2020 Lexus LX

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2020
The Car Connection
2020
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Andrew Ganz Andrew Ganz Senior Editor
November 17, 2019

Buying tip

The two-row version of the 2020 Lexus LX 570 makes more sense for most buyers.

features & specs

LX 570 Three Row 4WD
LX 570 Two Row 4WD
MPG
12 city / 16 hwy
MPG
12 city / 16 hwy
MSRP
$91,480
MSRP
$86,480

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 disguises its truck-based roots well with brash lines balanced by a calming interior, but be prepared for prodigious thirst.

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 makes no effort to be subtle. The big SUV's brash styling, strong engine, and prodigious thirst are balanced by a plush interior and cosseting ride. On our scale, the new Lexus LX rates 5.4 out of 10. (Read more about how we rate cars.) 

The LX shares its basic design with the Toyota Land Cruiser, though the two differ in exterior and interior styling, infotainment software, and suspension equipment. This year, the LX 570 adds a new Sport package that can be had on the three-row model in a wider array of interior hues.

A 5.7-liter V-8 sends 383 horsepower to all four wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission. That’s enough power to motivate the 6,000-pound beast with more authority than many drivers might expect. The truck chassis helps the LX confidently tow up to 7,000 pounds, though doing so drops fuel economy from atrocious to unbelievable. Few vehicles guzzle at the same rate as the Lexus LX. 

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Underneath, the height-adjustable suspension can be lowered for easier access and raised to go off-road. A host of four-wheeling modes deliver impressive off-road ability, though the low-hanging front bumper will be awfully expensive to replace should it be wedged against a rock.

Inside, the LX is as plush as anything else in the Lexus lineup, and optional softer leathers and open-pore wood trim deliver a designer appearance. If only the tech team had been given the same marching orders. The standard 12.3-inch display is large, but that’s its only asset. Don’t look for Apple or Android compatibility. 

Comfortable front and second-row seats make the LX a posh explorer. The optional third-row seats work in a pinch for kids but block the view out when stowed. Think hard about whether you need them.

Though the truck hasn’t been crash tested, it hits most active safety tech marks. 


6

2020 Lexus LX

Styling

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 looks like no other SUV. That could be good or bad.

A razor-sharp front end and pinched taillights give the 2020 Lexus LX 570 stand-out styling, though we’re not sure it’s all that well-wrought in its transition from working class Range Rover to tony cruiser. Its clean, car-like interior earns a point above average, bringing this big bruiser to 6 out of 10 points. 

The LX’s lines date to before Lexus’ full commitment to its now-familiar “spindle grille” design, which helps explain why the prodigious proboscis isn’t particularly well-integrated. The snout is ringed by a chrome trapezoid that looks like a “POW!” graphic from a comic book. From the side, the look is almost pure Land Cruiser. We’re more comfortable with the L-shaped LED taillights at the rear and the two-part tailgate.

An optional Sport trim package—an odd name for a decidedly non-sporty vehicle—swaps in a more intricate grille treatment and revised exterior trim.  

Even though its bones are shared with the Land Cruiser, the LX’s low bumpers mean its off-roading prowess is comparatively limited. 

Inside, the LX has a wide, low dash adorned with a choice of well-finished woods and leathers. The sedan-like dash features a wide display resting above an analog clock and climate controls. A knob for the infotainment system sits on the center console. Various interior hues range from the expected black and tan shades to a brick-like reddish orange.

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6

2020 Lexus LX

Performance

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 boasts strong acceleration and a comfy ride.

Like a gentle giant, the 2020 Lexus LX 570 is a big SUV that rides as well as some luxury sedans. We land at 6 out of 10 based on its ability to take bumps in stride. 

The 2020 LX shares its truck-like ladder chassis and 5.7-liter V-8 with the related Toyota Land Cruiser. Here, the V-8 is rated at 383 horsepower and 403 pound-feet of torque, a tiny bump over the Cruiser due to the Lexus’ premium-fuel requirement. Power goes to all four wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission that shifts smoothly and boasts two overdrive gears, though fuel economy is horrendous. 

The smooth V-8 accelerates the 6,000-pound LX to highway speeds quickly, and the truck is rated to lug a 7,000-pound trailer.

The LX differs from the Land Cruiser in its suspension. Both trucks start with the same base, an independent front suspension and a coil-sprung solid rear axle. But the Lexus makes use of height-adjustable electro-hydraulics that raise or lower the body at the tap of a button. An automatic load-leveling rear suspension copes with hefty loads and trailers. 

The LX rides softly even with the optional 21-inch wheels. The big body leans heavily into corners, and the steering requires a fair amount of corrections on a winding road. The big truck makes a better highway cruiser.

Off-road, the LX 570 uses the same toolkit as the Land Cruiser: a two-speed transfer case, a crawl control system that helps it sneak over rocks at a walking pace, and numerous off-road traction-control modes. The deep front bumper and tall wheels limit its ability however, so if four-wheeling is in your future, stick with the more capable Land Cruiser.

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9

2020 Lexus LX

Comfort & Quality

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 is old-school luxury inside, though the available third row is not for adults.

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 is a far cry from utilitarian versions of the Land Cruiser inside. Its low dash looks like it could have come from a car, and it delivers ample five- or seven-seat passenger and cargo space. We rate it at 9 out of 10. 

The LX 570 works best as a two-row SUV. Its heated and cooled front seats are exceptionally comfortable and wrapped in fine leather. Row two is nearly as spacious, though foot room beneath the front seats is tight and the tall ride height makes climbing aboard a challenge for shorter-legged passengers. Even plusher semi-aniline leather is optional, though you’ll want to invest in a leather care kit to keep up its appearance. Various woodgrain trim options help justify the price tag. 

Skip the third row and the LX 570 can haul a maximum of 140 cubic feet of cargo, which drops to about 45 cubes with the rear seat up. The two-part tailgate is an asset for camping. 

The optional third row slices cargo space by around five cubic feet. The rearmost seats fold up against the rear windows. Head room is fine, but leg and foot space means the third row is suited primarily for children. 

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2020 Lexus LX

Safety

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 will do its best to avoid a crash, though it hasn’t been tested.

Neither the IIHS nor the NHTSA has crashed the hefty, 6,000-pound 2020 Lexus LX 570 into a wall, so we can’t assign it a safety score.

Active safety tech checks all the basics, but little more. The 2020 Lexus LX comes standard with automatic emergency braking that can stop for pedestrians, high-beam assist, lane-departure warnings, blind-spot monitors, rear cross-traffic alerts, and adaptive cruise control. Don’t look for any system that can center the big truck in its lane, or hands-off semi-autonomous driving tech like that now found in many rivals, however.

Passive safety features include stability control and 10 airbags, not to mention considerable mass.

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5

2020 Lexus LX

Features

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 is behind the times when it comes to in-cabin tech.

A handful of options and trim choices mean it’s easy enough to tailor a 2020 Lexus LX 570 to your liking. We add a point for its basic feature set but take away that point due to a complicated infotainment system that isn’t equipped with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto compatibility. (Read more about how we rate cars.) 

The 2020 LX 570 comes in two- and three-row configurations, and a handful of option packages add to a truck already well equipped with leather upholstery, heated and cooled front seats, a power moonroof, and a 12.3-inch infotainment screen. 

Loaded-up models boast a 19-speaker Mark Levinson audio system, a cooler box in the center console, 11.3-inch screens for second-row passengers, 21-inch alloy wheels, softer leather hides, and open-pore wood trim. The LX makes a strong case for itself as a luxury truck—as it should considering its price. 

Lexus’ infotainment system frustrates at every opportunity. The mouse-like center controller is tricky to operate, and the menu-intensive software can prove distracting. The lack of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility adds to the dismal infotainment setup. 

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1

2020 Lexus LX

Fuel Economy

Few new cars guzzle more fuel than the 2020 Lexus LX 570.

The 2020 Lexus LX 570 delivers ghastly fuel economy. It’s among the least-efficient new cars available. 

This year, the 2020 LX is rated at just 12 mpg city, 16 highway, 14 combined. Those numbers are between 1 and 2 mpg lower than last year’s truck, and even a Lexus representative scratched his head to deliver an explanation since the engine and body are carried over from last year. 

Adding even more dollars at the pump, the 2020 LX 570 runs on premium unleaded rather than regular unleaded like its Land Cruiser near-twin.

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$86,480
MSRP based on LX 570 Two Row 4WD
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5.4
Overall
Expert Rating
Rating breakdown on a scale of 1 to 10?
Styling 6
Performance 6
Comfort & Quality 9
Safety N/A
Features 5
Fuel Economy 1
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