Lexus made changes to its sport utility vehicle lineup this year, remodeling the previous LX570 and calling it something different – LX 600.
The 2022 LX 600 separates itself from last year’s model by adding new underpinnings (same as the new Toyota Tundra full-size pickup) that make it a more capable SUV. The LX 600 is more luxurious and fuel-efficient than ever before.
Despite an upgraded, stronger engine, classy cabin, and modern technology, the LX600 can be matched by nearly all its rivals. And its competition generally can beat the starting price of the LX 600 – $86,900. The competition includes the Audi Q7, Lincoln Navigator, BMW X7, Cadillac Escalade, and Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class.
The economic hard times that hit the U.S. more than a decade ago led American car buyers toward smaller SUVs that didn’t have the bulk or the costly price tag of bigger models. That trend remains. Sales of the LX model have not exceeded 4,753 in the past four years.
The largest SUV in the Lexus lineup has a big, imposing presence. It features a large grille, high ride height and has plenty of luxury characteristics. The LX600 offers comfort and versatility, good towing capacity (8,000 pounds), and handles fine for a big vehicle.
The new SUV arrived with an improved engine, switching from a V8 to a turbocharged 3.4-liter, V6 that generates 409 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. For a full-size SUV, it goes an impressive 0-60 mph in 6.1 seconds. It’s also more fuel efficient than the LX570, getting 17-22 mpg. All five trim levels (LX 600, Premium, F Sport Handling, Luxury, Ultra Luxury) come with all-wheel drive and a 10-speed automatic transmission.
For a large SUV, the LX 600 offers good handling and doesn’t drive like its cousin – the more lumbering Toyota Landcruiser. The LX600 maneuvers well in tight parking areas, yet the road driving is not as refined. The steering and braking are uninspiring and the SUV gets floaty at times.
Despite its size, the LX 600 handles well and provides a quiet, smooth ride that never feels like it gets tippy, even on challenging roads and tight turns. Lexus says the LX 600 is 20-percent more rigid than before and is a bit sharper than the LX 570.
Standard driving safety aids include forward collision mitigation, lane departure mitigation, blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, 360-degree camera system, automated parking system.
AT A GLANCE – 2022 LEXUS LX 600
- Performance: turbocharged 3.4-liter, V6, 409 horsepower
- Mileage estimate: 17-22 mpg
- Price estimate: $86,900 to $126,000
- Warranty: 4 years/50,000 miles; drivetrain: 6 years/70,000 miles; roadside assistance: 4 years/unlimited; corrosion: 6 years/unlimited
What we admire most with the LX 600 interior is the flexible seating that the Ultra Luxury model offers. One can avoid the standard second-row bench and in its place have two six-way reclinable captain’s chairs with power-adjustable footrests. The second row also has a full center console between the seats that comes equipped with a touchscreen and seat massage function. There is no available third row with the Ultra Luxury package.
The primary information center is a 12.3-inch touchscreen with strong graphics and quick input. The large display offers most media functions. There’s also a 7-inch touchscreen that handles secondary controls like seat settings and climate. Gone is the finicky joystick controller interface.
The front seats offer terrific comfort and support, making them ideal for long drives. The LX 600 provides 41 cubic feet of storage space behind its second row, which is average for the class. The space expands to 71 cubes with the rear seats folded down. Note the space behind a three-row LX is only 11 cubic feet.
Even with its multiple improvements like performance, interior makeup and new underpinnings, the 2022 Lexus LX 600 fails to distinguish itself from competitors. The starting price is high, so we anticipate no rise in sales for this large SUV.
Weidel on Wheels is featured regularly on www.tahoeskiworld.com. Auto writer Jeffrey Weidel can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @jeffweidel.