Review by Jacob Black, photos by Jacob Black and Jonathan Yarkony

They share a platform, a drive train and even a human-machine interface system. The dimensions are about the same, as are the performance statistics – so why exactly would you buy one over the other?

Our latest Pop Quiz helps you decide between luxury brand Lincoln’s MKZ luxury sedan with the base 2.0 Ecoboost or the fashionable family-man Ford Fusion in top Titanium trim?

2013 Ford Fusion Titanium2013 Lincoln MKZ
2013 Ford Fusion Titanium, 2013 Lincoln MKZ. Click image to enlarge

1. Are you Prince Charles?

    A: Yes
    B: No

If you answered A: Then you value one’s name and pedigree above all else. Why else would you be besotted with the well-named but homely Camilla Parker-Bowles yet eschew the well-boned but less-well named Diana Spencer?  If it’s pedigree you prefer than the Lincoln is the car for you. Well named, good luxury pedigree and a noble bloodline.

If you answered B: You might prefer the more conventional beauty and perfectly acceptable pedigree of a Ford Fusion Titanium.

2013 Ford Fusion Titanium2013 Ford Fusion Titanium2013 Lincoln MKZ2013 Lincoln MKZ
2013 Ford Fusion Titanium, 2013 Lincoln MKZ. Click image to enlarge

2. Technology should be:

    A: Quirky and retro, yet honestly reflective of the mechanics behind it
    B: Unnoticeable, and a facsimile of conventional analogue systems it replaces

If you answered A: You will enjoy the push-button gear selection on the MKZ console.  They make it clear that gear selection is a purely digital process, and get rid of any pretense that harkens back to manuals. Added bonus: The push-button gear selection is a throwback to older American cars, also with a strong pedigree.

If you answered B: Buttons?! No thank you! We’ve being using sticks in the floor (or on the steering column, or suspended from the roof) since 1908 and we don’t intend to stop now. So what if the six-inch stick doesn’t actually do anything but fire off some electrical signals? It’s what we know and it’s the natural order of things. You will enjoy the Ford Fusion’s steadfast commitment to a conventional automatic shift lever.

2013 Ford Fusion Titanium2013 Lincoln MKZ
2013 Ford Fusion Titanium, 2013 Lincoln MKZ. Click image to enlarge

3. Do you really enjoy sunlight, but can’t tolerate the “outdoors”?

    A: Yes.
    B: No.

If you answered A: You will enjoy the Lincoln’s enormous, panoramic sunroof and Active Noise Cancellation. You can pop the sunroof cover open and bask in the glorious sunshine without having to engage with bugs and rain. The Lincoln’s Active Noise Cancellation system also keeps the interior serenely quiet.

If you answered B: You’ll be perfectly happy with the much smaller sunroof in the Ford Fusion Titanium. It is a touch louder inside than the MKZ, but that’s ok, you like to feel the world around you.

2013 Ford Fusion Titanium2013 Ford Fusion Titanium2013 Lincoln MKZ2013 Lincoln MKZ
2013 Ford Fusion Titanium, 2013 Lincoln MKZ. Click image to enlarge

4. In the Wizard of Oz, you were:

    A: The Tinman
    B: One of the munchkins

If you answered A: You’re probably freakishly tall, like 5’7” at least. You’ll therefore need the added headroom found in the Ford Fusion Titanium.

If you answered B: Hey, Jacob too! But you will enjoy the MKZ, whose low roofline makes you feel like a giant.

2013 Ford Fusion Titanium2013 Lincoln MKZ
2013 Ford Fusion Titanium, 2013 Lincoln MKZ. Click image to enlarge

5. All-wheel drive is:

    A: Nice enough, I guess.
    B: Completely necessary, I live in Canada don’t you know? It snows here.

If you answered A: Are you being coy? It’s okay to prefer front-wheel drive. It’s more simple, offers better fuel economy and in some cases less long-term maintenance costs. If all-wheel drive is not your thing, you’ll enjoy the simplicity of the Lincoln front-drive system.

If you answered B: You will need to opt for the Ford Fusion Titanium – that comes with AWD standard. The only way to get AWD in the MKZ is to upgrade to the 3.7L V6 model.

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