2023 Lincoln Nautilus Luxury SUV: A Sanctuary on Wheels

What do you expect in a sanctuary? Massaging seats, plush leather and a cabin that quiets the world outside. This is what we found in the 2023 Lincoln Nautilus

The Lincoln Nautilus Key Is A Smart Key That Unlocks The Car When You Approcha
The Lincoln Nautilus key is a smart key that unlocks the car when you approcha. Photo: Kim S

You might never want to get out of this SUV.

On a scenic drive to the Hudson Valley recently, we drove the 2023 Lincoln Nautilus, a mid-size 5-passenger luxury SUV priced from $46K. Our test model was a top of the line Black Label edition – think of Ralph Lauren’s Purple Label: Top drawer in every detail. I’m not sure my family was ready to be so pampered. But I was.

It started with a smooth ride, which if you know New York roads, is a feat; they are beat up with pot holes, bad patching and uneven surfaces. Our experience was serene, thanks to the adaptive suspension and something called torque vectoring control: That’s a fancy way of saying all wheel drive, which pushes or limits power to each wheel as needed to maintain control and comfort. Add to that the plush leather seats and panoramic sun roof that flooded the car with sun and picturesque views and the experience was complete.

And I was serene behind the wheel; the massaging seats let me focus on the road and ignore the *conversation* my kids were having in the back seat. Now, that is a true sanctuary on wheels.

Related: You Have to See This to Believe it: The 2024 Lincoln Nautilus Fast Forwards the Future to Now

2023 Lincoln Nautilus Black Label Parking Assist Helped Me Get Into This Spot In Brooklyn.

2023 Lincoln Nautilus Black Label Parking Assist helped me get into this spot in Brooklyn. Photo: Kim S

Gorgeous Exterior, with Lush Interior to Match

The look of our test model was stunning, showcasing just how modern and elegant Lincoln’s design aesthetic is: the Flight Blue Metallic Clear Coat Exterior paint has a personality of it its own; it morphs in different lighting, giving it an ever-changing look. The distinctive Black Label satin aluminum grille and 21″ wheels add a touch of sophistication. Plus, the security approach and farewell lamps create a welcoming ambiance. 

The exterior was complemented by the Venetian leather interior in luggage tan. 

All that style isn’t just pretty, it’s comfortable, too. The seats support you as much as they let you sink in and enjoy the fragrance of the leather; the carpets have a lovely tactile feeling while quieting the cabin. Technology at your fingertips gives you instant access to whatever you need – a new playlist, a cooler cabin temperature, directions to Starbucks.

Related: 2023 Lincoln Corsair Luxury SUV: Minimum Makeover for Maximum Impact

2023 Lincoln Nautilus Awd Black Label Venetian Leather Interior And Control Center

2023 Lincoln Nautilus AWD Black Label Venetian Leather Interior and control center. Photo: Kim S

Black Label: The Ultimate Escape From the Daily Grind

Looking good isn’t enough if there’s not enough power under the hood; the Nautilus has a 2.7L V6 engine that churns out 335 horsepower, ensuring you have more than enough muscle for highway adventures like merging into traffic at full speed or safely passing a tractor-trailer.

Inside, the leather seats steal the show, offering a 22-way adjustment, heating, and ventilation for front seat passengers. Second-row passengers also get the royal treatment with heated seats. Add in the heated steering wheel and the beautiful Alcantara micro suede ceiling headliner, and the overall feeling is simply spelndid.

Related: How Lincoln Created a Sanctuary of Luxury and Elegance in its New SUVs

Me In The 2023 Lincoln Nautilus Awd Black Label On Our Drive To The  Hudson Valley

Me in the 2023 Lincoln Nautilus AWD Black Label on our drive to the Hudson Valley. Photo: Kim S

How Does the 2023 Lincoln Nautilus AWD Black Label Drive?

Beneath the style of the 2023 Lincoln Nautilus AWD Black Label lies a powerhouse. Its 2.7L V6 engine churns out 335 horsepower, ensuring you have more than enough muscle for those highway adventures. I put it to the test on the Southern State Parkway’s notorious curves during a brunch trip with my family, and it handled them with grace. And merging onto Long Island’s unforgiving highways was effortless.

Probably the feature I liked most, though, is brake hold: tap it on and when you fully apply the brake, the car is held in place until you tap the accelerator. It’s a sanity-saver in stop-and-go traffic.

All that power comes at a price, though: while the Nautilus is EPA rated to get 21 MPG in the city and 26 on the highway, we averaged around 16 MPG in the city, though we did a bit better than the estimates on the highway, averaging 27 MPG.

Also, Lincoln recommends using premium fuel, which is always suggested to get the maximum performance and life from a car’s engine. However, regular fuel works just fine, too, the company says. 

2023 Lincoln Nautilus Awd Black Label Rearfacing Car Seat Installation

2023 Lincoln Nautilus AWD Black Label Rearfacing car seat installation. Photo: Kim S

Always, Safety Comes First

I have two daughters, one who is still in a rear facing car seat, so installing her seat is a consideration in any car: Will it fit? I found the LATCH anchors to be easily accessible, and the wide rear seat comfortably accommodated her seat on the passenger’s side without leaving my husband with too little leg room.

And I really appreciated the rear passenger seat reminder to ensure we never leave any precious cargo in the car. This system recognizes that you’ve put something in the rear seat, gotten in the car and driven, then parked; a reminder on the driver information screen prompts you to check the rear seat.

In the city I really appreciated the blind-spot monitoring and the 360-degree camera system. It’s a great help with changing lanes and when parking, finding those curbs before they scuff your rims. 

Luxury Options In The Black Label Include Massage Seats To Enhance The Driving Experience

Luxury options in the Black Label include massage seats to enhance the driving experience. Photo: Kim S

Good Technology is a Luxury, Too

Lincoln’s impressive tech features include a 12.3-inch entertainment touchscreen display that is a breeze to use, putting control of everything from seat settings to music right at your fingertips.

With Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, both Android and iPhone users can enjoy their favorite tunes through the 19-speaker Revel audio system. And the option of 4G LTE-powered onboard Wi-Fi hotspot can be a game-changer for work or keeping the kids entertained.

The Nautilus navigation system and a wireless smartphone charging pad come standard on Reserve and Black Label models. Add that to the front and rear seat USB ports and an optional rear-seat entertainment system, and everyone stays connected and entertained.

It Fits! The Cargo Space In The 2023 Lincoln Nautilus

It fits! The cargo space in the 2023 Lincoln Nautilus can hold our stroller and then some. Photo: Kim S

Storage and Cargo Galore

With kids, storage and cargo space are vital. Can the Nautilus handle strollers, groceries, and all the gear your kids need – all at once? Surprisingly, it can! With 37.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row and 68.8 cubic feet with the seats folded, it’s a champ.

For smaller things up front, the floating center console offers a convenient spot for your essentials. Plus, there are 6 cupholders and bottle pockets in the doors for holding cups and bottles. While I missed having cupholders in the rear console, the Nautilus makes up for it with cleverly designed storage spaces throughout the cabin.

2023 Lincoln Nautilus Flight Blue Metallic Exterior With 21 Inch Wheels And Back Label Grille.

2023 Lincoln Nautilus Flight Blue Metallic exterior with 21 inch wheels and Back Label grille. Photo: Kim S

The Different Trim Packages for the Lincoln Nautilus

The 2023 Lincoln Nautilus comes in three trim levels: Standard, Reserve, and Black Label. Here’s what they feature and how they are priced:

  • The Standard trim starts at $46,020, comes with a 4-cylinder engine that generates 250 HP and offers a comprehensive list of standard features, from leatherette seating, power liftgate to a full suite of safety features and the large 12.3″ multimedia screen. Its offered standard in front wheel drive, though AWD can be added 
  • The Reserve trim, starting at $52,235, adds 18-inch wheels, a premium sound system, panoramic sunroof, heated and cooled front seats, and heated rear seats. Buyers can upgrade to the V6 engine and add AWD.
  • The top-of-the-line Black Label trim, starting at $68,440, is sold only at Black Label Lincoln dealers. It spoils you with the more powerful V6 and AWD, Lincoln’s Co-Pilot 360 advanced driver assistance system, Venetian Leather seats, a 19-speaker premium sound system, 360-degree camera and exclusive member privileges like complimentary car washes and access to exceptional restaurants. Our test model, with massaging seats and destination fee, had an MSRP of $70,285.
The Lincoln Nautilus Key Is A Smart Key That Unlocks The Car When You Approcha

The Lincoln Nautilus key is a smart key that unlocks the car when you approch. Photo: Kim S

Who is This SUV For?

Clearly, buyers who prioritize luxury and design. But as an SUV, it’s great for:

  • Families who want a roomy cabin but not an overly large SUV 
  • A family of four who need ample cargo space, technology and conveniences
  • Driver and passenger who want heated and ventilated massaging seats, dual climate control, and 22-way adjustable driver and front passenger seats
  • Anyone seeking a mobile sanctuary that caters to your every need
The 'Coast To Coast' Screen

The ‘coast to coast’ screen, as seen in the Black Label edition of the 2024 Lincoln Nautilus. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Keep Your Eye Out for the 2024 Lincoln Nautilus

If you’re already impressed by the 2023 Lincoln Nautilus, just wait until you hear about the 2024 model. Lincoln is taking it up a notch with exciting features, such as the largest in-car screen in any car, multi-sensory lighting and fragrance, and hands-free highway driving with Lincoln Blue Cruise.

The redesigned exterior will feature all-new LED lights, and a powerful hybrid powertrain option.

And if you’re a music lover, you’ll adore the Revel Ultima 3D Audio System with 28 speakers. I can’t wait to get behind the wheel of the 2024 Nautilus when it becomes available in early 2024.

Lincoln Nautilus Monroney

Lincoln Nautilus Monroney

Your Sanctuary on Wheels: The 2023 Lincoln Nautilus AWD Black Label

While the 2024 Nautilus sounds, and looks, amazing, the 2o23 edition is no slouch; Lincoln is clearly hitting its stride with elegant design, beautiful materials and pampering technology and features. You can’t go wrong either way, with this sanctuary on wheels.

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Kim Smith is a 30-something-year-old wife and do-it-all mom of two beautiful daughters; her rainbow babies. As if working... More about Kim S.