That time I surprised my birthday girl with a 2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV

2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV

My youngest daughter turned 32 years old the first part of July. When I asked what she'd like for her birthday, Andrea requested only that my husband and I go to church with her that day, to her church in Denver, which we'd never visited before. And MOANA on DVD, too.

The wishes of my Disney-loving daughter seemed rather small, so I decided to throw in a surprise. A 2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV sort of surprise!

Not for the birthday girl to keep, of course — though if my budget allowed, I'd certainly hand her the title without question. But thanks to help from Rocky Mountain Redline and a vehicle courtesy DriveShop, I did manage to surprise Andrea with a special mode of transport on her special day. In the 2017 Lexus GX460, my baby girl was chauffeured in style around Denver, to and from her church and birthday brunch.

2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV 

And she still got MOANA. Which she was delighted to watch a few minutes of in the Lexus GX460, thanks to the built-in DVD player that entertains backseat passengers (and includes a remote and headphones so the front-seat driver need not fiddle with the entertainment options while at the wheel).

Though the Lexus surprise was for my daughter for a day, the Lexus loaner was mine for a week. And it just so happened it was a week which I was tasked with taking grandson James to and from summer daycamp. He delighted in the DVD feature just as much as my daughter. Maybe even more.

2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV

I delighted in pretty much everything about the 2017 Lexus GX460. The thing is gorgeous — "Nightfall Mica" is the exterior color, mahogany wood steering wheel and shift knob adorn the interior. So pretty outside and in. And spacious, too, with three rows of seats, including tilt/slide captain's chairs in the second row.


The seats are semi-aniline leather trimmed, heated and cooled in the front, cooled in second row. All passengers in all seats are well protected, too, with plenty of airbags, including front, knee and side for the driver and front passenger, second row side, and roll-sensing side curtain in all rows.

Now, sometimes third-row seats can be a major pain to convert from cargo space to seating. Not so with the Lexus GX460, and James proves it.


I was initially a tad anxious about driving — and parking — the large SUV, as my personal car is a compact. My trepidation was quickly assuaged by the multiple assistance features. To name just a few:

• Automatic Collision Notification

• Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert

• Lane Departure Alert

• Wide-view Front and Side Monitor

• Backup Camera

• Intuitive Parking Assist

They even made it easy peasy for me to park in my garage without worrying I'd scratch (or scrunch) the sumptuous-yet-sizeable SUV.

The Lexus GX460 is loaded with various bells and whistles that kept me smiling and singing while at the wheel. The push-button start/stop got me going quickly. The Mark Levinson Premium Audio Surround Sound and SiriusXM Satellite Radio entertained me from the minute I started the SUV to the second I stopped. (Except for times James was along and enjoying a DVD.) The navigation system with 8-inch touchscreen kept me in the know on where I wanted to go... and what the speed limit was on each road I travelled.

2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV

Plus — I just gotta admit — I was pretty impressed with the rain-sensing windshield wipers when I found myself on the road in the rain. For years I've whined to my husband that wipers that know when to go on and off just had to be plausible. The Lexus GX460 was my first experience with that (minor) fantasy turned reality.

Speaking of reality, some real important standard features of the 2017 Lexus GX460:

  • 4.8-liter V8-32 valve, Dual OverHead Cam Variable Valve Timing, 301 hp / 329lb-ft.
  • Full-time 4WD w/Torsen Limited Slip Center Differential (w/Electronic Locking Feature)
  • Adaptive Variable Suspension, Rear Air Suspension w/Automatic Load Leveling, Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System
  • 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Anti-Lock Braking System, w/Electronic Brakeforce Distribution and Brake Assist, Vehicle Stability Controller and Trailer sway control

All in all, the 2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV is a driver's dream come true... albeit one a wee bit above my price range. The well-appointed GX460 I tested — loaded with the "Sport Design Package" and "Driver Support Package" plus a couple other options — has an MSRP of $70,915 (minus delivery fees). Mileage on the loaded vehicle comes in at 15 MPG city and 18 highway.

Which means for me, the SUV of my dreams will unfortunately remain but a dream. Yet I'll forever fondly remember the special day the 2017 Lexus GX460 delighted my daughter — as well as the full week I felt pretty darn special sportin' about in it myself.

2017 Lexus GX460 luxury SUV

For more on the many features of the 2017 Lexus GX460 that I didn't mention here plus all the tech and spec stuff on the vehicle, visit

Disclosure: I received this vehicle free for review for a week (thank you, DriveShop!); all opinions are my own.