Crossover & Midsize

The 2021 Lincoln Corsair Is a Surprise Runner-up on This List

When you’re considering luxury vehicles, Mercedes-Benz and BMW probably come to mind. You know their cars are high-end and probably worth buying. So when a vehicle from another brand tops a Benz or a Beemer, it must be a winner. Well, that’s where the 2021 Lincoln Corsair finds itself on a prestigious list of the best compact luxury SUVs. The Corsair finished second in the roundup.

The 2021 Lincoln Corsair is one of the best compact luxury SUVs

MotorTrend‘s list of the best compact luxury SUVs to buy in 2021 sees some of the best names in luxury automobiles in the top five spots. The Lexus NX ranks fifth, and the Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class comes in fourth place. The Acura RDX is third, while the Lincoln Corsair claims the number-two spot. The only vehicle ranked ahead of the Corsair is the Volvo XC60.

That puts the Corsair in rarified company among some of the best-in-class SUVs in the segment. Other familiar luxury brands the Corsair beat Infiniti, Jaguar, Alfa Romeo, and Cadillac.

What makes the Lincoln Corsair a great small SUV?

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You know any luxury won’t be cheap because quality comes at a price. But the Corsair is less expensive than many of its rivals. It also has the lowest starting price of the top five models, at $37,100. That’s $5,000 under the XC60’s starting MSRP.

Even though the Corsair isn’t as expensive as the competition, Lincoln has still made it a top contender among luxury compact crossovers. MotorTrend likes the Corsair’s “strong engines.” Its 2.0-liter turbo inline-four produces 250 hp, and a 2.3-liter turbo inline-four harnesses 295 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. Plus, you’ll enjoy its 24 to 25 mpg combined fuel economy. There’s also a plug-in hybrid powertrain getting 78 MPGe.

MotorTrend also praises the Corsair for its “cushy ride” and “luxurious interior.”

The cons that kept the Corsair from beating the Volvo XC60

It’s not all good news for the Lincoln Corsair, though. A few things kept it from claiming the top spot. On MotorTrend’s list of cons is its small cargo capacity, offering just 28 cubic feet behind the back row and 58 cubic feet with that row folded down. You can carry more belongings in the XC60, boasting 63 cubic feet behind the front row (though only 18 cubic feet behind the back row).

MT also criticizes the Corsair’s soft dynamics and hesitant transmission. In its review, MotorTrend knocked its “grabby brakes” and that it “gets pricey fast” when you add options. In fact, the top-trim Corsair’s starting price approaches $49,000. That’s more than the highest-trim Lexus NX’s base price.

But 2021 is only the Corsair’s second model year, so there’s still time for improvement if Lincoln listens to the criticism and makes changes to future iterations. It might be tough to continue beating the likes of Mercedes-Benz and Lexus, but just being in the conversation with them is a huge accomplishment for Lincoln’s relatively new crossover.