Toyota Land Cruiser vs Lexus LX 570 Suspension Flex Test | Measuring suspension articulation on an RTI ramp

There is no have to have to clarify the Toyota Land Cruiser, one particular of

There is no have to have to clarify the Toyota Land Cruiser, one particular of Toyota’s earliest successful items. The 2020 Toyota Land Cruiser Heritage Version celebrates some sixty years of level of popularity of a car that has survived the segment’s “mall wagon” period and the increase of crossovers. Its already-sterling popularity has been given an extra modern thrust from the increase of overlanding — an outside pastime that has normally existed but only not long ago obtained a press agent.

By comparison, the Lexus LX is a a lot more modern growth. Debuting in 1996, the LX 470 was small a lot more than an eighty-sequence Land Cruiser with cladding, a Lexus badge and a larger value. The total of styling differentiation and luxurious specialization has elevated around the years to the position that the latest LX 570 basically looks like a totally unique car.

In fact, the 2020 Lexus LX 570 and the 2020 Toyota Land Cruiser are each two hundred-sequence Land Cruisers beneath the pores and skin. They share the same thirsty V8 engine and the same frame that options a double-wishbone suspension at the front, a 5-connection coil spring suspension at the rear and a 112.2-inch wheelbase in the center. The styling is strikingly unique, of study course, but so are the hidden information of their suspensions.

The Land Cruiser employs a uncomplicated established of coil springs and shock absorbers, but with an interconnected pair of immediately disconnecting stabilizer bars called KDSS (Kinetic Dynamic Suspension Technique). The Lexus, on the other hand, has fastened stabilizer bars and coil springs, but its “shocks” are seriously hydraulic cylinders that conduct height changes and transmit suspension movements by using piping to remote electronically-adjustable damper valves mounted alongside the frame rails.

All of the earlier mentioned begs a query: Which of them will go farther up my RTI ramp and, by extension, present much better suspension articulation in an authentic off-road scenario?    


Appropriate away, the very tactic to the ramp demonstrates a substantial change and a major issue for the LX. Its usual cruising height (there is a lower height, but this isn’t that) does not provide adequate tactic clearance to attempt the ramp. The front spoiler contacts the horrible grating before the tire does. It’s a shut-operate factor, but from this position on, clearance will get Smaller sized as the remaining front suspension compresses on the way up. If it can be touching now, it is only likely to get even worse if I go forward.

It must be observed that this LX570 exam sample is equipped with the optional “Sport Package” that consists of, amid other issues, an even a lot more aggressively-styled front fascia with designed in “spoilers” that do a excellent job of living up to the key definition of the phrase by ruining tactic clearance straight in front of the tires. Issues surely would have been unique if this LX 570 lacked this $2,510 overall look offer.

But our LX 570 isn’t out of this battle however. Its four-wheel height control procedure incorporates a change that raises the front 2 inches and the rear 2.4 inches. That is a lot more than adequate to give it the clearance it wants to drive up the ramp. But I found a problem when I pressed the change to set it in higher mode: The procedure raises the rear axle initially, which has the effect of driving the scarcely-touching nose firmly into the ramp. The front does not start off to increase until soon after the rear is fully elevated. This looks backwards. You tactic obstructions at the front, so the front must lift initially.

In the meantime, the Land Cruiser, which only has one particular fastened height, has no issues motoring suitable on up the ramp.


The Land Cruiser’s edge is apparent. It is able to drive about 8 inches farther up the ramp than the LX before the remaining-rear tires of each vehicles shed get hold of with my driveway and get started spinning.

These a visible comparison isn’t normally significant when unique can make and styles contend for honors on the ramp, but it operates listed here due to the fact they have exactly the same wheelbase.


Even when established to higher mode, the LX is even now in even worse shape at the leading of the ramp than the Land Cruiser. I can scarcely swipe my index finger by way of the gap, and only if flat it will not healthy sideways. This reaffirms my choice to award zero points to the LX in usual mode due to the fact the car would drop 2 inches and crush its front bodywork if I ended up to interact it now.

In the meantime, the Land Cruiser’s front fascia stands higher adequate that I can healthy my complete hand in there with place to spare. I’m not concerned about the flap in the qualifications due to the fact it is flexible adequate to shift out of the way. It’s also a hidden unpainted piece that sits farther again.

This comparison illustrates that the LX’s spoiler isn’t just harming the tactic angle due to the fact it is lower, it is also leading to trouble due to the fact it juts farther forward. The spoiler is about the same distance from the camera even however the LX’s tire (and its common bulk) are some 8 inches farther away down the ramp.


The reverse corner — passenger side rear — is at full compression, with each suspensions resting on their bump stops. There does not look to be a lot of a change in flex again listed here.

That explained, a tiny change is apparent if I set my fingers in earlier mentioned the tire. I can healthy a few in the LX, but I have to bend one particular again to do the same in the Land Cruiser. Connect with it 2 1/2 or 2 three/4. Both equally tires are explained to have the same in general rolling diameter, but the Land Cruiser’s sidewalls are 1.5 inches taller. They’ll compress a lot more at the base, so I suppose they could similarly distort upward at the leading a tiny total.

Decreased down, the seam in my driveway and the warp in the mudflaps even more illustrates how a lot farther the Land Cruiser was able to climb and pitch its nose up. 


The total of flex seems to be to be rather related from this side, also. But the tires seriously stand out listed here. The LX 570 arrives common with 20-inch wheels and tires, but this one particular has the optional 21-inch improve. The expression improve is debatable on a complete host of fronts, but it can be a apparent damaging when it arrives to off-freeway effectiveness. The Land Cruiser, on the other hand, rides on eighteen-inch wheels and tires that make a lot a lot more perception off road. The Heritage Version arrives with special BBS solid wheels that are lighter than the common Land Cruiser eighteen-inch fitment.


The change in suspension adaptability is most apparent up front, where by the Land Cruiser’s front tire tucks a lot farther up into the wheel perfectly. This extra flex is why it can drive farther up the ramp, as evidenced by my two parts of blue tape. The Land Cruiser’s disconnectable KDSS stabilizer bars may perhaps ought to have credit rating listed here, but I’m not able to ensure that due to the fact I couldn’t drive the LX 570 up the ramp in its usual height mode to make a immediate comparison.

Why does this Hi mode issue to this measurement? Height-adjustable suspensions typically articulate a lot more in usual height mode than they do in any elevated mode. The mechanism that can make the car increase does so by making the suspension stiffer, which lessens the total of suspension compression for a specified degree of force. The LX’s front tire would pretty much undoubtedly compress farther up into the fender in usual mode and climb larger up the ramp, but there isn’t adequate tactic clearance to attempt that measurement.


Here’s what all of this boils down to in phrases of Ramp Travel Index, which is the distance a car climbs up the ramp divided by its wheelbase — multiplied by 1,000 to eliminate any pesky decimals and make issues a lot more intriguing.


Right here are the success: 


LX 570, usual mode: inches of climb ÷ 112.2 x 1,000 = points

LX 570, higher mode: sixty six inches of climb ÷ 112.2 x 1,000 = 588 points

Land Cruiser: seventy four.2 inches of climb ÷ 112.2 x 1,000 = 661 points



First, the Land Cruiser is very capable suitable out of the box 661 points is no joke. That is a lot more than a Gladiator Rubicon can handle with its stabilizer bar disconnected. Also, the LX 570’s higher mode score of 588 points is even now extraordinary in its personal suitable. A TRD Tacoma cannot handle five hundred points, if you have to have a reference position.

But the LX’s so-called Activity Deal certainly ruins the tactic angle in usual mode, and it is scarcely passable even in higher mode. Do not get the Activity Deal if you are eyeing the LX 570 for any type of off-pavement touring.

It’s difficult to know what the deficiency of the Activity Deal would mean to the LX. The extra chin clearance would undoubtedly let it to make a ramp attempt in usual mode, and it would undoubtedly score larger. Would it be adequate to match the Land Cruiser? It’s difficult to say, but 661 points is only 8.2 inches away. It is the same chassis, so it may possibly handle it if the fastened stabilizer bars really do not get in the way.

I’d enjoy to carry out that exam, but I can already notify I wouldn’t hassle with the LX 570 if I experienced overlanding in mind. Its adaptive variable suspension and road-centered wheel and tire offer are there to you should pavement cruisers, and the sheer complexity of the procedure can make it unachievable to install a spring and shock improve with no ripping it all out and dealing with the blinking warning lights that would inevitably mark its absence.

The reply is suitable there in the title: if you want to get out there and cruise on some land, get the Toyota Land Cruiser.

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