The Lexus GX, which debuted in the U.S. in 2002, has always been revered as a smaller brother of big boy Lexus LX, with similar luxury and great off-road capability. Buyers from true overlanders to soccer moms and dads all heralded the versatility of this Sport-Ute.
So was the previous-generation GX the perfect mid-size SUV?
In many ways yes, but why rest on your laurels? With the all-new 2024 model, Lexus has upgraded the GX in terms of luxury, convenience, off-road capability, and size.
GX Key Takeaways:
- Off-road capability is improved with new Overtrail and Overtrail+ grades with standard 33-inch All-Terrain tires on 18-inch wheels
- Gone is the V8 engine, replaced with a 3.4-liter twin-turbo V6 outputting 349 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. A hybrid powertrain will be introduced in the U.S. at a later date
- Safety and convenience are a priority, with the Lexus Safety System+ 3.0 and Lexus Interface with 14-inch multimedia touchscreen standard on all trim levels
- True body-on-frame construction features an up to, depending on trim, 9,096-pound towing capacity
According to Lexus, the new GX is “Reimagined from the ground up — designed to inspire customers to pursue their urge to travel, take an unpaved path, and revel in the joy of driving.”
With a starting MSRP of $64,250, the 2024 GX is offered in six grades: Premium, Premium+, Luxury, Luxury+, Overtrail and Overtrail+.
Rugged Yet Refined Exterior:
Exterior styling is vastly different from previous generation models as the GX is boxy-rugged. Up front, the Lexus spindle grille continues, a styling feature I’ve never been a big fan of. But the new GX’s grille is super-well integrated and creates a strong look to match the overall well-executed profile. Standard “Triple-Beam” LED headlamps and grille openings have been raised to help avoid potential road/off-road impact. LED fog and cornering lamps are optional depending on trim.
The side profile features a wide track and fender flares — overall width increases by 3.74 inches (Overtrail trims by 4.52 inches) compared to the previous-generation GX.
At the rear, a body-width light bar makes a strong styling statement. A standard power rear hatch (a GX first) with a pop-out window and available kick sensor round out aggressive rear styling.
The all-new interior is substantially improved compared to the last generation model. Information is fed to the driver via a digital 12.3-inch Multi-Information Display. The horizontal instrument panel carries into the center dash with a standard 14-inch touchscreen display with Lexus Interface technology. My test Overtrail+ trim featured a Head-Up Display, and physical dials for frequently used controls such as air conditioning and audio volume—a real plus in an automotive world that favors touchscreen and touchpad technology. Thank you Lexus! Some things are better left alone!
On the lower dash/console, off-road controls are concentrated near the gear shifter.
With seating for up to seven (Premium, Premium+, Luxury, Luxury+), ergonomic measures have been implemented to help decrease load and work to aid driving posture through seat cushion, seatback bolster, and headrest improvements.
The second row is available in two configurations: captain’s chairs or a 60:40 split-folding bench (Premium+, Luxury, Luxury+). A one-motion tumble system has been added for convenient access to the third row/luggage space. Heated and ventilated outboard seats are standard in the driver and front passenger seats, with available heated second-row seats.
The third row is available in both power and manual seat configurations. A rear seat reminder has been implemented for increased safety and convenience.
Comfort and convenience features abound in the new GX. Interior highlights include, depending on trim, up to six illuminated charging ports (four in Overtrail and Overtrail+) are available throughout the cabin and a wireless charger is available in the front console tray. New details increase interior storage space in the center console and door pockets, and depending on trim there are up to 12 cupholders. Luggage space for both the second and third-row configurations has improved compared to the previous generation, holding up to five suitcases with the third row folded. Two additional storage spaces have been added under the cargo area to accommodate smaller items, and a 120V AC inverter has been added for additional power needs.
The 2024 GX comes standard with a 10-speaker premium sound system, with available 21- Speaker Mark Levinson Surround Sound. Both sound systems are impressive, but the Mark Levinson system is worth the additional cost as the sonic quality is awesome. Wireless Apple CarPlay Integration and Android Auto are standard.
Additional options (depending on trim) include Digital Key with SmartAccess Card Key, Cool Box, the aforementioned Head-Up Display, Traffic Jam Assist, Cold Area Package, and a tonneau cover.
Superior Off-Road Capability
Off-road, the picturesque trails within the White Stallion Ranch, with the Tortolita Mountains as a backdrop, served as a decent arbiter of the unpaved chops of the GX. While there were no rivers to ford (GX can handle up to 26” of water), and no large rocks or hills to climb, we were able to experience muddy moguls, sharp on-trail turns (which highlighted the turn assist function), and explore the entire trail in low 4WD range with the Torsen limited-slip center differential locked. You can also lock the rear diff when the snow is deep or the roadway/pathway is slippery or rock-strewn. When accelerating during a turn, the Torsen differential optimally distributes the driving force according to the load on the rear left and right wheels to achieve controlled performance.
Overtrail and Overtrail+ grades exclusively offer an electronically controlled locking rear differential, activated by a console-mounted switch, that splits the power evenly between the left and right rear wheels to help the wheels turn at the same speed. Overtrail and Overtrail+ are outfitted with the Electronic Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (E-KDSS). Depending on driving conditions, speed, steering input, and the Multi-Terrain Select (MTS) mode. MTS in “Low-4” has four modes: Auto, Sand, Mud, and Rock. In “High-4” there are five modes: Auto, Dirt, Sand, Mud, and Deep Snow. Depending on the setting chosen by the driver, the system can independently lock or unlock the front and rear stabilizer bars as needed.
When MTS is on, the Multi-Terrain Monitor (MTM) can assist with views under and around the vehicle when driving off-road. MTM uses four cameras to check road conditions, blind spots, and distance between obstacles.
So yes, the new GX continues its legacy of being a true, body-on-frame (the only BOF chassis in its class) SUV.
On smooth roads, the new GX excelled. Ride quality is supple, and engine performance is very good. The smaller, turbocharged six-cylinder engine is noisier than the silky smooth V8 it replaces, but it’s certainly acceptable for a luxury truck. Tire noise was excessive on rough-hewn road surfaces, and very quiet on blacktop and grooved highway surfaces.
Lexus Safety System + 3.0
All GX trim levels come standard with Lexus Safety System+ 3.0, an integrated suite of active safety equipment and convenience features including Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Risk Avoidance Emergency Steer Assist, Left Turn Oncoming Vehicle Detection/Braking, All-speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Tracing Assist, Emergency Driving Stop System, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist Road Sign Assist, Proactive Driving Assist and a long list of additional safety and crash prevention/mitigation features.
Lexus Overtrail Project
At the 2023 Tokyo Outdoor Show, Lexus introduced the “Overtrail Project,” an initiative that intends to inspire customers around the world to explore nature through refined adventures. The goal is to include more opportunities for new Lexus Overtrail and Overtrail+ customers in the future; including potential products, accessories, gear, and experiences.
2024 GX Pricing