The Lexus LX is the Japanese luxury brand’s version of the Toyota Land Cruiser. It’s the biggest and most luxurious SUV that Lexus makes, and for 2022 it’s getting a full redo from the wheel nuts up. Based on the recently announced 2022 Land Cruiser (that Toyota won’t be selling here in the United States), the 2022 LX gets fresh underpinnings to make it more capable than ever before.
Chief among the changes is a new chassis built on Toyota’s Toyota GA-F architecture, the same platform that underpins the new Toyota Tundra and the aforementioned Land Cruiser — but with the needs of the more luxe Lexus in mind. Lexus says it’s 20% more rigid than before and contributes to the new model’s reduced weight, which is a claimed 441 pounds fewer. That combo could help the LX 600 drive a bit sharper.
The new LX 600 gets Active Height Control hydraulic suspension that can raise or lower the vehicle. The old LX has something similar and could, say, lower the vehicle to make getting in and out easier or raise it for better off-road ground clearance. The new suspension system has a number of modes from Lo to Hi2, and Lexus says it works quicker than the old setup.
There’s plenty of off-road tech here, too. The LX now gets Toyota’s Crawl Control, which allows the SUV to go up steep climbs and descend hills; all the driver has to do is steer. Multi-Terrain Select, a system that changes various settings like the traction control and throttle response depending on the type of terrain you’re on, is also on the new LX and will now work in 4-Hi and 4-Lo.
This is all fine and good, but the likelihood that anyone who’s eyeing this new LX will take it off road is quite low. Instead, it’s going to be used as a luxury SUV for chauffeuring the kids to and from school and soccer practice, and that’s fine. With a new Sequoia on the way and the new Tundra TRD Pro already here, Toyota has its off-roading bases covered.
Under the hood the LX is identical to the Land Cruiser. Both cars are powered by a 3.4-liter twin-turbocharged V6 that makes 409 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque. Both numbers are way up from last generation’s V8, which only managed 383 hp and 403 lb-ft. (Note: Lexus says the V6 displaces 3.5 liters but if you check the specs you’ll see that it actually displaces 3,445 cc, which rounds down to 3.4.)
The new engine routes power through a 10-speed automatic transmission to a full-time four-wheel-drive system, which also has a low range. The middle differential can be locked for a 50/50 torque split between the front and rear axles. F-Sport models get a limited-slip differential on the rear axle too.
And since the LX won’t be used to scale the Rubicon Trail, it’s probably best to focus on the new SUV’s luxury features — and there are plenty. The first is the addition of a new trim called Ultra Luxury. The new trim ditches the second-row bench seat in favor of two six-way-adjustable captain’s chairs with a full center console between them that features a touchscreen to control seat position and the new massage function. The right rear passenger can also recline the seat to an almost flat position and, potentially, take a nap. Now that’s luxury.
If you don’t opt for the Ultra Luxury trim, you get bench seating in the second row. Lexus didn’t mention if the LX will have an available third-row seat like the previous-generation LX, so we can’t be sure if this big SUV will end up being just a five seater or a seven-seater. We’ve contacted Lexus for an answer and once we know more we’ll update this article.
Inside the LX 600 has its own take on luxury. There are screens everywhere. Two screens are stacked one on top of the other in the center console. The lower 7-inch screen controls climate functions while the upper 12.3-inch display handles infotainment duties. The software is essentially the same as the one found in the new NX, with the main difference coming in the form of the secondary touchscreen that’s dedicated to the climate controls. We’re hopeful this new system is a lot better than the LX’s previous system, which was outdated and distracting to use while driving.
There is a third screen in front of the driver — a customizable digital driver’s display that changes its look depending on what drive mode you’re in. All of it is thoroughly modern tech the LX needed to compete in its very crowded class of full-size luxury SUVs.
Lexus hasn’t released fuel economy estimates for the new LX, but we assume that the new V6 and 10-speed automatic will fare better in the EPA’s testing than the old 5.7-liter V8, which got 14 mpg combined