My .02 on this LX after thinking more and more about it: I think the frustration lies in the fact that the LX is "flagship" in name but not fully a Lexus flagship in execution -- and a vehicle that is trying to serve too many audiences. It's supposed to fill the role of the Land Cruiser, be an ultimate luxury BOF icon, and there's an expectation of some shoppers that "It's the biggest Lexus so it should be a good family hauler with the most room." The LX falls short of #1 and #3, but should excel at #2 which is how/what it was in the past.
Lexus should have gone further and positioned it more upmarket considering buyer tastes and shifting forces in the segment. Essentially, less compromises and doubling down on what an LX should be.
Think about it...
Not so Flagship:
LX has less technology and features than the NX and RX. Interior is not great. Needs more power. Missing some luxury features from even the 2018 LS. Interior is not as provocative and unique as the LC. Not really that big for passenger and storage space.
Land Cruiser roots; Everyone just expects it to be one since it's an "L"X and this is an SUV-crazy market.
I think it would be better received if a few things were different:
3 powertrains with 3.4L V6 ICE not offered:
- Base: 3.4L V6 (iForce MAX) hybrid
- Upgrade option: TT V8
- BEV follows later
Three trim "journeys" with no base/premium trims offered:
- F SPORT--> F SPORT Performance/F
- Luxury --> Ultra Luxury
- Off Road --> Ultimate Off Road
Revised interior with more customization:
- Dual screens are killed in favor of 14" infotainment screen
- Additional interior and exterior color options
- Additional interior trim and exterior wheel options
- Needs added tech and luxury options from the '23 RX and even the LS
- More detailing and "luxury" touches on the door panels after the dash is revised
- LSS 3.0, panoramic roof, massaging seats, power door closers, power window shades, etc.
These changes would help push the LX further upmarket and eliminate some of the comparisons/expectations around it being a family hauler or "not as good as the Escalade, Navigator, etc". Does it really matter that much since they're sold out globally for 2 years? No but...
... Right now, the LX isn't standing up so well as a flagship effort in comparison to Lexus other flagships and even the RX. My primary concern is that once the new GX and TX arrive, Lexus is going to have 3 SUVs that are all very close to each other in size and the LX's flagship status is probably going to be harder to understand or justify. If it stayed on the current platform but incorporated the changes above, there would be no questioning or disputing it's place as the Lexus SUV flagship on merit
-- not on name. To be clear, I am not asking for the LX to become the Sequoia as I think the TX will cover that just fine, but Lexus should use the Land Cruiser roots and build upon that for an ultimate performing off road/ultra luxury SUV experience that's significantly elevated -- not just a little lipstick and heels.
Also, the GX should have the LX's tune of the 3.4L TT V6 -- not a detuned version just so the LX can be "king" and rob the others of equipment and power they should have. I hate when Lexus does stuff like this.