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A tan-and-gray 2002 Lexus LX 470 in a parking lot

Cars & Bids Bargain of the Week: 2002 Lexus LX 470

It doesn't have a 'Land Cruiser' badge, but the 1998-2007 Lexus LX 470 is a more luxurious 100-Series Land Cruiser in all but name. And as this 2002 example listed on Cars & Bids, it's also a more affordable way to get one of these famously-durable off-road SUVs.

Even before the modern version was canceled in the US, Land Cruisers of all generations were going up in value. However, there are still ways of getting your hands on one of these durable luxury SUVs for an affordable price. If you’re a vintage Land Cruiser fan, you could always buy an imported Prado. Or, if you want a more modern SUV, you could get the 2002 Lexus LX 470 that’s currently listed on Cars & Bids.

A 1998-2007 Lexus LX 470 is a 100-Series Land Cruiser in a more luxurious disguise

A gray 2002 Lexus LX 470 driving through the desert
2002 Lexus LX 470 front 3/4 | Lexus
1998-2007 Lexus LX 470
Engine4.7-liter V8
Horsepower230 hp (1998-2002)
235 hp (2003-2005)
275 hp (2006-2007)
Torque320 lb-ft (1995-2005)
332 lb-ft (2006-2007)
TransmissionFour-speed automatic (1998-2003)
Five-speed automatic (2003-2007)
Curb weight5104 lbs (2002 model, MotorTrend)
0-60 mph time9.5 seconds (2003 model, MotorTrend)

Although we’re not getting the new 300-Series Land Cruiser in the US as a Toyota, we are getting it as a Lexus: the 2022 LX 660. That’s par for the course in the US, though, as the Land Cruiser-underpinned LX is something of a staple. That’s been the case since 1996 when Toyota introduced the 80-Series-Land-Cruiser-based LX 450. And in 1998, as the 80-Series gave way to the 100-Series, the LX 450 became the LX 470.

Although the 100-Series changed the Land Cruiser formula—adding independent front suspension and a V8 engine—it’s also considered one of the best generations. And while it doesn’t offer all the 100-Series’ off-road features, the Lexus LX 470 is the more luxurious SUV, Autotrader says. However, because it’s essentially a body-on-frame 100-Series Land Cruiser underneath, the LX 470 is still a capable off-roader and overlander.

The 1998-2007 Lexus LX 470 never offered a locking rear differential like the 1998 and 1999 Land Cruiser. However, it still has full-time 4WD with a two-speed transfer case, a solid rear axle, and a locking center differential. And while the rear differential doesn’t lock, it is a limited-slip unit. Plus, 2000-and-later LXs have stronger front differentials.

Also, unlike the Land Cruiser, it comes standard with height-adjustable suspension and adaptive dampers, as well as dual-zone automatic climate control. In addition, while the 100-Series Land Cruiser didn’t have standard traction and stability control until 2001, the LX 470 had it in 1998.

Later LX 470 models gained additional luxuries such as night vision and GPS navigation. However, even the earlier models offer an impressive blend of capability and luxury. And while the FJ80 Land Cruiser and LX 450 are rugged, they’re also older SUVs; the 100-Series and LX 470 drive, well, like modern cars, MotorTrend reports.

There’s a 2002 LX up for grabs on Cars & Bids

A tan-and-gray 2002 Lexus LX 470 in a parking lot
2002 Lexus LX 470 | Cars & Bids

As a 2002 model, the Lexus LX 470 currently listed on Cars & Bids has a four-speed automatic and ‘only’ 230 hp. However, it also has several desirable luxury features.

Besides the locking center differential, this 2002 LX 470 has a transmission oil cooler, trailer hitch, roof rack, running boards, and four-wheel disc brakes. Also, heated power-adjustable front seats, leather upholstery, wood trim folding third-row seats, and a Mark Levinson audio system with a six-disc CD/DVD changer. Plus, it has built-in navigation, a power-operated sunroof, and power-folding heated mirrors. And the only aftermarket modifications are a Blaupunkt DVD player and Audiovox rear-seat entertainment system.

The tan-leather interior of a tan-and-gray 2002 Lexus LX 470 seen through the open doors
2002 Lexus LX 470 side interior view | Cars & Bids

With less than 137,500 miles on the clock, this 2002 Lexus LX 470 has plenty of life left in it. And apart from some interior wear, exterior scratches and chips, and patches of underbody rust, it’s in great shape. In addition, the seller acquired it from the original owner and it has a zero-accident history.

If you keep up with maintenance, a Lexus LX 470 is just as ruggedly reliable as the Land Cruiser

As of this writing, this 2002 Lexus LX 470 is listed at $7671 with three days left in the auction. In comparison, the cheapest second-gen LX with similar mileage on Autotrader costs roughly twice as much. Meanwhile, six-figure FJ80 Land Cruisers aren’t unusual anymore. So, this Lexus Land Cruiser is a genuine bargain.

Also, although it has more luxury features than the equivalent 100-Series, the LX 470 is just as durable and reliable. These SUVs last for hundreds of thousands of miles provided you maintain them properly. That means changing the timing belt and water pump every 90,000 miles and regularly changing the transmission and differential fluids, Autotrader says. But apart from that and occasional water-leak-related electrical gremlins, the only remaining problems tend to be age-related ones.

So, if you want an affordable SUV that can comfortably commute and hit the trails, this LX might be worth checking out.

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