2008 Lincoln Mark LT Review

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The Car Connection Expert Review

Marty Padgett Marty Padgett Editorial Director
June 27, 2008

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT is a plush truck with a style all its own, but outdated safety equipment and low fuel economy are problems.

The car experts at TheCarConnection.com studied a wide range of road tests of the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT to compile this conclusive review. TheCarConnection.com's resident off-roaders also drove the new Lincoln Mark LT to help you decide which reviews to trust where opinions differ, to add more impressions and details, and to provide you with the best information.

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT is a full-size, four-door luxury pickup based on the Ford F-Series. It offers a roomy four-door cabin, plenty of features, and a useful 5.5-foot (and optional 6.5-foot) cargo bed.

Under the hood, a 5.4-liter V-8 engine churns out 300 horsepower and makes possible a maximum rated towing capacity of 8,900 pounds. A four-speed automatic transmission is the standard. Fuel economy runs as low as 12/16 mpg, and performance isn't brisk, merely acceptable.

The Mark LT's suspension has been softened up relative to the F-Series to provide a smoother ride in both rear- and four-wheel-drive versions. Atop its double-wishbone front suspension and a Hotchkiss rear end, on loan from the Ford version, the Mark ambles amiably down most roads, with steering that doesn't require the torture of a thousand tiny inputs to maintain a true heading.

Review continues below

The LT sports four full doors, front captain's chairs, and a three-passenger rear bench, with good room and support for five adults. You wouldn't want to be the middle passenger on the rear bench for an eight-hour trek, but an hour or two is no problem. The bed is either 5.5 or 6.5 feet long. With a towing capacity of 8,600 pounds and payload of 1,460 pounds, you can pull plenty with the Lincoln Mark LT--it's just hard to carry some longer objects in its short bed.

Inside, the Lincoln Mark LT is markedly different from the stock F-Series, with ebony-wood accents, leather seats, unique instruments, and pleasant textures all around. Add in a great audio system and the optional rear-seat entertainment system, and the LT could double for a private screening room. This year, all Mark LTs get standard Sirius Satellite Radio, and options include a rearview camera, a remote start system, and a Monochrome Appearance Package with a body-color grille surround, body-color bumpers, and 20-inch, seven-spoke chromed wheels.

Four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes with electronic brake-force distribution are standard, but the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT lacks stability control, as well as side and curtain airbags. Still, it rates five stars for front crash performance and four stars for rollover from the NHTSA.

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2008 Lincoln Mark LT

Styling

It's a bit more luxurious than most pickups, but the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT looks a lot like the similar Ford F-150.

What do you get when you cross a Ford F-150 pickup with a Lincoln Town Car?

According to most of the reviews read by TheCarConnection.com, a 2008 Lincoln Mark LT, that's what. Actually, the truck bears a greater resemblance to its Lincoln cousins, the Aviator and Navigator, according to Cars.com. The company "freshened up" the Lincoln Mark LT for this year, but there were no serious changes from 2007. ConsumerGuide describes it as "essentially a dressed up Ford F-150 SuperCrew crew cab."

According to Autoblog, this truck is "aimed at the Polo Club crowd," which Ford Motors is "hoping to wow...with that Lincoln chrome and glitter, while still offering all the utility of a real truck."

This crew cab is the only body style offered, reports Edmunds; however, there is a choice between a 5.5-foot bed and a 6.5-foot bed.

Edmunds also comments favorably on the interior's "wood accents and handsomely tailored leather seats."

On the other hand, ConsumerGuide says, "Standard leather upholstery is no more impressive than in top-line F-150 models." In any event, Autoblog reports that the interior is "unmistakably Lincoln...branding folks make sure you don't forget by affixing Lincoln badges to the seatbacks and center armrest while spelling out L-I-N-C-O-L-N in bold chrome letters on the ashtray door." In addition, "the seats are covered in black leather with contrasting gray piping."

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2008 Lincoln Mark LT

Performance

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT has mediocre acceleration, only four forward gears, and low fuel economy, though its ride is calm and its four-wheel-drive traction is good.

With a 5.4-liter V-8 putting out 300 horsepower and 365 pound-feet of low-end torque, the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT is powerful enough for heavy, dirty jobs: Edmunds reports a towing capacity of over four and a half tons, which "is more than respectable." Autoblog reports that with the Class IV towing package, "it can pull an 8,600 lb. trailer and haul 1,580 lbs"; however, "even with the 3.73 gear, [it] isn't built for drag racing."

Edmunds reports that the engine "makes more noise than forward progress," taking nearly 10 seconds to reach 60 mph. ConsumerGuide observes that the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT has "adequate acceleration and enough muscle for most towing and hauling chores, but highway-speed passing power and overall responsiveness is mediocre."

Cars.com informs that the Lincoln Mart LT's four-speed automatic transmission is the only one available. Autoblog describes it as "a couple of cogs short of the [rival Cadillac Escalade] EXT's six-speed," going on to state that "fuel economy appears to suffer because of it." That fuel economy averages a dismal 12.3 mpg, with fueleconomy.gov reporting 12 mpg city/16 mpg highway for the four-wheel-drive 2008 Lincoln Mark LT and 13/17 mpg for the rear-drive version.

Edmunds notes that the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT "has a remarkably refined ride...negotiating the mall parking lot is easy thanks to the truck's quick, well-weighted steering." According to ForbesAutos, the Lincoln Mark LT's suspension "has been softened a bit to help provide a smoother and, theoretically, more luxurious ride." Electronic brake-force distribution aids in bringing "this 5,000-pound-plus vehicle, and whatever it's pulling, to a stop." Overall, the Lincoln Mark LT is unwieldy; Kelley Blue Book chimes in with "like many traditional luxury vehicles [it] rides better than it handles." Edmunds reports a stopping distance of 134 feet from a speed of 60 mph and says that's "good for such a heavy vehicle."

According to Kelley Blue Book, the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT lacks the stability control system that is standard equipment on many newer vehicles. This is offset, however, on four-wheel-drive models because of the "enhanced traction" provided.

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2008 Lincoln Mark LT

Comfort & Quality

While the 2008 Lincoln Mark LT's comfort levels are acceptable, its cousin the Ford F-150 may provide you with the same ease at a lower cost.

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT has good interior room and higher-quality materials, according to reviews researched by TheCarConnection.com.

A five passenger, four-door "club cab" is the body style available. According to Cars.com, the Nudo leather seating surfaces "feature French-style pleating and incorporate a quilted pattern insert." Despite the sticker price, one finds "manual seat-back adjusters and lumbar controls," according to Autoblog. Nonetheless, the seats are "comfortable, easily adjustable, and offered greater lateral support than any Ford truck."

At 6.5 feet, the Lincoln Mart LT's bed is more generous than that of rival Cadillac Escalade EXT, according to Autoblog. As for in-cab storage, ConsumerGuide reports that the "rear-seat bottoms tip up to increase storage, but seat-frame corners jut into cargo space." On the plus side, "Generously sized map pockets can be found in all doors."

The 2008 Lincoln LT's materials seem to be more "bling" than substance; Autoblog and Cars.com both note that "contrast-stitched leather covers the center armrest and instrument cluster hood," but "while that's all very nice, the interior materials are still lacking." ConsumerGuide complains that compared to "top-line F-150 models," the Lincoln Mark LT "puts a slightly tonier finish on interior panels, but they're a veneer over the same hollow-feeling, hard-plastic surfaces as in its Ford cousin." They also observe that the "glovebox and ashtray doors and the console-mounted transmission shift lever suffer from a particularly low-budget movement and feel." Car and Driver says "the dash and the center stack only look Lincoln in color availability, as the layout and materials are the same in an F-150," and suggests that one should "think of it as a Ford dressed for a black-tie dinner."

Edmunds says that the interior accommodations are "plush...[with] smooth and quiet ride." ConsumerGuide agrees, but mentions that the "engine does roar in rapid acceleration."

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2008 Lincoln Mark LT

Safety

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT has good crash-test ratings, but it lacks side airbags and stability control.

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT scores well in crash tests, but it’s missing some important safety equipment.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) nonetheless gives it top scores in frontal impacts. As of this writing, there have been no tests on the Lincoln Mark LT performed by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS); however, this agency did award "the highest possible rating of 'Good' in frontal-offset crash testing," according to Edmunds.

Cars.com reports that "dual front airbags deploy at different levels according to crash severity, and a front-passenger sensing system is installed."

The glaring oversight that pulls down the Lincoln Mark LT's safety score in the view of TheCarConnection.com is its lack of side airbags, which is confirmed by Edmunds.

There is little said about visibility issues in the 2008 Lincoln LT, although the windows seem generous and the mirrors well placed. A rearview camera is now offered as an option, J.D. Power says.

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2008 Lincoln Mark LT

Features

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT has lots of luxe features and options, including a special tow package.

The 2008 Lincoln Mark LT has a long list of standard features and options bundled in packages to dress it up even more.

Available 2008 Lincoln Mark LT trims include the Trailer Package, Technology Package, Deluxe Power Package, and the Elite Package, as well as two Monochrome versions. In addition, the vehicle comes with either two- or four-wheel drive.

Kelley Blue Book reports that with the Lincoln Mark LT's Tailgate Assist, the powered tailgate "features a built-in torsion bar that makes both opening and closing it surprisingly easy." The AM/FM six-CD changer stereo system also has a jack for an MP3 player. The electronic message center keeps the driver apprised of conditions, while the remote keyless entry and integrated garage door opener add convenience. Other standard features as reported by Cars.com include "an auto-dimming driver-side rearview mirror;" Sirius Satellite Radio "comes with a free six-month subscription."

Additional options according to Cars.com include a DVD-based navigation system, while Automobile reports optional all-weather floor mats and chrome running boards.
The Auto Channel notes that Lincoln offers an excellent entertainment system that includes options such as an AM/FM six-disc CD changer and a DVD rear-seat entertainment system; more options include "power adjustable pedals that are necessary for the height-challenged ($120), platform running boards (250), power sliding rear window ($250), trailer tow package ($350), 18-inch chrome clad wheels ($495), chrome box rail bars ($250), and a reverse sensing system that's also necessary."

With the Deluxe Power Package, a moonroof and a power sliding rear window come installed; the rear camera system is only available with the Elite Package.

Those who plan to use the Lincoln Mark LT should be aware of the Class IV Trailer Tow Package; this features a reverse-sensing system to warn the driver of anything that might be lurking back there, as well as a necessary radiator upgrade and transmission cooler.

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