2020 Lincoln MKZ vs. 2020 Mazda 6

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/24

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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

The MKZ offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Mazda 6 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 Mazda 6 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 Mazda 6 has a metal gas tank.

Both the MKZ and the Mazda 6 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, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning and available front parking sensors.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Lincoln MKZ is safer than the Mazda 6:

MKZ

Mazda 6

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

125

130

Neck Stress

200 lbs.

266 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Lincoln MKZ is safer than the Mazda 6:

MKZ

Mazda 6

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

268

271

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/24

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 6’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 Mazda covers the 6. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Mazda 6 ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

There are over 46 percent more Lincoln dealers than there are Mazda dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the MKZ’s warranty.

Reliability

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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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the car’s engine.

The battery on the MKZ is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the MKZ’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Mazda 6’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

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 MKZ’s reliability 11 points higher than the Mazda 6.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Lincoln vehicles are better in initial quality than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln fifth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 12th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lincoln vehicles are more reliable than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 19th in reliability. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 21st.

Engine

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/24

The MKZ has more powerful engines than the Mazda 6:

Horsepower

Torque

MKZ Hybrid 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder

188 HP

n/a

MKZ 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder

245 HP

275 lbs.-ft.

MKZ 3.0 turbo V6

350 HP

400 lbs.-ft.

MKZ AWD 3.0 turbo V6

400 HP

400 lbs.-ft.

Mazda 6 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder

187 HP

186 lbs.-ft.

Mazda 6 Grand Touring/Signature 2.5 turbo 4-cylinder

250 HP

310 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Consumer Reports the Lincoln MKZ 2.0 turbo is faster than the Mazda 6 4-cylinder:

MKZ

6

Zero to 30 MPH

3 sec

3.6 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

7.4 sec

9.2 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

4.6 sec

5.5 sec

Quarter Mile

15.8 sec

17.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

92.2 MPH

86 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the MKZ Hybrid gets better fuel mileage than the Mazda 6 with its standard engine (42 city/39 hwy vs. 26 city/35 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the MKZ Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Mazda 6 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the MKZ Hybrid’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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The MKZ AWD’s standard fuel tank has 1.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Mazda 6 (18 vs. 16.4 gallons).

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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Environmental Friendliness

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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 Mazda 6 (3 to 7). This means the MKZ produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Mazda 6 every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

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The MKZ Hybrid has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Mazda 6 doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

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The MKZ stops much shorter than the Mazda 6:

MKZ

Mazda 6

70 to 0 MPH

168 feet

184 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

115 feet

124 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

133 feet

141 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the MKZ has larger tires than the Mazda 6 (245/45R18 vs. 225/55R17).

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 Mazda 6 Sport’s standard 55 series tires. The MKZ’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Mazda 6 Touring/Grand Touring/Signature’s 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the MKZ has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Mazda 6 Sport.

Suspension and Handling

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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 Mazda 6’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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

The MKZ AWD handles at .84 G’s, while the Mazda 6 Signature pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

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The front grille of the MKZ Hybrid uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Mazda 6 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

As tested by Car and Driver while under full throttle, the interior of the MKZ AWD is quieter than the Mazda 6 Grand Touring (75 vs. 80 dB).

Passenger Space

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The MKZ has 2.1 inches more front legroom, 1.6 inches more front hip room, 1.8 inches more front shoulder room, .3 inches more rear hip room and .2 inches more rear shoulder room than the Mazda 6.

Cargo Capacity

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The MKZ has a larger trunk than the Mazda 6 (15.4 vs. 14.7 cubic feet).

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the MKZ. The Mazda 6 doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the MKZ offers an optional power trunk, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button. The Mazda 6 doesn’t offer a power trunk.

Towing

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The MKZ has a 1000 lbs. towing capacity. The Mazda 6 has no towing capacity.

The MKZ 3.0 Turbo/Hybrid (except 2.0 Turbo) can be flat towed on all four wheels (dinghy towed), allowing recreational vehicle owners to bring it with them on the road. When they reach their destination, the MKZ can be unhitched and driven around locally. The Mazda 6 can’t be towed flat on the ground.

Servicing Ease

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The MKZ uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Mazda 6 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.

The MKZ has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The Mazda 6 doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Lincoln service is better than Mazda. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 7th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 54% lower rating, Mazda is ranked 25th.

Ergonomics

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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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The power windows standard on both the MKZ and the Mazda 6 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the MKZ is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Mazda 6 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

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 Mazda 6 can only operate 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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

The MKZ’s power window, power lock and power mirror switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Mazda 6’s power lock and power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

A power rear sunshade is standard in the MKZ Reserve to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The Mazda 6 doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

The MKZ’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Mazda only offers heated mirrors on the Mazda 6 Grand Touring/Signature.

The MKZ Reserve offers optional massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the Mazda 6.

Both the MKZ and the Mazda 6 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 Mazda 6 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 Mazda 6 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

The MKZ Reserve’s Active Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Mazda 6 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages

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According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the MKZ is less expensive to operate than the Mazda 6 because it costs $116 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost less on the MKZ than the Mazda 6, including $178 less for fuel injection and $58 less for a fuel pump.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/01/24

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Lincoln MKZ and the Mazda 6, based on reliability, safety and performance.

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

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