has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the Countryman with its rear seat folded (53.1 vs. 47.6 cubic feet).

A standard locking glovebox keeps your small valuables safer in the MKC. The Countryman doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Towing

The MKC has a 2000 lbs. towing capacity. The Countryman has no towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Lincoln service is better than MINI. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 7th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 11% lower rating, MINI is ranked 10th.

Ergonomics

The MKC has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Countryman doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the MKC’s exterior PIN entry system. The Countryman doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the MKC has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Countryman only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The MKC has standard heated front seats. Heated front seats cost extra on the Countryman. The MKC also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Countryman.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the MKC Reserve/Black Label keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Countryman doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the MKC’s optional (except Premiere) heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Countryman doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The MKC (except Premiere) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Countryman doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the MKC is less expensive to operate than the Countryman because it costs $63 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the MKC than the Countryman, including $16 less for front brake pads, $236 less for a starter, $30 less for fuel injection, $21 less for a fuel pump and $181 less for front struts.

Recommendations

The Lincoln MKC outsold the MINI Countryman by 82% during 2017.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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