It appears the 2015 Lincoln Navigator has broken through the various automotive press quarantines, and now it is open season for the sarcastic journalist folk and anyone with an
asshole opinion to shit all over LiMoCo's Escalade-wannabe. Great, let's begin.
Despite the opening above, I'm really the last person on earth to get serious about ridiculing a designer's or design team's work. As much as some people want to burn Chris Bangle at the stake for ruining an entire generation of BMWs, I'm not sure if I want to go down that road with arguably the most archaic design to ever grace any given Ford/Lincoln dealership since the decidedly pre-Industrial Revolution Ford Super Duty.
In most ways, the 2015 Lincoln Navigator is no different. It appears this is a heavy effort in the facelift department, as expected, but you immediately recognize architectural cues that bring up red flags everywhere. Just for starters, look at the daylight opening on the side profile of the vehicle and start whispering to yourself, "Oh shit ... not again."
Same story on the inside. A current-gen F150 steering wheel is recycled with a slapped-on Lincoln logo, as if to completely confuse me about exactly what vehicle I'm driving, and despite claims of brand-spanking-new interior appointments and materials, it's obvious that the same underlying architecture and layout was– again –recycled. Oh Lincoln.
All of this, however, is completely forgivable to your author. The design team here has successfully retained the EXACT SAME VEHICLE from the last generation or two of Navigators and managed to make it seem somewhat fresh. The front and back façades look handsome and svelte – and if not that, a huge improvement over the chromed-out mouth guard that adorns the existing model. Fine by me, despite the rest of the vehicle looking alarmingly familiar.
Photos of this new SUV from HQ make me laugh, though. The talent they hired to make this new(ish) Lincoln look its best did it right – put it in front of some Seattle-Tacoma contemporist mansion with frosted glass garage doors and let the two shapes play off each other. After all, a box reflects a box, right?
These projections of "lifestyle" in the form of marketing photography are extremely powerful, but you'll also remember that nearly any other Range Rover or Hyundai Santa Fe would work just as perfectly in the same setting. LiMoCo wants to sell "progressive luxury" and a "confident, forward-thinking demeanor" despite being a completely expected and openly ridiculed piece of machinery that we already know way too well.
I dig the style, I think there's a lot to like, but let's not sell it as something it's not. My money is betting against some miraculous Frank Lloyd Wright resurgence in automotive prowess for this new Lincoln, and nearly every other person that graces this planet with their presence would place the same bet. In other news, water is wet and Charles and Ray Eames once designed a chair.