Hard to believe Lexus didn’t have its North American lineup quite right; however, it resolved the need for a capable — and dedicated — three-row SUV with the all-new 2024 Lexus TX. The new model replaces the RXL, which filled the gap not-so-capably.
Luxury brand Lexus seemingly has a vehicle for every segment, but one of those wasn’t quite right. Fortunately, the maker got plenty of feedback from dealers and customers saying it needed a purpose-built three-row large SUV.
The brand had been making do with the RXL, but with the arrival of the new Global Architecture-K, or GA-K, it wasn’t going to be long before the new TX was announced giving Lexus fans the seven-seater they longed for.
Fortunately, Headlight.News got an invite for the first drive in the new ute in Austin, Texas and I came away … satisfied — very satisfied.
Not like the others
First of all, one must know that the Lexus RX is one of the best luxury SUVs on the planet. It offers just about anything someone could desire in a midsize ute and stretching to seat seven people made sense to me — until climbing into the TX.
Ambling into any of the five versions — Standard, Premium, Luxury, F Sport Performance Premium, and F Sport Performance Luxury — makes you stop and essentially say, “Oh yeah. Now I get it.” Rarely does stretching a smaller vehicle to handle more people or cargo work as intended. The demand for a better Lexus to do the job only provides further evidence of this.
Cramming seven people into three rows can be accomplished in many ways. In fact, Lexus does three ways with the also-new GX and the full-size LX as well as the new TX — without the “cramming” part.
Gotta be appealing
Of course, with options for seven people, the way you get people into your new model is to make it as attractive on the outside as it is roomy on the inside. Lexus does that without any problem. Starting at the front, it sticks to the same basic look for the grille, but with a stylish update it calls the “Unified Spindle.”
The new look is not only born out of aesthetics, but practicality, improving the aerodynamic performance of the front end, helping to better cook the brakes and lower its drag coefficient.
It retains the sharp, angular look its siblings enjoy, including the slit-like headlights that give it a contemporary, but not overdone look. It’s taken to the limit, but no further. The angles almost lead you down the side of the TX where it gets some sculpted doors. The creases are minimal and clean with a slight flare on the fenders. There’s not more than what’s needed to keep the wind moving down the side.
Once you get to the rear of the TX, the flared fenders accentuate the vehicle’s wide track. The planted look is accentuated by the slim signature L-shaped light bar lamp, which keeps the theme from the front of TX.
The cabin of the TX is a tech-laden, yet comfortable place to be. So often tech-heavy interiors can be intimidating, the native operating systems being obtuse. Not so in the TX, including the 12.3-inch multi-information display available in the new model — a 7-inch is standard.
Controls for the comfort features are all within easy reach and require almost no time to decipher. Many of those are tied up in the massive 14-inch touchscreen. The native software is designed to be similar to that of a smart phone, which I found to be true. However, if you like consistency, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto can be accessed on the TX.
Those phones and other devices can all be charged and accessed through the seven USB ports and three power outlets (depending upon which trim level you’ve got). Up front, three USB Type-C ports sit on the lower instrument panel, just above the standard wireless charger.
For second-row passengers, two USB Type-C ports are located at the bottom rear of the front center console, the company notes. For third-row passengers, one USB Type-C port is located on both the right and left side of the seat.