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  • William Maley
    William Maley

    New York 2018: Lincoln Aviator Concept Is A Junior Navigator

      Rear-Wheel Drive You Say...


    The Lincoln Aviator is making a comeback as a three-row crossover. At the New York Auto Show, Lincoln unveiled the Aviator Concept which looks like a smaller Navigator. The bold front end, clean side profile, and smooth rear end are here. But that isn't the big news about this concept. For that, you need to look under the Aviator's skin.

    The concept uses an all-new rear-wheel drive platform that will also underpin the next-generation Explorer. Lincoln hints the production model will have the option of all-wheel drive. As for power, the concept boasts a twin-turbocharged V6 engine paired with a plug-in hybrid system. No other details such as power figures or range were given.

    Inside, the Aviator looks to be a carbon copy of its larger sibling complete with a lowered dash and 12-inch screen for the instrument cluster. For tech features, the Aviator concept can be unlocked and started through your smartphone (through the aptly named Phone as a Key), and Suspension Preview Technology that looks at the road ahead and automatically adjusts the chassis settings.

    A production version of the Aviator is expected next year and we wouldn't be surprised if it mostly looks like the concept seen here.

    Source: Lincoln
    Press Release is on Page 2


    Elegant Aviator SUV Previews Lincoln’s Next Act With Power, Technology, And Plug-In Hybrid Option

    • Aviator preview embodies Lincoln’s future as the brand moves toward a portfolio of more utilities highlighting beauty and elegance and offering Lincoln’s quietest, smoothest drive yet
    • Three-row, rear-wheel-drive Aviator marks the first time Lincoln will offer a plug-in hybrid model that is capable of using its twin-turbocharged engine if needed – easing range anxiety
    • Owners will be able to use their smartphone as a key when Lincoln debuts the Phone as a Key technology on the production model of Aviator, allowing clients to lock and unlock the vehicle, open its trunk and, most importantly, start and drive it – no smart key fob necessary

    NEW YORK, March 28, 2018 – Aviator glides into New York this week, offering a preview of The Lincoln Motor Company’s newest vehicle along with a glimpse into the brand’s future, which is moving toward a broader portfolio of utilities and electrification in conjunction with effortless services.

    As more consumers choose the spaciousness and capability of SUVs, Lincoln unveils Aviator, a distinctive three-row plug-in hybrid production preview. The “teaser” model serves to preview the direction Lincoln plans to take with its newest SUV when the production model goes on sale next year.

    “The Lincoln Navigator continues to turn heads and bring new clients to the brand,” says Joy Falotico, president, The Lincoln Motor Company. “We believe Aviator’s elegant design, state-of-the-art technology and refined plug-in hybrid option will draw even more clients to the Lincoln showroom, including families who are looking for three-row capability.”

    With its slim, tapered lines, roomy interior, twin-turbocharged powertrain available with an advanced plug-in hybrid option, the three-row Aviator targets the heart of the premium market, entering the medium luxury SUV segment that represents more than a quarter of all premium SUVs sold. Appealing to millennials starting families, with the majority of vehicles sold to people ages 35 to 44, the medium luxury SUV segment saw sales of more than 585,000 vehicles in 2017.

    Aeronautical inspiration

    The synchronicity of Aviator’s name and form language is intentional; aeronautics has long inspired automotive design.

    “In Aviator, the lines of the vehicle are streamlined,” says Lincoln Design Director David Woodhouse. “You have the stature and presence of the grille at the front, then the body and tail taper off – creating a distinct aerofoil analogy.”

    The emphasis of graceful lines pulling downward toward the rear – a cue to Aviator’s rear-wheel-drive platform – is what Woodhouse describes as an in-flight gesture. “If you look at a bird or plane in flight, the wing is always at an angle to the air and falling downward toward the rear,” he says. “You see that in the main bodyline of Aviator. From the headlight to the taillight, there’s a beautiful undercut feature varying in depth that connotes poise and grace.”

    The iridescent Flight Blue exterior color complements Aviator’s elegant, flowing lines, while the signature Lincoln grille is executed in high-gloss black and chrome accents. A wraparound windshield helps complete the aviation-inspired theme.

    Comfort and convenience

    The effortless experience begins even before entering the Aviator, as owners can use their smartphone as a key. When it debuts on the production SUV, Phone as a Key technology is expected to be one of the industry’s leading systems. Activated through the Lincoln Way™ app, it allows owners to lock and unlock, open the trunk and, most importantly, start and drive the vehicle – no smart key fob is necessary.

    Phone as a Key is designed to offer other amenities similar to a smart key fob. For instance, drivers can activate a locator chirp to find Aviator in a crowded parking lot, or recall their personal profile. Should the phone battery go dead, a backup passcode can be entered on the standard exterior keypad to gain access, then clients can start and proceed to drive the vehicle via the center touch screen. And, if the phone is lost or stolen, Phone as a Key can be easily deleted, providing additional peace of mind.

    Inside, Aviator’s spacious, airy cabin accentuates horizontal lines, minimizing visual clutter to deliver a soothing sanctuary. A thoughtfully designed steering wheel is intended for ultimate ease of use, with only subtle finger movements needed to access the many functions it houses.

    As comfort is paramount with Aviator, the amenities continue with Perfect Position seats offering 30-way adjustability and massage capability, while flexible second-row seats can recline and slide forward for easy access to the spacious third row.

    Wireless phone charging is located in the front armrest, while a convenient media bin is available for passengers in front as well. Multiple power outlets are located throughout the cabin, while standard Wi-Fi ensures everyone stays connected.

    An all-new Lincoln Black Label-inspired theme harmoniously combines Shearling Beige and Lunar Gray to further elevate the ambience. Machine-turn aluminum appliqués, brushed in small circles to replicate the shape of early aviation instruments, enhance the theme. The supple leather of the seats is minimally processed to retain its natural texture.

    Power, capability and choice

    Built on a rear-wheel-drive platform, Aviator allows for the power and capability luxury clients require in a three-row SUV. The platform also serves to enhance Aviator’s elegant proportions, with a long wheelbase allowing for a spacious second and third row.

    The Lincoln powertrain is designed for clients interested in options. A twin-turbocharged engine can be paired with the brand’s first advanced plug-in hybrid technology, marking the first time the company will offer a plug-in hybrid powertrain mated to a twin-turbocharged engine. This combination of power and electrified capability will help Aviator deliver Lincoln’s quietest, smoothest, most powerful drive yet. 

    Offering the capability of its twin-turbocharged engine in combination with a hybrid electric powertrain makes Aviator mightier than many supercars on the road today. The plug-in hybrid experience provides for a responsive, refined ride, with no powertrain-induced noise and vibration when operating on battery charge, yet is capable of using its twin-turbocharged engine if needed, easing range anxiety.

    Lincoln Drive Modes allow clients to further customize the drive experience, while a 12-inch standard cluster display confirms the choice with beautiful and dynamic, easy-to-read graphics.

    Client-focused technologies, services

    Aviator delivers a wealth of advanced technologies designed to assist the driver every step of the way.

    With Aviator’s advanced forward camera scanning the road ahead, Lincoln’s first-ever Suspension Preview Technology seamlessly adjusts the suspension for upcoming road conditions. This can help reduce driver stress caused by potholes and bumps in the road.

    Aviator will be equipped with Lincoln Co-Pilot360™, an advanced suite of standard driver-assist technologies including automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind spot information system with cross-traffic alert, lane keeping system, reverse camera and auto high-beam lighting.

    Aviator offers Reverse Brake Assist, an enhanced driver-assist technology that integrates rear sensors and a camera to provide automatic braking if an obstacle is detected behind the vehicle.

    Aviator also debuts a selection of considerate prompts delivered through the newest version of SYNC®. With the introduction of these prompts, or cues, Lincoln advances the brand’s holistic approach to vehicle ownership by bringing those services into the car.

    The prompts are designed to deliver helpful information to drivers visually on the cluster display, recommending appropriate actions to help them overcome whatever situation they’re facing. Should they run low on fuel, for example, Aviator will notify them and seamlessly connect them with navigation to offer them the closest gas station options.

    “Lincoln is committed to delivering the innovation and features that luxury consumers expect today,” says Falotico. “And, the Aviator is yet another example of how we are creating an effortless experience for our clients.”




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    Done right, Family connection to the big momma and sharp. Could be a decent Hybrid to own. Look forward to seeing one in person.

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    ccap41

    Posted (edited)

    Vehicle looks great. It's exciting to hear about a plug-in hybrid, because that's my current favorite hybrid/EV design.

    Did I hear that correctly?  REAR WHEEL DRIVE???

    @Drew Dowdell is this a new platform or...? 

    I guess while i tagged you and speaking of platforms.. any idea when the new Ford modular platform is supposed to be a thing? CD8, I think? 

    Edited by ccap41
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    Looks great, sort of European looking out the outside.. And yes new platform that will also underpin the new Explorer as stated..

     

     

     

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    Hahaha i barely read this one at all because I read something elsewhere.. They probably said it there as well that I managed to read over. 

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    This could be a true renaissance of Lincoln if they can bring out quickly a new product portfolio of SUV/CUVs that are done like this.

    Potential light after all for Lincoln! :scratchchin:

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    10 minutes ago, dfelt said:

    Done right, Family connection to the big momma and sharp. Could be a decent Hybrid to own. Look forward to seeing one in person.

    Absolutely.  I would not be shy about telling you all if I did not like this...but I really do like it!

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    Sounds like a good RWD CUV, but why a three-row CUV?  I thought the Navigator was supposed to have that niche.  Doesn't Lincoln need a five-passenger CUV underneath the Navigator?

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    3 minutes ago, riviera74 said:

    Sounds like a good RWD CUV, but why a three-row CUV?  I thought the Navigator was supposed to have that niche.  Doesn't Lincoln need a five-passenger CUV underneath the Navigator?

    MKT, MKX

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    7 minutes ago, riviera74 said:

    Sounds like a good RWD CUV, but why a three-row CUV?  I thought the Navigator was supposed to have that niche.  Doesn't Lincoln need a five-passenger CUV underneath the Navigator?

    The Navigator has the larger three-row RWD BOF SUV niche covered.   This is smaller, replaces the MKT.   The Nautilus (MKX rebadge) is the two row CUV. 

    It's like how GM has 3 row CUVs (Traverse, Enclave) and 3 row BOF SUVs (Tahoe, Suburban, Yukon, Escalade).   Ford will have the new Explorer, then two lengths of Expedition.  Same with Lincoln. 

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    13 minutes ago, riviera74 said:

    Sounds like a good RWD CUV, but why a three-row CUV?  I thought the Navigator was supposed to have that niche.  Doesn't Lincoln need a five-passenger CUV underneath the Navigator?

    They have the Nautilus/Edge as a 2-row, 5 passenger above the MKC and below the Navigator and this will be the Explorer to the Expedition in the Lincoln lineup. 

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    With the Navigator proving itself (at least initially) to be a true world class large SUV, I hope for the same for the smaller Aviator.

    It does look promising, to say the least and having it be a hybrid (although still not high on my personal taste) should open some sales doors.

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    I think this is really well done.  It looks like a Navigator (which makes sense) and it looks even better because it doesn’t have that slab sided pick up truck look that the Navigator is stuck with.  Interior looks nice, I like the different colors, you have to sit in it to know what the quality is like but from the pictures it looks good.  

    I read the turbo V6 would be “mightier than super cars.”  Lincoln lost me at that point unless this thing has 600 hp in it which I doubt.  They should put the 2.7 liter turbo V6 base and the Navigator’s 450 hp V6 as the optional engine to go along with whatever plug in they do.  

    I rarely think Lincoln gets much right but it looks like they got this right unless they really dumb down the production version.

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    3 hours ago, Frisky Dingo said:

    Wow. Looks fantastic. Bravo, Lincoln. This brand may finally be getting it's act together.

    Exactly.  Who would ahve thought...but this is fantastic!

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    This one is clearly still just a concept, but wow what a concept! Much of the vehicle is production ready with off the shelf parts from other Lincoln vehicles.  I don't expect there to be as big a change concept to production as there was on Navigator and Continental. Even if only 90% of what we see in the interior makes it, it will compete easily with GLE and Range Rover.  Those who like the Range Rover Velar but can't stomach the frequent trips to the dealer for warranty repairs will like the Aviator.

     

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    If the production version interior is 90% then they have a strong case against Infiniti QX70, MDX and anything Lexus has, I think they beat all them.  Cadillac has their work cut out for them for an XT7.  Range Rover can go off road in a serious way, the Aviator is no match for that but probably for the Velar which I don’t see that interior being that good.

    GLE and Q7 are a tall mountain to climb, the Q7 is already better inside than the Navigator and Ford will cut corners somewhere with this vehicle.

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    The Velar interior is picture pretty, but fades quickly once you start casting a critical eye over the details.

     Q7 has to have a better interior because it is trying to play in the Escalade/Navigator/GLS class while also bridging down to GLE pricing.

    The fact that we're even talking about a mid-size Lincoln crossover in the same conversation as the GLE and Q7 is testament. The possibility that Lincoln could possibly sway would-be German intenders is not even close to zero.  One really couldn't say that before today.

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    Overall I think this is a VERY nice looking SUV and that is coming from a car guy.  Exterior and interior are pretty much right on the mark with one small exception:  the seats.  I don't know what it is about them but I just don't like the design.  Everything else about the vehicle looks elegant and classy but the seats just look..... too busy?   I'm not a fan of the split thigh cushion and split side bolsters in the front and overall they just don't match with the style of the rest of the vehicle, at least to me.  Hopefully those will get sorted out before production and these are just for the concept car.

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    I like the green house, I like the interior as well.

     

    For some reason it looks much smaller than it probably is. Are my eyes fooling me?

     

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    19 minutes ago, 2QuickZ's said:

    Overall I think this is a VERY nice looking SUV and that is coming from a car guy.  Exterior and interior are pretty much right on the mark with one small exception:  the seats.  I don't know what it is about them but I just don't like the design.  Everything else about the vehicle looks elegant and classy but the seats just look..... too busy?   I'm not a fan of the split thigh cushion and split side bolsters in the front and overall they just don't match with the style of the rest of the vehicle, at least to me.  Hopefully those will get sorted out before production and these are just for the concept car.

    Just for full disclosure, those are optional seats. At least I assume they will be, as they are in the Navigator.

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    55 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    The fact that we're even talking about a mid-size Lincoln crossover in the same conversation as the GLE and Q7 is testament. The possibility that Lincoln could possibly sway would-be German intenders is not even close to zero.  One really couldn't say that before today.

    This is true.  The Explorer is a big mid-size, it is near a full size SUV, I don't think they gave the specs, but my guess is this Aviator is pushing 200 inches long, but so is the Q7.  We have to see the final version to see if it can compete with a German, but yes a year ago Lincoln was barely above Honda and probably if you put an MKX in a comparo test vs a Pilot  it would have lost.  Huge win for Lincoln if they can even get in the same sentence with the Germans, but I also like that Lincoln doesn't even mention the Germans and just focuses on "American luxury."  A lot of marketers try to compare their product to the Germans (Kia Stinger) and they are almost dead on arrival because they aren't going to be a good as a German car so why oversell and under deliver.

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    30 minutes ago, 2QuickZ's said:

    Overall I think this is a VERY nice looking SUV and that is coming from a car guy.  Exterior and interior are pretty much right on the mark with one small exception:  the seats.  I don't know what it is about them but I just don't like the design.  Everything else about the vehicle looks elegant and classy but the seats just look..... too busy?   I'm not a fan of the split thigh cushion and split side bolsters in the front and overall they just don't match with the style of the rest of the vehicle, at least to me.  Hopefully those will get sorted out before production and these are just for the concept car.

    They're the same 37+ way seats offered as optional in the Continental and Navigator. Like in those vehicles, they'll be optional or part of an upper tier package.gallery_51_1157_121837.jpg

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