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2021 Lincoln Corsair

Consumer Reviews
0 Reviews
2020
The Car Connection
2020
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Martin Padgett Martin Padgett Editorial Director
September 16, 2020

Buying tip

Spend money on interior features before you upgrade to the stronger turbo-4; there’s not much difference in acceleration between the two.

features & specs

Grand Touring AWD
Reserve AWD
Reserve FWD
MPG
NA
MPG
21 city / 29 hwy
MPG
22 city / 29 hwy
MSRP
$50,230
MSRP
$45,090
MSRP
$42,890

The 2021 Lincoln Corsair builds its brand on serenity and luxury.

What kind of car is the 2021 Lincoln Corsair? What does it compare to?

The Lincoln Corsair is a compact luxury crossover SUV with seating for up to five passengers. It’s a lovely vehicle with a good crash-test record and ample features, as well as a coming plug-in hybrid edition. 

The Corsair compares with vehicles such as the Acura RDX and BMW X3.

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Is the 2021 Lincoln Corsair a good car?

It’s a great vehicle for drivers who want a quiet ride, good infotainment, and lots of cargo space. We give it a TCC Rating of 7.2 out of 10. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

What’s new in the 2021 Lincoln Corsair?

A new plug-in hybrid Grand Touring version joins the lineup in the fall of 2020. Other Corsairs can be ordered with a monochromatic paint job, a sport appearance package, and a towing package. Two more USB ports come with a Technology package, and front and rear camera washers now come with the advanced safety option set.

With its tailored, slim-fitted suit, the Corsair doesn’t seem related at all to the Ford Escape. It’s more a downsized Aviator, dressed for a night on the town. The cabin’s elegantly spare, with a slim horizontal strip of vents that divide the driving controls from the entertaining ones.

The Corsair’s turbo-4 engines push it to a brisk pace. It’s not exceedingly quick, but plentiful power in even the 250-horsepower Corsair makes uphill passes simple, through an 8-speed automatic and front- or all-wheel drive. Save the money from the 295-hp turbo-4 and apply it instead to the adaptive dampers, which give the Corsair a wonderfully composed ride, one that snubs bumps like they’re absolutely not on the VIP list.

With lots of sound deadening, the Corsair blots out much of the outside world. Front-seat passengers get cushy chairs with lots of adjustment and available leather, heating, and cooling; the back row gets a sliding bench for better leg room and fold-down seatbacks to boost cargo space from good to great.

How much does the 2021 Lincoln Corsair cost?

With a base price of about $37,000, the Corsair Standard comes with keyless start, power heated front seats, 18-inch wheels, a power liftgate, automatic emergency braking, and an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. We’d stick there; loaded Corsairs with the bigger turbo-4, power sunroof, 24-way front seats, and 20-inch wheels cost more than $60,000, even before the plug-in Grand Touring model gets a Monroney.

Where is the Lincoln Corsair made?

In Louisville, Kentucky.

8

2021 Lincoln Corsair

Styling

The Corsair keeps Lincoln’s hot streak lit.

Is the Lincoln Corsair a good-looking car?

Is it ever. Lincoln’s come a long way from its big winged grilles and alphabetic names of just a few years ago. The Corsair, like the bigger Aviator and Navigator, taps a leaner, more spare look that’s very attractive—and distinct from the Ford Escape that shares some of its running gear. We give it an 8 with two extra points for the exterior, one for the interior.

The Corsair adopts a streamlined shape that adds sinew and muscle in a few places. The nose plays its horizontal grille against the vertical Lincoln gunsight badge, and wraps slim headlights into softly contoured front fenders. A strong shoulder line mimics the roof, and makes the Corsair look long and elegant. A band of chrome breaks up the Corsair’s wide LED strip of taillights.

The Corsair interior splits the cabin on a horizontal line of vents, flanked on top by a wide touchscreen and on the bottom by a console of controls, including its pushbutton shifter. It’s pared-down, intentionally understated, and visually quite striking.

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7

2021 Lincoln Corsair

Performance

Strong pull and a smooth ride mark the Corsair.

Starting from an average score of 5, we give the Corsair points above average for its supple ride and its powertrain, for a 7 here.

How fast is the Lincoln Corsair?

It depends on which engine you choose. A 2.0-liter turbo-4 shared with the Ford Escape makes 250 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque; it’s standard on nearly every version of the Corsair. With an 8-speed automatic turning out quick and buttery shifts, the engine’s powerful enough to deliver 0-60 mph runs in the seven-second range. The power is accompanied by a little turbo whistle at low engine speeds and some 4-cylinder rasp at the top. Add all-wheel drive, and the extra 140 pounds won’t sap much of its zest. 

The Corsair’s optional 2.3-liter turbo-4 cranks out 295 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. Coupled to the same automatic, it’s entirely possible you’d never notice the difference. It’s stronger at highway passing speeds, less so at stoplight takeoffs. We’d be happy with the base engine and pocket the change.

The Corsair’s drive modes get colorful names like “Excite,” which holds gears and tips in throttle more eagerly. That keeps the engine in a somewhat buzzy range beyond 4,000 rpm.

We’ll report back once we’ve driven the plug-in hybrid Corsair Grand Touring.

Is the Lincoln Corsair 4WD?

Most versions offer all-wheel drive, while it’s standard with the larger engine.

As for ride and handling, we’ve sampled Corsairs with the optional adaptive suspension. The ride and steering are both better than expected, even on chunky 20-inch wheels. The Corsair isolates and smothers bumps in the road, with just a hint of tire noise to accompany its work. The light steering feels perfectly on-brand for the Corsair’s flavor of luxury—unbothered.

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2021 Lincoln Corsair

Comfort & Quality

The Corsair delivers on its high-minded premise.

With the Corsair, Lincoln wraps its plusher details around some of the same pieces found in a Ford Escape. The transformation’s impressive. The Corsair has comfortable front seats, an exceedingly quiet ride, and lots of cargo room. We give it an 8 here.

The Corsair checks in at 106.7 inches in wheelbase and 180.6 inches from head to toe. Inside that footprint, the front passengers are treated to excellent comfort thanks to power seats with as many as 24 ways of adjustment, including at the thighs and the lumbar. Have they been talking to our chiropractor? Upgrades include leather upholstery, heating, and cooling, and we’d recommend all of them.

The rear bench seat is admittedly less luxurious, but it’s able to host three tall and wide people in a pinch, two in reliable comfort. Leg room measures as much as 38.6 inches when the sliding second row is pushed back. The seat bottom is somewhat thinly padded, but the seatback reclines for good comfort.

The Corsair’s cargo hold measures 27.6 cubic feet, and the load floor is low. The power tailgate can be fitted with hands-free sensors that open it with the flick of a foot.

We’re most impressed with the Corsair’s blend of wood, leather, and high-quality materials, not to mention lots of sound deadening. It’s a relaxing and welcoming environment free from any penalties we can find.

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2021 Lincoln Corsair

Safety

The Corsair scores well in crash tests.

How safe is the Lincoln Corsair?

Very safe. The NHTSA gives the Corsair five stars overall, while the IIHS calls it a Top Safety Pick. The latter applies only to Reserve models with optional upgraded LED headlights; other Corsair headlights rate “Poor.”

Every Corsair comes with automatic emergency braking, active lane control, and blind-spot monitors. An available package adds automatic parking assistance and a surround-view camera system. A head-up display is on the options list too, and its bright display is placed well and offers useful information.

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7

2021 Lincoln Corsair

Features

Lower-end Corsairs are well-equipped, and are better values.

Which Lincoln Corsair should I buy?

We’d steer you toward the Standard model, which costs about $37,000 and includes keyless start, a power tailgate, power heated front seats, synthetic leather upholstery, 18-inch wheels, and an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility with two USB ports. Based on that version, we give it points for standard equipment and infotainment to land at a 7.

Options on this version include all-wheel drive, which comes bundled with navigation, a split-folding rear seat, and ambient lighting, to nudge over the $40,000 mark.

How much is a fully loaded 2021 Lincoln Corsair?

With all the toys, a Corsair Reserve can cost more than $60,000. It comes with the 2.3-liter turbo-4, all-wheel drive, digital gauges, 24-way adjustable heated and cooled front seats, 20-inch wheels, adaptive suspension, a head-up display, a panoramic sunroof, leather upholstery, and wireless smartphone charging. High-end audio with 14 speakers is optional.

Lincoln covers the Corsair for 4 years/50,000 miles, but doesn’t include free maintenance, which would earn another point.

Yet to come: Corsair Grand Touring, which likely will exceed $60,000 in fully equipped form.

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4

2021 Lincoln Corsair

Fuel Economy

Corsair gas mileage is respectable, but we’re waiting on the plug-in.

Is the Lincoln Corsair good on gas?

It’s not particularly frugal for its size, but it’s fine. The EPA scores the front-drive 2.0-liter turbo-4 at 22 mpg city, 29 highway, 25 combined, for a 4 on our scale. With all-wheel drive, the numbers dip to 21/29/24 mpg.

The stronger 2.3-liter turbo-4 with all-wheel drive lands at 21/28/24 mpg. 

The EPA hasn’t published plug-in range on the upcoming Corsair Grand Touring, so stay tuned.

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$35,945
MSRP based on Standard FWD
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7.2
Overall
Expert Rating
Rating breakdown on a scale of 1 to 10?
Styling 8
Performance 7
Comfort & Quality 8
Safety 9
Features 7
Fuel Economy 4
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