2021 Lincoln Navigator Reserve: Overview
Lincoln introduced the current-generation Navigator for the 2018 model year, as the full-size SUV combining luxury with advanced technology in both standard size and extended-length (by 300 mm) L versions. There are minimal changes for 2021. Navigator is the biggest vehicle of the model family and shares the same body-on-frame platform with Ford Expedition, its corporate cousin.
In the meantime, Ford’s luxury brand has a model family consisting of only SUVs. Like in the mother company, the sedan models, Continental and MKZ disappeared amid the rising tide of SUVs. The Navigator is the biggest Lincoln you can get.
Engine and Powertrain
The once-almighty and prestigious (and also gas-guzzling) V8 engines of American manufacturers now largely belong to the past. Ford and Lincoln turned to Ecoboost engines that deliver the additional power on demand and via turbocharging. And at times of upcoming BEVs, even 6-cylinder engines do not have a bright future. The all-wheel-drive Navigator has a 3.5L twin-turbo V6 engine paired with a 10-speed transmission. It delivers up to 450 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque with premium fuel. With the normal fuel, you can expect 411 horsepower and thus sufficient power in every case.
Inside, the luxury and spaciousness come in all three rows. The luxury starts in the front: The heated and ventilated power seats are 3o-way adjustable and have with massaging function. However, I have to tell you that Lincoln needs a more critical look at these seats when a facelift or model change is due. Despite the almost infinite adjustability you always have the impression it could be better. I found the seats of the Ford F-150 Platinum, our other test vehicle, more comfortable. The heated steering wheel is definitely not a luxury for a vehicle with a price tag well north of the 100K mark.
The graphics of the TFT instrument display are very clear and easy to read. The 10″ capacitive infotainment system with Sync 3 and Revel audio system with HD radio and 14 speakers provide the best what today’s technology can offer. Apple Car Play and Android Auto are also standard. The push-button gear selectors are very nicely integrated into the dashboard and save tons of space enabling a big, “undivided” centre console.
In a vehicle of this size, you expect to have storage almost at every corner. You will not be disappointed. Two big centre consoles for the first and second row are complemented by door pockets and bins to keep the cabin clean and organized. The advanced cargo management system offers an adjustable shelf behind the rear seats that allows occupants to create storage customized to their needs. Even with the SUV parked on an incline, the feature ensures groceries won’t roll out when the liftgate is opened.
With six USB ports, four 12-volt power outlets and, a 110-volt plug and the wireless phone charger in the first-row centre console media bin, you have a solid “infrastructure” every passenger onboard stays powered and connected.
The continuously adjustable suspension is the main factor for driving pleasure and comfort that should justify the significant price premium compared to Ford Expedition, its corporate cousin. The ride is floaty and best suited for long rides on the highway. You feel the weight and “disconnection” on narrower side roads with twists and turns as we did at the King Street parallel to QEW between Lincoln and St Catherines in the Niagara Region.
Make to mistake: This is a big vehicle and you should not expect the practicality of a compact SUV in urban areas. In other words, if you can afford this vehicle, the Navigator is probably not your only vehicle, maybe, you are driven too and even both.
The smooth-shifting 10-speed automatic adds to driving pleasure. The average consumption of 16 litres (after a one-week mixed-mode drive) is acceptable for a vehicle in this category and the Navigator is not meant to be champion in fuel economy.
Pricing and Equipment
Our tester in the range-topping Reserve trim level with options has an MSRP just south of 110K.
For details of pricing and equipment, please see the window sticker below.
If you are looking for a big (and really big) and luxurious SUV with a six-digit price tag, that is capable of towing up to four tons while offering a soft, comfortable ride, the Navigator is probably one of the best options you have. With the capacity of transporting up to eight people and literally “tons” of stuff, you have good reasons to justify environmental concerns.
You can also read our review on the Lincoln Navigator Reserve L by selecting the link below.
For more detailed information, please visit http://www.lincolncanada.com
Article by Varol McKars
Photos by Varol McKars and Dan Gunay