Ford Authority

Lincoln Navigator Will Not Challenge The Cadillac Escalade-V

It’s no secret that the Lincoln Navigator and Cadillac Escalade are direct and bitter rivals in the full-size luxury SUV space, and have been for years now. In fact, Ford Authority spies have spotted The Blue Oval benchmarking the new-for-2021 Escalade not just once, but twice, as those two models continue to duke it out on the sales charts. The refreshed 2022 Lincoln Navigator was revealed last fall to do battle with the all-new Caddy, but that renewed effort won’t include a high-performance answer to the Escalade-V, it seems.

“We like to focus on our own identity and focus on how we would deliver our experience that resonates with our clients,” John Jraiche, Global Lincoln Product Director, told Ford Authority in a recent interview when asked if the brand was considering a direct rival to the Escalade-V. “We understand where the competition is, we’re not looking to emulate anyone. We took a strategy years ago to be separate and distinct with our Lincoln lineup and we’re looking to double down and deliver that strategy in a new way as we transition into EVs.”

The 2022 Navigator is available with one single powertrain option – Ford’s twin-turbocharged 3.5L V6 EcoBoost that is rated to produce 440 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. GM has yet to release power figures for the Escalade-V, but that SUV is expected to be powered by the automaker’s supercharged 6.2L V8 LT4 powerplant present in a number of other performance vehicles, including the Cadillac CTS-V, CT5-V Blackwing, Chevy Camaro ZL1, and C7 Corvette Z06. In the Blackwing, it produces 668 horsepower and 659 pound-feet of torque.

Many were hoping that the 2022 Navigator would be available with Ford’s twin-turbo 3.5L V6 PowerBoost hybrid, which produces 430 horsepower and 570 pound-feet of torque in the Ford F-150, but as Ford Authority reported last month, Lincoln’s customers felt like the non-hybrid version of that powerplant was adequate for their needs. Regardless, the Navigator Black Label has been attracting younger customers to the brand in recent months, so a higher-performance variant makes a lot of sense, too.

We’ll have more on the 2022 Lincoln Navigator soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for more  Lincoln news, Lincoln Navigator news, and continuous Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

Subscribe to Ford Authority

For around-the-clock Ford news coverage

We'll send you one email per day with the latest Ford updates. It's totally free.


  1. Mark

    Imagine a V-8 in a Lincoln one last time before an era is gone forever. Brings memories when I owned a Lincoln Ls V-8. What authority the car had when driven. Can’t buy a real Continental new so the Navi-8 would be such a treat.

    1. Marc

      I had a 2006 Lincoln LS V8. It was a great car . . . a pleasure to drive with excellent handling, RWD and good power from that 3.9 Liter engine. Lincoln then replaced that splendid car with a FWD clone of the Ford Taurus. I had no use for that joke of a car, so I replaced my LS with a 2014 Mustang GT 5.0 V-8.

  2. Mf

    Ford issue is they don’t have any motors to use for it. If they used the predator or trinity motor, they’d have to stuff the V8 in which would make them look bad for not offering a 5.0 v8. Ecoboost doesn’t have a powerful enough trim to compete.

    It’s a real shame because escalade V is going to compete with European offerings, and while navigator is nice, it just won’t have the firepower to compete.

  3. John C

    Why can’t Ford get serious with Lincoln???? Navigator should be “Best in Class” status not “Just Getting By”. That would apply to the full Lincoln lineup as well.

    Time to wake up the sleeping, boring Quiet Luxury and Shake the Earth! Put some life into Lincoln please.

    There needs to be a way to have vehicles from Lincoln that can be used in the same sentence as Mercedes, BMW and Cadillac as a comparison, but this will never happen.

    Unique custom designs that don’t echo a Ford it’s based off of would be a good start. Let’s see something breathtaking from a European coachbuilder to express the level of luxury and sophistication that Lincoln is supposed to stand for. Remember that the early Lincoln’s (1920’s, 1930’s) were in the same class as Rolls Royce. Why not offer 1930’s coachbuilder inspired bodies and interiors??

    1. Mf

      Because nobody would buy them.

  4. Michael Theodore

    I am a real Lincoln owner and will buy a new one soon. I have no desire for a Cadillac especially when it is fitted with a monster V-8 with unusable horsepower and torque. I love my Black Label service in Plymouth MI and Naples FL.

    1. Mf

      There’s nothing unusable about the power of the 6.2L in the Escalade. It makes great low end torque and doesn’t require any boost to do so. Where the Ecoboost can lug, the V8 just goes.

      Escalade also offers a diesel that does like 27 mpg, with tremendous torque.

      The escalade V will have monster power, but it’ll still be usable because it’s a gigantic and heavy beast. Where supercharged motors like that really shine is their instant response. If you want to pass someone, you just do it instantly, without waiting for boost. If youre stopped at a light and need to get into the lane next to you in front of someone, that’s not an issue.

      Clearly a 600 plus hp SUV isn’t for everyone, it’s not replacing the normal escalade. But Lincoln not offering any competition to it is a lost piece of the market. Navigator has always struggledwith power vs escalade, gm had a 350hp 6.0 when Navi had a 300hp 5.4, then gm added a 420hp 6.2L and Navi had a 300hp 5.4, then gm added 450hp 6.2, and Navi got a 370hp 3.5?

      Regardless of track record, Lincoln would be smart to actually compete.

      1. Justin

        They are competing where they think they need to: interior luxury and concierge service. Lincoln isn’t a sporty brand and diving into there would be adding cost for things that their customers don’t want.

        Not everyone wants a sports car.

      2. James

        Ford and Lincoln have always played catchup in the performance world. They still do today. Example my 2021 Sierra 1500 AT4 6.2L has more HP and Tqe then a 2022 F250 super duty 6.2L.
        Lincoln interior I feel will always be a step ahead of GM. With samsung in caddilac they are trying to keep up.

  5. James

    Funny…… I’ve seen at least a dozen wrapped up navigators pulling either in or out of, or cruising around Milford Proving Ground.
    Ford has been at work with GM for quite a while at the Milford proving Ground..
    Kinda ironic I seen a Ford lightning and a Silverado EV following each other into MPG

  6. George888

    Is it possible to actually build a limited edition Navigator with the Gullwing doors (remember the Navigator concept??) as a 101 Anniversary Edition? Or even Coach Doors would be acceptable. The Continental Coach Door received a lot of attention and buzz. Unfortunately, the buzz went south when Lincoln gave up 1/3 of annual sales discontinuing the Z and Connie leaving us with boring, unoriginal and uninspiring suv’s.


    This vehicle is a poor seller to begin with (2022 sales are 3,154 units, down 51.48% from 2021), so spending more money for a powertrain upgrade this makes no financial sense in this case.

  8. RedSkyBlackDream

    Some people are acting like it would take so much R&D dollars to shoehorn a V8 from Ford’s parts shelf. It would not. They can even use a few brakes and other bits from the Ford Performance parts shelf. It would cost little to nothing to do a higher performance Navigator. Lincoln’s stick in the butt powers in charge are saying no. I’m sure everyone else on the team wants to do it. That’s how it always goes. Don’t even know why Alex even bothered passing down that lame excuse. “Different luxury”, “Quiet Luxury”, “Silent Luxury” or whatever sure is right. Those sales at Lincoln look silent too. It bothers me so much because Cadillac AND Lincoln have so much potential. Cadillac’s Escalade should have the Blackwing V8 in it if we are really going there. That motor was a waste of money and engineering. I’m disappointed in both brands as a big fan of American brands.

  9. Jorge G

    Huge mistake from Ford, the Raptor will get the 5.2L from the GT500, so installing the same engine in the Navigator should be rather easy, selling it for 150k should be just as easy. A bespoke 4.0L twin-turbo V8 would be perfect, but developing an engine from scratch is going to be expensive.

    Lincoln needs to do something with the Navigator to catch up in the segment they created. The Escalade isn’t the only rival product anymore, the Grand Wagoneer comes with two more powerful engines than the 3.5 in the Linc, the GLS63 and XB7 don’t sell in huge numbers, but help moving the lesser versions of those SUVs.

  10. Jason

    GM fans “b-word” about Ford or Lincoln not offering a direct competitor to a certain performance car, but forget that Chevy and GMC don’t have an F-150 Raptor competitor

  11. chrisj979

    “We understand where the competition is, we’re not looking to emulate anyone. We took a strategy years ago to be separate and distinct with our Lincoln lineup and we’re looking to double down and deliver that strategy in a new way as we transition into EVs.”

    Start emulating and up those sales and stop catering to 50+ year old males, it’s getting embarrassing.


Leave a comment