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There are some things in this industry that we're perplexed by, like the infotainment system on our long-term Subaru WRX or why the Mitsubishi Mirage is allowed to exist, among other things. Let's add one more to that group, with the Lexus GX. It's not a particularly bad vehicle for a big, body-on-frame brute, remaining one of the only true SUVs in the mid-size luxury class, alongside the equally old fashioned Land Rover LR4.

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In case you're thinking, "But Lexus already has a seven-seat crossover in the GX 460," that's actually a proper SUV – the body-on-frame kind with the massive footprint and floaty handling. A report in Automotive News says that Lexus is trying to figure out how to produce a true crossover with space for seven humans, with the options narrowed down to growing the RX (pictured) or sorting out a brand new model.

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Old School Meets New Lux

The Toyota 4Runner has always held a special place in my heart for its boxy styling and off-road prowess, but until now, I never had the chance to drive its more luxurious cousin, the Lexus GX 460. Granted, the GX actually has more in common with the foreign-market Land Cruiser Prado, but all three SUVs ride on the same body-on-frame platform.

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Well, that didn't take long. Just days after patent images leaked, Lexus has released pricing and images for its redesigned 2014 GX 460. Our first reaction is... wow, look at the front end on that! The updated luxury SUV features what Lexus calls "a new interpretation" of its now-trademark Spindle grille. The oversized hourglass shape is certainly unique, and whether for good or bad, it's sure to make the GX stand out.

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The Lexus GX and the Toyota Land Cruiser Prado, which isn't sold in the US, have gone without visual updates since the current generation was launched in 2009. But what appear to be patent filing sketches and pictures of the sibling sports utility vehicles' mid-cycle updates have been leaked on a Russian Land Cruiser Club forum.

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There's been a lot of news regarding future Lexus products recently, including spy shots of new RC coupe and NX compact crossover, and reports that a 2+2 coupe based on the LF-LC concept is heading for production. Now, Automotive News says that Japan's #1 luxury automaker is planning to replace the fullsize, body-on-frame Lexus GX SUV with a three-row crossover called the TX.

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What would you do if a wild animal jumped into your vehicle through an open window during an African safari? What if said animal was an impala being chased by cheetahs? Though the scenario seems unbelievable, that's just what happened to a group of tourists in Kruger National Park in South Africa, and it was all caught on video.

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Add another one to the endangered list. The number of traditional body-on-frame SUVs has been dwindling as manufacturers replace them with crossovers, which is the direction the Lexus GX 460 is heading. According to Ward's Auto, the GX will likely be supplanted by a unibody, three-row crossover at the end of its current lifecycle.

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The super-hot Lexus LFA coupe may only have a production run of 500 units, but the candle might not burn out on this stunner anytime soon. According to Automotive News, Lexus will produce an LFA roadster, previewed by the 2008 Detroit Auto Show concept car pictured above. Interestingly, the report indicates that there will likely be a one-year hiatus in between LFA coupe and roadster production, so the droptop supercar should hit the streets in mid-2014.

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Last year, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) ranked the natural gas-burning Honda Civic GX as the greenest vehicle of 2010. Well, that CNG-fed Civic, which is only available in a handful of states, has topped the charts yet again.

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2010 Lexus GX460 – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Lexus Safety Experience – Click above for high-res image gallery

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You take the high(drogen) road and Oklahoma'll take the CNG road. That's the situation in the Sooner State now that Governor Brad Henry signed the Oklahoma Energy Security Act, which tries to make the state less dependent on foreign oil, into law last week. The new law declares that 15 percent of the state's electricity has to come from renewable energy sources by 2015 and, more germane to our car-centered blog here, it "spells out goals to have CNG fueling stations located along the Interstate

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According to Consumer Reports, it's officially safe to wade back into Lexus GX waters. The luxury SUV has been removed from the infamous "Do Not Buy" list after Toyota solved the handling issues that landed the high-riding people mover in time-out. The Japanese automaker has corrected a software issue that allowed the vehicle to lose control during emergency braking maneuvers. All new models will be sold with the fix, and current owners have been asked to bring in their vehicles so that the repa

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The only factory-built natural gas-fueled car currently offered in the United States is now a little bit more available. Cheap natural gas costs and state incentives have led Honda to start offering the Civic GX to retail customers in Oklahoma. Previously, the car had only been available in California, New York and Utah.

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