In Frank Markus' latest blog post, he ventures out onto a road trip that takes him to the Specialty Food Trade's Summer Fancy Food Show where he is traveling in style in what is called a White-Chocolate Navigator L, fitting for this event.
Here's a quick snippet from his blog:
This luxury land-yacht swallowed our gear with ease and provided a hushed environment in which first- and third-row passengers could converse comfortably at gently super-legal speeds without resorting to bad-cell-phone-connection vocal volumes. What's more, the nine-hour drive was managed with only two stops and zero complaining from the commodious third-row seat (diversions like the $2485 DVD video/iPod/Sirius Radio setup may have contributed to the calm).
We've knocked the Navigator in the past for handling and acceleration performance that seems a bit tame and tepid by comparison with the burly Cadillac Escalade, but when these vehicles are loaded for a long haul, what matters most is smoothness. Driven empty for lap times, the big-bore Caddy wins handily. When schlepping four gourmands stuffed to bursting with pesto-Parmesan peanuts, peppery-fig compotes, jicama-cucumber salsas, lemon-and-cinnamon olives, maple-pumpkin sauces, and Azuki-bean ice creams, the Lincoln's easy-does-it throttle and brake application and its smooth-as-truffle-honey ride help to keep the fancy food down.
And while it may seem a sub-optimal vehicle in which to dice with New York cabbies, keep in mind that, from high atop the Navigator's wheelhouse, the driver can see over and past even the new hybrid SUV cabs to predict the best lane to be in. The electronic little-n navigator knows how to get to every high-end chocolate shop in Manhattan and then how to find the public parking lots closest to each -- vital info in an 18.6-foot-long vehicle. (A few navi niggles: The system makes you input your destination city every time or else lists every incidence of your desired street name in the whole state, and it doesn't allow you to select points of interest near the destination, only near the car.) Furthermore, we averaged 15.3 mpg over 1300 miles -- that's 76.5 people-miles-per-gallon, for you carbon-footprint counters.
To read more about his road trip, visit Motor Trend's Blogs!