Ford Authority

Lincoln Navigator Sales Remain In Second Place In Segment During Q4 2020

Lincoln Navigator sales decreased in the United States and Mexico during the fourth quarter of 2020. Deliveries totaled 348 units in Canada during the quarter.

Lincoln Navigator Sales - Q4 2020 - United States

In the United States, Lincoln Navigator deliveries totaled 5,042 units in Q4 2020, a decrease of about 8 percent compared to 5,455 units sold in Q4 2019.

During the complete 2020 calendar year, Navigator sales decreased about 18 percent to 15,252 units.
MODEL Q4 2020 / Q4 2019 Q4 2020 Q4 2019YTD 2020 / YTD 2019 YTD 2020 YTD 2019
NAVIGATOR -7.57% 5,042 5,455 -18.25% 15,252 18,656

Lincoln Navigator Sales - Q4 2020 - Canada

In Canada, Lincoln Navigator deliveries totaled 348 units in Q4 2020.

During the complete 2020 calendar year, Navigator sales totaled 1,209 units.
MODEL Q4 2020 / Q4 2019 Q4 2020 Q4 2019YTD 2020 / YTD 2019 YTD 2020 YTD 2019
NAVIGATOR * 348 * * 1,209 0

Lincoln Navigator Sales - Q4 2020 - Mexico

In Mexico, Lincoln Navigator deliveries totaled 91 units in Q4 2020, a decrease of about 27 percent compared to 124 units sold in Q4 2019.

During the complete 2020 calendar year, Navigator sales decreased about 38 percent to 298 units.
MODEL Q4 2020 / Q4 2019 Q4 2020 Q4 2019YTD 2020 / YTD 2019 YTD 2020 YTD 2019
NAVIGATOR -26.61% 91 124 -37.53% 298 477

Competitive Sales Comparison (USA)

Despite the continued drop in Lincoln Navigator sales during the fourth quarter, the full-size luxury SUV remained in second place in its competitive set, behind the Cadillac Escalade. The Infiniti QX80 came in third and the Lexus LX took fourth (and last) place. It’s worth noting that the Escalade outsold the Navigator by more than 4,400 units during Q4. As a result, the Navi’s primary rival widened its lead, while Infiniti came closer to overtaking the Lincoln.

From a segment share standpoint, the Escalade held a 45 percent share, while the Navigator accounted for 24 percent. The QX80 took 23 percent and the Lexus saw 8 percent.

Sales Numbers - Full-Size Luxury SUVs - Q4 2020 - USA

MODEL Q4 20 / Q4 19 Q4 20 Q4 19 Q4 20 SHARE Q4 19 SHARE YTD 20 / YTD 19 YTD 20 YTD 19
CADILLAC ESCALADE +6.36% 9,454 8,889 45% 43% -30.71% 24,547 35,424
LINCOLN NAVIGATOR -7.57% 5,042 5,455 24% 26% -18.25% 15,252 18,656
INFINITI QX80 -1.59% 4,832 4,910 23% 24% -15.63% 16,125 19,113
LEXUS LX +18.12% 1,636 1,385 8% 7% -4.37% 4,512 4,718
TOTAL +1.57% 20,964 20,639 -22.43% 60,436 77,911

It’s worth noting that the Navigator’s 8 percent drop represented the largest decline in sales volume on a year-over-year basis. By comparison, Escalade sales grew 6 percent and the QX80 suffered a 2 percent decline. The Lexus LX, meanwhile, saw an 18 percent jump.

The full-size luxury SUV segment expanded 1.6 percent to 20,964 units in Q4 2020, meaning the Navigator outperformed the segment average.

For reference, we’ve included sales figures for full-size luxury crossovers below. Though they differ mechanically from “true” body-on-frame SUVs by having a unibody construction, they are typically cross-shopped and considered as alternatives to the full-size SUVs mentioned above. Currently, the only luxury automakers with full-size luxury crossovers are the BMW X7 and Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class, though Audi is rumored to be working on a Q9 that will compete in this segment.

Sales Numbers - Full-Size Luxury CUVs - Q4 2020 - USA

MODEL Q4 20 / Q4 19 Q4 20 Q4 19 YTD 20 / YTD 19 YTD 20 YTD 19
BMW X7 -9.92% 7,044 7,820 -4.61% 20,579 21,574
MERCEDES-BENZ GLS-CLASS -38.51% 5,244 8,528 -0.24% 22,172 22,225
TOTAL -24.83% 12,288 16,348 -2.39% 42,751 43,799

The Ford Authority Take

The decrease in Lincoln Navigator sales during the fourth quarter follows declines in the third and second quarters of 2020. The declines are to be expected given current economic circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. That said, the Navigator has finally displaced the Infiniti QX80 as the second-best-selling model in the segment.

That said, the all-new Cadillac Escalade resulted in the Navigator losing two percentage points of share, while the QX80 lost one percentage point. And though the Navigator has demonstrated the ability to achieve second place in the segment, keeping that spot protected from Infiniti will be an uphill battle in light of large incentives and aggressive fleet sales by the Japanese luxury brand. Another challenge will be the new Escalade until the refreshed Navigator arrives for the 2022 model year.

About The Numbers

  • All percent change figures compared to Lincoln Navigator sales in Q4 2019, unless noted otherwise
  • In the United States, there were 79 selling days in Q4 2020 and 78 selling days in Q4 2019
  • Lincoln Navigator sales include regular-wheelbase Navigator and extended-length Navigator L

Frankie's first favorite car was a 1968 Ford Mustang, and he's had a strong appreciation for the nameplate ever since. Later in his youth he became infatuated with Eleanor, thanks to Nicholas Cage's stellar performance. Frank's a real jokester, too.

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  1. Donald S DiCarlo

    It’s those fugly seats Lincoln puts into it’s beautiful vehicles.

  2. Lincoln Fan Mark

    So the sales numbers and market share for LIncoln aren’t very encouraging, even in this economy. With that said, I wonder what is needed to become a market leader in just one of the segments where Lincoln competes, such as this large SUV class? The product here is great and the price is at least comparable I suspect to the three competitors listed. Should Lincoln consider a best in class warranty to build confidence in the reliability/durability?…advertise more?…get more dealerships for easier customer access for sales and service? Seems to me FMC is going to have to go big or go home. Terrible to say that because the Lincoln product portfolio–even now when it’s all SUV/crossover oriented is impressive and should be profitable.

  3. MrBoz

    1) A simple explanation to “L F Mark’s” questions is that the Cadillac Escalade is an “all new” model and this market niche favors “all new” regardless of the features/benefits of such. It’s likely that the Lincoln Navigator’s refreshed (all new?) 2022 model will take share from competitors just like it did a few years back when the current version was launched.
    2) It’s interesting that this article’s author (Francisco Cruz) distinguishes the BMW X7 and Mercedes GLS Class as a different market segment because they’re CUV’s and not true body-on-frame SUV’s. It’s doubtful whether most buyers in this segment understand this subtle geeky difference. For the most part they’re just looking for “Full Size Luxury _UV’s”

  4. MrBoz

    PS – I too am a Lincoln/Mercury fan, having owned/driven both a Lincoln Continental and a Mercury Mountaineer in my past. And now I’m very interested in the Lincoln Corsair PHEV, if it ever becomes available. And quite frustrated, because it’s now been well over 2 years since I first saw it on display at the 2019 NYIAS. If it delays much longer I may switch my interest to the Volvo or Audi or even Hyundai or Toyota SUV-CUV PHEV models.

    1. Alex B.

      They said it’s coming out in April but there has been so many delays (such as the 2021 Escape and Edge)and I wanted to get the Lincoln Corsair Grand Touring but I had to get a new car because mine had over 100,000 miles and I got the Volvo XC-40 Recharge and it’s very well planned out. Cuts through 2 feet of snow like nothing, gorgeous interior and exterior, great technology, very practical. It has over 400 hp and over 200 miles of range which is plenty for me otherwise I just borrow my wife’s Lincoln Aviator Grand Touring Black Label for long trips which is equally wonderful (if not more).

  5. Phillip

    Its a tough market and luxury brand loyalty is very high. I personally like the Navigator more than the Escalade from a styling perspective. Two problems though, buyers who wanted the last generation Escalade got discounts and of course more buyers want more tech. Nissan is desperate so they will push rebates on the hood. Lincoln needs to offer something better like a better warranty as it was mentioned. I still think Lincoln needs a sedan to create more volume even though Cadillac is still being beat by Mercedes in overall sales.

  6. J

    Lincoln suffered at the end of the recession, and is still plagued by the “rebadged ford” label. It’s a hard reputation to shake, and I think it could take another 5-10 yrs, a few lease cycles for ppl to try Lincoln. Also, Lincoln get no buzz at all. Ford brand gets EVs, new trucks, halo models like the raptor, new trims, etc. Lincoln needs an ev, and some sort of halo vehicle. They got the mustang platform, why not use it for Lincoln. Even if it doesn’t sell in volume, just get ppl talking about them

    1. Chad

      I mean Lincoln’s getting great publicity when they do get publicity but they definitely struggled tremendously in the 90s-mid10s and it’s obvious that they’re still recovering but Cadillacs starting to go down the rebadging hole as Lincoln did (ex: the entire XT lineup) and it’s only a matter of time before people realize who the better brand is. But Lincoln also needs to add new cars to its lineup like a actually good Continental, a electric SUV that’s not similar to the Mach-E but still in between mid-size and compact, and maybe a new redesigned electric Navigator with at least 500 miles of range or more if they really want some attention globally and steal the spotlight from Cadillac

  7. Pete

    Unfortunately, as I’ve reached my mid 60s I just cannot comfortably enter and exit the navigator; it’s just too high off the ground. It makes no sense to me that the aviator as a kneeling feature, you would have to be a little person to need it. But the vehicle that needs it the most doesn’t have it

    1. Andrew

      My guess is the refreshed version will also include air ride with the kneel functionality. The aviator just happens to have it and the PHEV as its their newest vehicle.

  8. Shadow

    Lincoln makes beautiful, comfortable, luxurious vehicles. The problem isn’t alleged Ford rebadging, lack of buzz, particular specs, competition from other vehicles, etc. As a Navigator owner I can attest that the problem is the dealer network. Lincoln makes a fine luxury vehicle for the 21st century, but the dealer network is still circa 1990-something. Even in redesigned and newer Lincoln dealerships the reality of luxury service falls short. Staff may be honest, well-intentioned, salt of the earth mechanics and salespeople, but their reference point for luxury service is non-existent. I purchased my Navigator from one of the newest, fanciest Lincoln dealers in the country. The building is lovely and finished with the finest materials, but the staff – top to bottom – is clueless about using any technology. They wouldn’t know Nordstrom type service from Sears. You can tell they want to make you happy, but literally don’t have the training or experience to figure out how. They fumble around, apologize, try and try again to get it right …. exhausting you in the process. Whether it is signing digital closing documentation on the desktop flatscreens they don’t know how to operate, scheduling service through the Lincoln Way app that glitches out and fails to connect, customer communication software that doesn’t work, loan car delivery and pick up that takes weeks to schedule, service documentation, you have to beg for because they forget to print, quality of workermanship issues and incomplete service which necessitates multiple in-service returns – it’s all a total fail. I believe whole heartedly the Lincoln dealer employees I have encountered mean well, but there is a lack of accountability, training and support that kills the experience at every turn. If it was just a matter of enjoying a terrific vehicle that would be one thing, but it’s really an enormous computer on wheels. Lincoln bet the farm on phone as key, black label service through the app, etc. and in doing so it shifted from just a car company to a lousy software company. Unfortunately Lincoln’s customer service technology sucks. The Lincoln Way App has been a nightmare. Again, good in theory but the app drains your phone battery and leaves you stranded so if you didn’t bring your key fob you’re gonna need to call Uber, but oh wait, Lincoln Way drained your phone battery so you can’t do that either. And waiting for Lincoln to deliver that loan car and take your vehicle back and forth for service is like waiting for the cable guy … in the 90s. Maybe they show up on time. Most likely they don’t and you just wasted another afternoon. GM has some great Cadillac dealers that understand and deliver their own consistent quality service. I have yet to experience that in any level with Lincoln. Lincoln delivers a luxury vehicle, but the luxury service that should accompany its expensive products doesn’t go deeper than their commercials and print ads. Looks good on TV and nice to look at in print, but it’s fiction. I predict Grand Wagoneer will have similar issues. I had a Jeep Grand Cherokee. I loved it. It did everything it was supposed to, but dealing with Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram dealerships anything but luxurious.

  9. Nickie Estes-Clifford

    Hubs and I went in to look at the Aviator today. We were excited to see what Lincoln could offer – and whether it could compete with the European’s. Well, it really didn’t matter that we were customers willing to spend 80k ish on a new Aviator, the under-par sales force service was so detrimental to our view of what contending with the dealership would be like (and that is very-important to a luxury customer) that we walked out of there with a very poor impression. Lincoln up your game. A Lincoln sales person should not be an unsophisticated Ford sales person. You will lose prospective customers.

  10. Donald Hayes

    I think the home run for Lincoln is the Aviator. Great design outside and inside. The issue is currently finding one on dealer lots. I procrastinated and my dealership in the Davenport Florida area sold out. Hopefully the chip issue will be handled soon


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