The 2015 Lincoln Navigator has received praises from critics for having a much improved design over the outgoing model. Some of the notable changes include the new exterior design, updated interior materials, adaptive suspension, redesigned infotainment system, the twin-turbo V6 engine (that replaced the V8), and better fuel economy. Its price starts at $61,000.
The new Navigator features a new 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine that produces 460lb-ft of torque and 380 horsepower. The six-speed automatic transmission comes as standard for this 2015 model. The EPA stated that the 2015 Navigator runs up to 16/22mpg city/highway with the rear-wheel drive. These numbers are fairly good for a large luxury SUV. This vehicle is capable of towing up to 9,000 pounds, which is more than what most of its rivals can accommodate.
Critics agree that the 2015 Navigator’s new V6 twin-turbo engine delivers great passing power and strong acceleration, even in the larger L model. Some reviewers, however, reported that the engine is too noisy. This is something that Lincoln should work on.
The Navigator also comes standard with rear-wheel drive, while the four-wheel drive comes as an option. Those models under the Reserve equipment group have with Lincoln Drive Cotrol, which is an adaptive suspension system with Sport, Comfort, and Normal settings. People who have test-driven the 2015 Navigator said this SUV has clumsy handling even with the LDC feature, but praised its new steering system because of its nice feedback. They added that the Comfort setting provides a softer ride, while the Sport is more firm and has a more composed handling.
Auto reviewers said that the 2015 Lincoln Navigator’s cabin used better quality materials than those in the outgoing model. They said its rich wood trim and soft leather are the most notable changes. Critics, however, said the Navigator used cheap plastic on some of its interior surfaces. Reviewers found that the first- and second-row seats provide ample support, while the third-row seat is the most roomy in its class. They also said that the cargo area is large for this segment.
The standard interior features include the leather upholstery, heated second-row seats, heated and cooled front seats, a power liftgate, a power-folding third-row seat, a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, satellite radio, navigation, two USB ports, a 14-speaker THX surround sound system, Bluetooth connectivity, the MyLincoln Touch infotainment system, and the Lincoln voice-activated SYNC system.
Optional features include a dual-screen rear-seat DVD system and a moonroof. Critics said the 2015 Lincoln Navigator’s new infotainment system is fairly easy to use. However, others found it confusing and frustrating – particularly the voice command system.
The 2015 Lincoln Navigator received a reliability score of 4 out of 5 from the J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Study. There were no reported safety recalls issued from the NHTSA. In addition, the 2015 Navigator comes with a 50,000-mile or four-year bumper-to-bumper warranty, as well as a 70,000-mile or six-year powertrain warranty.
The new Cadillac Escalade, unlike the 2015 Navigator, has controlled handling. It also looks lavish with its well-constructed interior, according to auto reviewers. In addition, the Escalade runs quietly and offers more technology and safety features than the Navigator.
Meanwhile, the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class boasts of it top-notch cabin design and smooth ride over rough roads. The GL350 is diesel-run and offers a much higher fuel economy than the 2015 Navigator. Reviewers added that the MB GL series has strong acceleration.
The sales for large luxury SUVs have declined over the past years, but the Navigator still reports having around 80,000 buyers each year. These buyers normally either have large families, have big toys to transport, or simply want to make the Navigator a part of their collection. With a starting price of just around $61,000, the Navigator is definitely a good investment.
Note 2016 model shown in feature image.