Premium large SUV; Built in USA
  • 4-door wagon
  • longitudinal front-engine/rear- or 4-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $3,000 – $7,000*


2000 Lincoln Navigator


1998 Lincoln Navigator 4-door


1998 Lincoln Navigator interior


1998 Lincoln Navigator


1998 Lincoln Navigator

Pros:
  • Standard antilock braking
  • Cargo room
  • Instruments/controls
  • Passenger room
Cons:
  • Entry/exit
  • Fuel economy
  • Maneuverability

A hot seller from the start, Navigator drew buyers in their 40s–markedly younger than usual for Lincoln. Some observers derided the Navigator’s blatantly excessive body trim, but plenty of shoppers loved it. All told, Navigator might be a good buy–not much more costly than the highly rated Expedition, and loaded with amenities. A Navigator contains every luxury a semireasonable hedonist could covet–as well as real stretch-out space, in both front and rear.

Overview

Few observers ever expected the Lincoln name to appear on a truck. But there it was in 1998: a full-size Lincoln sport-utility vehicle, similar to the Ford Expedition. Lincoln’s SUV differed from the Expedition with unique front and rear styling, extra sound deadening, softer suspension tuning, plus standard leather upholstery and walnut trim. Lincoln also offered front and rear bucket seats with a center console. Even more noticeable than the luxury appointments was the extroverted exterior trim that was ladled onto what was essentially an Expedition underneath. Navigator was available either with rear-wheel drive or Ford’s Control Trac 4-wheel-drive system, which could be left engaged on dry pavement. Automatic self-leveling air-ride shock absorbers went at front and rear on 4x4s, but rear-only on 2WD Navigators. Antilock 4-wheel disc brakes were standard either way. A 3-place, third-row bench seat was installed. A 3-place split middle bench was available at no cost, to expand seating capacity from seven to eight. Towing capacity was 8000 pounds–that’s right, a hefty four tons. Sole engine was the larger of Expedition’s two V8s: a 5.4-liter, rated at 230 horsepower. Navigators got a special post-assembly inspection, plus a 25-mile preshipment road test. Rivals included the GMC Yukon/Denali, Land Rover Range Rover, and Toyota Land Cruiser.

Yearly Updates

1999 Navigator
Like Ford’s Expedition, the Navigator gained a new optional adjustable-pedal cluster that could move the accelerator and brake pedals fore and aft. Its setting could be hooked into the newly standard memory system for the driver’s seat and door mirrors. Unlike the Expedition, Lincoln’s SUV got a power boost as its V8 engine gained 30 horsepower and 20 pound-feet of torque. Early in 1999, that Triton engine gave way to a Lincoln-exclusive “InTech” 5.4-liter V8 with dual overhead cams and four valves per cylinder, producing 300 horsepower and 360 pound-feet of torque. That engine came with electronic shift control for the automatic transmission. Navigator’s third-row seat gained built-in rollers to ease removal and installation.
2000 Navigator
Front side airbags were installed this year as standard equipment. “Climate-controlled” front seats, with a small fan and heat pump to circulate air, and an onboard navigation system joined the options list. So did Ford’s Reverse Sensing System, which used rear-bumper sensors to provide an audible warning as the vehicle approached an obstacle while backing up. Door mirrors were revised, with built-in turn indicators and an available power-fold mechanism. Previously optional, 17-inch wheels became standard. Interiors sported additional wood trim, softer “Nudo” leather upholstery, a redesigned center console with more cupholders, and child-seat anchors for the second and third rows. An automatic parking-brake release and front-seat power lumbar adjustment became standard.
2001 Navigator
All Lincolns got free regularly scheduled maintenance for the first three years/36,000 miles starting in 2001. Navigator gained a rear-seat video entertainment package and standard auxiliary rear climate controls.
2002 Navigator
There were no significant changes for 2002.

Engines

longitudinal front-engine/rear- or 4-wheel drive

A 230-horsepower, 5.4-liter V8 engine went into early Navigators, driving a 4-speed automatic transmission. That engine gained 30 horsepower for 1999. During the 1998 model year, however, a new dual-overhead-cam “InTech” 5.4-liter V8 edged aside the original Triton engine, yielding 300 horsepower.

ohc V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 5.4/320
Engine HP 230-260
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 325-345
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

13/17

12.0

dohc V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 5.4/330
Engine HP 300
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 355-360
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

13/18

12.5

Road Test

Though too big and heavy to drive like a car, Navigator does have good scoot for a large sport utility. The latest 300-horsepower engine is stronger than Expedition’s, promising robust acceleration and plenty of low-speed muscle for swift passing. Even better, though not really agile, it handles with surprising poise on twisty roads. Body lean is modest, at least at reasonable cornering velocities. On the down side, steering feels too light and divorced from the road, especially on 4×4 models. Those 4x4s also yield a stiff and jiggly ride that’s absent on 2WD models, which ride nearly as smooth as some regular passenger cars. Both versions are quiet in highway driving.

Navigator offers the same towing brawn and convenient Control Trac 4WD operation as the Expedition, with a simple dashboard switch to select 2WD, automatic 4WD (which shifts automatically between 2WD/4WD, locked-in 4WD High, and 4WD Low). Demerits include dismal fuel economy–just over 12 mpg in our tests, with 2WD or 4WD. Some drivers have found seats to be too hard and low, lacking in lumbar support. Accessing the third-row seat is difficult, however, so it’s best left to preteens. Front-seat space is bountiful, and the Navigator is wide enough for comfortable 3-across adult seating in the second row. A nearly flat floor means no one has to straddle a hump.

Sheer size makes the Navigator difficult to park. Overall height, especially in 4WD form, may prevent the big SUV from fitting in some garages. Getting inside is a task, due to the tall step-up into the interior, even on 2WD models. It’s worse yet on 4x4s, despite the air suspension that lowers the vehicle an inch when the ignition is turned off. That inch just isn’t enough to make a difference.

Instruments and controls are well laid-out, and the steering wheel holds a nice array of duplicate radio and climate controls. Cargo space is skimpy with the third seat in place, but immense if it’s removed. Because it’s heavy, though, removal is a 2-person task. Interior storage possibilities are unmatched: two gym-bag-sized center consoles, plus bins and pockets galore–though nothing is lockable. Visibility is good to the front and sides, but hindered to the rear by a forest of large headrests. Touches of wood trim highlight rich-looking interior materials.

Two options are worth looking for: The new Reverse Sensing System is helpful, sounding a warning of unseen objects while backing up. Shorter drivers are likely to favor the adjustable-pedal cluster, which moves the unit forward by as much as 3 inches.

Ratings

Model Tested: 2001 Lincoln Navigator 2WD

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 5
50%
Fuel Economy - 2
20%
Ride Quality - 6
60%
Steering/Handling - 3
30%
Quietness - 6
60%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 7
70%
Room/Comfort Front - 9
90%
Room/Comfort Rear - 9
90%
Cargo Room - 9
90%

Other

Value - 3
30%

Total: 59

Specifications

4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
119.1 204.8 79.9 76.7
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
116.4 30.0 7/8
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
39.8 39.8 41.0 39.7
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 1999 Navigator 4-door wagon

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 4
80%
Front Passenger Injury - 4
80%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision 108
Injury 74
Theft 387

Trouble Spots

Air conditioner
Description: Engine problems such as roughness, stumbling, hesitation, etc. can be caused by an oxygen sensor damaged when water (condensation) drips on it from the A/C. Hose must be rerouted. (1998)
Automatic transmission
Description: A moaning noise that comes from the front axle when in 2WD (but goes away in 4WD) is caused by a problem with the differential side gears, which are being replaced under warranty. (1998-99)
Cold-starting problems
Description: Throttle sticks due to icing in cold weather requiring a service kit for the PCV system. (2000-02)
Dashboard lights
Description: The air-suspension check-suspension lamp may come on even though there is not perceptible problem, requiring a new suspension-control module. (1998-99)
Doors
Description: A problem with the ventilation-mode doors causes a cold draft on the front floor in heat mode. (1998)
Vehicle noise
Description: A clunk in the front end is caused by the stabilizer bar hitting the frame. (1998)
Electrical problem
Description: If key-off accessory-power courtesy functions do not work, battery saver relay may have to be replaced. (1999-2000)

Recall History

1998
Description: Main battery cable can contact body panel in trunk, resulting in damage to cable insulation that could lead to short circuit, loss of electrical supply, or fire.
1998
Description: Certain off-lease vehicles, Canadian in origin but sold in the U.S., have daytime running lights that do not meet U.S. specifications.
1998
Description: Text and/or graphics for headlamp-aiming instructions, provided in owner guides, are not sufficiently clear.
1998-00
Description: Bolts that attach trailer-hitch assembly to frame could lose their clamp load; hitch could then separate from vehicle.
1998-02
Description: Cruise-control deactivation switch on some vehicles may overheat, smoke, or burn; fire at switch could occur.
1999
Description: Retainer clip that holds master-cylinder pushrod to brake-pedal arm may be missing or partially installed, causing increased stopping distances.
1999
Description: Fuel-line assemblies on some vehicles may have been damaged by supplier during manufacture, allowing leakage.
1999 w/4WD and 17-inch chrome steel wheels
Description: Clamp load can be lost on wheel lugs, due to insufficient wheel contact area with hub; in some cases, contact area can deform, resulting in loss of lug-nut torque that can cause vibration or separation of wheel/tire from vehicle.
2000
Description: Cruise-control deactivation switch on some vehicles may overheat, smoke, or burn; fires have occurred while vehicle was parked with ignition “off.”
2000-01
Description: Some of the owner’s manuals for these vehicles are missing instructions for properly attaching a child restraint system.
2000-01
Description: A switch located in the plastic cover of the wiper-motor gear case could malfunction and overheat, potentially resulting in loss of wiper function or fire.
2001
Description: Driver- and/or front passenger-outboard seatbelt buckle may not fully latch. In the event of a crash, the restraint system may not provide adequate occupant protection.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.