Say goodbye to the 4.6-liter naturally aspirated V8.
The upcoming new generation of the Lexus GX will highly likely be adopting a hybrid powertrain when it is finally introduced.
This information surfaced via leaked information regarding the upcoming Toyota Land Cruiser Prado, on which the Lexus has always been based. According to the renowned Japanese publication Best Car, we should expect a hybrid engine option. A turbocharged diesel V6 unit will also be available, but the US will likely not get access to the oil burner.
Toyota has two gas-hybrid engines currently available for the GX. There's the all-new 2.4-liter turbocharged four-pot hybrid that made its debut in the Crown or the old-school 2.5 NA four-pot used in various hybrid models. Given the weight of a seven-seat off-roader, we're willing to bet on the former. Since the launch is rumored to happen in 2024, Toyota might even have an all-new hybrid in the pipeline.
It's unclear which platform will be used, but the TNGA-F, which also supports the Lexus LX, is the most likely candidate.
The Japanese publication hints that the design will merge straight lines with curved surfaces and likely boast similar exterior dimensions to the current-generation model, including its seven-seater configuration. Furthermore, the GX's standard level of safety equipment will be brought to the same level as the current models, such as the RAV4. It will also feature Toyota's new infotainment system, likely to incorporate Google's new in-car software.
It is safe to say that Lexus has gotten some fantastic value out of the current-generation model. It was officially introduced back in 2009 and handed some minor updates throughout its life.
Will people be willing to sacrifice the 301 horsepower 4.6-liter V8 for a hybridized four-pot?
Before we panic, let's remember that the larger Lexus LX lost its V8 unit in favor of a newer twin-turbo V6 without sacrificing performance or capability, which resulted in a staggeringly positive market reception. Downsizing may not be an awful thing. While the publication doesn't mention who the source is, this rumor does fall in line with Lexus and Toyota's conservative EV strategy in the USA.
The big question is when we'll see this model hit the streets. It's understood that the Prado will break cover in the summer of next year with no official word on when we may see the GX, but looking at how close the Toyota Land Cruiser 300 and LX were revealed in proximity to one another, we don't think the wait will be that long.