It gets two new Black Label trims and a whole lot of semi-autonomous luxury.
The Lincoln Navigator was a big deal when it dropped in 1997 for the 1998 model year. After the death of the Jeep Grand Wagoneer, Americans got the smaller Jeep Grand Cherokee, while the customers that needed a full-size SUV were stuck with the Chevy Suburban and its competitor the Ford Expedition. But Lincoln brought luxury to the full-size American market, even beating cross-town rival Cadillac's launch of the Escalade.
We saw a new generation of Navigator in 2003, then 2007, and last in 2018. Today, Lincoln hasn't unveiled an all-new model, but it has refreshed the fourth generation substantially for the 2022 model year. It has a bunch of new tech, the same EcoBoost engine and a few new Black Label trims, and the new Black Label-exclusive color, Manhattan Green Metallic, looks spectacular.
The most important bit of new tech is Lincoln's ActiveGlide. It's the luxury company's version of Ford's problematically named BlueCruise hands-free driving. Lincoln is correct in calling it an evolution of its adaptive cruise control with stop and go, lane centering and speed recognition. Like the Ford F-150 Lighting and Mach-E, the Navigator will get signature blue light cues letting drivers know that the camera and radar are working. It will operate on more than 130,000 miles of highways in North America, using a driver-facing camera to make sure the driver's eyes stay on the road.
Elsewhere on the tech front look for Ford's cloud-connected SYNC 4 system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and SYNC apps along with a 13.2-inch main screen. It has Alexa too, which can be synced to your house and smart devices. You can ask it where a gas station is or to play a song, the usual stuff. Additionally, like the new Jeep Wagoneer, the Navi comes with Fire TV, meaning anything you can get on an Amazon Fire Stick, you can get here. Over-the-air updates are now part of the package, dubbed Lincoln Enhance.
The Navigator will again be available in standard and Navigator L guise, with the latter adding 9.1 inches to the wheelbase, although the extra space is given to the trunk rather than the occupants. The front passengers still get the excellent 30-way adjustable Perfect Position seats. They're heated and cooled and offer massage. For the first time in the segment, the second-row seats can also be equipped with massage functionality. Those back passengers also get their own control/climate screen, in addition to the optional rear entertainment setup with 10.1-inch screens. These augment the 5.8-inch rear climate and audio touchscreen, and the standard 12-inch digital instrument cluster. All these screens, and the main 13.2-inch item, utilize a 'Constellation' design theme.
The Navigator's top audio system is a Revel Ultima unit with 28 speakers. Also new for 2022, chimes replace standard electronic alerts to inform drivers of everything from an open fuel door to an unbuckled seat belt. Those chimes were recorded by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
As for design, this is an evolution to bring the Navigator in line with the rest of the company's new SUVs. It has an updated grille, adaptive pixel headlights and new 3D taillamps. Those lights are part of the welcome procedure called Lincoln Embrace. This is what we were talking about with the new lighting signatures, in that they're becoming interactive, informing the driver of what's happening in the vehicle.
Two new Black Label themes will join last year's Chalet and Yacht Club. They're named Central Park and Invitation. Central Park "strikes the perfect balance between a lavish, organic oasis and the surrounding skyscrapers of New York City, with rich-contrast, open-pore dark walnut extending the full-length of the instrument panel and depicting lasered-in scenic pathways of perhaps the most famous urban park in the world." Invitation is described as "a welcome feel to an intimate celebration, luxurious and detailed, with industry-first dual laser-etching and exclusive open-pore Khaya wood that expands across the instrument panel and center console."
Those Black Label trims, the most expensive in the lineup, offer more colors including the aforementioned Manhattan Green, and Starlight Gray, and interior materials like Espresso Ash Swirl and Santos Rosewood. Other new colors to the lineup include Ocean Drive Blue and Chroma Caviar.
Under the hood and near the wheels there are still a few changes. It does stick with the same 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost V6 making 440 hp and 510 lb-ft. That's connected to a ten-speed automatic transmission and either rear- or all-wheel drive. New to the Navigator is Lincoln's Adaptive Suspension with Road Preview, which uses steering, acceleration, and braking activities, along with a forward-facing camera to read the road 500 times per second and automatically prompt adjustments to smooth out the ride. Up to 100 adjustments are made every second.
The Navi comes standard with Lincoln Co-Pilot360 2.0, including standard Intersection Assist, which will stop you if you try to turn left with a car approaching, and Active Park Assist 2.0 to help maneuver the titanic Navigator in and out of parking spaces. Those new features join forward collision warning, post collision braking, distance alert, dynamic brake support, pedestrian detection, auto hold, hill start assist, automatic headlamps, and "phone-as-a-key."
The 2022 Lincoln Navigator will be built at Ford's Kentucky Truck Plant, and will go on sale early next year. We don't have pricing yet, that will come closer to launch, but the current Navigator starts at $76,705 and goes up to $98,655 (before options) for the Black Label trim.