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#7

in Luxury Large SUVs

MSRP: $49,085 - $60,715
Invoice: $45,159 - $55,857
MPG: 15 City / 20 Hwy
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Lexus GX Performance

Test drivers say the 2014 Lexus GX 460 has a comfortable ride, but doesn't inspire a lot of confidence in fast corners. They also report that the GX 460 is a more capable off-road vehicle than many of the luxury crossovers available. Some reviewers say the GX 460 has sufficient engine power, but others find that acceleration is sluggish at highway speeds.

  • "Riding atop a reinforced boxed ladder frame, the Lexus GX can conquer all manner of challenging off-road situations without breaking a sweat. But when it comes time for urban duty, the GX's excessively rugged underpinnings produce a ride quality that is decidedly less forgiving than that of the BMW X5, Acura MDX, Infiniti QX60, and Mercedes-Benz M-Class." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Blessed with the proven on- and off-road DNA of its Toyota 4Runner and Land Cruiser cousins, the GX 460 is as adept at providing a smooth, quiet highway ride as it is nimbly working its way through a rugged, rock-strewn trail." -- Edmunds (2013)
  • "The GX 460 is Lexus' answer to those seeking a luxury SUV that can still perform off-road when necessary." -- Left Lane News

Acceleration and Power

The GX 460 is powered by a 4.6-liter V8 that produces 301 horsepower and 329 pound-feet of torque. Power is routed through a six-speed automatic transmission. Fuel economy is an EPA-estimated 15/20 mpg city/highway, which is on par with that of most SUVs in the class.

Some reviewers say that the GX 460's V8 engine provides plenty of thrust, but others think that it could use more power for quicker acceleration, especially at highway speeds. The transmission also received mixed reviews, as most test drivers report that it shifts smoothly, but some notice that it is hesitant to downshift at higher speeds.

  • "Sure, you'd be wrong to expect stellar fuel economy from a big, rugged SUV, but the one area that really disappointed me about the GX 460 was the 460 part. Toyota's 4.6-liter V8 produces just 301 horsepower and 329 pound-feet of torque, and most of the time feels like it's struggling to motivate the 5,340-pounds SUV." -- Autoblog
  • "On the other hand, the GX 460's potent 301-horsepower V8, responsive and smooth-shifting 6-speed automatic transmission and proper 2-speed transfer case combine to make short work of most any task on most any surface." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Acceleration from the mandatory V8 is adequate, though it's unusual to see a V8 these days with such a low horsepower rating, and you'll feel the lack of juice at higher speeds." -- AutoTrader
  • "GX 460 is a heavy vehicle, but the standard V8 engine is powerful enough to provide fine acceleration. It's also very refined. The automatic transmission is smooth, but it can be very reluctant to downshift. This is especially true at highway speeds." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Handling and Braking

Some reviewers say the GX 460 delivers a smooth, comfortable ride and remains composed over expansion joints and speed bumps. Still, most critics say that the GX 460 can't be hustled through corners like some of its car-based rivals can. Other reviewers add that the steering is well-weighted, but fairly numb-feeling. They also report that the GX 460 has a tight turning radius for an SUV, as well as strong brakes, but mention that a sensitive pedal makes the brakes seem too grabby.

  • "That feeling doesn't inspire confidence in corners, where the GX could hardly be more out of its element." -- AutoTrader
  • "The overall ride quality is certainly acceptable, but not quite up to Lexus standards." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "For as big, bulky and rugged as this SUV is, it delivered a smooth, Lexus-spec ride. Speed bumps and expansion joints do little to upset the GX's balance, and the luxurious interior makes the GX feel like an excellent long-distance hauler... with the exception being its fuel economy." -- Autoblog
  • "That isn't to say that the GX 460 is uncouth when it comes time to return to the pavement. It can't match the handling sophistication of crossovers, but it's more wieldy than its off-roading prowess would suggest due to an available adaptive suspension that with computer-controlled dampers that automatically adjust to road conditions for improved responsiveness and ride comfort." -- Left Lane News
  • "The GX 460 is a tall truck, so it's not too surprising that there's plenty of body lean while cornering. It never feels tippy, though. The steering doen't provide much road feel, but we think it has just enough power assist. For an SUV of this size, the tight turning radius is a pleasant surprise. The brakes are strong, but the pedal is very touchy and the soft suspension allows for too much nosedive during heavy braking." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Off-Roading

The 2014 GX 460 comes standard with full-time four-wheel drive with an electronic-locking center differential, as well as design features like favorable approach and departure angles that reviewers write are good for off-roading. Test drivers say that while the GX 460 can't handle extreme off-road courses, it still tackles dirt and rocks with ease and is a better off-roader than many SUVs in the class.

  • "Even with the big wheels, plastic fascias and integrated running boards, the GX still has decent ground clearance, as well as good approach and departure angles, not to mention an adjustable air suspension. This isn't to say the GX can tackle the Rubicon Trail or anything, but it is surely a more competent off-road vehicle than most other midsize and fullsize utility vehicles currently out there." -- Autoblog
  • "Even though it's luxurious and nicely appointed, the 2013 Lexus GX 460 gives the strong impression its natural habitat is out in the dirt and rocks. The GX 460's fully boxed frame withstands the abuses of hardcore off-road excursions but is not ideal on the pavement." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)
Review Last Updated: 5/14/14

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