2019 Lincoln Nautilus Review By Larry Nutson
2019 Lincoln Nautilus
New name; new look.
In case you missed it, Lincoln is moving away from alpha model names. Nautilus is the new name for Lincoln’s midsize crossover SUV, formerly known as the MKX.
The transition to Nautilus also brought about an exterior freshening with a new front and rear design featuring the new Lincoln signature grille leading the way. The interior cabin has also been redone, there’s a revised powertrain lineup, plus new safety technology.
Lincoln Co-Pilot360 is standard and adds an array of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) for enhanced safety and crash avoidance. Adaptive cruise control with stop and go, active park assist, evasive steering assist and lane centering are also available in various option packages.
The Nautilus has gone turbo-only with its engines. Standard is a 245-HP 2.0-L turbo 4-cylinder and optional is a 335-HP 2.7-L turbo V6. Both engines use an 8-speed automatic transmission and feature automatic engine idle stop-start. There’s a choice of front-wheel or all-wheel drive.
Nautilus pricing starts at $40,340 for the base trim, and then ramps up with Select ($44,545), Reserve ($48,875) and Black Label ($56,895) trims. All-wheel drive adds $2,495 and the destination charge is another $995.00.
My first drive experience in the new Nautilus was at the Midwest Automotive Media Association Spring Rally held at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. This event gave me and other of my colleagues the opportunity to drive the Nautilus around the twisty country roads of Wisconsin’s Kettle Moraine.
During the event, my fellow journalists and I had the opportunity to evaluate six MAMA Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year contenders. The Lincoln Nautilus was voted as one of three Spring Rally finalists in contention for this 2019 award.
Following this I had a week’s time to become even better acquainted with the new Nautilus. This go-round had me driving the top-line Black Label equipped with AWD and the V6 engine. Loaded up with a Tech package ($1,720), a Driver Assist package ($1,590) and 22-way power multi-contour front seats ($1,500) the total MSRP topped-out at $67,630.
Lincoln has done a good job of giving the Nautilus an overall very premium look and feel. Noise reduction measures and acoustic glass keep the cabin very quiet. The turbo V6 develops plenty of torque. With the smooth shifting automatic it provides good acceleration without lots of noise from under the hood. There’s good steering response and the suspension is nicely tuned for luxury-level ride and handling.
The interior is very well appointed with refined materials and finishes. The Black Label with its Onyx Venetian leather is soft, plush, and high quality. The Alcantara headliner adds more refinement. The huge panoramic moonroof brightens things up on the inside. I have mixed feelings on the push-button transmission shifter. The optional 22-way front seats massage, heat, cool and have a myriad of adjustment possibilities.
On note, the Black Label Lincoln Nautilus, heralded for its sophisticated good looks and welcoming cabin, was named to the exclusive Wards 10 Best Interiors list for 2019.
On the practical side of things the Nautilus has seating for five and 37.2 cu.ft. of cargo room behind the rear seat. Lower the rear seat with the convenient switches and total cargo volume becomes 68.8 cu.ft. The hands-free foot-activated rear hatch came in handy more than once.
Coincidentally, my Gen-Y son-in-law drives a new Nautilus and is pleased with its overall character and driving dynamics. He’s a repeat customer, as this replaced his 3-year old MKX.
More details and model information on the 2019 Lincoln Nautilus can be found at www.lincoln.com.
To make ownership a bit easier Lincoln provides pickup and delivery for dealer service. New Lincoln owners receive a six-month complimentary CLEAR membership for airport security. Black Label owners receive a 12-month complimentary CLEAR membership.
Black Label also provides some concierge services, 4-year/50,000 mile maintenance, car washes, and access to travel and culinary benefits.
There’s also a Lincoln Way app that allows owners to start, lock, unlock and locate their Nautilus, as well as schedule remote starts to enable the vehicle to heat or cool to comfortable levels plus some additional items.
The Nautilus is very comfortable and makes for good transportation both around town and out on the highway. If a high level of comfort and convenience as well as a bit of special service from your dealer is what suites you, I would add the Nautilus to your shopping list.
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© 2019 Larry Nutson, the Chicago Car Guy