This is a unique 1997 LX450 as it has a TRD Supercharged 4.5 engine. Vehicle sat for a year before I bought it with 145,000 miles. After a good cleaning and over due maintenance, it’s at 167,000 miles and going strong. Softer ride than the Land Cruiser. Drive train is strong. Supercharger gives it plenty of power. The driver’s seat leather shows some wear, but the rest of the interior is immaculate. No rattles, no squeaks, no abnormal wind noise. Looking forward to driving it this winter. This vehicle is proof of Toyota’s durability, even after 20 years. Update: Decided to sell the LX as the wife was using it as a daily driver and needed something that got better mileage. We hated to see it go, but it was fun while we had it. It started consuming a bit of oil, probably the valve stem seals as it had sat for a long period prior to us buying it. Other than that it was still going strong. Awesome vehicle.
I now have 287,488 miles on my '97 LX450 and it still purrs like a kitten. At 285,000 I had a very slight head gasket leak, didn't let it overheat, and went to the shop. When the cylinder head was pulled off, there was still obvious cross-hatching on the cylinder walls, as if the engine was new. I had a new head gasket installed, and back on the road she went, no smoke, no unusual oil consumption, just turn the key and go. I added some Old Man Emu replacement springs and shocks (after 20 years with the original equipment) just to smooth out the body roll at freeway speeds. The car remains the best vehicle I've ever owned. Unparalleled reliability and off-road performance.
Has been a GREAT family vehicle for active duty military family of 5 + Lab. Have traveled coast to coast at least 4-5 times in the 10 we've had it. Took it 4 wheeling all the time in sand & mountains in AZ & west TX (with everyone in the car)! Handles awesome! Creeps & crawls beautifully up & down rocks & the desert landscape. Taken it out on drives on the beach in the east coast. Never gets stuck. Leather Interior is a MUST with a family! Kids get sick in car? No problem! Dog hair? No problem! Kids spill cheerios, ketchup, fries, drinks? No problem! Everything wipes up clean & doesn't smell! Wish I could afford another one! This one is till going strong but would love cupholders! < - - that's my only gripe!
Update: 10k miles later, still have her and still going strong!! I WANT ANOTHER ONE!!
I bought my LX450 two years ago with 218,000 miles on the clock with no worries and now showing 237K. I was shopping for a Toyota Land Cruiser when I found this LX, and if you have done any research, you know that they are the same vehicle, with different badges and a few extra toys. The locking diffs are great off-road, and the factory stereo and CD changer still sound great.
Everything inside works as it should with the exception of the power seats, which seems to be an issue with most of these cars. The motors are $500 apiece, and luckily mine broke in the right spot for me to be comfortable in. The A/C is great and the heat is fantastic. Oh, the light on the dash that illuminates the "D" has burned out, really, I cannot complain about that.
Mechanically, this truck is amazing. The engine, gearbox and 4WD system are still running flawless. The only thing I have had to replace is the radiator, and will soon need a new power steering pump, but other than routine maintenance, it has been trouble free. I would not hesitate to get in it and drive cross country tomorrow.
On the outside, the paint is fade-free and the clear-coat still intact. The upright windshield gives great visibility but is prone to catching rocks. The rear bumper finish is starting to crack and come off, but it's not really a great concern of mine since it does not affect the way the truck drives.
I have a mild lift and am running "35's so the gas mileage is not so great (getting 14 mpg. in mixed use) and the ride can be a little harsh, but if you want a cloud like ride, buy a Lincoln Town Car (which is what I did).
I am a wildlife photographer and needed a truck that I could trust to get me into nature and back home when I was done. From rocky tracks to muddy trails to snow and ice covered roads, my Lexus has never faltered or given me a reason to be concerned.
I love this truck, after spending a day in the wild with me, a good friend bought a '97 Land Cruiser and he is so happy that he prefers it over his 2015 Tacoma TRD.
Purchased a 5 year old LX 450 in January of 2002 with 65k. Now have 124k on the SUV with absolutely zero problems. The SUV is in great shape and people mistake it for a 1 to 2 year old vehicle vs the 10+ years. Have the local Toyota specialists perform the regular maintenance and the vehicle functions like a fine Swiss watch. I love it! Runs like a champ on the highway and its a mountain goat when I go off road.