Towering above the All-Stars tangle of low-slung super coupes and sleek sedans, the Burgundy Velvet Lincoln Navigator reigned supreme—at least as far as presence in terms of sheer size is concerned. Even as the Continental and MKZ idle on dealer lots, the Navigator—along with the upcoming Aviator, smaller Nautilus, and even smaller Corsair—offers proof positive that Lincoln is well into its heretofore slow and currently steady climb back to relevance.
As far as full-size body-on-frame SUVs are concerned, the Navigator is incredibly elegant, inside and out. From its smooth, sweeping lines to the turbine-style wheels, the Navigator comes off as more reserved than the Cadillac Escalade and less polarizing than the wide-mouthed Lexus LX570.
As good as it is outside, the interior might be one of the snazziest cockpits we’ve seen this side of a Rolls or Bentley. “I love the interior design, which feels like a fresh approach to luxury in our time, blending tech with midcentury modern themes,” senior online editor Johnson said. “It lacks the final bit of polish and fit and finish, though, with some subpar plastics.”
Despite its cavernous interior space and tremendous towing capabilities (up to 8,700 pounds depending on spec), it was the Navigator’s bulk that turned off some of our judges. “One can’t help but feel that this massive package is somehow behind the times, in spite of its sincerest efforts at making its occupants feel like a million bucks,” contributor Basem Wasef lamented. Added editor-at-large and columnist Arthur St. Antoine: “If you want a big, comfortable, plush, amenities-laden truck-based SUV, the Navigator should be on your considerations list. Good as it may be, though, I cringe at the very thought of vehicles so leviathanlike. Not getting my vote.”
Tough crowd. Perhaps the Navi would have shined even brighter if each participant were able to use its size, three rows, and 510 lb-ft of torque to its full effect. Come back next year, Lincoln. We want to take that Aviator for a spin.
2019 Lincoln Navigator Black Label Specifications
|PRICE||$94,900/$96,150 (base/as tested)|
|ENGINE||3.5L twin-turbo DOHC 24-valve V-6; 450 hp @ 5,500 rpm, 510 lb-ft @ 3,000 rpm|
|LAYOUT||4-door, 7-passenger, front-engine, AWD SUV|
|EPA MILEAGE||16/21 mpg (city/hwy)|
|L x W x H||210.0 x 79.9 x 76.3 in|
|0–60 MPH||6.0 sec (est)|
|TOP SPEED||115 mph|