Toyota is preparing to give the full-size Land Cruiser major updates inside and out, so it comes as no surprise that the Lexus LX will benefit from similar modifications at about the same time. Official details are being kept under wraps for the time being, but low-resolution spy shots seemingly taken in Dubai give us a good idea of what to expect from the newest version of one of the last body-on-frame SUVs.
Updated 08-10-2015 by Ronan Glon: Added new pictures, more information about the modifications.
Introduced in 2007, the Lexus GX gets a new front end characterized by what is unquestionably the biggest rendition of Lexus’ trademarked spindle grille ever seen on a production vehicle. Other visual updates include new headlights that give the LX a more modern look and boomerang-shaped chrome trim with small round fog lights on either side of the lower bumper.
Published by Chinese website AutoIfeng, the photos reveal the LX’s rear fascia is fitted with thinner LED tail lamps accented by thin strips of chrome trim, a redrawn hatch and a revised bumper. As always, new alloy wheel designs and paint colors will further differentiate the facelifted model from its predecessor.
The dashboard has been comprehensively updated, too. Notably, a curved piece of wood trim emphasizes the cockpit’s width while giving the center console a more streamlined look, and the infotainment system is displayed on a much bigger screen. The steering wheel, the shift knob, and the instrument cluster are also new. Clearly, the updates go a step beyond the average mid-cycle update.
In select markets, the Land Cruiser is expected to get a 2.8-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder engine borrowed from the recently-introduced Hilux pickup, but Australian website Motoring reports the LX will carry on without any major mechanical modifications. Currently, Lexus’ range-topping SUV is powered by a 5.7-liter V8 engine that uses a six-speed automatic transmission to send 381 horsepower and 401 lb-ft. of torque to all four wheels. The behemoth can tow up to 7,000 pounds, but it returns 13 mpg in the city.
Related: New Lexus flagship in the works
The updated Toyota Land Cruiser and the Lexus GX will both be introduced in Japan later this month, and they are expected to go on sale in the United States shortly after. However, whether they’ll arrive here before the end of the year as 2016 models or next spring as 2017 models is still up in the air.