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Eric's Autos: 2022 Lexus GX460

Eric Peters on

Land Rover Discovery's available six is more powerful than the GX's standard V8.

Under The Hood

This Lexus still comes standard with a V8 engine, defying the trend toward replacing these engines with what are said to be "more efficient" turbocharged four- and six-cylinder engines, often paired up with some kind of "mild hybrid" system that shuts off the engine regularly -- relying on inertia and battery power to keep the vehicle moving during these intervals -- as a way to reduce fuel consumption.

But does it, really?

As it turns out, the 4.6-liter, 301 horsepower V8 that every GX comes standard with is only slightly less "efficient" than the much smaller four- and six-cylinder turbo'd and often hybridized engines that are used in rivals such as the Land Rover Discovery and Mercedes-Benz GLE -- both of which come standard with 2.0-liter four-cylinder engines that make 296 and 255 horsepower, respectively.

EPA says the Lexo-saurus will travel 15 mpg in city driving and 19 mpg on the highway on a gallon of premium unleaded, which sounds horrendous. But the four-cylinder Disco goes ... wait for it ... 19 in the city and 22 on the highway. The Benz GLE goes a bit farther on the highway, where the EPA says it's good for 27 miles. But in the city, it's back down to 19 -- so when you average it out, it's about the same.

 

On The Road

Having a massive steel frame underneath you has a certain feel that having a body welded together does not. It's a pleasant heaviness that's desirable in a vehicle like this. It's a confidence-inspiring feeling when you look underneath a vehicle like this and see a heavy steel beam perimeter and know it's not going to bend if you put a floor jack under it or get hung up off-road, and which is much less likely to need welding if you get hit on the road.

With a body that's bolted to the frame, many exterior body panels can be unbolted and replaced without welding. And a heavy steel frame is probably going to endure longer -- especially against structural rust -- than a welded-together (and thinner gauge metal) body and frame.

At The Curb

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