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William Maley

Quick Drive: 2016 Lexus LX 570

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Most luxury SUVs will never go fully off-road. The closest they’ll ever get is driving down a gravel road. But that doesn’t mean some automakers aren’t filling them with the latest off-road for that one person who decides to. Case in point is the LX 570. Lexus’ variant of the Toyota Land Cruiser has been updated inside and out to try and draw buyers away from the usual suspects in the class.

  • For 2016, Lexus has softened the LX’s boxy-shape with some rounded edges and more imposing fenders. The front grille has grown in size to match other Lexus vehicles, though to our eyes it looks more like the head from a Cylon in the 1980’s Battlestar Galactica tv show. The rear features new taillights and a reshaped tailgate.
  • The interior has somehow become more opulent since the last LX we drove. A new dash design features real wood trim and more soft-touch materials. Our tester featured leather upholstery that can be described as red-orange. At first, I thought it was a bit much. But over the week I grew to like the color as it adds some personality.
  • Sitting in either the front or second-row seats of the LX is a pleasant experience. There is plenty of head and legroom for both rows, along with heat. Front seats also get ventilation as standard. The third-row seat is a bit of joke. Getting back there in the first place is quite difficult due to the small gap when you move the second-row forward. Once back there, you find legroom is almost negligible. Finally, the way the third row folds up by side walls and not into the floor hampers cargo space - only offering 41 cubic feet.
  • Lexus’ Remote Touch interface has arrived in the LX this year with a gargantuan 12.3-inch screen sitting on top of the dash. On the plus side, the screen is vibrant and easy to read. The negative is the remote touch controller as you’ll find yourself choosing the wrong function because the controller is very sensitive to inputs.
  • Power comes from 5.7L V8 with 383 horsepower and 403 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic and full-time four-wheel drive system. On paper, the V8 should move the LX 570 with no issue. But a curb weight of 6,000 pounds negates this. Performance can be described as ho-hum as it takes a few ticks longer to get up to speed. At least the eight-speed automatic transmission is a smooth operator and quick to respond when you stab the throttle.
  • The LX 570 is chock full of clever off-road tech such as crawl control, hill start assist, 360-degree camera system, and multi-terrain select system that optimizes various parts of the powertrain and four-wheel drive system. Sadly, we didn’t get the chance to put any of these to the test.
  • No matter the condition of the road, the LX 570 provides a smooth and relaxing ride. Impressive when you consider the LX is riding on a set of 21-inch wheels. Road and wind noise are kept to very acceptable levels.
  • Lexus added a set of adaptive dampers for the 2016 LX and you can adjust the firmness via a knob in the center console - Comfort, Sport, and Sport+. The dampers do help reduce body roll in corners, giving you a little bit more confidence. Steering is what you would expect in an SUV, light and numb. This makes the LX a bit cumbersome to move in certain places such as a parking lot.
  • Compared to the last LX 570 we drove, the 2016 model has gone up in price. Base price now stands at $88,880 and our as-tested price comes in at $96,905. This one feels a bit a more worth of price tag that Lexus is asking for, but I still think a Cadillac Escalade or Range Rover are slightly better in terms of value.
  • If you’re planning a trip to Death Valley or the Rocky Mountains and want something that can you there and back, along with providing all of the luxuries, look no further than the LX. Otherwise, there are a number of other luxury SUVs that make more sense if you’re planning to stay on the pavement.

Year: 2016
Make: Lexus
Model: LX 570
Trim: N/A
Engine: 5.7L 32-Valve, DOHC Dual VVT-i V8
Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Full-Time Four-Wheel Drive
Horsepower @ RPM: 383 @ 5,600
Torque @ RPM: 403 @ 3,600
Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 13/18/15
Curb Weight: 6,000 lbs
Location of Manufacture: Aichi, Japn
Base Price: $88,880
As Tested Price: $96,905 (Includes $940.00 Destination Charge)

Options:
Mark Levinson Audio System - $2,150.00
Dual-Screen DVD Rear-Seat Entertainment System - $2,005.00
Luxury Package - $1,190.00
Heads-Up Display - $900.00
Cargo Mat, Net, Wheel Locks, & Key Glove - $250.00
All-Weather Floor Mats - $165.00
Heated Black Shimamoku Steering Wheel - $150.00
Wireless Charger - $75.00


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This vehicles occupies a really strange, and if we're being honest- superfluous, spot in the market. With those 21's, and low overhangs, this is really only capable of light off-roading. And how many people are going to be even doing that in their near-100K SUV? Sure, it may be comfortable and have stellar reliability, but you can say the same thing about the substantially cheaper and infinitely better-looking Land Cruiser.

If this thing isn't at least bringing a better powerplant to the party than the Land Cruiser, I'd struggle to understand the reasons behind it's existence. In reality, there are no shortage of better options for both slightly more and even less than it's price point.

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I made a mistake in a post on another thread about Lexus never having made an engine with over 400 lb-ft of torque, because I forgot they still made this thing, and I didn't realize it has 403 lb-ft.  So this is the most torque heavy Lexus ever made.

Not sure why anyone would pay $76,000 for this let alone $96,000, I feel like this vehicle has been on sale over 10 years with no changes but the grille, it is the Crown Victoria of large SUVs.

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On 11/28/2016 at 10:01 AM, Frisky Dingo said:

This vehicles occupies a really strange, and if we're being honest- superfluous, spot in the market. With those 21's, and low overhangs, this is really only capable of light off-roading. And how many people are going to be even doing that in their near-100K SUV? Sure, it may be comfortable and have stellar reliability, but you can say the same thing about the substantially cheaper and infinitely better-looking Land Cruiser.

If this thing isn't at least bringing a better powerplant to the party than the Land Cruiser, I'd struggle to understand the reasons behind it's existence. In reality, there are no shortage of better options for both slightly more and even less than it's price point.

It will sell because of the L word...and not even the interesting L word.....

7 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

I made a mistake in a post on another thread about Lexus never having made an engine with over 400 lb-ft of torque, because I forgot they still made this thing, and I didn't realize it has 403 lb-ft.  So this is the most torque heavy Lexus ever made.

Not sure why anyone would pay $76,000 for this let alone $96,000, I feel like this vehicle has been on sale over 10 years with no changes but the grille, it is the Crown Victoria of large SUVs.

I think this comment is spot on, and I agreed with your comment in the other thread about Lexus being in some ways a second tier luxury brand next to Benz in terms of Toque and the S class.

The Crown Victoria was at least useful at what it did and not offensive in its appearance, two things that cannot be said about the Lexus in question.

On 11/28/2016 at 9:05 AM, William Maley said:

 

  • For 2016, Lexus has softened the LX’s boxy-shape with some rounded edges and more imposing fenders. The front grille has grown in size to match other Lexus vehicles, though to our eyes it looks more like the head from a Cylon in the 1980’s Battlestar Galactica tv show. The rear features new taillights and a reshaped tailgate.

 

 

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The science fiction reference is well placed, because the person who designed the tailgate obviously had an act of sexual congress with a Klingon in mind when he designed it.

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      Year: 2018
      Make: Mazda
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      Trim: Grand Touring AWD
      Engine: 2.5L DOHC 16-Valve Inline-Four
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 187 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 186 @4,000
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 24/30/26
      Curb Weight: N/A
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      Base Price: $30,945
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      Trim: SE 4Motion
      Engine: 2.0L Turbocharged 16-Valve DOHC TSI Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 184 @ 4,400
      Torque @ RPM: 221 @ 1,600
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 21/27/23
      Curb Weight: 3,858 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Puebla, Mexico
      Base Price: $30,230
      As Tested Price: $31,575 (Includes $900.00 Destination Charge)
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      Front Fog Lights - $150.00
    • By William Maley
      Lexus will soon be joining the subscription service fray. Roadshow reports that Lexus will introduce Complete Lease for the first quarter of 2019 to coincide with the launch of the UX crossover.
      The service will offer two-year leases with a 20,000-mile limit for one non-negotiable price. This price includes lease payment, insurance, and maintenance coverage. Lexus will launch Complete Lease in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Miami. According to Cynthia Tenhouse, Lexus general manager of product and consumer marketing, these locations were chosen in part to UX is aimed at those living in the city, and the high insurance costs in those cities make a subscription service that includes insurance very appealing.
      There are still a number of details that Lexus is keeping quiet on, such as how much it will cost, who will be providing the insurance, and whether a buyer needs to go into a dealership to order their UX.
      Source: Roadshow

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Lexus will soon be joining the subscription service fray. Roadshow reports that Lexus will introduce Complete Lease for the first quarter of 2019 to coincide with the launch of the UX crossover.
      The service will offer two-year leases with a 20,000-mile limit for one non-negotiable price. This price includes lease payment, insurance, and maintenance coverage. Lexus will launch Complete Lease in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Miami. According to Cynthia Tenhouse, Lexus general manager of product and consumer marketing, these locations were chosen in part to UX is aimed at those living in the city, and the high insurance costs in those cities make a subscription service that includes insurance very appealing.
      There are still a number of details that Lexus is keeping quiet on, such as how much it will cost, who will be providing the insurance, and whether a buyer needs to go into a dealership to order their UX.
      Source: Roadshow
    • By William Maley
      Many automotive journalists have been flummoxed by the popularity of the Toyota Camry. The model trails the pack in a number of key areas such as design, handling, and performance. But I know the reason why the Camry is beloved by many; it is a no hassle midsize sedan that will go the distance. 
      But there is a change that endangers many midsize sedans. Buyers who previously brought sedans are now trending towards crossovers and SUVs as they offer a number of traits such as a higher ride height and a large area for people and stuff. Automakers find themselves in a difficult spot as to whether they should drop their sedans to focus on utility vehicles, or put more effort into making them more appealing. Toyota has chosen the latter option with the 2018 Camry. Let’s see if they made the right call.
      Previous Camrys have tended to play it safe with their exterior designs. The new model drops the safe attitude and goes for something very extroverted. For the XSE, this includes a different front end with a smaller lower grille and large cutouts in the bumper. The side profile shows off a pronounced character line and a set of 19-inch machined-finish alloy wheels. Move the back to find a faux diffuser and a set of quad tailpipes. I actually prefer the look of the XSE to the other Camry models as it loses out on the gaping maw that is the lower grille.
      Compared to the jumbled-together look of the previous Camry’s interior, the new model features a flowing and modern design. The unique shape of the center stack and contrasting trim pieces for the passenger really help the model stand out. Controls are laid out in a very logical fashion and have easy-to-read text. Material quality is very impressive with exposed stitching, metal trim, and a lot of soft-touch plastic. 
      The XSE features leather seats with eight-way power adjustments for driver and passenger. I found the seats to be on the firm side and provide decent support on short trips. But on longer trips, my lower back started to ache. I couldn’t tell if I design of the seat just didn’t work with my back or if I had too much lumbar. On paper, the Camry has the smallest amount of rear legroom. But in reality, I found that I had more than enough to feel comfortable. Taller passengers will need to duck as headroom is quite tight due to the optional sunroof.
      Toyota has installed the latest version of their Entune infotainment system in the 2018 Camry. The new version comes with an updated look that retains the ease of use that we have liked on the older systems. Performance is about average for the class as it takes only a few milliseconds to get to the various functions. I do like the array of physical buttons that provide an easy way to move around the system. There is still no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. But considering the 2019 Avalon does have Apple CarPlay, we hope the Camry will get it as well.
      XSE models get a heads-up display as standard. However, I found the display to be more of a hindrance as the image was blurry. I think this is a problem with Toyota as I experienced the same issue in the LC 500 coupe I drove late last year.
      For its polarizing character, you might be expecting the Camry XSE to have either a turbo-four or V6 under the hood. While a 3.5L V6 is available, this XSE featured the standard 2.5L four-cylinder engine producing 206 horsepower and 186 pound-feet of torque. It was a bit disappointing to find this engine under the hood considering the vehicle’s character. Around town, the Camry doesn’t feel as fast as the Hyundai Sonata due to most of the power being available only at higher rpms. On the highway or needing to make a pass, the four-cylinder comes alive with enough shove to get you moving at a decent clip. Disappointingly, Toyota forgot to quiet down the engine during acceleration as there is a fair amount of buzz coming inside the cabin. But the engine quiets down to a murmur when cruising. The new eight-speed transmission pairs well with the engine, delivering unobtrusive and quick shifts.
      Fuel economy figures for the 2.5 are 28 City/39 Highway/32 Combined. My average for the week landed around 32.6 mpg in mixed driving.
      The Camry is the latest Toyota model to move on to the TGNA modular platform and it makes the model somewhat fun to pilot. On a curvy stretch of road, the XSE feels well-mannered as there isn’t excessive body motion and the steering proving a direct and well-weighted feel. Despite its sporting nature, the XSE’s ride is well-controlled with only a few bumps making their way inside. One disappointment is the large amount road and wind noise that comes inside when driving on the freeway. 
      The Camry XSE sits as the flagship trim with a starting price of $29,150 for the four-cylinder and $35,100 for the V6. With a number of options, the as-tested price of this XSE comes to $35,333. That is quite the poor value considering for a few hundred dollars more, you can get into a loaded an Accord Touring complete with a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder producing 252 horsepower. For a couple thousand dollars less, the Hyundai Sonata Limited 2.0T and Kia Optima SX offer similar driving dynamics and more luxury touches.
      Toyota knew it had to take a big gamble with the new Camry considering the growing demand for crossovers. In certain respects, Toyota has done it. The Camry is not a wallflower in terms of its looks and handling. Additionally, the interior blends a distinctive design with ease of use. But there are some problems that put the Camry in a tough spot. The four-cylinder engine needs a bit more low-end punch for around-town driving. Some more sound deadening would go a long way in making the Camry a good long-distance cruiser. The biggest issue is the value argument as other sedans offer much more equipment for similar or less money than the Camry. Toyota is likely banking on the name equity of model to justify the higher price. This would be ok if we weren’t in a time where more and more buyers are moving to crossovers and utility vehicles. The 2018 Toyota Camry is a much better car from the one it replaces, but the high price tag may be its downfall.
      Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the Camry, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2018
      Make: Toyota
      Model: Camry
      Trim: XSE
      Engine: 2.5L Twin-Cam, 16-Valve Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 206 @ 6,600
      Torque @ RPM: 186 @ 5,000
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 28/39/32
      Curb Weight: 3,395 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Georgetown, KY
      Base Price: $29,000
      As Tested Price: $35,355 (Includes $895.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Audio Package - $1,800.00
      Driver Assist Package - $1,675.00
      Panoramic Sunroof - $1,045.00
      Special Color - $395.00
      Illuminated Door Sill Enhancements - $299.00
      Carpet/Trunk Mat Set - $224.00

      View full article
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