Trucks & SUVs

The 2020 Lincoln Navigator’s Clumsy Handling Makes It Not Worth the Price

The Lincoln Navigator has been a contender in the large luxury SUV segment for years. It’s also the brand’s largest and grandest model. That combined with the high expectations of a luxury vehicle and the Navigator must go above and beyond to achieve flawless performance. But when experts took the new 2020 Lincoln Navigator out on the road to see whether it’s worth its luxury price, one big performance factor left a few questions.

Why you should question the 2020 Lincoln Navigator’s “luxury” label

Consumer Reports experts had high expectations for the 2020 Lincoln Navigator’s performance, and for a price tag that can reach more than $100,000, they were right. But after Consumer Reports’ road test, “there are some deficiencies that detract from a great experience.”

While the SUV certainly has “luxury touches” that differentiates itself from the herd, the experts found the driving experience to be less than expected of its luxury price. 

While the words “luxury” and “smooth” tend to go together, the 2020 Navigator struggles to drive and ride smoothly. Experts found the steering and handling “floaty and disconnected in turns,” with “pronounced body lean.”

The Navigator doesn’t own the road like other luxury vehicles. Large and imposing, the 2020 Lincoln Navigator can be hard to navigate in parking spaces, cities, and narrow areas; only aiding in its poor handling.

More drawbacks for a steep price tag: is it worth the price?

But its so-so steering and clumsy handling aren’t the only things you’ll have to deal with after spending a pretty penny. With an average overall Consumer Reports score of 65 (out of 100), the 2020 Lincoln Navigator doesn’t exactly scream luxury.

This score places it at the bottom of its segment when compared with other 2020 luxury models. It receives a poor rating of two (out of five) for its handling, as well as its braking. But seat comfort also lacks in the luxury behemoth, receiving just average ratings of three for both front and rear comfort.

For its large size and therefore impracticality, it receives a rating of just three for usability. Access to the third-row is difficult and narrow, receiving a poor rating of two. Worst of all is its fuel economy, which is still unimpressive for a large SUV.

Even downgrading the Navigator from an eight-cylinder to a six-cylinder doesn’t help quench its thirst. Consumer Reports only averaged around 16 mpg on its road test, resulting in a super-low score of one (out of five). This is even lower than the already-low EPA estimate of 21 mpg.

What the 2020 Lincoln Navigator got right

While its size and clumsiness seem to be the 2020 Lincoln Navigator’s biggest downfalls, there is a reason why people pay its hefty sticker price. On the same road test, Consumer Reports experts admitted that the Navigator “pampers occupants with power everything and a rich interior ambiance.” It’s no surprise then that the interior receives the best ratings by Consumer Reports, earning perfect scores of five (out of five) in interior fit and finish. 

Even Car and Driver experts feel that the 2020 Lincoln Navigator’s “prices can exceed luxuriousness.” But even after finding the ride to be undefined and the fuel economy to be subpar, however, Car and Driver still calls it “one of the best SUVs out there,” with “its flashy exterior and extravagant features rise above these shortcomings.”

The 2020 Lincoln Navigator comes with every tech and connectivity feature owners could ask for, as well as a variety of luxurious accents and customizable features.