The all-new Lincoln Navigator is equipped with six different drive modes, three of which are terrain and weather-related, whereas the rest influence ride quality.
In order to create the graphics for these new drive modes, Lincoln engineers spent time studying snowflakes and star placement, as well as clouds and constellations. The goal was to create an easy-to-use, intuitive piece of tech to showcase the Navigator’s capabilities as well as its style.
The three previously mentioned weather-related modes are Deep Conditions (snow, muddy or sandy environments), Slippery (wet and icy conditions) and Slow Climb (steep terrain). The other three are Normal, Conserve and Excite.
Excite is meant to offer a more responsive and engaging drive, while switching into Conserve will lead to more efficient drive and Normal gives you a balanced ride.
“The beauty of these drive modes is they’re intuitive and easy to use,” said Lincoln chief engineer, Andrew Kernahan. “You don’t have to know how each drive mode is developed, or adjust suspension settings or powertrain mapping. You just have to turn the dial, and the behavior of the vehicle is modified to fit the conditions or desired experience.”
Each drive mode is showcased via detailed graphics on the instrument cluster, yet only briefly so as to not distract the driver from the road ahead.
“As a reference in our research, we looked at everything: Nebula, Northern Lights and various atmospheric types of conditions,” added Craig Sandvig, digital experience design manager for the automaker. “We wanted to pay homage to Earth.”
“It’s amazing to see how much went into the development of slippery mode – we wanted to show the snowflakes going from the front of the globe to the back. We went through several trials for this mode to make sure clients could see the road, so we included dashed lines with certain reflections to give that icy road feel.”
In Excite mode, for example, there’s an image showing taillights moving in the night so as to illustrate the thrill of driving. Meanwhile, if you choose Deep Conditions, you will see a tire spinning in deep snow. So, apart from working as they should, the 2018 Navigator’s tech looks good, too.