Lexus GX

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Lexus GX
2010 Lexus GX 460 Starfire view1.jpg
2010 MY Lexus GX 460 (US)
Overview
Manufacturer Lexus (Toyota)
Production 2002–present
Model years 2003–present
Body and chassis
Class Mid-size luxury SUV
Body style 5-door SUV
Layout Front-engine, four-wheel-drive

The Lexus GX is a luxury mid-size sport utility vehicle (SUV) sold in North American and Eurasian markets by Lexus. Lexus introduced the first generation, known as the GX 470 in 2002, and subsequently became the third SUV to enter the Lexus lineup. The 4.7-liter V8 engine in the GX 470 was the same as used on the larger LX 470. The firm next introduced the second generation model in 2009. Now badged GX 460 to reflect the switch to a 4.6-liter V8 engine, Lexus later released a lower displacement GX 400 in 2012 for the Chinese market, with a 4.0-liter V6 engine.

In the Lexus lineup, the GX is situated between its crossover counterpart, the RX, and the premium full-size LX. All GX production has occurred at the Tahara plant in Japan, alongside the Toyota Land Cruiser Prado. In fact, both generations of the GX have been heavily based on the Prado, with updated frontal styling to better integrate with the Lexus design language. Elsewhere, the changes are less prominent and mainly restricted to minor trimmings, such as wheels and taillamp lenses inserts. Inside, the first generation interior largely mirrors that of the Toyota-badged version, but for the second generation, the interior has been further individualised with less shared componentry.

First generation (J120; 2002–2009) [edit]

First generation (J120)
2008-2009 Lexus GX470 -- 01-13-2010.jpg
Overview
Also called Toyota Land Cruiser Prado
Production November 2002 – July 2009
Model years 2003–2009
Assembly Japan: Tahara, Aichi
Designer Shoichi Fujiyoshi
Powertrain
Engine 4.7 L 2UZ-FE V8
Transmission 5-speed A750F automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,789 mm (109.8 in)
Length 4,780 mm (188.2 in)
Width 1,880 mm (74.0 in)
Height 1,895 mm (74.6 in)
Curb weight 2,209 kg (4,871 lb)

Lexus introduced the GX 470 at the North American International Auto Show in January 2002 as a 2003 model, with sales commencing in November 2002. The GX development program began in 1999 following the J120 Toyota Land Cruiser Prado in 1997, with design work by Shoichi Fujiyoshi concluding in the first half of 2000.[1] Heavily based on the Toyota Land Cruiser Prado (J120), the GX and Prado shared a common platform, mechanicals, and bodyworks (except front-end), so therefore had common basic dimensions. Likewise, the interiors were much the same, with the Lexus receiving further premium touches when compared to the Toyota-badged version. Like the Prado, the GX design incorporated welded steel body-on-frame construction, an electronically controlled five-speed automatic transmission, and permanent four-wheel drive with a center locking Torsen differential.[2] The suspension shared its layout with the Toyota 4Runner equipped with the rear air suspension, while adding Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) and Downhill Assist Control (DAC). AVS could adjust damper firmness continuously while DAC modulated descents down slopes.[2] Power came from a 4.7-liter, 32-valve, four-cam 2UZ-FE V8 engine originally rated at 175 kW (235 hp) at 4,800 rpm and 434 N·m (320 lb·ft) of torque at 3,400 rpm.[2] Towing capacity was rated at 2,300 kg (5,000 lb) for the 2003 model year.[2] Midway through the 2004 model year, the GX received an upgraded towing capacity of 2,900 kg (6,500 lb) with the addition of a much stronger frame-bolted tubular hitch. Ground clearance measured 211 millimetres (8.3 in), with an approach angle of 30-degrees and a departure angle of 29-degrees raised (25-degrees normal).[2][3] The GX 470 carried a drag coefficient of Cd=0.38.[2]

Lexus GX 470 interior

The interior came equipped with two rows of seating, while an optional third row allowed up to eight passengers to be carried.[2] However, the folding third row was tight with only 610 mm (24 in) of legroom. A Mark Levinson audio system along with a Rear Seat Entertainment System were available as options.[2] A side-opening rear tailgate was standard.[2]

In 2003, for the 2004 model year, the GX 470's transmission was upgraded to a sealed unit with no dipstick. An optional Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS) became available as a late-year addition.[4] KDSS freed and adjusted the vehicle's stabilizer bars for greater articulation allowing the wheels to move with less restriction over uneven terrain, and used front and rear hydraulic pressure-sensing valves and larger stabilizer bars to reduce body roll during on-road conditions.[5] Safety upgrades for 2004 included a roll-sensing feature for the side curtain airbags, a tire pressure monitoring system, and an optional rear backup camera system.[4]

2008–2009 Lexus GX 470 (UZJ120)

In 2004, for the 2005 model year, the GX 470's engine gained 26 kW (35 hp) with the addition of VVT-i for a total of 201 kW (270 hp).[4] This allowed the SUV to be certified as an Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle II (ULEV II) in the U.S.[6] Other upgrades included an enhanced navigation system, Bluetooth compatibility, and more voice commands. A Sport model joined the lineup, including the Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System and different styling such as smoked bezel headlamps, added chrome trim, and black bird's eye maple wood.[7][8]

In 2005 for the 2006 model year, changes in SAE engine testing procedures resulted in a slight drop in the amount of stated power for the V8 to 196 kW (263 hp), and Lexus Link telematics was offered in North America.[4] For 2007, the GX 470 was largely unchanged, with upgrades for cabin electronics including a new generation navigation system, auxiliary input jack for devices like an iPod, DVD video playback when parked, and larger optional rear entertainment video screen.[6]

Finally, in 2007 for the model year 2008, the GX 470 received styling updates, including a dark metallic grille, liquid graphite wheels, added exterior and interior chrome, revised turn signal lights, and added wood and body color options.[9]

The Lexus GX has won various awards including "Four Wheeler of the Year" in 2003 and 2004 from Four Wheeler Magazine, and Automobile Magazine All-Star for 2003 in the Mid-Size Sport-Utility category.[10] J.D. Power and Associates named the GX 470 the highest ranked premium luxury SUV in initial quality in 2005,[11] and Kelley Blue Book gave the GX 470 its Best Resale Value Award in 2006.[12]

Second generation (J150; 2009–present)[edit]

Second generation (J150)
Lexus GX460 -- 10-08-2010.jpg
Overview
Also called Toyota Land Cruiser Prado
Production November 2009–present
Model years 2010–present
Assembly Japan: Tahara, Aichi
Designer Yuji Fujiwara (2007)[13]
Body and chassis
Related Toyota 4Runner
Powertrain
Engine 4.0 L 1GR-FE V6
4.6 L 1UR-FE V8
Transmission 6-speed A760F automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,789 mm (109.8 in)
Length 4,806 mm (189.2 in)
Width 1,885 mm (74.2 in)
Height 1,844 mm (72.6 in)
Curb weight 2,406 kg (5,305 lb)

The GX 460 debuted at the China (Guangzhou) International Automobile Exhibition in November 2009. The redesigned model continued with body-on-frame construction, full-time four-wheel drive, a hi-lo transfer case, and a Torsen center locking differential. The Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS) became standard.[14] Power came from a new 4.6-liter 1UR-FE V8 engine producing 224 kW (301 hp) and 446 N·m (329 lb·ft) of torque,[15] mated to a new six-speed automatic transmission. Fuel economy was improved over the prior generation,[16] while maximum towing capacity was 2,950 kilograms (6,500 lb).[15] The drag coefficient was reduced to Cd=0.35.[14] The rear wiper was hidden under the rear spoiler, and while the tailgate remained side-opening, a flip-up glass panel was added.[14]

Lexus GX 460 interior

The interior added a power-folding, two-passenger third row which folded flat, allowing capacity for up to seven passengers, with the second row sliding or tilting for third row access.[15] Because the third row was no longer removable and used additional space, cargo capacity declined. A toggle switch replaced the transfer case's floor mounted shift lever, and the gauge cluster added a steering wheel angle display for off road situations.[15] Similar to before, a Mark Levinson sound system and two-display Rear Seat Entertainment System (RSES) were optional,[14] while three-zone climate control, semi-aniline leather, and heated second row seats and steering wheel were new options.[14]

Like its predecessor, Rear Adjustable Height Control (AHC) air suspension was offered on the GX 460 with an Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) system and Hill-start Assist Control (HAC). Additional electronic aids included the LX 570's Crawl Control system, Downhill Assist Control (DAC), and Active Traction Control (A-TRAC).[14] The Torsen differential distributed a variable torque split when left unlocked, including a 40:60 (front:rear) ratio under normal driving conditions, a 30:70 ratio during cornering, and a 50:50 ratio when rear wheel slippage was detected.[14]

2010 Lexus GX 460 (URJ150)
2012 Lexus GX 460 (China)

Added safety features included whiplash-reducing active headrests and ten airbags, including front knee airbags and rear side torso airbags. New safety options include a Pre-Collision System, Driver Monitoring System, lane departure warning system, and Lexus Enform with Safety Connect telematics.[14] Optional cameras located at the rear door, rear-view mirror, and passenger-side mirror provided views of the vehicle's sides.[15][17] Low-beam HID headlamp projectors were offered with an Intelligent High Beam feature which automatically dimmed the high beams depending on traffic conditions and an Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS) that swiveled the headlamps in corners.[14]

On 28 May 2012 Lexus China announced the market launch of the GX 400, which replaces the GX 460 in China. The engine option is now changed to the 4.0-liter 1GR-FE V6 engine that outputs 202 kW (271 hp) combined with a five-speed automatic transmission. Due to the power reduction, it takes 9.8 seconds for the GX 400 to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (0 to 62 mph). Compared with the outgoing GX 460, most standard equipment on GX 400 remains the same.[18]

On April 13, 2010, Consumer Reports in the United States urged customers not to buy the 2010 model year GX 460, giving it a “Don’t buy, Safety Risk” label, its first such vehicle rating since 2001, following the results of a "lift-off oversteer" emergency test. This label was lifted on May 7, 2010.[19] In the high-speed test, the SUV was quickly turned with no pedal input,[20] causing a sideways slide before the vehicle stability control (VSC) initiated a full stop.[20] Consumer Reports said that the VSC acted too slowly, and if a wheel hit a curb or slid off the pavement, a rollover accident could occur. The shared-platform Toyota 4Runner passed the test,[20] and while Consumer Reports said it knew of no actual incidents, it recommended a software fix.[20] The same day, vehicle maker Toyota expressed concern, thanked the magazine, and temporarily suspended GX 460 sales.[20][21] While noting that the SUV met all U.S. federal requirements,[21] on April 16 Toyota confirmed that its testing had duplicated the results.[22]

On April 19, a voluntary recall of the GX 460 was issued, along with the left-hand-drive Land Cruiser Prado, for a software update to fix the VSC response.[23][24] With the software update in place, sales resumed on April 29.[25] Vehicle stability control had been criticized by Wheels magazine for slow response speed on such models as the Toyota Kluger (known as the Highlander in North America),[26][27] while Drive noted that VSC had also been said to intervene too soon.[27] The Wall Street Journal pointed the lack of VSC a decade ago.[28]

In September 2013, the GX was updated with the Lexus spindle grille design, new LED headlamps and LED daytime running lights standard; LED foglamps are optional. In the US pricing has been reduced by $4,750.[29]

Sales[edit]

Sales data in United States for the Lexus GX are as follows, sourced from manufacturer yearly data:

Generation Model(s) Calendar year Total sales (U.S.)
UZJ120
GX 470 2002 2,190[30]
2003 31,376[31]
2004 35,420[31]
2005 34,339[32]
2006 25,454[32]
2007 23,035[33]
2008 15,759[33]
2009 6,235[34]
URJ150 GX 460 2010 16,450[35]
2011 11,609[36]
2012 11,039[37]
2013 12,136[38]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "US Design Patent D480990" (patent). 2003-10-21. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i 2003 Lexus GX 470 Review, Prices, Photos: New Car Test Drive
  3. ^ AOL Autos Top 10 SUVs for Off-Roading
  4. ^ a b c d Consumer Guide 2003–2009 Lexus GX 470: Year-to-Year Changes
  5. ^ "Toyota Hopes Dynamic Suspension Boosts Land Cruiser". Ward's Autoworld. Retrieved 2009-07-27. 
  6. ^ a b 2007 Lexus GX 470 Review, Prices, Photos: New Car Test Drive
  7. ^ Autochannel 2006 Lexus GX 470 Review
  8. ^ Top Speed 2006 Lexus GX 470
  9. ^ 2008 Lexus GX 470 Review, Prices, Photos: New Car Test Drive
  10. ^ "2003 All-Star: Mid-Size Sport-Utility". Automobile Magazine. 2009-04. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  11. ^ J.D. Power Initial Quality 2005
  12. ^ Kelley Blue Book 2006 Best Resale Value Award
  13. ^ "US Design Patent D630972" (patent). 2011-01-18. 
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Lexus introduces second-generation 2010 GX460". Autoblog. Retrieved 2010-01-16. 
  15. ^ a b c d e "2010 Lexus GX 460 – Lexus Midsize Luxury SUV". Automobile Magazine. Retrieved 2010-01-16. 
  16. ^ EPA-estimated 15 mpg-US (16 L/100 km; 18 mpg-imp) city, 20 mpg-US (12 L/100 km; 24 mpg-imp) highway (17 mpg-US (14 L/100 km; 20 mpg-imp) combined) rating
  17. ^ Four Wheeler – 2010 Lexus GX460 First Drive
  18. ^ "Lexus All-road Mid-size Luxury SUV GX 400 Lands in China". www.lexus.com.cn. 2010-06-13. Retrieved 2010-05-28. 
  19. ^ Weiss, Chris (2010-05-07). "Consumer Reports Gives Lexus GX 460 Thumbs Up". Motorcrave.com. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  20. ^ a b c d e "Consumer Reports Cars Blog: Don't Buy: Safety Risk-2010 Lexus GX 460". Blogs.consumerreports.org. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  21. ^ a b "Lexus Vehicles : Lexus’ Statement Regarding Consumer Reports’ Testing of the 2010 GX 460 / Toyota". Pressroom.toyota.com. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  22. ^ "Toyota duplicates result of Consumer Reports test". www.reuters.com. 2010-04-16. Retrieved 2010-04-16. 
  23. ^ "Toyota to Fix 34, 000 Vehicles Worldwide". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  24. ^ Insideline: 2010 Lexus GX 460 Recall Expands Globally
  25. ^ Linebaugh, Kate (2010-04-29). "Toyota Resumes Sales of Lexus GX 460". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  26. ^ Blackburn, Richard (2010-04-14). "New Toyota safety row". Drive. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  27. ^ a b Dowling, Joshua (2008-03-10). "Toyota Kluger". Drive. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  28. ^ Welsh, Jonathan (2010-04-15). "Lexus GX 460: The Dying Art of Controlling a Skid – Driver's Seat". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  29. ^ DeAngelis Puckett, Lauren (2013-08-24). "Like sands through the hourglass, so is the 2014 Lexus GX". Autoblog. Retrieved 2013-08-27. 
  30. ^ Lexus sales figures 2002
  31. ^ a b Lexus sales figures 2003–2004
  32. ^ a b Lexus sales figures 2005–2006
  33. ^ a b Lexus sales figures 2007–2008
  34. ^ Lexus sales figures 2009
  35. ^ Lexus sales figures 2010
  36. ^ December 2011 Sales Chart
  37. ^ "December 2012 and Year-End Sales Chart". Toyota USA Newsroom. 2013-01-03. Retrieved 2013-01-04. 
  38. ^ http://lexusenthusiast.com/2014/01/05/lexus-december-2013-sales-report-including-year-end-sales-totals/

External links[edit]