Outside, the Navigator has an entirely fresh and appealing new look. Up front, there’s a simultaneously sleek and massive grille and new LED headlights. Under the hood is an impressive new powertrain. The Navigator is powered by a revised turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 that now cranks out a stout 450 horsepower. Putting that power to the ground is a new 10-speed automatic transmission. Ten speeds may seem like overkill, but you’ll hardly notice the shifting, and the additional gearing helps improve both acceleration and fuel economy.
Inside, the Navigator uses top-notch materials on every panel and offers updated, modern tech behind the infotainment screen and three rows of adult-size seating with a massive amount of cargo space to back them up. As with other amply sized models of this class, the Navigator isn’t the easiest to drive in crowded urban areas, but overall we think it will be one of the nicest luxury SUVs on the market for 2018.
The 2018 Lincoln Navigator is completely redesigned.
While the base Premiere trim level is appealing for its lower starting price and the topped-out Black Label trim comes with almost everything as standard, our recommendation falls right in the middle of the lineup. We say go with the Select trim level with the optional Technology package. The Select trim level gets the benefit of the surround-view parking camera system and the adaptive suspension, while the Technology package adds all sorts of desirable top-end safety equipment such as adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning and intervention.
Setup levels & features
The 2018 Lincoln Navigator is available in four trim levels: Premiere, Select, Reserve and Black Label. All trims are powered by the same turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 (450 hp, 500 lb-ft) paired to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive is standard and four-wheel drive is optional for the first three trims; the Black Label gets 4WD as standard.
Considering the size and weight of the Navigator, it does a surprisingly good job of keeping itself tidy. The drivetrain is quick and responsive, the steering is low-effort, and the suspension is relatively slop-free.
You’d expect the Navigator to be comfortable, and it delivers. Seat comfort is excellent, and the adaptive suspension is good at filtering out sharp impacts. The climate control system works effectively to keep you delightfully cool or warm and toasty.
The Navigator has interior room in spades, and its smart design maximizes ease of entry. A lot of controls require some familiarization time, but ultimately they are easy to use. Cameras help you maneuver this large SUV in tight spaces.
If it’s space you want, it’s what you’ll get, even without the extended L Navigator model. There’s an abundance of in-cabin storage for everyone’s personal effects, and power-folding seats make loading longer cargo items a breeze.
With an excellent infotainment interface, superb sound-system quality, comprehensive driving aids and ample device-charging options, the Navigator has embraced the latest technology without reservation. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and a Wi-Fi hotspot are just the icing on this cake.