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2017 Lexus LX 570 Overview
Add the premium Lexus brand name to Toyota’s legendary Land Cruiser and you have the 2017 LX 570, a full-size body-on-frame luxury SUV. This 8-passenger hauler is a rarity in these days of environmental awareness and fuel-efficiency, but for the well-heeled family that enjoys venturing off-road while immersed in such creature comforts as leather upholstery, 4-zone automatic climate control, and memory for driver settings, this Lexus is a perfect fit.
Back in the mid-80s, Japanese automakers recognized that consumers worldwide would pay premium prices for luxury Toyotas, Hondas, and Datsuns (Nissans). Toyota offered its first Lexus, the LS, in 1989 and had an instant hit. The LX 450 came out in 1996 and in 2008 took on the 570 designation. The present-generation LX 570 has undergone 3 redesigns since its inception, with the latest debuting for the 2013 model year.
Offered in a single trim for 2017, the LX 570 features only 2 changes of note: Lexus’ new Safety System+ package, with adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assistance, pre-collision warning with pedestrian alert, and automatic high/low-beam headlights is now standard, while the once-standard cooled storage bin is only available with the optional rear-seat entertainment package.
Outside, the LX 570 is handsome in a boxy, heavy-handed way, and boasts step bumpers, a power sunroof, a roof rack, LED headlights, and 20-inch alloy wheels. Inside, look for a standard 12.3-inch Enform infotainment touchscreen display (with remote) to dominate the center of the dashboard, while 4-zone automatic climate control (Lexus’ Climate Concierge), genuine wood accents, and a 9-speaker audio system also come standard.
Behind the distinctive spindle grille lurks a 5.7-liter V8 powerplant putting out 383 hp and 403 lb-ft of torque. Behind that, an 8-speed shiftable automatic transmission manages the grunt for an estimated 13 mpg city/18 highway/15 combined. Towing is maxed out at 7,000 pounds with the standard hitch and wiring, while tests at one track last year saw the LX 570 scoot from 0-60 mph in 7.3 seconds, which isn’t bad but lags most competitors' times.
Th LX 570 comes with standard full-time 4-wheel drive (4WD) boasting crawl control, hill-start assist, descent control, and an electronically locking limited-slip center differential that allows power and braking to be transferred automatically between the wheels that slip and the wheels that grip. The LX 570 also sports a terrain-taming Drive Mode Select system that allows drivers to select specified powertrain and suspension configurations via a console-mounted dial. Add to that electronically adaptable shock absorbers and stabilizer bars in front and rear, combined with variable adjustable steering, and you’ve got some jaw-dropping off-road capabilities.
The third-generation 2017 LX 570 features a lot of room for front and second-row passengers, but despite Lexus’ claims that the third row seats three, only two small adults will be at all comfortable back there. And accessing the way-back seats is surprisingly difficult, with no forward or reverse adjustment of the second-row seats, and those third-row seats fold to the side, taking up a significant amount of cargo space.
Optional features like the rear-seat DVD entertainment system, heated and ventilated second-row seats, and upgraded leather upholstery throughout the cabin are back for 2017, along with an available Mark Levinson premium Surround Sound audio system that boasts 19 speakers and 7.1 channels.
Standard safety equipment augmenting the new Safety System Plus package includes 4-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), traction and stability control (with off-road modes), front side-mounted airbags, 3-row head curtain airbags, running lights, turn-signal-integrated mirrors, and front fog/driving lights, along with Enform emergency telematics. Available safety features include a head-up windshield display and Intuitive Park Assist, which uses front and rear parking sensors in combination with a rear-view camera. There’s no crash-test data for the LX 570, ostensibly because of its low sales volume, but it’s a stretch to imagine this hefty hauler getting the worst of a collision with the average sedan, coupe, or crossover.
The LX 570 goes head to head with not only its Land Cruiser cousin, but with Mercedes-Benz’s GL-Class and Land Rover’s Range Rover and LR4 sport utes as well. And although few consumers here in the U.S. find the need for an oversize family automobile like the LX, which flaunts a base price tag of $89,380, its dominating road presence, palatial accommodations, potent powerplant, and off-road abilities still have a certain appeal.
Have Laptop. Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.
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