At launch, the Lincoln Aviator will be available with two engines. They're both twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6s, and one of them is a plug-in hybrid. The standard engine makes an impressive 400 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque.
To help put that into perspective, that's about 40 more horsepower than the top-rung six-cylinder Mercedes-Benz GLE 450 we just drove, and about 65 more horsepower than the entry-level six-cylinder BMW X5 xDrive40i. Moving to the hybrid powertrain brings Aviator output to 450 horsepower and a staggering 600 pound-feet of torque.
That's just 6 ponies shy of the V8-powered BMW X5 xDrive50i, but 121 more pound-feet of torque.
This plug-in hybrid powertrain will also be able to do the typical plug-in stuff. You can run the vehicle in pure electric mode or hold the charge to be deployed at a more advantageous time such as driving in town at the end of a highway drive. Lincoln did not give estimates for the pure electric range. Fuel economy hasn't been revealed yet, either.
Other interesting hybrid notes: The battery fits entirely under the passenger side of the vehicle between the front and rear wheels. The motor is sandwiched between the engine and transmission. Lincoln also mentioned this is a modular hybrid system, so expect to see it appear in other Lincoln and Ford products in the future.
This powertrain layout is part of what makes it possible for all versions of the Aviator to use the same 10-speed automatic transmission, which is gradually proliferating through the whole Ford family. From there, power either goes solely to the rear wheels, or through an optional all-wheel-drive system.
All of this power can ride on an available adaptive air suspension the company calls Air Glide. It works like many adaptive suspensions, scanning the road with a camera to adjust damping for bumps ahead. It does have some other trick features, though. When the Aviator is parked, the suspension lowers to make the crossover look more attractive while sitting. And when the driver approaches, it lowers itself further for easier ingress. It also raises itself for snow or mild off-road driving, and it lowers down at highway speeds for better aerodynamics.