The Lincoln Aviator is being resurrected after 13 years in retirement.
Remember the Lincoln Aviator? Based on the Ford Explorer, the luxury SUV was only on the market for three years between 2002 and 2005. It was well received at the time, but never caught on with consumers despite the popularity of SUVs. 13 years later, the Lincoln Aviator is being resurrected. At the New York Auto Show later this month, Lincoln will be presenting an Aviator concept car previewing a future production model. Lincoln announced the Aviator’s comeback via a teaser video on Twitter, but there’s very little to go on at this point.
Essentially, it will be joining the full-size Navigator and replace the slow-selling MKT, which originally replaced the Aviator as Lincoln branched out into the luxury crossover market. It makes sense, as there’s certainly room for a three-row SUV to join Lincoln's lineup slotting between the Nautilus and the Navigator. According to a report by Automotive News in 2016, the reborn Aviator will be a large three-row crossover based on the next-generation Ford Explorer. Production is slated to begin later this year, but the crossover may not reach dealerships until early 2019. The teaser video doesn’t reveal much, giving us a brief glimpse of the crossover's large grille and illuminated Lincoln emblem.
Expect the cabin to be luxurious with seating for up to seven people. Being based on the Ford Explorer, it’s probably safe to expect both front- and all-wheel drive options. Chances are it will be powered by the Explorer's 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6, too. Ford also recently confirmed the next-generation Explorer will have a hybrid powertrain, so this will probably be carried over to the Aviator as well. More details will be revealed when the Aviator concept debuts at the New York Auto Show at the end of the month.