THE POPULAR SUBURBAN-NITE 4X4 CONTINUES TO LIVE ON: 2019 LEXUS GX 460 LUXURY 4X4
Remember when owning a big, gas guzzling, Goliath of an SUV was a thing? When getting 14-MPG’s didn’t matter because the earth was flourishing with oil and gas was cheaper than water? Somewhere along the way, all that change. Owning these things turned into a bad, environmental, politically incorrect avowal and before we knew they were gone, vanished – almost like they didn’t exist. And yet for as bad as they were, they were oh so good to us. And still to this day, some remain among us.
Processing a proper review article on the latest Lexus GX 460 would be like betting my 80 year old grandfather to a 40 yard dash. Although, judging by my own stature, it probably would be a close race. When the GX was first introduced in 2003, it was that proper SUV that suited its time well. And it wasn’t like one of those wimpy little crossovers we see now on the road. It’s a true to the core sport utility vehicle with a body-on frame construction, full-time four-wheel drive, Torsen center locking differential and an electronic transfer case with four-wheel low. You don’t see this concept on the road anymore unless it comes with a five and half foot bed.
In its prime, competing against committed off-road capable vehicles such as the Hummer H2 and Land Rover Discovery, the GX offered the comfort convenience of a premium luxury vehicle for the weekday jaunts to the office while offering the off-road competencies to your luxurious, off-pavement cabin in the woods. Now that the forest has been suburbanized with gated communities, trucking to your cabin doesn’t have to be so painful as it used to be and can be easily accomplished in the Lexus RX with all-wheel drive – just call up the friendly, neighborhood snow plow to dust off your driveway before you arrive.
Jumping behind the wheel, we start to get a sense of just how archaic the GX has become. After-all this interior has been around since its debut in 2010. At least keeping up to Lexus standards, there is no denying the comfortability of this GX 460 as there is plenty of wood, leather and metal materials to go around enlightening a premium atmosphere. The last significant update to this rolling fossil was nearly 3 years ago in 2016 when we saw the beginning stages of the corporate spindle grille design and new LED headlamps, fog lights, and daytime running light design. Despite Lexus now offering standard Lexus Safety Sense system across their product line, the GX has introduced a $2000 credit to their $4000 technology package that incorporates Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Departure Warning, Forward Collision Alert and Automatic High Beam Assist.
Even after 9 years in production, the GX is going strong with its handsome presence and masculine disposition. Having a 4.6-liter V-8 engine, it isn’t quite the quick cannon, especially considering it weighs over 5,000lbs. With just over 7-seconds to 60-mph, its performance is ample for what it’s truly meant for. Rated at 301-horsepower and 329 lb-ft of torque, its off-the-pavement track is really where its performance shines. During its heighten glory, the GX used state-of-the-art advance off-road technology that had most of its consumers in ahhh when out on a test drive. With a Crawl Control brake module system, Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System and full-time four-wheel drive, the GX was, and is truly a go anywhere, do anything kind of vehicle.
Accentually using similar formula from the infamous off-roading mountain goat, Toyota Land Cruiser, the GX 460 wanted its companions to feel comfortable in a premium setting while the outside saw the ruts and guts of the earth. Driving down a dirt road, the GX maintains smooth serenity feeling as if we never left the pavement. Our top trimmed GX 460 Luxury being equipped with the Adaptive Variable Suspension; we were able to modulate the smoothness and stiffness of the suspension by adjusting it between Sport, Normal and Comfort. Utilizing a standard kinetic dynamic suspension with an adjustable air ride-height, the GX makes traveling off the pavement a stress free situation.
Given its age, the GX continues to strive – its reliability and 6500 lbs of towing capacity continues to make it a strong assessor against everything else that’s gone done the ordinary path of uni-body formation. With no real future plans for the GX to go through a massive enterprise change up, it has recently gone through a more thorough update for the third time that we’ll see as a 2020 model incorporating Lexus latest spindle grille design, updated comfort features and technology.
Model: 2019 LEXUS GX 460
Starting Price: $52,505
As Tested: $66,920
Color: CLARET MICA
Engine: 4.6-LITER V-8
Horsepower/Torque: 301-HORSEPOWER / 329 LB-FT TORQUE
Drivetrain: FULL-TIME FOUR-WHEEL DRIVE
Fuel Economy: EPA RATED: 00-CITY / 00-HWY / 00-COMBINED
(AS TESTED: 13.5 MPG COMBINED)
Fuel Range: 290 MILES
0-60 MPH: ±7.0 SECONDS