The 2022 Lincoln Navigator Fails to Deliver on the Company’s Touted EV Transformation

When it comes to American luxury vehicles, Lincoln is one of the best-known brands. From the limousine-like Lincoln Continental of the 1960s to the recent generation of the full-size Navigator, Lincoln vehicles are coveted and accommodating. 

Like other automakers, Lincoln recently announced its plans to electrify its lineup. And the top-of-the-line Navigator was the presumed next model in line for a transformation. But it looks like we’ll have to wait a while longer for an electric Navigator.

The 2022 Lincoln Navigator at a glance

A 2022 Lincoln Navigator Manhattan Green Black Label traveling on a two-lane highway passing a blur of trees
2022 Lincoln Navigator Manhattan Green Black Label | The Lincoln Motor Company

According to Lincoln, the 2022 Navigator seeks to bridge elements of nature with the luxury SUV to deliver an elevated, harmonious “sanctuary.” To achieve that Zen, the Navigator offers various design elements in its trim packages.

There are two new design themes for the Lincoln Black Label package: Central Park and Invitation. Other themes return, including Yacht Club, Chalet, and Special Edition Package.

As for updated technology and safety features, the 2022 Navigator has a slew of cool tech features, both standard and optional. Its standard driver-assist package, Lincoln Co-Pilot 360 2.0, includes adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, and the new Intersection Assist. Expect a 360-degree camera standard, too. And two optional Lincoln Co-Pilot 360 2.0 upgrade packages assist with towing.

In addition, the Lincoln Navigator boasts an indulgent 13.2-inch LCD touchscreen media panel at the center of the dashboard. From there, its Sync 4 system controls media and apps for smartphones and the behemoth SUV. 

Additionally, the 2022 Navigator has adaptive headlights that modify lighting to accommodate different road situations. The Navigator also has new massaging seats.

Topping the list of impressive features is the ActiveGlide system, allowing drivers to operate the 2022 Navigator hands-free on select stretches of divided highways, totaling 100,000 miles of roads in North America.

But an electric 2022 Lincoln Navigator is missing

In June, Ford announced plans for 50% of its sales to come from all-electric models by 2026, CNBC reported. In its restructuring plan — dubbed “Ford+” — 40% of the carmaker’s global sales volume would be from electric vehicles by 2030. On top of that, Lincoln also wants to electrify its entire portfolio by the end of the decade. 

Despite its EV plan and projections, Lincoln chose not to offer even a plug-in hybrid Navigator for 2022 as it does for its two smaller SUVs, the Aviator and Corsair.

Lincoln’s president, Joy Falotico, attributes the lack of an electric Navigator to timing. He said Lincoln would gradually make electric changes based on customer desires, Bloomberg reported.

Interestingly, CNBC added, Falotico says Lincoln will still offer gas vehicles along with PHEVs in its gradual progression to an all-EV lineup while closely following how consumers respond.

In the meantime, the 2022 Navigator will offer only one powertrain. A twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 engine pairs with an automatic 10-speed transmission. It harnesses 440 hp, and Lincoln claims it gets an EPA-estimated 21 mpg on the highway. However, Car and Driver got only 18 mpg during its testing.

The PHEV powertrains for the Aviator and Corsair

The Lincoln Aviator Grand Touring and Black Label Grand Touring trims pack a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine with Nano electric motors, producing 494 hp and 630 lb-ft of torque, Lincoln claims. The EPA-estimated fuel economy for this luxury midsize SUV is 54 mpg in the city, 58 mpg on the highway, and 56 mpg combined.

Lincoln’s Corsair Grand Touring compact SUV has a 2.5L i-VCT Atkinson inline-four hybrid engine with a paddle-shift continuously variable transmission. This Corsair is also the brand’s first all-electric all-wheel-drive model. The powertrain produces 266 hp and gets an impressive EPA-estimated 83 mpg in the city, 72 mpg on the highway, and 78 mpg combined.

For now, we’ll have to wait and see whether the 2023 Navigator follows suit with a plug-in hybrid or all-electric version.

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