As you may have heard, Lincoln wants badly to resurface in the luxury segment – ready like Duran Duran to get out of those tacky motel bars and embark on a grand return tour.

Last year, it introduced the chiseled and fairly impressive MKC, a near-luxury compact crossover based on a Ford Escape.

The MKC was joined this year by the MKX, a midsize crossover that, like the MKC, is based on a mainstream platform (the Ford Edge) but treated to fresh styling, a retuned engine and vastly better interior.

I suppose it says a lot about this faux-trucky era we’re in that Lincoln chose two crossovers – two soft, sort-of SUVs – to get its wagon back on the road.

(Please don’t let anyone cart my sorry ashes to the dragstrip in a crossover. The back seat of an evil, bad-mannered ’40 Ford will do just fine.)

At least the dark brown 2016 Black Label MKX I had recently felt high-end and quietly distinctive – two qualities Lincoln wants all of its new vehicles to convey. (The crossovers, incidentally, will be joined by a new Continental sedan this fall.)

First, though, I’ve got to tell you that the $67,000 window sticker on my MKX absolutely stunned me.

Granted, the Black Label is the top-of-the-line MKX, but that’s a mighty high price for a vehicle that must compete with the $55,000 Lexus RX350 _ and certainly can’t claim that it’s back on top.

Still, the MKX offers a lot, starting with better styling than the Lexus. Gone, for example, is the MKX’s former waterfall grille, replaced by a more graceful split grille with horizontal bars that abut large, sweeping headlamps.

The trucklet’s broad hood looked a bit busy to me, with four lines carved into it. But the thick sides flashed some nice muscle, thanks to a prominent character line up high that kicked up above the back door handle, forming a small shoulder.

Moreover, short overhangs and a sleek, slightly curved top made the MKX look taut for a 4,700-pound vehicle.

In back, in a nod to Lincoln tradition, wrap-around taillamps were joined by a thin, lighted red band that ran the full length of the rear.

Likewise, 10-spoke, 20-inch wheels shod with meaty 245/50 tires added to the MKX’s substantial presence.

While all that makes for a strong start, I thought the best feature in the MKX is under the hood. Lincoln took the energetic 2.7-liter EcoBoost V-6 that Ford developed for its new F-150 pickup, retuned it to 335 horsepower and tied it to a six-speed automatic tranny.

The little engine’s big turbocharged power gets delivered with authority through a civilized all-wheel-drive system.

Prod the engine hard, and it responds quickly without any noticeable turbo lag, lunging to 60 in a highly respectable 6 seconds, according to Car and Driver.

That’s about a second quicker than the segment-leading Lexus, and more important, the EcoBoost motor felt bigger and stronger than its size throughout its broad power band.

Likewise, unfortunately, it put up fuel economy numbers like a V-8’s _ a modest 17 miles per gallon in town and 24 on the highway.

Also, sometimes when I was cruising down the expressway, admiring its rich diversity of billboards, the engine would seem a little soft if I needed to step into it to pass someone.

So I learned to push harder, forcing the transmission to downshift and sending us off to the races again, riding a satisfying wave of power all the way to 6,000 rpm.

The MKX carried a full load of nannies, including active-park assist, a front-video camera, an irritating lane-keeping system and adaptive cruise control.

Lincoln’s goal is to provide “quiet luxury” and the MKX moves with the sort of hushed refinement once associated with the old Town Car.

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