2019 Volkswagen Jetta vs. 2019 Lincoln MKZ

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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The Jetta has standard Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The MKZ doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Both the Jetta and the MKZ have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.


The Jetta comes with a full 6-year/72000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car. The MKZ’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 2 years and 22000 miles sooner.

The Jetta’s corrosion warranty is 5 years longer than the MKZ’s (10 vs. 5 years).


A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Jetta’s reliability 31 points higher than the MKZ.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Volkswagen vehicles are more reliable than Lincoln vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Volkswagen 4 places higher in reliability than Lincoln.


As tested in Car and Driver the Volkswagen Jetta is faster than the MKZ Hybrid (automatics tested):




Zero to 60 MPH

7.7 sec

9.4 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

22.5 sec

25.3 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

8.6 sec

9.1 sec

Quarter Mile

16.1 sec

17.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

87 MPH

83 MPH

Top Speed

127 MPH

109 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Jetta gets better fuel mileage than the MKZ:











1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

30 city/40 hwy



1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

30 city/40 hwy







2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

20 city/31 hwy



3.0 turbo V6

18 city/27 hwy



2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

20 city/29 hwy



3.0 turbo V6

17 city/26 hwy

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Volkswagen Jetta uses regular unleaded gasoline. The MKZ with the 3.0 turbo V6 engine requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Volkswagen Jetta higher (7 out of 10) than the Lincoln MKZ (5 to 7). This means the Jetta produces up to 8 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the MKZ every 15,000 miles.


The Jetta offers a manual transmission for better acceleration, control and fuel economy. The MKZ doesn’t offer a manual transmission.

An eight-speed automatic is optional on the Volkswagen Jetta, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the MKZ.

Brakes and Stopping

The Jetta stops shorter than the MKZ:





60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

138 feet

139 feet

Consumer Reports

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the Jetta’s turning circle is 2.6 feet tighter than the MKZ’s (36.4 feet vs. 39 feet).


The Volkswagen Jetta may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 850 to 1250 pounds less than the Lincoln MKZ.

The Jetta is 8.8 inches shorter than the MKZ, making the Jetta easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The Jetta has .6 inches more front headroom, .6 inches more rear headroom and .4 inches more rear legroom than the MKZ.

Cargo Capacity

A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the Jetta easier. The Jetta’s trunk lift-over height is 28.7 inches, while the MKZ’s liftover is 30.5 inches.


Heated windshield washer nozzles are optional on the Jetta (except S) to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The MKZ doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Jetta owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Jetta will cost $1055 less than the MKZ over a five-year period.

The Jetta will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Jetta will retain 45.57% to 47.04% of its original price after five years, while the MKZ only retains 38.09% to 40.84%.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Volkswagen Jetta will be $15143 to $20343 less than for the Lincoln MKZ.


Consumer Reports® recommends the Volkswagen Jetta, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Lincoln MKZ isn't recommended.

The Volkswagen Jetta outsold the Lincoln MKZ by over four to one during the 2018 model year.

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

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