Lincoln MKT Transmission Fluid Capacity

The Lincoln MKT is a luxury crossover SUV that was produced from 2010 to 2019. As a part of Lincoln’s lineup, the MKT was designed to offer a blend of performance, luxury, and utility.

Although it has been discontinued, the vehicle continues to have a strong presence in the pre-owned market and is known for its comfortable interior, robust engine options, and advanced safety features.

Key Takeaways:

  • Fluid Capacity and Type: 9-11.6 quarts.
  • Change Intervals: Typically, Lincoln recommends changing the transmission fluid every 150,000 miles, but this can vary based on driving conditions.
  • Signs of Fluid Degradation: Look out for symptoms like slipping gears, strange noises, or darkened fluid as indicators that a fluid change may be needed sooner.
  • Cost: Expect to pay between $150 and $350 for a fluid change, though costs can vary based on location, mechanic rates, and the type of fluid used.
Lincoln MKT

The transmission system in any vehicle, including the Lincoln MKT, plays a critical role in ensuring smooth and efficient operation.

Transmission fluid acts as both a lubricant and a coolant for the complex array of gears and moving parts in the transmission. Proper fluid maintenance is essential for:

  1. Optimizing Performance: Fresh, clean transmission fluid allows for smooth shifting, optimal fuel efficiency, and overall better driving experience.
  2. Extending Lifespan: Regularly changing the transmission fluid can prolong the life of your transmission, reducing the likelihood of expensive repairs down the line.
  3. Maintaining Safety: A failing transmission could lead to unreliable vehicle behavior, putting you and your passengers at risk.
  4. Warranty Requirements: Keeping up with the recommended fluid change intervals is often required to maintain your vehicle’s warranty, where applicable.

By adhering to the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule, you not only preserve the performance and reliability of your Lincoln MKT but also potentially save yourself from significant repair costs in the future.

Always consult your owner’s manual or a qualified mechanic for the most accurate and personalized advice.

2010-2019 Lincoln MKT Transmission Fluid Capacity And Transmission Fluid Type

For the first generation of the Lincoln MKT (2010-2019), the transmission fluid capacity generally ranges from 9 to 13 quarts, depending on the specific model and transmission option.

GearboxFluid capacityFluid type
3.7L 6-speed 6F50 automaticTotal fill: 10.9 quarts (10.3 liters)Mercon-LV
3.5L 6-speed 6F55 automaticTotal fill: 11.6 quarts (11 liters)Mercon-LV
2.0L 6-speed 6F35 automaticTotal fill: 9 quarts (8.5 liters)Mercon-LV

Recommended Fluid Type:

Lincoln recommends using Mercon LV Automatic Transmission Fluid for the first-generation MKT models. This fluid is specifically designed to provide optimal lubrication and cooling for the transmission system.

Make sure to double-check your owner’s manual to confirm the recommended fluid type for your specific model and year.

Fluid Change Intervals:

  1. Routine Maintenance: For most first-generation MKTs, it’s advisable to change the transmission fluid every 30,000 to 60,000 miles, depending on driving conditions and usage.
  2. Severe Conditions: If your MKT is regularly used for towing or is subjected to extreme temperatures, consider shortening the change intervals to every 20,000 to 30,000 miles.
  3. Consult Manual: Always consult your owner’s manual for Lincoln’s specific recommendations for your vehicle. The manual may provide different change intervals based on the model year and engine type.

Maintaining proper transmission fluid levels and sticking to the change intervals will significantly help in keeping your Lincoln MKT performing at its best.

Signs Your Transmission Fluid Needs Changing

Knowing when your transmission fluid needs changing can save you from costly repairs and improve your vehicle’s performance. Here are some signs to watch for:

  1. Slipping Gears: If your vehicle is unexpectedly changing gears or having difficulty staying in gear, this could be a sign of low or degraded transmission fluid.
  2. Delayed or Rough Shifting: A delay in shifting or noticeable “hard” shifts could indicate that your fluid is old or contaminated.
  3. Unexplained Noises: Hearing whining, clunking, or humming noises from the transmission area is often a red flag.
  4. Transmission Overheating: Many modern cars have transmission temperature indicators. An overheating transmission is a serious issue and could indicate low fluid levels or poor-quality fluid.
  5. Warning Lights: The transmission or check engine light may illuminate, suggesting that the vehicle’s computer has detected an issue with the transmission, which could be related to the fluid.

Appearance of Old vs. New Fluid

Understanding the visual difference between new and old transmission fluid can help you determine its condition.

  1. New Fluid: Fresh transmission fluid is generally clear with a reddish tint and has a somewhat sweet or neutral smell.
  2. Old Fluid: As fluid ages, it tends to darken and may turn brown or even black. The consistency may become thicker, and it may develop a burnt smell.

If you notice any of the symptoms mentioned above or see that your fluid has changed color or consistency, it’s likely time to change your transmission fluid. Regularly checking these elements will help you maintain the transmission system in your Lincoln MKT effectively.

Transmission Fluid Change Intervals

Properly maintaining your Lincoln MKT involves understanding when your transmission fluid needs to be replaced. Factors such as the fluid’s expected lifespan, manufacturer’s guidelines, and your driving habits all play into this.

Transmission fluid generally lasts between 30,000 and 150,000 miles under normal driving conditions. However, this lifespan can vary based on factors like the type of fluid used and the conditions under which the vehicle operates.

Lincoln MKT transmission fluid change intervals

For the Lincoln MKT, Lincoln typically recommends changing the transmission fluid every 150,000 miles. Adhering to these intervals is often a requirement for keeping your warranty intact, if applicable.

Impact of Driving Conditions

Different driving conditions can significantly impact the lifespan of your transmission fluid.

  1. City Driving: Stop-and-go traffic and short trips can speed up the degradation of transmission fluid.
  2. Highway Driving: Constant, long-distance driving at higher speeds may actually help the fluid last a bit longer due to less shifting.
  3. Towing and Heavy Loads: If you use your Lincoln MKT for towing or carrying heavy loads, consider more frequent fluid changes. The added strain on the transmission can degrade fluid more quickly.
  4. Extreme Climates: Very hot or very cold temperatures can also affect the rate at which your transmission fluid degrades.

By taking these factors into consideration, you can make a more informed decision about when to change the transmission fluid in your Lincoln MKT. This will ultimately help in prolonging the life and reliability of your vehicle.

Cost of Transmission Fluid Change

Changing your transmission fluid is an investment in the long-term health of your vehicle. Below is a breakdown of what you might expect to pay and the factors that could affect the total cost.

Average Costs

The average cost to change the transmission fluid in a Lincoln MKT can range from approximately $150 to $350. This price often includes the cost of the fluid itself, which can be around $50 to $100, and the labor, which can range from $100 to $250, depending on your location and the mechanic’s rates.

Factors Affecting the Cost

Several variables can influence the final cost of a transmission fluid change:

  1. Location: Costs can differ substantially depending on your geographical location. Labor costs tend to be higher in cities and lower in rural areas.
  2. Dealership vs. Independent Mechanic: Services from a dealership are generally more expensive than those from an independent mechanic. However, a dealership will have specialized knowledge about Lincoln vehicles.
  3. Type of Fluid: The cost of the transmission fluid itself can vary. Specialized or synthetic fluids are typically more expensive than conventional ones.
  4. Additional Services: Sometimes a full transmission flush, which is more comprehensive but not always necessary, may be recommended. This service will be more costly than a simple fluid change.
  5. Model Year: Newer models might require more advanced (and expensive) fluid types or may be more labor-intensive to service due to complex transmission designs.

By understanding these factors, you can better anticipate the cost involved and make an informed choice when it comes to maintaining the transmission system in your Lincoln MKT.

Your vehicle’s transmission is a complex piece of machinery, and using the right fluid is crucial for its longevity and performance. Here’s why adhering to the manufacturer’s recommendations is vital.

Importance of Manufacturer Specifications

The transmission fluid serves multiple functions, such as lubricating moving parts, facilitating gear shifts, and cooling the transmission. Manufacturers like Lincoln have invested a lot of time and resources into determining which type of transmission fluid will offer optimal performance and durability for their vehicles. By following these specifications:

  1. Optimized Performance: You ensure that your transmission operates smoothly, facilitating easy and seamless gear shifts.
  2. Extended Lifespan: The correct fluid minimizes wear and tear on internal components, potentially extending the lifespan of your transmission.
  3. Warranty Compliance: Using the manufacturer-recommended fluid is usually required to keep your warranty valid. Failure to comply can result in denied warranty claims for transmission-related issues.

Going against manufacturer recommendations comes with several risks:

  1. Performance Issues: Non-recommended fluids may have different viscosity and additive profiles, which can result in poor gear shifts and reduced driving comfort.
  2. Increased Wear: The wrong type of fluid may not offer sufficient protection for your transmission’s internal components, leading to accelerated wear and a shorter lifespan for your transmission.
  3. Compatibility Risks: Certain types of fluid may react adversely with the materials used in your transmission, causing corrosion or buildup.
  4. Voided Warranty: Using a non-recommended fluid will likely void any existing warranty, leaving you on the hook for potentially costly transmission repairs.

By sticking with the recommended transmission fluid for your Lincoln MKT, you maximize the performance, reliability, and lifespan of your vehicle’s transmission system.


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