It's offered in one Base trim level with standard four-wheel drive. There are cameras in the grille and passenger sideview mirror, with the otherwise blind spots revealed on a screen. The power-folding third-row seat is hard to get to, and it's quite cramped. Crawl Control also helps in low-speed maneuvers over boulder-strewn paths or scree-strewn hillsides. The disadvantage to the setup is that the third-row seats can't be completely removed, and they narrow the cargo space. It's yet one more of the jarring incongruities of a vehicle that feels out of touch in the Lexus brand.
The front seats are generously sized, and covered in perforated leather. Mitch McCullough contributed to this report, with Sam Moses reporting from the Pacific Northwest. Then the second-row seats fold to double that space, to 83. The Luxury Package upgrades to semi-aniline leather and extends the mahogany trim. When the going gets really bad, locking the center differential gives more traction, while low range is for extreme challenges, for example deep sand, mud or snow, or boulders to cross. At the other extreme from mall parking, we hitched up a 7,000-pound trailer and found the engine and transmission had no trouble hauling the load up hills.
A switch on the dash selects Sport, Normal, or Comfort suspension damping. Parking is made easier by variable gear-ratio steering, needing less effort steering at slow speeds. The 2nd-row seats fold and tumble forward. This creates a flat load floor, but eats up valuable room on the sides. But luxury and technology come first with the Lexus, from its active suspension and adaptive headlamps to its Mark Levinson audio system and high quality interior. Bluetooth and a nav system are included, and from features like a 180-degree camera that can see each way at a blind intersection to power-assist middle-row seats, there's a lot to love in the everyday-useful feature department.
The cockpit switchgear is uncluttered, partly thanks to steering wheel controls. The instrument panel is upright yet finely detailed, softly contoured, and accented with matte-metallics, and the lavish cabin is trimmed with high-end perforated leather and impressive veneers. Turn Assist helps tighten turning by braking the inside rear wheel so the vehicle pivots a bit. Crawl Control also helps in low-speed maneuvers over boulder-strewn paths or scree-strewn hillsides. The three-person bench has a power-sliding function that moves it on a 3. A rearview camera comes standard. For groceries or other everyday uses, the 15-cubic-foot area behind the third row is sufficient.
. Such options include ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, heated 2nd-row seats and a center-mounted cool box for food and beverages. While many prefer black or gray interiors, we like the Parchment. A centralized system using a control knob of some sort would be helpful here. The standard leather upholstery is high quality, but the cabin shows its age, and the second- and third-row seats aren't as easy to fold as you'd expect. Later we hit the full 7000-pound load, see our Driving Impressions. Unless otherwise indicated, specifications refer to test vehicle.
It all makes parking easier, quicker and safer. The transmission is a 6-speed automatic. Instead, there's plenty of body motion and roll, and very little response to be elicited from its steering. Third-row entry is made easy with a touch-and-tumble seat on the passenger side second row. In Sport mode, the suspension stays on an even keel during enhanced acceleration and braking.
Available add-ons include a heated steering wheel, a dual-screen rear entertainment system, Siri Eyes Free Mode, air-conditioned front seats and heated second-row seats. Still, the Lexus has 4×4 chops. Trailer Sway Control is standard. The four-wheel independent suspension control arms in front, a four-link setup in the rear offers nearly nine inches of ground clearance as well as impressive articulation. When prodded, our 6155-pound test truck reached 60 mph in 6. Lastly, Lexus has added a five-mode terrain control system that lets driver choose traction management by the kind of territory they're traversing--be it sand, snow, mud, rocks, or streets.
It can transport up to eight people and haul their gear across great distances in comfort, as well as tow hefty loads. The bumper is mostly hidden, so the spindle is visually dominant. And if that's not enough, optional extras include a rear-seat entertainment system, radar-adaptive cruise control, and a 19-speaker Mark Levinson audio system. Competitors from Mercedes-Benz, Land Rover and Infiniti offer more features and greater gas mileage for their prices. The system is compelling and memorable. All eight seats have three-point seatbelt systems.
A Pre-Collision System is optional. They're soft to the touch, but supportive. Other standard safety systems include an emergency communication system with a one-year trial subscription, active front head restraints, side curtain airbags for all three rows, front side-impact airbags, side-impact airbags for outboard second-row passengers and front knee airbags. There are also sensors to warn of objects near the corners of the car. Stitching on the seats is precise.