2010 Lincoln Navigator Review

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The Car Connection
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The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Nelson Ireson Nelson Ireson Senior Editor
January 20, 2010

The 2010 Lincoln Navigator is a well-rounded, full-size SUV offering both luxury and performance.

TheCarConnection.com's editors took the wheel of the Lincoln Navigator to bring you their expert take on the big SUV, and supplement that with the highlights of the Web's best reviews to bring you a comprehensive picture.

With over a decade on the roads and through several updates, the Lincoln Navigator is still as large and stately as ever, though some reviewers find the overall appearance a bit on the "bling" side of attractive. More upscale than the Ford Expedition, the Navigator is quiet and comfortable inside. Design and function of all the interior's core elements are good, and Lincoln's unique gauges are a fun touch.

Power for both 2010 Lincoln Navigator models comes from a 300-horsepower, 5.4-liter V-8 engine that drives either two or four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. Hauling is second nature to the Navigator, with a maximum tow rating of 9,100 pounds.

Handling is solid and stable, though it's a large SUV, not a sports car. The size and 6,200-pound curb weight of the vehicle also tax the 5.4-liter V-8 engine at times compared to other vehicles in the class. Shifting is slick and easy, though, turning low revs at highway speeds to reduce engine noise. Body roll is what you'd expect from a big, heavy SUV, but four-wheel independent suspension helps provide a smooth ride.

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Seating is comfortable throughout, even in the oft-compromised third row. Power fold capability means the third row can be quickly and easily stowed when not in use, and as one of TheCarConnection's editors note, the power fold feature can be used to scoot faraway cargo toward the rear, as it moves the cargo aft when unfolding the seats.

Safety is a strong point with the new Navigator, rating five stars in front and side driver and passenger ratings with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Rollover ratings, despite the Roll Stability Control system, are lower at just three stars for the two-wheel-drive models and four stars for the four-wheel-drive models. Standard safety equipment includes safety canopy and side impact airbags; child tether system; Lincoln's Personal Safety System with safety belt pre-tensioners, load-limiting retractors, dual-stage front airbags, driver seat position sensor and crash severity sensor; and SOS post-crash alert system.

Two models are available, the Navigator and Navigator L; the latter is 14.7 inches longer than the standard model. The Navigator L also features 24.5 cubic feet of extra cargo capacity compared to the Navigator, which clocks in at 18.2 cubic feet total with the seats up. Fold the second- and third-row seats down and that figure grows to 103.5 cubic feet for the Navigator and 128.2 cubic feet for the L.

Improvements for 2010 include the addition across the range of the new SYNC and Sirius Travel Link features, plus Standard Trailer Sway Control as part of the AdvanceTrac stability system and MyKey technology, which allows Navigator owners to limit top speed and radio volume even when they're not in the car-and all are standard. All are also available on either the standard Navigator or the longer L. Other features introduced last year include a rearview camera system, rain-sensing windshield wipers, EasyFuel capless fuel fill, Front Park Assist, and heated second-row seats.

Other 2010 upgrades and options include standard power-deployable running boards to ease ingress and egress, as well as leather-trimmed seats.

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2010 Lincoln Navigator

Styling

King of bling? The 2010 Lincoln Navigator.

With over a decade on the roads and through several updates, the Lincoln Navigator is still as large and stately as ever. Reviewers sum up the 2010 Lincoln Navigator as a brash and flashy piece of rolling bling. TheCarConnection.com's editors like the 1960s-esque grille work, though others have called it "overkill in chrome."

"Chrome" might not be the right word, however, as Cars.com points out-"it's actually painted plastic" and up close, it doesn't look "substantial." Edmunds doesn't care about the technicalities and says the Navigator has the "most amount of chrome available on the nose of any current production vehicle." Cars.com admits it looks like the real thing from a distance, and MotherProof calls the look of the 2010 Navigator "distinctive, stylish, and decidedly Lincoln," though it'll never be considered "discreet." Cars.com cuts to the chase and labels the Navigator the "Blingmobile."

Styling in the cabin also draws some inspiration from earlier Lincolns, this time with gauges similar to those found in 1970s and 1980s vehicles. Kelley Blue Book says the design has even deeper roots, with a "'50s retro look." Cars.com praises them for being "easy to read and extremely distinctive."

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7

2010 Lincoln Navigator

Performance

The 2010 Lincoln Navigator handles much better than it accelerates.

Power for both 2010 Lincoln Navigator models comes from a 300-horsepower, 5.4-liter V-8 engine that drives either two or four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. Hauling is second nature to the Navigator, with a maximum tow rating of 9,100 pounds.

Handling is solid and stable, though it's a large SUV, not a sports car. The size and 6,200-pound curb weight of the vehicle also tax the 5.4-liter V-8 engine at times compared to other vehicles in the class. Shifting is slick and easy, though, turning low revs at highway speeds to reduce engine noise. Body roll is what you'd expect from a big, heavy SUV, but four-wheel independent suspension helps provide a smooth ride.

As AutoWeek tells it, the Navigator is a "surprisingly agile handler." Cars.com finds the ride "pleasant...but nothing spectacular." Size does have its advantages, however, with ConsumerGuide noting the way the Navigator's "sheer size and weight tame most surface imperfections."

A weaker-than-expected V-8 engine dampens the party a bit, however. Edmunds calls Lincoln to the carpet, saying the 2010 Navigator "lacks the standout performance expected" of luxury SUVs these days, especially in comparison to offerings from Cadillac, Infiniti, and Mercedes-Benz. Cars.com agrees, noting that the engine is "woefully lacking in the power department."

Making up for this lack of power is a very smooth and well-tuned six-speed automatic transmission. Cars.com points out that with this single transmission, the Lincoln Navigator can be equipped to tow "up to 8,950 pounds."

Both two- and four-wheel-drive variants are available. Fuel economy pays the price you'd expect of a big V-8 engine and 6,200-pound curb weight. ConsumerGuide's tests show an average of "12.5 mpg, low even for this class." EPA ratings are only available for the two-wheel-drive model, which rates 14 mpg city and 20 mpg highway for an expected combined average of 16 mpg.

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2010 Lincoln Navigator

Comfort & Quality

Lesser-quality materials detract from the cabin of the otherwise luxurious 2010 Lincoln Navigator.

Available in two models, standard and long-wheelbase L, the 2010 Lincoln Navigator promises comfort inside its cavernous interior. More upscale than the Ford Expedition, the Navigator is quiet and comfortable inside. Design and function of all the interior's core elements are good, and Lincoln's unique gauges are a fun touch. Seating is comfortable throughout, even in the oft-compromised third row. Power fold capability means the third row can be quickly and easily stowed when not in use, and as one of TheCarConnection's editors notes, the power fold feature can be used to scoot faraway cargo toward the rear, as it moves the cargo aft when unfolding the seats.

Materials inside the 2010 Lincoln Navigator are mostly high-quality, though there are a few low points. Premium trappings like "real-wood interior trim" and "luxuriously soft" leather are "let down" by cheap switchgear, painted plastic elements, and unpadded surfaces, says ConsumerGuide. Cars.com also finds fault with the interior plastic's texture, remarking it "doesn't seem nice enough to be in a pseudo-luxury vehicle."

On the whole, major elements are well-executed, but the details fall between the cracks. Cars.com finds the four cup holders enough for even the "incredibly thirsty traveler," but decries the lack of "smaller cubbies" in the cabin. "Big, plush seats" are everywhere, they continue, with "no shortage of room" anywhere in the cabin, according to ConsumerGuide.

Quietness also enhances the comfort, thanks in part to the "acoustic windshield, thicker side glass and increased insulation," says Kelley Blue Book.

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9

2010 Lincoln Navigator

Safety

The 2010 Lincoln Navigator is one helluva safe ute.

In terms of safety, the 2010 Lincoln Navigator is one of the best SUVs on the market, though as with any SUV, rollover safety is a concern.

The 2010 Lincoln Navigator scores three stars for two-wheel-drive and four stars for four-wheel-drive models in rollover resistance and five stars for front impact protection in crash tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). However, as Cars.com points out, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), which "has a more stringent testing process than NHTSA," hasn't tested the 2010 Lincoln Navigator.

ConsumerGuide praises the available rearview camera package, but is disappointed that it's part of a "pricey option package." The rearview camera is just an aid to the Navigator's otherwise excellent visibility, especially the "commanding view ahead," says Automotive.com. Cars.com likes the tire pressure monitoring system, noting that it's important to stay on top of with any car, and "even more so with SUVs."

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9

2010 Lincoln Navigator

Features

The 2010 Lincoln Navigator leaves nothing to the imagination because it offers luxury and gadget fans pretty much everything.

Improvements for 2010 include the addition across the range of the new SYNC and Sirius Travel Link features, plus Standard Trailer Sway Control as part of the AdvanceTrac stability system and MyKey technology, which allows Navigator owners to limit top speed and radio volume even when they're not in the car-and all are standard. All are also available on either the standard Navigator or the longer L. Other available features introduced last year include rearview camera system, rain-sensing windshield wipers, EasyFuel capless fuel fill, Front Park Assist, and heated second-row seats.

The SYNC and Sirius Travel Link system offers voice-activated control of climate and navigation systems, plus the ability to search traffic and weather conditions in real time.

Last year saw a similar migration of once-optional features to standard equipment, including a "power liftgate, heated and cooled seats... and PowerFold third-row seats," according to Automobile.

A Monochrome Limited Edition Package offers a few appearance tweaks inside and out, including new outer trim, power-folding side mirrors, and unique badges. Interior elements of the Monochrome treatment include black carpet and floor mats, black wood trim, and unique seats with Lincoln-logo inserts. Other 2010 upgrades and options include standard power-deployable running boards to ease ingress and egress, as well as leather-trimmed seats.

Optional features abound on the 2010 Navigator, with power moonroof, rear-seat DVD system, perimeter alarm, illuminated entry with approach lamps, remote start, adjustable pedals, and passive anti-theft system all available.

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August 23, 2016
For 2010 Lincoln Navigator

I love my vehicle!!

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I love, love, love my 2010 Lincoln Navigator!! There is however one thing that is troubling me. I've been hearing a knocking/tapping sound that sounds to be coming from the inside dash. I've done a vehicle... + More »
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