Should You Take the 2022 Lexus GX Off Road?

The 2022 Lexus GX is a great off-road vehicle, with good engineering and tons of available off-road options—but it’s not exactly a trail master.
Written by Matt Nightingale
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
With a smorgasbord of available off-road features and sound engineering, the
Lexus GX
is as at home in the mountains and forests as it is in the urban jungle. However, per the 2022 Lexus GX off-road rating, thrill-seekers looking for a rock-crawling, wall-climbing companion should swipe right.
An off-road-capable vehicle can be a real game-changer. You won’t have to make excuses when your friends plan a fun weekend of camping and fishing—you can actually go. But not all SUVs are created equal.
In this article, we’ll answer the question: should you take the 2022 Lexus GX off road? We’ll also look at what makes an off-road vehicle great and offer some alternatives to consider if the GX doesn’t fit the bill.
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Can the 2022 Lexus GX go off road?

It sure can! Lexus has made a point of preparing the 2022 GX for off-road exploration. 
Starting at $57,200, the Lexus GX provides a sturdy frame and offers an array of useful off-roading options, including:
  • Crawl Control, a low-speed cruise control that allows you to maintain consistent speed in off-road situations.
  • Multi-terrain monitor, a series of cameras that allow you to see the terrain beside, in front of, and behind you.
  • Multi-terrain select, a menu that allows you to toggle through driving modes for various terrains such as rock, loose rock, and mud and sand.
  • Fuel tank protector, a shield that protects your fuel tank from rocks and other protruding elements in your path.
  • Transmission cooler, which keeps your transmission from overheating while doing extra work in off-road and towing situations.
But four key specs are make or break when it comes to off-road ability. Let’s take a closer look at these particulars to see how the 2022 Lexus GX rates as an off-road vehicle. 

Ground clearance

Good ground clearance is essential for any decent off-road vehicle. Ground clearance is the minimum distance between the road and the lowest point of your vehicle’s undercarriage.
The 2022 GX has a ground clearance of 8.1inches. Most experts recommend a minimum ground clearance of 6.6 inches before you consider any sort of off-road driving. Those same experts recommend a ground clearance of 8.6 inches for more strenuous overland driving and a 10.8-inch minimum clearance for serious 4x4 rock-crawling.
The GX’s 8.1-inch ground clearance is decent, but it is overshadowed by off-road gladiators like the
Jeep Wrangler
with its 9.7-inch clearance.


Another spec that off-roaders should be interested in is torque—especially low-end torque. Low-end torque is the vehicle’s ability to turn its wheels from a stand-still. The Lexus GX’s torque has been measured at 329 foot-pounds at 3,500 rpm, which is pretty good for off-road purposes.


Good tires cannot be underestimated when it comes to offroading. The good news is that, if you don’t have good off-roading tires on your Lexus GX, you can easily buy and install some without much hassle.
All-terrain tires are best for offroading as they offer more rugged sidewalls and a chunkier tread for maximum traction. The downside is that they tend to wear out faster than standard all-season tires, so your tire budget may take a bit of a hit.


Most seasoned off-roaders will recommend four-wheel or all-wheel drive for offroading. If you have anything less, you run a real risk of getting stuck. 
But, if you’ve purchased a 2022 Lexus GX, you don’t have to worry—four-wheel drive is standard on all GX models.


The more extreme your off-roading escapades are, the more important angles become. Approach angle and departure angle are key to determining just what types of objects your vehicle can traverse.  
  • Approach angle: The maximum angle that your vehicle can climb without scraping its front bumper on the ramp—21 degrees for the GX
  • Departure angle: The maximum angle that your vehicle can descend without scraping its rear bumper on the ramp—23 degrees for the GX
The 2022 Lexus GX has an approach angle of 21 degrees and a departure angle of 23 degrees. That’s not outstanding when compared to the
Ford Bronco
’s 30.4 approach angle and 33.1 departure angle.
The GX can still navigate some relatively rugged terrain, but more extreme rock crawling is not recommended.

Off-road rating: Rough and Ready

Jerry has graded the 2022 Lexus GX using our cutting-edge DIRT rating system:
Don’t Try It
Vehicles better suited to highway conditions
In a Pinch
Vehicles that can handle off-road conditions in certain circumstances
Rough and Ready
Vehicles designed for casual offroading
Trail Boss
True off-road vehicles capable of tackling a range of terrain
We give the 2022 Lexus GX an R rating. With a host of off-road options and very good technical specs, the GX is great for moderately challenging off-road excursions. 
Although the GX has a ground clearance of 8.1 inches, it's less than the 10.8inches needed to secure a T rating. And the GX’s low approach and departure angles prevent it from taking on anything too challenging. Drivers who are looking to go where no one has gone before would do well to look elsewhere.
MORE: Battle of the luxury SUVs: The Audi Q7 vs. Lexus GX 460

The best off-road alternatives to the 2022 Lexus GX

If you’re looking for a luxury SUV that can get down and dirty on the weekends, the 2022 Lexus GX is a great choice. But if you’re looking for more extreme adventures, or if the $57,200 starting price has you nervous, there are some other great SUVs that are sure to suit your needs.  
Here are some of the best alternatives to the 2022 Lexus GX.
Best affordable alternative
2022 Toyota 4Runner
With a 270-horsepower 4.0L V6 engine, a 9.6-inch ground clearance, and 4WD option, the 2022 Toyota 4Runner is good for offroading and easy on your wallet.
Best luxury alternative
2022 Infiniti QX80
The 2022 Infiniti QX80 offers all the trappings you’d expect from a luxury SUV, including a smooth, quiet ride, heated leather seats, and a 12-inch touchscreen infotainment system. The QX80’s 400-horsepower 5.6L V8 engine, available all-wheel drive, and 9.2-inch ground clearance make it a capable off-road coconspirator.
Best alternative for serious offroading
2020 Nissan Armada
The 2022 Nissan Armada comes with a 400 horsepower 5.6L V8 engine that supplies 413 pound-feet of torque at 4,000 rpm. It has competitive approach and departure angles and a ground clearance of 9.1 inches.
MORE: What’s better for off-road? The Lexus LX 570 vs. Toyota Land Cruiser
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How to find affordable car insurance for off-road vehicles

Insurance for off-road vehicles tends to be a little more expensive than your average vehicle. That’s because off-road situations pose a higher risk of damage, so insurance companies raise rates to offset the increased risk. But, you can save money on
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