New Shopper Suspension Choice

masterdrago

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New to the forum as we're shopping mid sized SUVs. Pretty much narrowed to the Aviator. We drove a Reserve and the ride and sound level is so much better than Explorer, Telluride, Highlander and more. I get the impression that there are two suspension options - Adaptive Suspension and Dynamic. I'm having difficulty in understanding if there is really a difference. At the top of our "want list" is smooth, quiet ride and comfort in seating on long trips. In fact, we will most likely try to get the 20" wheels instead of the 22" for that slight increase in ride comfort. The unit we drove was extremely quiet and the ride was amazing as we are coming from a Ram 3500 dually and a Mini Cooper S Countryman with run flat tires (never run flats again). Can someone elaborate on my choices?
 

rjabend

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I have my 1st air suspension on the Black Label. I have driven the standard suspension and don't see much improvement. There is some convenience since the vehicle lowers when you open the rear hatch to load cargo, but I am not seeing a significant change in ride quality. Air suspensions have a compressor and air lines to the suspension that can fail and leave you with a crooked SUV. I would also appreciate hearing from others who have the air suspension along with their opinions.
 
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masterdrago

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Thanks for the input. What I needed to hear. As a new potential buyer, I've been reading thru all the package descriptions with a fine tooth comb. It is a real task sorting this all out. DW wants one of the Black Label trims. Me, not so much, as the Reserve can be had with all the real functional things I feel are needed. Although I see the seats she likes are to my liking too. As well as more interior color choices. But things like 22" wheels, 28 speakers, 30 way adjustable seats, Illumination package, Convenience package and Dynamic lower entry are on my list of "use the $$$ for something else".
 

rjabend

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Your analysis is "right on". I believe the Reserve to be the sweet spot. The only reasons I purchased the Black Label were discount and scarcity. If you do take the plunge, I recommend your CAREFUL inspection of the vehicle. Fit and finish have not been Lincoln's strong point from my experience.
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Margo17

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Picked up a 2020 hybrid and love it. The air suspension is awesome. Sound system is the best, as music enthusiast you hear instruments you never knew were there. The speed and pickup is astonishing, you just get a smile on your face how quick it is and how easy to maneuver through traffic. The looks of the vehicle are again spectacular, everyone seems to look at it when stopped. Very impressed and hope to stay that way.
 

RAINEY

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The only benefit that I see with the air suspension is that the cargo area can lower. This is nice only for the dog. I was hoping for better ride and sudden observed bumps, man hole cover dips etc. The air suspension is noisy and abrupt on any of those. I had a loaner without the air suspension. Night and day difference on the same roads and bumps. The non-air suspension rides so much better. It's quiter and smoother as well.
 

masterdrago

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Amazing. For some reason, I thought the $3000 Dynamic Handling Package would be much smoother. I should get to test drive one this week. I don't need the lowering for loading and I was not sure that the cost would be worth any small improvement in ride. The Reserve I drove last week did not have it and I thought the ride was awesome, but again, I've been testing cars $30k cheaper (Highlander, Palisade, Explorer, etc). Thanks for the input.
 

rjabend

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The only benefit that I see with the air suspension is that the cargo area can lower. This is nice only for the dog. I was hoping for better ride and sudden observed bumps, man hole cover dips etc. The air suspension is noisy and abrupt on any of those. I had a loaner without the air suspension. Night and day difference on the same roads and bumps. The non-air suspension rides so much better. It's quiter and smoother as well.
Mine unfortunately has the 22" wheels. There is a note in the manual about the need to break-in the tires and I am finding a much improved ride after they are broken-in. That said, I would still recommend the standard suspension. Kind of strange to me because I have never had to break-in tires before or at least never noticed it.
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RAINEY

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Mine unfortunately has the 22" wheels. There is a note in the manual about the need to break-in the tires and I am finding a much improved ride after they are broken-in. That said, I would still recommend the standard suspension. Kind of strange to me because I have never had to break-in tires before or at least never noticed it.
Mine being the PHEV has the 21" wheels. I don't think breaking in the wheels is a real thing.
 

RAINEY

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Amazing. For some reason, I thought the $3000 Dynamic Handling Package would be much smoother. I should get to test drive one this week. I don't need the lowering for loading and I was not sure that the cost would be worth any small improvement in ride. The Reserve I drove last week did not have it and I thought the ride was awesome, but again, I've been testing cars $30k cheaper (Highlander, Palisade, Explorer, etc). Thanks for the input.
Definitely test drive both if you can. Use the same drive mode and take the exact same course. I would seek out some rougher road and a couple abrupt kind of bumps as well. I typically always drive in "Normal" or "Pure EV".
 

bbf2530

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Mine being the PHEV has the 21" wheels. I don't think breaking in the wheels is a real thing.

Hi RAINEY. The tires have a short break-in period always have, not the wheels.

Tires have always had a short break-in period, it just that most people do not know that. It is essentially similar to breaking in a new vehilce. In the case of tires, don't drive like a maniac for the first 500 miles or so. Check the vehicle Owners Manual for precise/complete details.

Good luck.
 

rjabend

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Does anyone know if there is an adjustment/setting that could make the air suspension smoother? The lack of improvement over the standard suspension doesn't seem to make sense.
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bbf2530

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Does anyone know if there is an adjustment/setting that could make the air suspension smoother? The lack of improvement over the standard suspension doesn't seem to make sense.

Hi rja. If the system is working correctly, none that I know of. Checking with the Service Department of your local Lincoln Dealer may bet you a more definitive answer to that question though.

The air suspension is not going to give a significant ride improvement over the "standard" suspension. It is not really designed for or meant to.

It is designed more specifically to accommodate those who may carry large loads (people and/or cargo), and as a luxury item to raise/lower the vehicle for off road or other times an owner may need higher ground clearance.
Also, for the perceived convenience of lowering the vehicle for entry/exit, among other reasons.

Yes, the adaptive suspension will give some benefits, but not large ones. You may see more improvement by keeping tires properly inflated...not over or underinflated etc.). Even going to a smaller diameter wheel with a taller sidewall ratio tire will help, since the good looks of large wheels come with the penalty of a harsher/rougher vehicle ride.

EDIT- What is the recommended tire psi on the manufacturers placard, located on the drivers door sill? What PSI are your tires inflated to? Do not use the TPMS system as a tire gauge. Use a quality tire pressure gauge (purchase one if necessary) and check them cold, in the morning.

Good luck..
 

rjabend

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Thanks. I have driven other vehicles with standard and air suspensions and there is a significant difference. While the dealer cleverly set the tire pressures to 50psi, I reset them to 38F/42R which is what is on my door frame (cold). Actually my TPMS is accurate to the pound. The tire break-in appeared to continue to over 1000 miles, but the manual states 300.
 

bbf2530

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Thanks. I have driven other vehicles with standard and air suspensions and there is a significant difference. While the dealer cleverly set the tire pressures to 50psi, I reset them to 38F/42R which is what is on my door frame (cold). Actually my TPMS is accurate to the pound. The tire break-in appeared to continue to over 1000 miles, but the manual states 300.

Hi rjabend. The problem is the 22" wheels and the necessary short sidewall tires to fit them on a vehicle. And it is a widespread issue, now that such large wheels are becoming common on passenger vehicles. They will ride harsher than smaller diameter wheels with taller sidewall ratio tires. There is not much that can be done about this, other than smaller diameter wheels with taller sidewall ratio tires.

And yes, I understand that you feel the TPMS is accurate to the pound in your Aviator. It is also accurate to the pound in my MKZ, when I check it against my tire pressure gauge.

However, do not use the TPMS system as your primary tire pressure gauge. It can be used in an emergency or quick check. However, it takes time to readjust and can be inaccurate if used improperly. We need to use a proper tire pressure gauge. Our Owner Manuals, Lincoln, Ford, other manufacturers and tire manufacturers will all tell you the same thing.
As long as you are also periodically checking your tires with a proper tire pressure gauge, it is a moot point.

Good luck.
 
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rjabend

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I agree with using a good tire gauge. I actually haven't figured out a good way to use the TPMS when I fire up my compressor and fill the tires with air. I do use the TPMS to tell me when I need to add air. It is nice to have the alert function and I have found on other vehicles that it has saved me from a complete flat giving me time to take it in for repair without using the spare.

I was remiss in not mentioned that my comparison was to other vehicles with 22" wheels. I don't know why they keep providing those without option when so many folks don't want them. The way I see it, 22" wheels offer an advantage only if you plan to participate at Daytona :cool:
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masterdrago

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All 4 of our 22" tires were overinflated by 5-8#. Adjusting to door sticker today. I'm still considering making a change but doing a lot of research on impact as the 255/55R20 will put less rubber on the road.
 
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