The GX gets smarter as it ages; it’s even teaching tricks to other Lexus models

Lexus is treating the go-anywhere GX to a comprehensive round of tech updates and a nip-and-tuck for the 2020 model year. The seven-seater is certainly not the most modern model in the company’s lineup, but the changes prove that old-fashioned off-road prowess and cutting-edge technology features aren’t mutually exclusive. Most of the driving aids added to the GX will trickle down to other members of the company’s portfolio.

Every variant of the GX, from the base model to the flagship Luxury trim, will come standard with the Lexus Safety System+ suite of electronic driving aids. It bundles a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, lane departure alert, automatic high beams, and radar-based adaptive cruise control. These features make the GX safer by reducing the likelihood of an accident. Of course, it’s ultimately up to the driver to avoid a crash.

Tech makes the GX smarter on the pavement, but owners can also rely on it when they venture off the beaten path. The optional Off-Road package also added to the lineup for the 2020 model year relies on an armada of cameras to show the driver what’s in front of, behind, on either side of, and even under the GX. Footage is transferred to the infotainment system’s screen on the center console. The Off-Road package also adds Multi-Terrain Select technology, which prevents wheelspin by adjusting the response of the throttle and the brake pedal. The available settings include loose rocks, sand, and rocks.

Visually, the 2020 GX stands out from the 2019 model thanks to a jumbo grille that looks big enough to park a UX on, and redesigned headlights. The changes bring it in line with other members of the Lexus family, including the RX.

There are no major mechanical changes to report. As its name implies, the GX 460 carries on with a 4.6-liter, naturally-aspirated V8 engine tuned to deliver 301 horsepower and 329 pound-feet of torque. It spins the four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission and a full-time four-wheel drives system. Body-on-frame construction has many downsides (including mediocre fuel economy), but it also presents a wide panoply of upsides. The GX’s towing capacity notably checks in at 6,500 pounds, and it’s one of the best off-roaders in the industry.

The 2020 Lexus GX will begin arriving in showrooms in the coming months. Pricing information will be released closer to its on-sale date.

In a separate announcement, Lexus announced the aforementioned Safety System+ suite of driving aids will be standard on every 2020-model-year car it sells regardless of market segment or price. Some already came with these features, but there were a few holdouts in the Japanese firm’s 2019 portfolio. There’s no word yet on whether pricing for the upcoming model year will go up to reflect the expanded list of standard features.

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