One Week With the 2020 Lexus LX 570—Big Grille, Big SUV
When it comes to luxury SUVs with chassis bodywork, the Lexus LX 570 is at the top of the range in terms of capacity. In terms of technology and design? Not really. Just when you thought the huge grille couldn’t get bigger, it grew. And because the current generation debuted in 2007 (the year I graduated from high school), the technology and packaging are quite old. However, the 2020 Lexus LX 570 can go where most SUVs can’t. And this is a big problem.
For the 2020 model year, Lexus has launched a new Sport package that is hard to spot. Available only for the three-row model, the package adds a slightly different grille and front fascia, while the side mirrors are body-color and chrome accents. Inside, a new black roof trim covers the cabin. Apart from these details, the Lexus LX 570 continues to be the same SUV that we drove two years ago during our comparison of off-road SUV, still sharing its platform and powertrain with the Toyota Land Cruiser .
2020 Lexus LX 570: inside
Enter the LX cabin and you will immediately feel a sense of luxury. Clearly, this is Lexus’ flagship SUV; from wood to leather to the big screen, you feel like you are somewhere special. But look deeper and these feelings diminish. From the driver’s seat, the small screen on the dashboard appears to be 10 years old. The LCD screen displays vital information for the driver, but in the days of digital cockpits and full displays, the small screen and the speedo and analog tach seem out of place in a flagship SUV.
Disappointment persists in the infotainment system. Its aging graphics are only amplified by the remote touch interface, which acts like a mouse for infotainment. The system is so sensitive that it is always difficult to land at the desired location. What’s more frustrating is trying to use the navigation system, which lacks voice commands and forces the driver to enter the address step by step. The absence of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto makes these gaps particularly frustrating, especially in an SUV that starts at nearly $ 90,000.
While we really like the large center console (after all, you drive a truck), there are some things that could be improved. The thick shifter and remote touch interface take up too much space, so the cup holders are placed right next to the AC controls. While this may not seem bad, it is when large cups block the apparatus. One thing I’m a big fan of is the deep storage in the center console. In addition to providing enough space for an iPad Mini, it is also a refrigerator, which can keep food and drinks cold when you are driving on the track, which proved useful during our week of conduct.
Like the front of the cabin, the second row expresses softness. Two individual screens located behind the front head restraints provide more entertainment for rear seat occupants. But like the facade, the screens are difficult to control. The screens are sort of designed to be used as touch screens, but you won’t have a chance to snoop around. Instead, a remote control takes care of everything, and there is only one remote control for the two screens, which children would have a hard time doing. In addition, the screens cost $ 2,005, which is much more than buying two iPads. Aside from entertainment, the back seat is a good place to ride, as there is plenty of leg and head room.
The third row should only be used by children, as the raised floor severely limits legroom. Instead of folding forward, each seat folds toward the windows, consuming precious cargo space. What is remarkable, however, is that the seats can be folded down at the push of a button.
2020 Lexus LX 570: the drive
To move a beast like that, a big motor is necessary. A 5.7-liter V8 develops 383 hp and 403 lb-ft of torque, transmitting that power to the rear wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission. While it sounds like a lot of power, we wish it had more punch, as the LX has trouble passing on a two-lane highway. Although it doesn’t feel slow from the start, it seems slow from 50 to 70 mph. The transmission goes smoothly, but it always seeks the highest gear. The big nose plunging when braking was what bothered me the most, as it was visible in the city streets and on the track.
The load-leveling coil spring hydraulic suspension offered phenomenal ride and, as you would expect, almost all the bumps on the street are well absorbed. The body roll, however, is quite visible. But when you buy an SUV with these proportions, you don’t expect it to behave like a racing car in the corners. The management is also well balanced and provides a lot of feedback; you clearly feel like you’re driving a truck. The cabin is generally quiet in general, but the 20-inch tires make a lot of noise entering the cabin; wind noise is minimal, however.
Still, the LX looks like an old horse, and when you compare it to other SUVs of this size, like the Lincoln Navigator, the Land Rover Range Rover and even the Infiniti QX80, the Lexus feels as old as a fossil.
Off the sidewalk, the LX is in its natural habitat. During a quick day trip to Jawbone Canyon, about two hours north of Los Angeles, the LX demonstrated its capabilities. The low-end torque helps it to climb steep slopes and easily overcome obstacles, and although it has a robust all-wheel drive system, I stayed in 2WD all the time. It is fair to say, however, that the trail was not as difficult as Coyote Flats, where we drove the LX the last time. With the hydraulic height adjusters at maximum, the truck never dragged its belly.
2020 Lexus LX 570: Value
It is difficult to give points to the LX in terms of value. When the starting price is over $ 90,000 and the platform is ten years old, it’s hard to justify anything. Our 2020 Lexus LX 570 crossed the checkout at $ 103,050 after adding more than $ 10,000 in options. While you don’t care as much about fuel economy when you buy a big device like this, the Navigator is more fuel efficient and cheaper than the LX. But if you plan to hit the trails often enough, the LX will give you style.
|2020 Lexus LX 570|
|STARTING PRICE||$ 87,775|
|DISPOSITION||Front engine, 4×4, 5 to 8 passages, 4-door SUV|
|ENGINE||5.7L / 383hp / 403 lb-ft V8 DOHC 32-valve|
|EDGE WEIGHT||6000 lb (MT is)|
|L x W x H||200.0 x 78.0 x 75.2 inches|
|0-60 MPH||7.0 s (MT is)|
|EPA FUEL ECON||12/16/14 mpg|
|ENERGY CONSUMPTION, CITY / HIGHWAY||281/211 kW-h / 100 miles|
|CO2 EMISSIONS, COMB||1.43 lb / mile|
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