2019 Lincoln MKZ vs. 2019 Chevrolet Volt

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Lincoln MKZ 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 Chevrolet Volt doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

The rear seatbelts optional on the MKZ inflate when a collision is detected, helping to spread crash forces over a much larger area of the body and limiting head and neck movement. This can help prevent spinal and internal injuries. The Volt doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

The MKZ offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Volt doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The MKZ’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Volt doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Compared to metal, the MKZ’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Chevrolet Volt has a metal gas tank.

Both the MKZ and the Volt have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available daytime running lights and front parking sensors.

Warranty

The MKZ comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Volt’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

Lincoln’s powertrain warranty covers the MKZ 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Chevrolet covers the Volt. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Volt ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

The MKZ’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Volt’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

Reliability

The MKZ 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 Volt doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the car’s engine.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Lincoln vehicles are more reliable than Chevrolet vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Lincoln 3 places higher in reliability than Chevrolet.

Engine

The MKZ Hybrid’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid produces 39 more horsepower (188 vs. 149) than the Volt’s 1.5 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid. The MKZ’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 96 more horsepower (245 vs. 149) than the Volt’s 1.5 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid. The MKZ’s optional 3.0 turbo V6 produces 201 more horsepower (350 vs. 149) and 106 lbs.-ft. more torque (400 vs. 294) than the Volt’s 1.5 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid. The MKZ’s optional 3.0 turbo V6 produces 251 more horsepower (400 vs. 149) and 106 lbs.-ft. more torque (400 vs. 294) than the Volt’s 1.5 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid.

As tested in Car and Driver the Lincoln MKZ 2.0 Turbo is faster than the Chevrolet Volt:

 

MKZ

Volt

Zero to 30 MPH

2.4 sec

2.6 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

7.4 sec

7.8 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

12.9 sec

13.7 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

21.6 sec

23.4 sec

Quarter Mile

15.8 sec

16.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

88 MPH

86 MPH

Top Speed

135 MPH

101 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

The MKZ Hybrid’s standard fuel tank has 5.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Volt (14 vs. 8.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The MKZ 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 Volt doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Lincoln MKZ higher (5 to 7 out of 10) than the Chevrolet Volt (3 to 7). This means the MKZ produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Volt every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the MKZ’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Volt:

 

MKZ Hybrid

MKZ 2.0T/3.0T

Volt

Front Rotors

11.8 inches

12.4 inches

11 inches

Rear Rotors

11.9 inches

12.4 inches

10 inches

The MKZ stops much shorter than the Volt:

 

MKZ

Volt

 

70 to 0 MPH

168 feet

181 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

115 feet

120 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the MKZ has larger tires than the Volt (245/45R18 vs. 215/50R17).

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

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the MKZ has standard 18-inch wheels. Only 17-inch wheels are available on the Volt. The MKZ offers optional 19-inch wheels.

The MKZ has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Volt; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

For superior ride and handling, the Lincoln MKZ has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Chevrolet Volt has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The MKZ has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the MKZ flat and controlled during cornering. The Volt’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

The MKZ has a standard driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Volt’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The MKZ’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 Volt doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the MKZ’s wheelbase is 6.1 inches longer than on the Volt (112.2 inches vs. 106.1 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the MKZ is 1.7 inches wider in the front and .2 inches wider in the rear than on the Volt.

The MKZ AWD handles at .84 G’s, while the Volt Premier pulls only .80 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

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

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the MKZ a Mid-size car, while the Volt is rated a Compact.

The MKZ has 6.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Volt (96.6 vs. 90.3).

The MKZ has .1 inches more front headroom, 2.2 inches more front legroom, 1.4 inches more front hip room, 1.2 inches more front shoulder room, .8 inches more rear headroom, 2.3 inches more rear legroom, 2.5 inches more rear hip room and 2.1 inches more rear shoulder room than the Volt.

Cargo Capacity

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the MKZ. The Volt doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Towing

The MKZ has a 1000 lbs. towing capacity. The Volt has no towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

The MKZ uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Volt uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

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

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the MKZ, the memory system makes it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, steering wheel position (with optional power wheel adjuster) and outside mirror angle. The Volt doesn’t offer a memory system.

The MKZ’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Volt doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The MKZ’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Volt’s passenger windows don’t close automatically.

If the windows are left open on the MKZ the driver can close them all from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can also lower the windows the same way. The driver of the Volt can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the MKZ’s exterior PIN entry system. The Volt doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system, and its OnStar® can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception or the driver can’t contact the service.

The MKZ’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Volt’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the MKZ has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Volt doesn’t offer cornering lights.

A power rear sunshade is optional in the MKZ to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The Volt doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

The MKZ’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Chevrolet charges extra for heated mirrors on the Volt.

The MKZ offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Volt offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the MKZ keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Volt doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

The MKZ’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Volt doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the MKZ and the Volt offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the MKZ has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Volt doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

The MKZ 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 Volt doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the MKZ owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the MKZ with a number “5” insurance rate while the Volt is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

The MKZ will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the MKZ will retain 38.09% to 40.84% of its original price after five years, while the Volt only retains 30.29% to 31.05%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the MKZ is less expensive to operate than the Volt because it costs $396 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost less on the MKZ than the Volt, including $81 less for a water pump and $3 less for front brake pads.

Recommendations

The Lincoln MKZ outsold the Chevrolet Volt by 17% during the 2018 model year.

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

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