2020 Lexus GX460 vs. 2020 Mercedes G-Class

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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For enhanced safety, the front and middle seat shoulder belts of the Lexus GX460 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Mercedes G-Class has only front height-adjustable seat belts.

The GX460 has standard Active Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The G-Class doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The GX460 Luxury offers an optional Panoramic View Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The G-Class only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the GX460 and the G-Class have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front and rear side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, all-wheel drive, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning and driver alert monitors.

Warranty

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Lexus’ powertrain warranty covers the GX460 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Mercedes covers the G-Class. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the G-Class ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

The GX460’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the G-Class’ (6 vs. 5 years).

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are better in initial quality than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 4 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 12th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus first in reliability, above the industry average. With 28 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 13th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Lexus first in reliability. Mercedes is ranked 21st.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the GX460 gets better fuel mileage than the G 550 (15 city/19 hwy vs. 13 city/17 hwy).

Brakes and Stopping

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The GX460 stops much shorter than the G-Class:

GX460

G-Class

60 to 0 MPH

117 feet

136 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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The Lexus GX460’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Mercedes G-Class only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling

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The GX460 has active sway bars, which help keep it flat and controlled during cornering, but disconnect at lower speeds to smooth the ride and offer greater off-road suspension articulation. This helps keep the tires glued to the road on-road and off. The G-Class doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

The GX460 Luxury has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The GX460’s height leveling suspension allows the driver to raise ride height for better off-road clearance and then lower it again for easier entering and exiting and better on-road handling. The G-Class doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

The GX460 handles at .73 G’s, while the G 550 pulls only .61 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The GX460 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2.4 seconds quicker than the G 550 (28.3 seconds @ .58 average G’s vs. 30.7 seconds @ .53 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the GX460’s turning circle is 3.5 feet tighter than the G-Class’ (41.1 feet vs. 44.6 feet).

Chassis

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The Lexus GX460 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 400 to 650 pounds less than the Mercedes G-Class.

For excellent aerodynamics, the GX460 has standard flush composite headlights. The G-Class has recessed headlights that spoil its aerodynamic shape and create extra drag.

Passenger Space

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The GX460 has standard seating for 7 passengers; the G-Class can only carry 5.

The GX460 has 22.7 cubic feet more passenger volume than the G-Class (129.7 vs. 107).

Cargo Capacity

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The GX460’s rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the right swing out door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The G-Class’ rear cargo window doesn’t open.

Servicing Ease

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J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Lexus service is better than Mercedes. J.D. Power ranks Lexus second in service department satisfaction. With a 11% lower rating, Mercedes is ranked fifth.

Ergonomics

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To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the GX460 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the G-Class only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the GX460 has standard extendable sun visors. The G-Class doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the GX460 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the GX460 will cost $8030 to $8350 less than the G-Class over a five-year period.

The GX460 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the GX460 will retain 49.39% to 52.53% of its original price after five years, while the G-Class only retains 43.42%.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Lexus GX460 will be $59296 to $68046 less than for the Mercedes G-Class.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/08/06

Consumer Reports® recommends the Lexus GX460, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Lexus GX460 outsold the Mercedes G-Class by almost four to one during 2019.

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