Best & Worst Lincoln Aviator Years [Facts & Figures]


The Lincoln Aviator was manufactured in the early 2000s, making it a bit of a throwback when it was reintroduced in 2020 after over a decade. Meanwhile, Numerous buyers of secondhand cars get a chance to own this luxury vehicle, which is why they wonder which year is the most reliable and which year should be avoided.

Here, you can find more information on the best and worst Aviator models, a list of typical Lincoln Aviator issues to look out for before purchasing a used vehicle, and other useful data. If that describes you, you have arrived at the correct spot.

The worst years to avoid the Lincoln Aviator are 2004, 2003, and 2020. The best years to buy the Lincoln Aviator are 2022, 2021, 2005, and 2023. This result was concluded from trustworthy sources such as NHTSA, Edmunds, J.D. Power, and Kelley Blue Book.

Worst Lincoln Aviator Years to Avoid

Here are the most problematic years of the Aviator, according to the amount of complaints and possible reliability issues:

  • 2004 Lincoln Aviator
  • 2003 Lincoln Aviator
  • 2020 Lincoln Aviator

3. 2004 Lincoln Aviator (3.96 Rating)

Source: autoblog

The 2004 Aviator was, unfortunately, not that much better. It could have been worse, in fact. Lincoln failed to offer a fix for the back panel crack, which remained present.

Although a small crack may not seem like a huge deal, who wants to worry about anything like that on a high-end car? Furthermore, we wouldn’t draw attention to the crack as much if it weren’t a persistent problem or the only one.

There are further problems with the engine, the heating and air conditioning system, and the annoying crack. The only known fix for the heating and cooling is to rebuild the system, which will cost about $4,000.

When you invest in a high-end car, this feels a little unfair.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

4. 2003 Lincoln Aviator (3.74 Rating)

Source: mlive

Debut models sometimes have “teething problems” until companies iron out their production and design quirks, so we constantly tell our readers to avoid them. One of the worst years to avoid is the 2003 Lincoln Aviator. There were numerous complaints about it, and most of those concerns were about the powertrain.

Its body and paint were also very problematic. Remember that the 2003 Aviator’s transmission, engine, and drivetrain might have some problems if you’re considering buying one. An exhaust leak is another issue that needs fixing quickly to prevent harm to the catalytic converter.

Constant overheating, a noxious coolant odor, a small crack in the liftgate, various paint and body problems, cylinder valve leaks, and the necessity of regular maintenance are among the other mentioned complaints. Regrettably, these problems have caused one accident, which raises concerns about the 2003 Aviator’s safety.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. 2020 Lincoln Aviator (2.91 Rating)

Source: newcartestdrive

No less surprising than any other year, the 2020 Lincoln Aviator is the top year to avoid. It was the most unreliable model overall, although it was relatively new.

The car’s fuel system supplies the engine with gasoline, ensuring it runs smoothly. The technology must function flawlessly on a high-end vehicle to deliver outstanding performance and fuel economy, but buyers have been griping about both for this model.

SUV seats are essential for providing safety, comfort, and security, but the Aviator also falls short in this regard. The braking mechanism is a potential source of fatal accidents. Although this system is made to stop the vehicle, many owners find it reacts quite differently.

Additionally, this model often experiences problems such as thunderous engine noise when lightly accelerated, engine leaks, and the complete disabling of all-electric warning lights. Engine, transmission, and electrical system issues topped the list of most common complaints. Before buying a 2020 Aviator, ensure it has been carefully inspected.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Most Reliable Lincoln Aviator Years

Thankfully, there are several reliable Lincoln Aviator years that you can explore. Years with the best track records for Lincoln Aviators are:

  • 2021 Lincoln Aviator
  • 2022 Lincoln Aviator
  • 2023 Lincoln Aviator
  • 2005 Lincoln Aviator

4. 2021 Lincoln Aviator (3.44 Rating)

Source: highwaynewspro

Owners adore that it can seat up to seven people and has the classic Lincoln appearance. The second and third rows may be folded flat to create up to 77.7 cubic feet of storage, and there is also lots of storage in the form of numerous pockets and consoles.

Numerous amazing technological elements and a sizable touchscreen are included with the infotainment system. You can receive between 400 and 494 horsepower, depending on the trim you select.

The lack of headroom appears to be one drawback, which most owners find annoying. The 2021 Aviator received an overall score of 77 from J.D. Power, with a quality and reliability rating of 75 out of 100.

It was ranked #5 in the Upper Midsize Premium SUV by the firm as well. It received an overall rating of 8.2 out of 10 from U.S. News and 7.7 out of 10 from

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

3. 2022 Lincoln Aviator (3.69 Rating)

Source: pinterest

As of right now, the 2022 Aviator is still relatively new, so information on it is scarce.
Still, there’s enough to get the broad notion that this is one of the “best years” at the moment.

Experts at rate it 7.7 out of 10, giving it an 8.5 for interior design, 8.0 for storage, and 7.5 for value and technology.
It is noted that the third row is more suited for tiny children than for adults due to its relatively small size.

Customers appear to agree as well, rating 3.6 out of 5 stars.
Their main grievances included paint flaws, a rattle, problems with the Sirius radio, and fuel gauge problems.

Nonetheless, these owners adore the car’s attractiveness and technological features. According to Kelly Blue Book, it is rated 3.7 out of 5 stars, with the greatest ratings going to its performance, comfort, and style.
Regarding quality and dependability, J.D. Power rated it 81 out of 100, and U.S. News rated it 8.3 out of 10.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

2. 2023 Lincoln Aviator (4.14 Rating)


The 2023 Lincoln Aviator is another good year to buy. It is ranked sixth out of 21 on U.S. News & World Report in the Luxury Midsize SUVs category.

The 2023 Aviator boasts a unique exterior and interior design like other Lincoln vehicles. Improved front seats make it even more comfortable and provide ample space for people and goods. Regarding class average fuel economy, the EPA has the all-wheel-drive Aviator at 20 mpg (17 city/24 highway) and the rear-wheel-drive vehicle at 21 mpg (18 city/26 highway).

Five different trim levels are offered for the 2023 Lincoln Aviator: Aviator, Reserve, Black Label, Grand Touring, and Grand Touring Black Label. However, The Aviator Reserve is the finest option if you’re looking for a luxury SUV with a great mix of standard features and personalization options.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. 2005 Lincoln Aviator (4.20 Rating)

Source: Car and Drive

Having the most minor complaints and zero recall history in its lineup, the 2005 Lincoln Aviator is undoubtedly a best-used Aviator. The base V8 engine delivers outstanding performance, and the handling dynamics of the 2005 Aviator are impressive for an SUV.

Additionally, the cabin is both attractive and feature-packed without sacrificing practicality. Along with adding a new Roll Stability Control feature, the AdvanceTrac stability control system is now included as standard equipment.

One well-equipped trim level has been eliminated from the list of models, and separate option packages have been made available for customers who desire more luxury amenities. There is a new chrome grille surround and slots, and the alloy wheels that measure seventeen inches in diameter are now standard.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Common Lincoln Aviator Problems

It is still a good idea to pay attention to your used Lincoln Aviator and ensure it does not exhibit any typical mechanical issues or breakdowns. The following are the most prevalent defects and issues that are associated with the Lincoln Aviator:

  • The engine and the transmission both have problems.
  • Issues with the exhaust system.
  • Errors from the spark plug.
  • Problems with the radio.
  • Shattered glass on the tailgate.
  • A failed bearing on the rear wheel.


Is the Lincoln Aviator a reliable car?

According to, the Lincoln Aviator is a reasonably reliable midsize SUV on average. However, it is essential to note that your mileage may vary based on the model year that you purchase. Reliability Ratings often vary based on the review website that you visit. However, certain sources suggest that compared to their newer models, old Lincoln Aviators are more reliable.

Is Lincoln Aviator expensive to maintain?

You should know that any used Lincoln Aviator is associated with ongoing maintenance costs. The average yearly repair cost for a used Lincoln Aviator is $626, according to It’s not cheap, but it’s also not outrageous. In addition, replacing the AC evaporator, for example, might be an extremely costly repair for a pre-owned Lincoln Aviator. The cost of replacing control arms is high as well.

How long will a Lincoln Aviator last?

According to owners of 2003-2005 Aviator SUVs who posted their experiences on, their vehicles lasted at least 200,000 miles (321868.8 km) if properly cared for and maintained.

Wrap Up

In conclusion, the 2022, 2021, 2005, and 2023 Lincoln Aviators are an excellent investment. These could be the perfect used luxury vehicle for you if you value style, reliability, and performance. However, If you want to buy a used Lincoln Aviator with complete confidence, get a mechanic to look it over before you buy it. In this way, you may drive it off the lot with the assurance that it was a worthwhile purchase.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments