Safety

Talk about fully loaded! The 2010 GX 460 is chock-full of safety features, including front knee airbags, side-impact airbags for the first and second rows, and side curtain airbags for all three rows. It also has standard active front head restraints, an electronic stability system, traction control and antilock brakes with brake assist and electronic brake distribution.

Buckling in was a cinch for youngsters because of the sturdy seat belt buckle receptors. Using the Latch connectors was a little trickier, however. Lexus had the right idea by creating a long flap that Velcros into place, covering the Latch connectors. It offers easy access to the Latch connectors. However, they put the rough side of the Velcro on the seat bottom (rather than the flap), requiring a parent to rough up their hands when sliding them between the seat bottom and the rough Velcro in order to use the Latch connectors.

One safety feature that really stood out is the optional Wide View Front and Side Monitor System with "crawl control" ($720) in combination with the Intuitive Parking Assist system ($500). The park assist turns on a backup camera when in Reverse, so I can make sure I'm not about to back over someone or something when I'm pulling out of my driveway. It works in combination with sensors in both the front and rear bumpers, alerting me with an audible tone if I'm coming close to hitting anything and an icon that lights up. When I'm slowed down as I approached a stop sign, for example, the front and side monitor cameras showed me if any small pedestrians might be crossing in front of me or if a bicyclist was pulling up beside me. Brilliant! This park assist really came in handy while the third row was in use since the head restraints definitely impeded my rear visibility.

FAMILY LIFESTAGE

In Diapers: Sliding second row makes room for rear-facing infant-safety seats.

In School: Power-folding third row transforms this SUV from a cargo hauler to school-kid hauler.

Teens: This is a lot of car to drive, but the Wide View Front and Side Monitor System helps keep everyone safe.

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