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The all-new 2020 Lincoln Aviator was first unveiled to the public at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. The Lincoln Aviator is now in its second generation iteration, with the first generation of the model having appeared first in the early 2000s. While its predecessor was based on the body-on-frame construction of the old Ford Explorer, the next-gen of this mid-sized luxury SUV is based on the same architecture as that of the latest sixth-generation Explorer.
In the posh American automaker’s current line-up, the 2020 Aviator will find itself between the Nautilus and the larger Navigator full-sized SUV. Built at the marque’s dedicated Chicago Assembly Facility in the United States, the Aviator represents Lincoln’s first mid-sized three-row (crossover) SUV. According to Lincoln, the brand-new Aviator is the spiritual successor of the erstwhile and awkward-looking MKT. Once it arrives in the UAE, the 2020 Lincoln Aviator will go up against the likes of the Audi Q7, BMW X5, Mercedes-Benz GLE and Volvo XC90.
As it turns out, the name ‘Aviator’ isn’t just a result of some random thoughts scribbled on a piece of paper during a coffee break; the Lincoln Aviator’s design is supposedly inspired by the world of aviation and aeronautics. According to the company, the new Lincoln Aviator’s exterior styling takes “connotations of flight are intrinsic in the strong front and tapering rear of the vehicle, creating a distinct aerofoil analogy.” However, I’m not so sure I see anything aeronautical here. Then again, that’s just my opinion.
While I may not see any (convincing enough) aerofoil-like design theme here, the 2020 Lincoln Aviator is definitely a modern and good-looking SUV. It has clearly got handsome yet sharp lines, soft but clear contours and of course, loads of chrome. Up front, the Aviator is adorned by Lincoln’s large and signature grille, stylish all-LED headlamps and a chiseled lower apron with sleek LED fog lamps. The sculpted hood adds some muscularity, while the ‘Aviator’ branding near the front door looks cool.
The sculpted wing mirrors have a unique design to them, whilst the multi-spoke alloy wheels add a sense of class and sophistication. The Lincoln Aviator’s side profile reveals its “pulled back”/”pinched” rear quarters, which certainly affords this SUV a certain sporty appeal. The rear looks quite distinctive, sporting a large roof spoiler, conspicuous ‘Lincoln’ lettering, the industry-favorite full-width LED strip, and clear lens, full-LED tail lamps.
The interior of the 2020 Lincoln Aviator is undeniably one of the best in the industry right now, at least as far as its modernity and plushness is concerned. There’s soft leather, knurled control surfaces, elegant-looking wood finish and high-quality switchgear. Sure, there are some less-than-ideal plastics further down in this cabin, but nothing in here feels nasty at all! The seats are truly some of the most comfortable, an area where Lincoln has been doing quite well of late.
The well-trimmed dashboard and door area look quite busy, mainly because of the blend of multiple textures, contours and colors. Being a three-row family SUV, usable space is an important factor to take into consideration. Thankfully, the 2020 Lincoln Aviator works well on this front, and there’s a decent amount of room in the third row - even more if you’re a child. The build quality is really good, and everything in your line-of-sight feels premium and expensive.
While the Aviator is loaded with many features and goodies, some of the few tech bits include adaptive cruise control, adaptive air suspension, smartphone-operable car controls, adaptive LED headlights, full-leather upholstery, up to 30-way adjustable front seats with massaging and ventilation, 28-speaker Revel sound system, panoramic glass roof, ambient mood lighting, fully-digital instrument cluster, hands-free tailgate, 10.1-inch touch-infotainment display, quad-zone climate control etc.
Engine and performance
The 2020 Lincoln Aviator makes 400 horsepower and 542 newton-meters of torque from its 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 engine. A 10-speed automatic handles transmission duties, with the Aviator capable of hitting a top speed of 250 km/h and a fuel economy of 10.6 L/100 km for the RWD variant.
While Lincoln hasn’t released any prices for the 2020 Aviator for the UAE market, the entry-level RWD trim costs about USD 52,000 in the States (or approximately AED 191,000). So far then, the 2020 Lincoln Aviator is turning out to be a stylish, modern, capable and luxurious mid-sized family SUV.