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Lincoln Navigator Review

The 2015 Lincoln Navigator ranks 8 out of 9 Luxury Large SUVs. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Lincoln Navigator, as well as reliability and safety data.

The 2015 Lincoln Navigator is ranked:

Automotive writers report that the 2015 Lincoln Navigator handles poorly and the cabin build is of uneven quality, but they say this SUV is a significant improvement over the previous year's model.

A new twin-turbocharged V6 engine powers the 2015 Lincoln Navigator, and while critics say it's noisy, they like its robust acceleration. The engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive is standard and four-wheel drive is available. Earning an EPA-estimated 16/22 mpg city/highway, the 2015 Navigator's fuel economy is relatively high for the class. The Navigator has a 9,000-pound maximum towing capacity, which is better than the towing capacities of most luxury large SUVs. Test drivers say the Navigator has a smooth ride, but they think its handling is less composed than its rivals’.

Reviewers say the soft leather and rich wood in the 2015 Lincoln Navigator's interior are significantly better than the materials found in the 2014 model. Still, they say the cabin is poorly constructed in places and contains too much inexpensive plastic. Test drivers find the first- and second-row seats supportive, and they note that the Navigator's third-row seat is among the roomiest in its class. They say the cargo area is particularly large for this class. Standard features in the 2015 Lincoln Navigator include leather upholstery, heated and cooled front seats, heated second-row seats, a power-folding third-row seat, a power liftgate, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, blind spot monitoring, navigation, satellite radio, two USB ports, Bluetooth, a 14-speaker THX surround-sound audio system, Lincoln’s voice-activated SYNC system and the MyLincoln Touch infotainment system. Optional features include a moonroof and a dual-screen rear-seat DVD system. Some critics think the 2015 Navigator’s updated infotainment system is easy to use, but others write that it’s confusing and has a frustrating voice command system.

  • "A large vehicle in a small niche segment, the Lincoln Navigator SUV has typically played second fiddle (or should we say second double bass) to its Cadillac rival. With a substantial refresh taking place this year, Lincoln's full-size luxury liner is putting up a stronger fight for first chair." -- Edmunds
  • "The Navigator's old, granted, but Lincoln has found a way to infuse some new blood into it. If you're in the market for a big, three-row, eight-passenger, body-on-frame SUV that can tow a good amount, you should have a look." -- Motor Trend
  • "Significantly quicker and better-furnished than before, the Navigator is now a respectable option for those seeking a traditional full-size luxury SUV with space and comfort to spare. Middling handling and the lack of some expected technology features definitely diminish its desirability, but the Navigator still shouldn't be underestimated." -- Left Lane News
  • "There are moments where the Navigator shines through, particularly with the application of Ford's 3.5-liter EcoBoost. But a solid, powerful powertrain is just one part of a larger formula. Until Lincoln can figure out what to do next, the Navigator will continue to be an also-ran in the world of luxury SUVs." -- Autoblog

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Other SUVs to Consider

The redesigned Cadillac Escalade has controlled handling, a quiet ride and a lavish, well-constructed interior, according to auto writers. The Escalade also has more available technology and safety features than the Navigator, including forward collision warning, lane departure warning and a head-up display.

Critics say that the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class has top-notch cabin materials and a comfortable ride over rough roads. The diesel-powered GL350 gets much higher fuel economy than the Navigator, and reviewers write that it has strong acceleration.

Compare the Navigator, Escalade and GL-Class »

Details: 2015 Lincoln Navigator

The 2015 Lincoln Navigator can seat up to eight and comes in standard-wheelbase and long-wheelbase (Navigator L) body styles. Instead of trim levels, the Navigator is available with Select (base) and Reserve equipment groups. The Navigator comes standard with a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 engine, a six-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive. Four-wheel drive is optional. Though the Navigator receives significant styling and powertrain updates for the 2015 model year, it hasn’t been fully redesigned since 2007. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2007 through 2015 model years.

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Review Last Updated: 3/31/15

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