Bullet-proof reliability paired with European levels of luxury is an unusual combination in any segment of the market

The 2016 Lexus LX 570 is a rare sight on Canadian roads, as the luxury brand's flagship full-size SUV has never been one of the most popular Lexus offerings. Don't take that to mean that there's anything unlovable about the premium truck - it's just that few buyers are as familiar with the big people mover's many charms as they are with other established three-row haulers from Cadillac, Land Rover, or Mercedes-Benz. Even smaller numbers of potential customers are aware of the fact that the Lexus LX 570 happens to be one of the most capable off-road rides on the market, a trait it inherits from the lauded Toyota Land Cruiser with which it shares its platform.

Far better, then, to interpret the LX 570's relative scarcity as a sign of exclusivity and approach it as one of the few remaining traditional SUVs in a market that is inexorably shifting towards car-based crossovers. Recently refreshed and more plush than ever, the Lexus LX 570 is your chance to sample bullet-proof reliability paired with European levels of luxury, which is an unusual combination in any segment of the market.

Pros

  • 'Unstoppable' is the foundation of the Lexus LX 570's vocabulary, and it's amply elocuted by way of the vehicle's full-time four-wheel drive system, low-range capability, multiple drive modes, hill descent control, crawl control, and adjustable air ride system (which can raise the vehicle to help tackle challenging trails).
  • At the same time, there's no penalty to pay for this array of outstanding abilities out on the street, which is where most Lexus LX 570s will undoubtedly spend most of their time. That same air suspension does an excellent job of pasting over the cracks and potholes in the pavement, while its ultra-quiet cabin and effortless (if not rocket-like) acceleration feel on par with the expectations of its class.
  • The LX 570's cabin truly feels like it should be perched at the top of the Lexus product pyramid. Everywhere you look - and touch - you're greeted by materials that prove the brand's design team devoted a significant effort to making you feel special every second you're inside its passenger compartment.
  • The Lexus LX 570 is also perhaps the stealthiest way to drive an ostentatiously-expensive luxury SUV. Since so few are sold every year, there's not a lot of recognition from pedestrians and passers-by when you're out tooling around in the LX. From Lexus' perspective this is most likely not viewed as a plus, but if you want to be coddled in a moving mountain of metal but also fly under the radar, the LX 570 presents a rare opportunity to do so.

Cons:

  • The 383 horsepower and 403 lb-ft of torque produced by the 2016 Lexus LX 570's 5.7-liter V8 are great with the pedal mashed, but fuel economy for the hulking SUV is dire. Rated at 18.3 L/100 km city and 12.9 L/100 km highway, you'd be hard pressed to find a thirstier full-sizer in the luxury segment.
  • As big as it is, the eight-passenger Lexus LX 570 stumbles when it comes to its third row. A side-mounted fold-down bench (that splits in the middle) simultaneously manages to eat up valuable cargo space while also offering little in the way of leg room for adult riders. Every one of its three-row rivals features a fold-flat design at the very back.
  • The Lexus infotainment system offers a nice, big LCD screen on the dash (as well as two others mounted on the vehicle's front headrests), but it's crippled by the difficult-to-use Remote Touch mouse controller that serves as its primary interface. The overly-sensitive setup is difficult to use while the vehicle is in motion, and challenging even when sitting still.

2016 Lexus LX 570

 

ENGINE

5.7-litre V8

OUTPUT

383 hp / 403 lb-ft

TRANSMISSION

8-speed automatic

0-100 KMH

7.3 Seconds

TOP SPEED

N/A

FUEL ECONOMY

18.3 L/100 km City / 12.9 L/100 km Highway

WEIGHT

2,727 kilograms (6,000 lbs)

SEATING CAPACITY

8

CARGO VOLUME

2,353 litres (83.1 cubic feet)

BASE PRICE

$107,440

AS-TESTED PRICE

$107,440

 

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