sounding like I shouldn't've put Aviator in this thread's title;
if this is an interim version ...LIKE the Continental?
now wondering since:
201.4 - 117.9 - 78.1 - 58.5 - Continental
196.7 - 116.1 - 73.9 - 59.2 - China Taurus
197.1 - 112.6 - 78.9 - 70.4 - D4 Explorer
whether Ford might do some *experimenting* during the 2-ish/3(/4?) years until the cD6 Explorer is IN production
also, while googling some of the cD6/Lincoln investment-sequence,
found an article from last July:
" SUVs from L to XXL
The Explorer is one of Ford's best sellers in North America and is now only two years away from replacement. U502 will be succeeded by a similarly sized SUV which uses an update of the same CD4 architecture from the Fusion/Mondeo. The D-segment/Mid Size sedan was the first model to use this platform. An additional model for Lincoln might well be launched some months ahead of the next Explorer (see 'Aviator' below)...
...The latest MKX went on sale first in the United States in that country's autumn of 2015, new for North America's 2016 model year. It is also available in China, the Middle East and South Korea. The first facelift should come for the 2020 model year, with the third generation model due in calendar 2022. Expect that vehicle to be on an updated CD4 front- and all-wheel drive architecture...
...The obvious size gap between the MKX and next Navigator will likely be filled by an additional model in 2018. Let's call it 'Navigator Sport' or 'Aviator' and assume it will use CD4 as its basis, which means it would be the twin of the next Ford Explorer and built in Chicago. This proposed model would be a rival for the Volvo XC90 and others in its class...
...The replacement for the MKZ is expected to be the first vehicle for Lincoln's D6 architecture. This platform can reportedly be for front-, rear- and all-wheel drive applications. The new model, which should changes names, is likely to be manufactured in North America and China.
NOTE: a few other things in the article have Recently been shown wrong-or-changed; so. . .
crossreference: speculation in today's Navi TestMule thread