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  • Drew Dowdell
    Drew Dowdell

    Lexus GX 460 Gets a Face..... Lift?

      ...take that BMW and your big grilles...

    The Lexus GX 460 is one of those vehicles that just keeps on being sold in spite of being rather old. For 2020, the GX 460 gets a face lift, a new safety system, and an available all-new off-road package.

    Starting off with the styling, Lexus added a giant spindle grille to the front, apparently borrowed from the larger LX.  Lexus also added Lexus Safety System+ as a standard feature across the lineup.  This addition means that now all Lexus vehicles have standard active safety equipment.  The Safety System+ on the GX 460 consists of Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert, Intelligent High Beams, and High-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.

    The new available off-road package offers multi-terrain monitor, panoramic view monitor, transmission cooler, fuel tank protector, crawl control, and multi-terrain select. The suspension is Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System that helps level out the vehicle in different load conditions to keep all four wheels on the ground.  On-road smoothness is helped by the Adaptive Variable Suspension that uses electronically controlled shocks that can be selected to Normal, Sport, or Comfort modes depending on the driver's mood. 

    The standard and only engine remains the same, a 4.6-liter V8 producing 301 horsepower 329 lb-ft of torque. 

    The updated 2020 Lexus GX 460 arrives at dealerships this fall. 

    2020_Lexus_GXG_0076_23261BEFB359BF3F8F22B2C31B73B3949AA55722_low.jpg

    2020_Lexus_GXG_0055_486D926FED0A5EE6BC165A4C64E1C288F381554B_low.jpg

    Edited by Drew Dowdell

    Source and Image: Lexus Media



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    Man, it gets uglier and uglier.  I wish we would get European version of Land Cruiser Prado face, looks so much prettier.2019-toyota-lc-prado-main-1547126137.jpg

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    The GX is a complete waste of an SUV. How they can butcher the 4 Runner and convert it to this monstrosity is beyond me. Just hideous. 

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    My parents who never comment about cars ever, have often said, "Lexus needs to stop this huge ugly grille thing they're doing."  As a matter of fact, I don't know a single person who likes them.  Yet they sell.

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    24 minutes ago, Paolino said:

    My parents who never comment about cars ever, have often said, "Lexus needs to stop this huge ugly grille thing they're doing."  As a matter of fact, I don't know a single person who likes them.  Yet they sell.

    Only the LC500 gives that grill a proper look IMO. The rest of them should be taken out back and beaten with a shovel. 

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    It is embarrassing how old this vehicle is.  A 4.6 liter V8 making 301 hp?  What is it a 1995 Northstar?  That is 30 year old numbers.  Even in 2007 a 301 hp V8 was dated.  For reference there have been 2 full redesigns of the GLE since this went on sale.

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    6 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

    It is embarrassing how old this vehicle is.  A 4.6 liter V8 making 301 hp?  What is it a 1995 Northstar?  That is 30 year old numbers.  Even in 2007 a 301 hp V8 was dated.  For reference there have been 2 full redesigns of the GLE since this went on sale.

    Maybe they are going the Mercedes route (G Wagon) and waiting ten more years before they finally update it properly. It worked for them. It could work for Lexus. 

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    19 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

     Even in 2007 a 301 hp V8 was dated.

    No, it wasn't. 

    2007 F150 w/ 5.4 made 305hp/365tq

    2007 Silverado w/ 6.0 made 322-360hp(depending what you bought)/373-382tq.

    2007 Ram made 345hp/375tq

    These were all the biggest baddest versions at the time. 

    Yeah, the Merc 5.5L was 380ish but I don't think 301 would be considered dated in 2007. 

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    I don't mind the engine so much.  I'd rather a 301hp V8 that is buuuuuuter smooth than a turbo V6 that I have to wait for the lag before I get my power

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    9 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    I don't mind the engine so much.  I'd rather a 301hp V8 that is buuuuuuter smooth than a turbo V6 that I have to wait for the lag before I get my power

    Very true. It may be dated but it is damn near bullet proof. At least it also has those proven 4 Runner bones. Personally I’d take a 4 Runner over the GX but I guess if one wants a little more luxury, you couldn’t beat the reliability of the GX. 

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    I actually tried to convince my wife to consider used or CPO GX460 , there are a lot of them off lease with low miles.  Was hoping to take it from her after she drives it about 8 years.  But it drives like a truck, and she didn't like it.

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    Just now, ykX said:

    I actually tried to convince my wife to consider used or CPO GX460 , there are a lot of them off lease with low miles.  Was hoping to take it from her after she drives it about 8 years.  But it drives like a truck, and she didn't like it.

    The extra luxury does not cover those old school truck bones unfortunately. Not a bad thing if you don’t mind that kind of ride but it’s definitely not for everyone. It’s taller than the 4 Runner stance also does not help. It’s why is just go with a 4 Runner and call it a day. 

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    2 minutes ago, ykX said:

    I actually tried to convince my wife to consider used or CPO GX460 , there are a lot of them off lease with low miles.  Was hoping to take it from her after she drives it about 8 years.  But it drives like a truck, and she didn't like it.

    What does she drive now?

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    14 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    What does she drive now?

    2011 MDX.  Probably will get another CPO 2018 MDX sometime this year, she test drove it and liked it.  It does drive nice, I have to say.

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    46 minutes ago, ykX said:

    2011 MDX.  Probably will get another CPO 2018 MDX sometime this year, she test drove it and liked it.  It does drive nice, I have to say.

    Nice rides, just tight on space for tall peeps like me. Glad she likes it. That is an important marriage win. :) 

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    6 hours ago, surreal1272 said:

    Maybe they are going the Mercedes route (G Wagon) and waiting ten more years before they finally update it properly. It worked for them. It could work for Lexus. 

    Mercedes changed engines and transmission over the years, and of course interior switchgear to whatever was used in other models.

    6 hours ago, Drew Dowdell said:

    I don't mind the engine so much.  I'd rather a 301hp V8 that is buuuuuuter smooth than a turbo V6 that I have to wait for the lag before I get my power

    For Lexus money why don't they give you a 450 hp V8 that is butter smooth?

    Over in the GLE they have a 488 hp V8 with electric assist and the X5 has a 521 hp V8.  Lexus is literally 220 hp behind BMW and the BMW gets better gas mileage.  

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    I don't worry about 0 to 60 or raw horsepower that much. As long as the power is smooth, instant, and "sufficient", the rest of the experience matters more. 

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    39 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

    Mercedes changed engines and transmission over the years, and of course interior switchgear to whatever was used in other models.

    For Lexus money why don't they give you a 450 hp V8 that is butter smooth?

    Over in the GLE they have a 488 hp V8 with electric assist and the X5 has a 521 hp V8.  Lexus is literally 220 hp behind BMW and the BMW gets better gas mileage.  

    On an SUV that costs more than double the GX (and that’s the cheapest G Wagon). Upping the engine and switch gear is the least they can do. 

     

    And while HP numbers are low vs those two Germans, it’ll spend far less time in the shop down the road too. 500 HP on an SUV is just a waste anyway, especially in this country. 

     

    Oh and that GLE needs 66 more HP to get the same 0-60 time as the GX (and that’s with a hybrid 367 HP engine and three more gears). Color me unimpressed. The base is the anemic 255HP for about the same price as the GX. Again, unimpressed. 

    Edited by surreal1272

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    54 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

    On an SUV that costs more than double the GX (and that’s the cheapest G Wagon). Upping the engine and switch gear is the least they can do. 

     

    And while HP numbers are low vs those two Germans, it’ll spend far less time in the shop down the road too. 500 HP on an SUV is just a waste anyway, especially in this country. 

     

    Oh and that GLE needs 66 more HP to get the same 0-60 time as the GX (and that’s with a hybrid 367 HP engine and three more gears). Color me unimpressed. The base is the anemic 255HP for about the same price as the GX. Again, unimpressed. 

    So if the Escalade used the 345 hp V8 from 2007 model in the 2020 model that would be okay?  This Lexus V8 was introduced in 2006 for the 2007 model year.  Imagine a C8 Corvette with the same 400 hp engine as a C6.  That is what Lexus is doing here, it is a joke.  The whole Lexus brand is hideous looking, Toyota switchgear filled, underpowered, uninspired, underwhelming product.

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    35 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

    So if the Escalade used the 345 hp V8 from 2007 model in the 2020 model that would be okay?  This Lexus V8 was introduced in 2006 for the 2007 model year.  Imagine a C8 Corvette with the same 400 hp engine as a C6.  That is what Lexus is doing here, it is a joke.  The whole Lexus brand is hideous looking, Toyota switchgear filled, underpowered, uninspired, underwhelming product.

    You are trying to move the bar while ignoring the actual evidence. We are not talking about Cadillac and it is just unrelated to even bring up the Vette. We are talking about SUVs, not sports cars. and I’ve already said that it would be nice if it had more power but as Drew pointed out, it isn’t everything plus it is damn near bulletproof compared to the Germans. Your average SUV/CUV buyer is more concerned about ride and comfort first, reliability a strong second, and power falls back to third and the GX is more than enough for most. Sports cars are a whole other matter. That’s a fact that’s not even debatable. 

     

    Hell, the 4Runner has been using the same motor for that long yet sells better than any Mercedes SUV out there, which pretty much proves my point. What works against the GX is the horror show looks. 

    Edited by surreal1272

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    Old isn't reliable, it is just old.

    2018 sales

    Lexus GX:  26,724

    Merc GLE: 46,010

    BMW X5:  45,013

    Audi Q7: 37,417

    The buyers aren't flocking to that GX, and I can't believe they actually even sold 26k of them.

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    11 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

    Old isn't reliable, it is just old.

    2018 sales

    Lexus GX:  26,724

    Merc GLE: 46,010

    BMW X5:  45,013

    Audi Q7: 37,417

    The buyers aren't flocking to that GX, and I can't believe they actually even sold 26k of them.

    “Old isn’t reliable” yet you would have never said that in regards to the G Wagon which was far older than anything from Toyota or Lexus.

     

    In the case of the two I’ve mentioned, it certainly is though and you clearly do not pay attention to every reliability study and article that backs this up. I also was not debating sales but since you’ve brought it up the GLE is only up 3,900 units for the year (so far) on the GX (12,900 vs. 9,000 roughly). The GLE is down 33% for the year while the old GX aid down just 5%. Guess by your logic, people aren’t flocking to the GLE this year. Your sales argument isn’t even that solid but like I said, the lack of GX sales has more do with its ugly looks than its powertrain.

     

    Cadillac has used the 6.2L for years now yet it still spanks the Germans, for the record. 

    Edited by surreal1272

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    12 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

    Old isn't reliable, it is just old.

    2018 sales

    Lexus GX:  26,724

    Merc GLE: 46,010

    BMW X5:  45,013

    Audi Q7: 37,417

    The buyers aren't flocking to that GX, and I can't believe they actually even sold 26k of them.

    Yup, just like the G-Wagon was OLD!

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    4 minutes ago, dfelt said:

    Yup, just like the G-Wagon was OLD!

    LMAO! Exactly my point but he won’t dare use that same argument against the “best or nothing”. The difference is the old GX and 4 Runner have far more reliability cred than that Benz ever will. 

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    3 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

    “Old isn’t reliable” yet you would have never said that in regards to the G Wagon which was far older than anything from Toyota or Lexus.

     

    In the case of the two I’ve mentioned, it certainly is though and you clearly do not pay attention to every reliability study and article that backs this up. I also was not debating sales but since you’ve brought it up the GLE is only up 3,000 units for the year (so far) on the GX (12,000 vs. 9,000 roughly). The GLE is down 33% for the year while the old GX aid down just 9%. Guess by your logic, people aren’t flocking to the GLE this year. Your sales argument isn’t even that solid but like I said, the lack of GX sales has more do with its ugly looks than its powertrain.

     

    Cadillac has used the 6.2L for years now yet it still spanks the Germans, for the record. 

    The G-wagen wasn't reliable because it was old, it was reliable because Mercedes engineered to take a beating and had them hand built, and it always had the current V8.

    A lot of that GLE is model changeover.  With the 3-row GLE on sale now that will turn course this year.

    That Cadillac V8 is old too, not Lexus old, at least GM updates their small block V8s with some frequency.  And it doesn't spank the Germans as the X7 has 521 hp, the GLS has 488 + an electric motor and the Escalade has 420 hp. 

     And I imagine BMW is going to do an X7 M and and X8 M, because Mercedes has a GLS63 and a GLS73 on the way.  And then Bentley will have to answer because their 600 hp Bentayga will look lame vs a GLS73 or a Ferrari Purosangue.   

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      Like the exterior, the ES’ interior is completely unrecognizable from the outgoing model. Gone are the cheap feeling and mismatch plastics. In their places is a combination of leather, soft-touch plastics, and wood trim that brings forth a sense of premium uniformity. Ergonomics are also top of the class with such touches as control knobs sitting on either side of the instrument panel, and controls for the climate and audio being in easy reach for driver and passenger.
      Those sitting in the front are treated to leather-covered seats that provide an excellent balance between support and coddle. Those sitting in the back seat might complain about the low position, but will like the ample amount of head and legroom.
      Stepping inside the Avalon Hybrid, Toyota has given it a major makeover. Gone is the flowing and rounded center stack with capacitive touch controls. Instead, the Avalon uses a narrower and blocky center stack with actual buttons. I’m sad to see the touch controls go away as I found them to be quite responsive. Toyota likely dropped them as buyers complained there was no feedback - a click sound or pulsation - to whoever was using it. Other changes include a slim chrome bar running along the dash vents and more color choices.
      Finding a comfortable position in the Avalon was no problem due to the numerous amount of power adjustments available on the Limited. Like the ES, the Avalon’s seats strike the balance of comfort and support just right. In the back, there is an abundance of legroom that allows passengers to stretch out. Headroom is fine for most adults.
      Infotainment
      Toyota has installed the latest version of Entune for the 2019 Avalon. While looking somewhat dated with a muted color palette and dull screen, Entune retains its ease of use. The menus with large touchscreen buttons make it very easy to move around the system, along with clearly marked buttons and knobs sitting on either side. Toyota has also got with times and made the Avalon the first model to feature CarPlay integration. Those wanting Android Auto will need to wait until 2020.
      If there is an Achilles heel to the ES 350, that would be Lexus’ Remote Touch. I have written numerously about how using this system is not only a pain, but very distracting when driving. Take for example changing an XMSirius station.
      Look at the screen to see where the cursor is. Use the touchpad to move the cursor to the station you want, making sure to keep an eye on the screen. Press down on the touchpad to make the selection, hoping you’re finger doesn’t slip and causes something else to happen. This whole routine plays out time and time again whenever you want to do something. Even Apple CarPlay which was introduced for 2019 is a pain to use with Remote Touch. There is salvation on the horizon. Earlier this year, Lexus unveiled an updated RX crossover with a touchscreen for the infotainment system. The automaker said that it will be available on other models in the coming years. Here’s to hoping the ES is one of the first recipients. 
      Performance
      Both vehicles come with the choice of either a 3.5L V6 or hybrid system using a 2.5L four-cylinder. An eight-speed automatic is teamed with the V6. The hybrid uses a CVT.
      The 3.5 V6 has been given a bit more power for 2019, now producing 302 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. This bump makes for a noticeable improvement in overall acceleration, feeling slightly quicker than the last ES 350 I drove. Power builds on a smooth and linear fashion. The engine is also noticeably refined, with barely a rumble coming from underneath the hood. 
      With only a total output of 215 horsepower, the hybrid system in the Toyota Avalon may seem underpowered. This is only an issue when climbing a steep hill or needing to make an immediate pass. Otherwise, the hybrid system provides plenty of oomph for the daily drive. I like how the system seamless transitioned from electric to hybrid power with only a minimal buzz coming from the engine bay. Like other Toyota hybrids, the Avalon Hybrid can travel on electric power alone - albeit a short distance and at speeds below 25 mph.
      In EPA testing, the ES 350 returns 22 City/33 Highway/26 Combined and the Avalon Hybrid returns 43 City/43 Highway/43 Combined. I clocked averages of 25 in the ES 350 and 40 in the Avalon Hybrid.
      Ride and Handling
      Aside from engines, the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 share another vital component. Under the skin of both models is a version of Toyota New Global Architecture (TGNA) known as GA-K. This variant provides the stiffer structure and lower-center of gravity found on other TGNA models, but allows both Toyota and Lexus to build larger front-wheel drive vehicles.
      In the Avalon Hybrid, the move to GA-K doesn’t change much. The last-generation model showed that you could have good driving dynamics and retain a mission of comfort. The new model continues that with slightly improved handling and sharper steering response. The ES 350 is a different story. Changing over to GA-K transforms the model from a creampuff on wheels to a luxury sedan with that can take corners without embarrassing itself. Body roll is significantly reduced and the steering responds to inputs without fuss. Neither one of these sedans will challenge the likes of the Germans or the Kia Stinger GT, but they will not fall over and cry uncle when pushed.
      Ride quality is still one of the impressive points for both models. On some of roughest, pothole-ladened streets that the Metro Detroit has on offer, the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 made it feel like mere ripples. Not much outside noise comes inside the cabin of either model, making them a perfect place to decompress after a long day.
      Verdict
      Let’s begin with the 2020 Avalon Hybrid. This updated sedan didn’t surprise me and that’s fine. Aside from the styling, Toyota made small changes to address certain issues of the previous-generation and build upon its strengths. Getting 40 MPG is still an impressive trait for such a big sedan. With a starting price tag of $35,560 for the gas version and $36,650 for the hybrid, the Avalon is still the one to buy if you want the luxuries of the ES without the luxury tax.
      The ES 350, on the other hand, is the more impressive of the two. You have to wonder if Lexus was motivated by what Toyota was able to pull off with last-generation Avalon. In a lot of ways, the ES 350 looks and feels like a proper luxury car. Add in a new platform that doesn’t make you feel like you’re going to tip over and Lexus is very close to that idea of “Experience Amazing”. The only fault is Remote Touch which sours many of the dramatic improvements. If Lexus can get that new touchscreen into the ES ASAP, I would gladly give it my “Most Improved Car of the Year” award. 
      How I would configure a 2019 Lexus ES 350 or Toyota Avalon Hybrid
      Starting with the ES 350, I would skip the base model and go with the Luxury trim. This adds such items as leather upholstery, heated and ventilated seats, and ambient lighting. On top of this, I would add Blind Spot Monitoring package and a power rear sunshade. With destination, I'm out the door with a final price of $45,540.
      For the Avalon Hybrid, I would pick the XSE. This is positioned as the sporty model with various exterior treatments including a mesh insert for the grille. Other standard equipment includes a moonroof, leatherette and suede upholstery, and wireless phone charging. The only two options I would tick are the Ruby Flare Pearl paint and 14-Speaker JBL Audio System. Add destination and the final price comes to $41,480.
      Alternatives
      Genesis G80: A perennial favorite, the G80 slots between the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 in terms of price - $41,750. It comes showered with loads of standard equipment and an excellent engine lineup. It cannot match the ES and Avalon in terms of interior design, but provides a more modern and easier to understand infotainment system. Ride quality is similar in all three vehicles, but the ES and Avalon have a slight edge in handling. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the vehicles, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas 
      Year: 2019
      Make: Lexus
      Model: ES 350
      Trim: Luxury
      Engine: 3.5L DOHC 24-Valve with Dual VVT-i V6
      Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, Eight-Speed Automatic
      Horsepower @ RPM: 302 @ 6,600
      Torque @ RPM: 267 @ 4,700
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/33/26
      Curb Weight: 3,649 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Georgetown, Kentucky
      Base Price: $42,755
      As Tested Price: $45,955 (Includes $1,025 Destination Charge)*
      Options:
      Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Intuitive Parking Assist with Auto Braking - $1,065.00
      18-Inch Split Five-Spoke Alloy Noise Reduction Wheels - $950.00
      Wood and Leather Trimmed Steering Wheel - $300.00
      Power Rear Sunshade - $210.00
      *No window sticker was provided for the ES 350. This is me taking a guess as to final price and options.
      Year: 2019
      Make: Toyota
      Model: Avalon Hybrid
      Trim: Limited
      Engine: 2.5L 16-valve DOHC with Dual VVT-i Four-Cylinder, 650V Electric Motor
      Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, CVT
      Horsepower @ RPM: 176 @ 5,700 (Gas);  118 (88 kW) (Electric); 215 (Total Output)
      Torque @ RPM: 163 @ 3,600-5,200 (Gas)
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 43/43/43
      Curb Weight: 3,715 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Georgetown, Kentucky
      Base Price: $42,800
      As Tested Price: $45,118 (Includes $920.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Advanced Safety Package - $1,150.00
      Carpet Mat Package - $248.00

      View full article
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