Ahh, the 1990’s. A time when the economy was booming, tech bubbles were inflating, and Americans couldn’t buy enough SUVs. The bigger and more luxurious the better. Thus emerged the two-headed luxury-ute beast…Cadillac escalade and the Lincoln Navigator. Now the escalade hit the mark…the Navigator not so much. Now SUV sales are roaring again, and this time Lincoln aims to navigate ahead of its cross town rival once and for all.
Nothing makes a statement quite like 3-tons of big, powerful, American luxury SUV. So, be prepared to be noticed when riding around in a 2018 Lincoln Navigator.
This rig feels fast, immense, and dominant; but not ungainly or obese like earlier generations.
As with any vehicle that boasts the dual threat of “modern luxury” and “advanced technology”, it’s how you’re treated on the inside that counts.
And throughout the Navigator’s spacious cabin, you will indeed find a first class experience. Materials are exquisite, control placement logical, tech easy to master, while the whole space can be described as uncluttered.
Luxury touches abound, from the welcome lighting, to gorgeous wood trim, Head Up display, a 20-speaker Revel Ultima premium audio system, 12-inch LCD gauge cluster, and Perfect Position seats with heating, cooling, massaging, and up to 30 adjustments.
A variety of interior themes are available. But, if you go with the always-classy black of our tester, it does look a little bland compared to some of the brighter choices.
The exterior takes up the slack, however; as the bling-factor is high. From the chrome-clad front, down the streamlined sides, to the smooth rear; it indeed all looks very nautical.
Regular and extended bodies are available, with about a foot of length between the two.
Standard seating is for seven. If you need room for one more, a 2nd row bench is available. Adults fit comfortably in all seats.
When it comes to luggage space, if you can’t fit it in here, you probably don’t need it. Standard wheelbase provides 19.3 cubic-ft. of space behind the 3rd row, 57.5 behind the 2nd, and a whopping 103.3 with all seats folded; though the long, flat space is interrupted by the rear console in most models. Navigator L’s up the max to 120.2 cubic-ft.
And now for the real highlight of the Navigator experience; lift the hood, and you’ll find the Ford Raptor’s high-output 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6, outputting the same 450-horsepower and 510 lb-ft. of torque.
Same 10-speed automatic too, with your choice of rear or 4-wheel-drive. Towing capacity is 8,700-lbs.
Putting it all to good use at our test track, had the Navigator leaping to 60 in just 5.9-seconds. It’s almost a surreal experience, as Lincoln keeps it so eerily quiet inside; you barely sense anything, as the engine puts down some serious power, and the transmission rifles through gears with rapid-fire precision. The ¼-mile ends in just 14.5-seconds at 96 miles-per-hour.
Through the cones, weight transfer was quite manageable, but steering was heavy and slow. So, it will get through here quite quickly, but it does make you work for it.
No extra effort is required at all, to bring this big boy to a halt in just 120-feet from 60 with just a light step on the pedal.
Government Fuel Economy Ratings with 4-wheel-drive, are 16-City, 21-Highway, and 18-Combined. We averaged a quite good 20.6 miles-per-gallon of Premium.
Pricing starts with Premier trim at $73,250. But, most buyers will find one somewhere between there and the Black Label, which starts at a lofty $94,900.
In recent years Lincoln has clearly struggled on the car side of things when trying to resurrect the 1960’s spirit of opulent power that they were once known for. While their newer, smaller SUVs have been steps in the right direction, that spirit is fully embodied here in this beast. Without a doubt, the 2018 Lincoln Navigator is back on top.
Engine: 3.5 liter
Torque: 510 lb-ft.
0-60 mph: 5.9 seconds
1/4 mile: 14.5 seconds @ 96 mph
EPA: 16 mpg city / 21 mpg highway