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2018 Navigator Sync Update

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4 hours ago, Canstead7 said:

Update: After voicing my concerns with the dealer and them researching the issue it was determined that just recently Ford issued a bulletin on this topic, without going into the boring specifics in a nutshell Ford basically admits that there is an issue with the system (not sure if this is a problem within the vehicle or with the internet server) and no fix has been released to address it yet, any current or future updates to the SYNC or navigation must be done via USB flash drive until the issue is sorted out. 

While I'm sure this is not what everyone wanted to hear, thanks for the update.

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5 hours ago, Canstead7 said:

Update: After voicing my concerns with the dealer and them researching the issue it was determined that just recently Ford issued a bulletin on this topic, without going into the boring specifics in a nutshell Ford basically admits that there is an issue with the system (not sure if this is a problem within the vehicle or with the internet server) and no fix has been released to address it yet, any current or future updates to the SYNC or navigation must be done via USB flash drive until the issue is sorted out. 

Thanks. Was that bulletin for all Nav sync systems or just a particular year?

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6 minutes ago, HofstraJet said:

Thanks. Was that bulletin for all Nav sync systems or just a particular year?

 

I know for sure all 18's and the 19 Navigator loaner they gave me same thing. So I would assume if affects all SYNC 3 systems running version 3.0

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11 hours ago, Canstead7 said:

Update: After voicing my concerns with the dealer and them researching the issue it was determined that just recently Ford issued a bulletin on this topic, without going into the boring specifics in a nutshell Ford basically admits that there is an issue with the system (not sure if this is a problem within the vehicle or with the internet server) and no fix has been released to address it yet, any current or future updates to the SYNC or navigation must be done via USB flash drive until the issue is sorted out. 

I am dealing directly with one of the service managers at Fair Oaks in IL. Now a stand alone Vitrine style store. Anyway, this is good info. Thanks for posting. 

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Just wanted to share my two cents on this issue.  This may get slightly technical, so I apologize in advance.

 

But first, to ask a question to the community: On your 18/19 Lincoln Navigators, are you missing the Shift Key on the Save Favorite Destinations keyboard screen?  Not having this forces all of our saved places to be in lower case letters, and is horrible to look at when you are selecting your destination.  This is our biggest complaint with Sync 3.0.17302.

Anyway, for the technical stuff.  I have done extensive research via VIN lookups on Sync 3 levels in dozens of various Ford/Lincoln vehicle.  From what I have found, 2018 and 2019 Lincoln Navigators are the only vehicles that are "stuck" on Sync 3.0.17302.  The majority of other Ford/Lincoln vehicles from those years are either able to upgrade to Sync 3.0.20204 or 3.4.21020, depending on their model year. 

 

What is the deciding factor between whether your vehicle can be updated to Sync 3.0.20204 or 3.4.21020?  I believe it comes down to the APIM module hardware itself.  As noted on this site https://www.infotainment.com/products/replacement-service-ford-sync-3-apim-module?variant=31597211189284, there are two different APIM module configurations...J and K.  From the trends that I saw, Config J APIM model year vehicles had Sync 3.0.20204 and Config K model years had Sync 3.4.21020.  This is understandable since there are some UI changes in 3.4 and perhaps there are memory/performance issues that may arise as a result of installing 3.4 on a Config J APIM.  However, I believe people have done this with success using 3rd party software, so Ford/Lincoln are probably just being safe...or want you to buy a new car :).

 

Why is my 18/19 Navigator stuck on Sync 3.0.17302?  Here is my theory.  First, 2017 Navigators were the model year before the redesign.  They had the "standard" sized Sync 3 screen that is in most Ford/Lincoln vehicles.  2017 Navigators are running Sync 3.0.20204.  However, 2017's were using the standard Lincoln Sync background and styling.  Let me explain what I mean.  If you look at a Ford Sync 3.0 system, I would classify it as Blue and Blocky (or square).  Nothing wrong with it, but that's what it looks like.  The Lincoln Sync 3.0 system in vehicles like the MKZ, MKC, etc. looks identical, accept it's more of a gold/dark yellow coloring.  So basically, they changed the colors.  That's easy.  Now look at your Lincoln Navigator Sync 3 system.  I would classify it as a dark, sleek, with rounded buttons.  So not quite as brutal and blocky as the other systems.  Both the 18/19's have this new sleek look (and I think even the 20/21's do too).  However, the 18/19's are on the older Config J APIM, while the 20/21's are on Config K.

 

I'll note then that the 20/21 Navigator's are on 3.4.21020, but from pictures I have seen, visually the UI looks the same as Sync 3.0.17302.

 

Conclusion

If you've followed all of that, awesome!  If not, that's ok too!  I believe, given that Navigator's are probably the smallest market out of all Ford/Lincoln vehicles, this is (unfortunately) a low priority for their Engineers.  Given that we are on a down level hardware APIM, have a larger screen size, a completely different UI styling than any other vehicle made by Ford/Lincoln, and that we are on the older Sync 3.0 Operating System (3.4 and 4.0 is probably where their focus is), we may be stuck on a 2017 Sync version possibly forever, unless, of course we all chime in and complain to our dealers.
On the bright side, at least on the 2019 Navigators, we can still update our navigation maps to "the latest" that Sync has to offer.

 

 

Please feel free to let me know what you think about my analysis.

 

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Huuum, this is interesting. 

 

I would hope for the amount of money people have spent on the Navigator that Lincoln would continue to support software upgrades on it.

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Are there any meaningful changes with 3.4?  My main gripe is not being able to save FM and Sirius channels in the same preset group.  Also not being able to just keep scrolling presets without selecting a new group is so 1990's.  

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3 hours ago, Emilner said:

Are there any meaningful changes with 3.4?  My main gripe is not being able to save FM and Sirius channels in the same preset group.  Also not being able to just keep scrolling presets without selecting a new group is so 1990's.  

 

Hi Emilner. What model and model year is your vehicle, and what version of SYNC 3 is installed in your vehicle now?

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42 minutes ago, bbf2530 said:

 

Hi Emilner. What model and model year is your vehicle, and what version of SYNC 3 is installed in your vehicle now?

I have a 2019 Navigator. It is on 3.0. 

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43 minutes ago, Emilner said:

I have a 2019 Navigator. It is on 3.0. 

 

Hi Emilner. Are you sure your 2019 Navigator only has SYNC 3.0?

 

If yes, not sure if you are aware...If you currently have SYNC 3.0, you can not factory upgrade to SYNC 3.3/3.4.

 

There are third party/aftermarket websites that will offer a procedure to upgrade to SYNC 3.4. However, I recommend against using them, at least while your vehicle is still within the 4 year/50,000 mile New Vehicle Bumper to Bumper Warranty. Using an aftermarket upgrade like they offer may/will result in denied warranty claims for anything SYNC/infotainment/audio/climate control/electronics related, since essentially all those systems (and more) are tied into SYNC.

 

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

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Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, bbf2530 said:

 

Hi Emilner. Are you sure your 2019 Navigator only has SYNC 3.0?

 

If yes, not sure if you are aware...If you currently have SYNC 3.0, you can not factory upgrade to SYNC 3.3/3.4.

 

There are third party/aftermarket websites that will offer a procedure to upgrade to SYNC 3.4. However, I recommend against using them, at least while your vehicle is still within the 4 year/50,000 mile New Vehicle Bumper to Bumper Warranty. Using an aftermarket upgrade like they offer may/will result in denied warranty claims for anything SYNC/infotainment/audio/climate control/electronics related, since essentially all those systems (and more) are tied into SYNC.

 

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

 

Yes, it certainly has 3.0.  I wasn't planning on doing anything aftermarket, I was just hoping a factory update could bring my $100k truck into the 21st century lol...

Edited by Emilner

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52 minutes ago, Emilner said:

Yes, it certainly has 3.0.  I wasn't planning on doing anything aftermarket, I was just hoping a factory update could bring my $100k truck into the 21st century lol...

 

There isn't much difference with 3.4.  The functionality is pretty much the same.

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53 minutes ago, Emilner said:

Yes, it certainly has 3.0.  I wasn't planning on doing anything aftermarket, I was just hoping a factory update could bring my $100k truck into the 21st century lol...

 

Hi Emliner. As akirby stated, there is not much difference. Mainly some graphics, color and UI interface changes. 

 

However, it is a moot point, since SYNC 3.0 can not be factory upgraded to SYNC 3.4.

 

Good luck.

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Posted (edited)

I think it reflects quite poorly on a luxury brand to have a 3 year old vehicle's infotainment system stuck on an old software version, in their flagship vehicle no less. From what I recall from when I had an Expedition, there was a similar issue where the Fusion had the latest and greatest and kept receiving updates while the Expedition was stuck on an old build and was never updated.

 

I understand that today the differences are not significant, but they may become significant in a few years and there's no reason they should be designing the Sync system in such a way that it isn't backwards compatible with older hardware.

 

Lincoln/Ford needs to get its act together.

Edited by HofstraJet

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44 minutes ago, HofstraJet said:

I think it reflects quite poorly on a luxury brand to have a 3 year old vehicle's infotainment system stuck on an old software version, in their flagship vehicle no less. From what I recall from when I had an Expedition, there was a similar issue where the Fusion had the latest and greatest and kept receiving updates while the Expedition was stuck on an old build and was never updated.

 

I understand that today the differences are not significant, but they may become significant in a few years and there's no reason they should be designing the Sync system in such a way that it isn't backwards compatible with older hardware.

 

Lincoln/Ford needs to get its act together.

I totally agree.  It also doesn't help that they limited it to some functionality that was surpassed over 10 years ago with other companies.  It's really my only gripe with the truck but it's a big gripe.

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