2017 Lexus LX570 Review

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2017 Lexus LX570 Review

Priced From $140,500Information

Overall Rating

0

3 out of 5 stars

Rating breakdown
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Safety, value & features

3 out of 5 stars

Comfort & space

4 out of 5 stars

Engine & gearbox

3 out of 5 stars

Ride & handling

3 out of 5 stars

Technology

3 out of 5 stars

Pros & Cons

  1. ProLimousine luxury in a tough and capable 4WD.

  2. ConHigh purchase price; heavy fuel use.

  3. The Pick: 2017 Lexus LX 570 4D Wagon

What stands out?

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The Lexus LX570 is a very comfortable, smooth and quiet eight-seat luxury 4WD wagon that is also highly capable when driven off road. Lexus is Toyota’s premium brand, and the LX570 shares its body structure and robust 4WD chassis with the Toyota LandCruiser. There are however many differences, beginning with the bigger and more powerful engine – a petrol V8 – and its eight-speed automatic gearbox.

What might bug me?

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How much money you find yourself spending on petrol. The LX570 uses a lot of it, and it is especially thirsty in stop-start city driving. Lexus also recommends you run on premium petrol, which is more expensive than regular. (Although the LX570 will run satisfactorily on regular if necessary.)

That friends who spent less and got the similar Toyota LandCruiser 200 can point to several reasons why their car is better. (However, it won’t be a one-sided argument: the Lexus too has its strong points.)

Looking for parking spots big enough to accept your LX570. It needs lots of room.

What body styles are there?

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A large five-door SUV-style wagon is the only body style, with seating for eight in three rows.

The LX570 drives all four wheels all of the time. You can also engage low-range gearing via a button on the centre console, which makes it easier for you to drive very slowly off-road.

The LX570 is classified as an upper-large SUV, higher priced.

What features do all versions have?

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A proximity key, which lets you unlock the car and drive away without removing the key from your pocket or bag. To start the engine, you push a button. Sidesteps, to help you get in and out of the car.

Satellite navigation, displayed on a 12.3-inch touchscreen. A 19-speaker audio system with USB and iPod ports, and Bluetooth connectivity for music streaming and phone calls. Wireless charging for compatible mobile phones.

Controls on the steering wheel for the sound system and your phone. Power-adjustment of the steering wheel for tilt and reach.

A head-up display that projects your speed and navigation prompts onto the windscreen, so that you can see it easily without taking your eyes from the road.

A rear-view camera, and front and rear parking sensors. Additional external cameras that allow you to select different views from around the car.

Bright and long-lived LED headlights that come on automatically when it gets dark, and that dip automatically for oncoming traffic. Windscreen wipers that operate automatically when it rains.

A leather-trimmed interior, with three rows of seats. Heating and power adjustment for both front seats. A memory for your adjustments to the driving position (steering wheel, external mirrors and 10-way adjustable seat), so that you can restore settings quickly after a companion has driven the car.

Powered fore-and-aft adjustment for the second-row seat, and powered deployment and stowage for the third-row seats. Powered opening and closing of the two-piece tailgate.

Four-zone climate control, so that the driver, front-seat passenger and two rear passengers can each set their desired cabin temperatures. A refrigerated coolbox in the centre console.

Two 11.6-inch DVD screens behind the front seats, and three sets of wireless headphones, so that rear-seat passengers can watch movies or play games. A sunroof.

Active (radar) cruise control, which will follow a vehicle in front at a pre-set distance, braking automatically if necessary. When the road ahead is clear, the LX570 will restore the cruise speed you have chosen.

A range of driving modes, which lets you adjust in concert how directly the car responds to the accelerator, how weighty the steering feels, and how comfortably the car rides. Eco mode will even tailor the air-conditioning for maximum fuel economy.

Adaptive suspension that optimises the ride automatically – and almost instantly – for smooth or rough roads, and that lowers the car at highway speeds to reduce body roll when cornering. You can also lower the car further when it is stationary, to make it easier for passengers to get in and out. And when you are driving off road, you can raise the car for more ground clearance.

Electronic traction control, which helps the car go further in difficult off-road conditions. Crawl Control, for negotiating very difficult off-road terrain. (This controls the accelerator and brakes automatically to maintain a speed you select; all you have to do is steer. You use this in conjunction with the low-range gearing.)

Settings for different off-road conditions that optimise the stability and traction control (also used in conjunction with the low-range gearing).

Shiny alloy wheels, and a full-size spare wheel. A system that warns you if a tyre is losing air pressure.

Ten airbags, and electronic stability control. (For the placement of airbags, and more on the LX570’s safety systems, please open the Safety section below.)

The LX570 comes with a four year, 100,000km warranty.

Which engine uses least fuel, and why wouldn't I choose it?

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There is only one engine available in an LX570 and it is a very big one – a 5.7-litre petrol V8. It uses 14.4 litres/100km in the official government combined-cycle test, and generally more in the real world.

In stop-start city driving, or off-road, it can use more than 20 litres/100km. However, in steady open-road driving at speeds around 100km/h the consumption is much better, dropping to about 13 litres/100km.

This engine is extremely smooth and quiet, and has plenty of power. It provides effortless performance.

A smooth-shifting eight-speed automatic is the only gearbox available.

What key features do I get if I spend more?

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About the only thing you can spend more on is an Enhancement Pack that swaps the standard 20-inch wheels for sportier looking 21-inch wheels and lower-profile tyres. It also adds ventilation and cooling for the front seats, heating and cooling for second-row outer seats, and heating for the steering wheel.

Does any upgrade have a down side?

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The tyres on the Enhancement Pack’s 21-inch wheels are less suitable for off-road driving than the tyres on the standard 20-inch wheels. They are more susceptible to off-road damage, and don’t ride as smoothly on rough roads.

Black is the only colour that doesn’t attract an additional cost. All other colours, including white, cost more.

How comfortable is it?

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The LX570 might be a high-riding 4WD vehicle, but you can make it easy for even small or not very agile people to climb on board by putting the suspension into Access mode – which lowers the car. The side-steps help here too. And with its smart-key entry, it even unlocks automatically when you touch the door handle.

Inside the LX750’s spacious cabin you’ll find a world of comfort and opulence. Everything is beautifully finished and detailed. The dash is dominated by a huge, 12.3-inch tablet-style touchscreen, from which you can control the many ancillary functions. That means control buttons don’t crowd the dashboard.

The LX570 may have a big V8 under the bonnet but you’d hardy know, as it does its job in a very subdued, quiet and refined manner – all the while providing ample response and effortless progress.

There’s also little road noise, and the suspension soaks up bumps beautifully. Life inside the LX570 is so very serene, unless of course you want to crank up the brilliant 19-speaker audio system.

What about safety?

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Safety is a strong point of the LX570. It brings you a big airbag count, fatigue-reducing automated functions such as headlamp dipping, and a comprehensive active safety suite that includes autonomous braking.

There are 10 airbags: front and knee airbags for the driver and front passenger; side airbags for the driver, front passenger, and second-row outer passengers, to protect upper bodies; and full-length curtain airbags to protect the heads of outer passengers in all three rows of seats from side impacts.

There is electronic stability control, which can help you bring a skidding car back under control. This is mandatory on all new cars.

Autonomous braking operates as part of the LX570’s radar-based Pre-Crash Safety System. If it detects the imminent prospect of a frontal crash, it will trigger an audio-visual warning and pre-tension the front seatbelts, and if you are not braking hard enough it will add brake pressure. If you are not braking at all, the system will brake for you automatically.

The LX570 also warns you if you are about to let the car wander out of its lane (through distraction or fatigue), and of vehicles in blind spots to either side. And it has a rear cross-traffic alert, which warns you, when you are backing out of a parking spot, if cars are approaching from either side. This feature is particularly handy in country towns, which often have nose-to-kerb angle parking.

The tyre-pressure monitor is another very useful safety item, and can help prevent an accident due to a flat tyre leading to a loss of vehicle control.

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) has not rated the LX570.

I like driving - will I enjoy this car?

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The LX570 will astonish you with its comfort, silence and smoothness, which make it always an enjoyable car to drive.

The big V8 engine is totally unobtrusive unless you want it to be. Put your foot down and there’s a rush of effortless acceleration. It’s reserved but authoritative, and very much in keeping with the LX570’s refined demeanour.

This engine is noticeably more powerful than the smaller petrol V8 available in the Toyota LandCruiser, and it is stronger, smoother and quieter than the LandCruiser diesel.

What the LX570 does less well is reward hard driving into and through corners, especially at high speeds and on bumpy roads. The automatic suspension systems do an excellent job of managing the car’s bulk, but there is only so much they can do for the handling because the LX570 has a truck-style chassis. It simply can’t provide the precision cornering and rough-road stability displayed by most other luxury 4WDs, whose chassis follow the patterns of those used on modern road cars.

However, the truck-like chassis contributes to the LX570’s formidable off-road capability. Off-road, an LX570 is at least as good as similar luxury 4WDs and generally much better. (It would be better again off road if it had higher profile tyres and smaller wheels, like the 18s fitted to the Toyota LandCruiser.)

How is life in the rear seats?

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The LX570 has a very wide and comfortable second-row seat that will accommodate three adults without squeezing them up. The separate air-conditioning settings for either side of the second-row seat add to the comfort (as do the heating and ventilation for the outside seats supplied with the Enhancement Pack).

The three third-row seats are suitable for children and small adults. The powered fore-and-aft adjustment for the second-row seat is handy here, as you can tailor legroom in the second and third rows to suit passengers of different heights.

Standard rear-seat entertainment systems give people in the back something to engage them on long trips, if they tire of the scenery.

How is it for carrying stuff?

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The LX570 has a larger cargo space than most similar vehicles and is very good for carrying stuff. You can even fit a few medium-sized bags behind the third row seats when they are deployed.

Push a button and the third-row seats stow away, leaving a large luggage space. If you fold the second-row seats flat as well, the luggage space is cavernous.

Push-button opening and closing of the two-piece tailgate, via buttons on the key-fob, the dashboard and at the rear of the car, is also very convenient.

The LX570 is rated to tow 3500kg, which is at least as much as any similar vehicle. The LX570 is a particularly good tow vehicle, although it can be very thirsty in this role. Trailer sway-control is standard, and helps prevent oscillation developing.

Where is it made?

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The LX570 is made in Japan.

What might I miss that similar cars have?

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Mainly lower fuel consumption from a diesel engine, such as you can get in a Range Rover, a Range Rover Sport or a Mercedes-Benz GLE or GLS. (The similar but less luxurious Toyota LandCruiser offers a diesel also.)

Lighter and more agile on-road handling, especially on bumpy roads. The Range Rover Sport and Mercedes-Benz GLE shine here, but the Range Rover and the Mercedes GLS are also very good.

I like this car, but I can't choose which version. Can you help?

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The LX570 without the Enhancement Pack is the better choice, unless you can’t live without ventilated seats up front and heated and ventilated seats at the rear. The downside of the Enhancement Pack is that it brings 21-inch wheels and tyres, which don’t work as well on rough roads and off-road as the 20s. The LX570’s key advantage over most similar cars is its fuss-free off-road performance, and you diminish that advantage if you go to the 21s.

Are there plans to update this model soon?

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The LX570 arrived in Australia in 2008, and was last updated for the 2016 model year. Given that it is based on the LandCruiser 200, a new generation LX won’t arrive before a replacement for the 200 arrives – and that is not expected before 2018.