When all hope is lost, build a beautiful car. That would seem to be the current reigning philosophy at Lincoln, a luxury brand that has stumbled from one false start to another over the course of the past decade in an unsuccessful attempt to discover its identity. The 2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid is the first vehicle to emerge from Dearborn's premium department during that entire period that doesn't come across as merely a nicely-equipped Ford. On the contrary, this sedan presents buyers with a dramatically different take on the automaker's shared mid-size platform when compared against its Ford Fusion cousin.
It's all well and good that the 2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid no longer stands in the shadow of its down-market corporate sibling, but much more important is how it compares with its premium competitors. In this area, the MKZ Hybrid comes on strong as the best effort in the brand's entire portfolio. That being said, Lincoln is up against not just a strong cast of characters (like the Lexus ES and the Buick LaCrosse) eager to take the money of entry-level buyers, but also its own tattered reputation. It's an up-hill battle for one of America's forgotten marques