After many years of “meh” refreshes and updates, the Lincoln Navigator will finally get the full redesign for 2018 that it needs to compete with true luxury SUVs. This will include a completely new look inside and out, reduced weight, more power, and all-new technology.
On the outside, there will be little that links this back to the previous-generation Navigator. Every square inch will be new and more premium than before. Up front, the Navigator will ditch the twin-wing grille and inherit a larger version of the new Continental’s mesh grille.
Front to rear, the 2018 Navigator’s design is more upright than before, giving it that rugged yet luxurious look. There will also be little bonuses, like the softly glowing Lincoln star logo on the grille, the Lincoln “welcome mat” projection, and lighted door handles. The new Navigator will also be about 200 pounds lighter than its predecessor, thanks to substantial use of aluminum.
Inside, the Navigator’s premium changes will just keep coming. This three-row SUV will boast all-new seating, a new advanced cargo-management system with an adjustable shelf behind the rear seats, a clean and uncluttered setup, six USB ports, four 12-volt power ports, a 110-volt plug, available wireless charging, a 12-inch configurable instrument cluster, and Personal Profile system that uses the key fob to remember seat, mirror, pedal, and climate control settings. There will also be the new SYNC 3 infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
An available rear-entertainment system will keep the kiddos in check, even on the longest trips. It will feature two headrest-mounted 10-inch screens. This system will allow each screen to show its own content streamed from an Android device or via SD card, HDMI cable, USB, or Sync AppLink. Lincoln also has a contract through Sling Media, which will allow those with a Slingbox to stream channels on up to 10 devices through the Navigator’s standard Wi-Fi.
Under its hood, the 2018 Navigator will boast an EcoBoost V6 engine that cranks out a mighty 450 horsepower. This power will travel through a 10-speed automatic transmission. Thanks to the 200-pound-lighter body and Trailer Backup Assist, the Navigator will have enhanced towing capabilities.
In terms of safety, the IIHS didn’t test the current Navigator, but we expect good results from the new model. On top of its aluminum construction, the new SUV will gain a 360-degree camera, enhanced parking assist, and adaptive cruise control.
There is no mention of automatic emergency braking, but we assume this will be included. Also helping in the IIHS’ new headlight testing process will be the Navigator's new speed-dependent lighting, which will project a wider beam at low speeds and a narrower beam at higher speeds to avoid glare from road signs.
Expect a full review closer to launch.