A week spent in the refreshed body on frame SUV from Lexus


Luxurious interior


Rear visibility
Fuel economy

2014 Lexus GX 460

2014 Lexus GX 460

The GX 460 shares its basic platform architecture with two other models from the Japanese manufacturer – the smaller Toyota FJ Cruiser and the more utilitarian 4Runner.

The suspension of the Lexus, therefore, consists of a double wishbone independent setup with coilover shocks and a stabilizer bar up front, while, on the base model, the solid rear axle is located by a four-link suspension with a lateral (Panhard) rod with coil springs and a stabilizer bar. Luxury models like our tester feature an Adaptive Variable Suspension with Adjustable Height Control in back.

2014 Lexus GX 460

18-inch split six-spoke alloy wheels are part of the GX  460's Premium Package (18-inch six-spoke wheels are standard) and are wrapped in Bridgestone Dueler H/T 684II P265/60R18 mud and snow tires. There's also a full-size alloy spare.

Ground clearance is 8.1 inches while approach and departure angles are 21 degrees and 23 degrees, respectively. Maximum towing capacity (rated using SAE towing standard J2807) for those so inclined and with the optional Class Four receiver hitch is a robust 6,500 pounds.

2014 Lexus GX 460 4.6-liter 1UR-FE DOHC V8

The only engine offered is an all aluminum 4.6-liter 1UR-FE DOHC V8 generating 301 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 329 lb.-ft. of torque at 3,500 rpm mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Fuel economy isn't bad considering the GX460 is a mid-size body-on-frame SUV weighing nearly 5,200 pounds. The EPA rates it at 15/20/17 city/highway/combined mpg, while my own observed fuel economy was 21.5 mpg on the highway and 17.5 mpg in city driving conditions.

2014 Lexus GX 460


The current generation GX460 was introduced in 2009 as a 2010 model. Since Toyota traditionally waits 7 years for major changes, the updated 2014 model features mostly cosmetic differences. Upfront there's a new fascia with the brand's signature Spindle grille with standard LED headlamps and available LED fog lamps.

In back, there are new clear taillight housings as well as a redesigned bumper and rear reflectors.

2014 Lexus GX 460


Inside, the GX offers up everything you might expect in a luxury utility vehicle including standard navigation, adaptive variable suspension, moonroof, proximity key with push button start, heated mahogany wood steering wheel, rain-sensing wipers, and power multi-adjustable memory front seats that are both heated and cooled. Even the dashboard clock is GPS-enabled so it doesn't have to be reset when traveling.

The gauges and knobs are large, easy to read and intuitive to use. An especially nice feature is the new instrumentation with a speedometer and tachometer and a center screen you can scroll through with features ranging from outside temperature to average fuel consumption.

2014 Lexus GX 460

An especially nice touch is the new 8-inch touch-screen display with backup monitor. Unlike the system found on other Lexus models, there are redundant buttons for most of the major functions and the “haptic-feedback” joystick is mercifully absent from the center console.

Because it's a body-on-frame SUV, getting into the GX isn't as easy as entering a car-based vehicle. Fortunately there are running boards and assist grips. Once in, though, you'll find plenty of leg, shoulder and head room for 2 adults up front and three in the middle seat. The steering wheel has a power tilt and telescope and telescopes with excellent bolstering for both the driver and passenger seat.

2014 Lexus GX 460

The power-folding third seat, however, is best left for small children. Getting in and out requires a great deal of contorting and, once seated, there's very little in the way of head, hip or leg room.

Another issue with the GX is that the rear door is hinged on the right side and swings out, rather than swinging up – which can make opening it and closing it difficult if you're parked in a tight space. Fortunately, the rear window opens up independently of the tailgate and flips up, allowing you to load and unload without having to open the tailgate.

2014 Lexus GX 460

The big Lexus has a fairly high beltline and comparatively low roofline, which makes the side windows and the windshield narrower. Despite this design, the view out the front and sides is excellent. Even the rear three-quarters view is very good as there's a good-sized window between the C- and D-pillars. Also keep in mind that a rear backup camera is standard and it displays on the large touch screen.

2014 Lexus GX 460

On the road

With an overall height of 73.8 inches and 8.1 inches of ground clearance with a concurrent high center of gravity, you'd expect a fair amount of body motion, and there is. Let's face it - this is no sports sedan. But ultimately the GX460's handling feels very secure - helped by the fact that it's equipped with a meticulously-tuned stability control system. There is still body lean in corners but it's well controlled. But the ride, while unaffected by potholes or road imperfections, tends to feel bouncy when traveling over uneven road surfaces.

2014 Lexus GX 460

At high speeds on the expressway the GX460 tracks straight down the road and, despite its boxy shape, is not affected by crosswinds or minor pavement irregularities. The cabin sound level is one of the high points – you almost feel cocooned. Even traveling down the expressway at over 70 miles per hour, engine sounds are muted and there's very little in the way of wind, road or tire noise that finds its way into the cabin.

Braking performance is outstanding - the brakes are very easy to modulate and provide excellent feedback through the brake pedal. Considering the size of this truck-based Ute there's hardly any nosedive during hard braking.

2014 Lexus GX 460

Equipment and pricing

2014 GX460 pricing starts at $49,995, including delivery fees, for a base model and can top out at over $70,000 for a fully-optioned and accessorized Luxury model.

Our Knight's Armor Pearl Luxury tester had a base price of $60,715. The addition of a $1,145 Mark Levinson Premium Audio system plus $910 for delivery, processing and handling brought the total MSRP to $62,770.

2014 Lexus GX 460

The Bottom Line

There's a lot to like about the 2014 Lexus GX460 including plenty of luxury features, a quiet interior with really good driver visibility and lots of room for five adults with good fuel economy for a vehicle of this type. It also comes standard with full- time 4WD, blind spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert, intuitive park assist and 10 air bags.

2014 Lexus GX 460

Not only is it a great highway cruiser, it is also a commanding presence in city driving – its high-profile tires soaking up pavement irregularities and huge potholes with ease.

The bottom line is that the Lexus GX 460 is the consummate body-on-frame sport utility cruiser – quiet and quick while eating up freeway miles and soaking up road irregularities in the city better than any other large vehicle we have ever driven. Throw in its legendary dealer experience and reliability and you have a combination that's hard to beat.

2014 Lexus GX 460