Today is Tuesday April 23, 2019
go to ktbb homepage
mobile homepage
listen to our live streams
Advertisement

Lonnie Johnson Picture



Car Reviews

2019 Lexus LX570

The 2019 Lexus LX570 is without a doubt one of the best SUV’s I’ve ever reviewed. The single biggest drawback is its drinking problem. I guess you could say it’s the John Daly of SUV’s, showing complete dominance in its field of competition and an inability to pass up a bar, err….in this case, a gas station.

Honestly, if you can afford the sticker of $88,940.00 as tested, then you should have no trouble keeping this very sexy behemoth well hydrated. For the sake of this review I’m going to omit the mileage because of this reason.

And now, the rest of the story. The 2019 Lexus LX570 is absolutely comfortable, quick and, wait for it….. nimble. Nimble feels like a strange description for a SUV just one spare tire shy of three tons, but it feels like a nimble, capable off-roader. Of course, with its strong Toyota Land Cruiser heritage I’m sure it’s very capable off-road. I didn’t dare take it there because the 20-inch aluminum wheels wrapped in four 285/50R20 mud and snow tires offered little confidence of returning the LX570 to Toyota with zero damage. I imagine if you were to swap tires and wheels to a more aggressive package, you could traverse most obstacles in your way. The truck just feels solid. Very little body roll for an SUV of this size.

Surely no one in the states will buy the new Lexus 570 for its off-road ability so, lets focus on the things that might move the needle for the 570’s potential buyer. Here’s one, USEABLE NON-INTERFERENCE TECH. The last SUV/Crossover I reviewed had more oversight than the new congress. Making every road decision reviewable in milliseconds. The 570 is far more passive allowing you to drive like we did before tech. From the cockpit I can tell you this makes for more enjoyable driving.
The Lexus LX570 is also quick for its size. Powered by a 383HP, 404lbft 5,7L V-8 the 570 lets you merge or dart in and out of traffic with ease and if someone darts in front of you, no problem, the 13.9-in front and 13.5-in brakes bring you to a stop faster than 40-degree temperature change, in our great state of Texas.

Moving on to the interior of the 570 you’ll find heated and cooled contrast stitched leather seats complimented by dark wood accents on the dash and doors. The outside noise level is non-existent in confines of the cabin. Muting the masses from disturbing you as you race by them in complete luxury. There were times when I would have to open the sunroof just to be sure I was indeed, on the road. I want to add again that the Lexus Safety System+ Pre-collision with Pedestrian detection remains Khashoggi quiet until it’s needed. Never at any time testing the 570 did I feel overwhelmed by the safety tech. The lack of frustration with the safety tech allowed me to relax and enjoy the fantastic sound system in the 570. The 9-speaker Lexus premium audio was as easy to operate and sync as it was glorious to listen to.

I know that when some of you read this you’ll be like, of course you like it, it cost eighty-nine-grand. I’ts not the price that matters most, it’s what manufactures deliver for the price that matters. In the case of the 2019 Lexus LX570 they delivered in spades, in all but one area, fuel mileage.

Fuel mileage is bad. Too bad indeed for a 24-gallon fuel cell. The second half of the tank disappears quicker than the passing thoughts of a millennial. All the cars and trucks I review are delivered clean with a full tank of gas. More times than not I can return them with fuel left. Not this time. When I put a half a tank of fuel in the mileage distance indicator informed me, I had all of 98 miles to go until empty.

As Sir Charles Barkley would say, that’s tuurredble! I’m sure in the not to distant future the mileage will be addressed but, that is all can find bout the 2019 Lexus LX570 to gripe about.

If you’re in the market for a very full size SUV that allows you to toil in luxury all the while having the off-road capability to star in an episode of Game of Thrones, than this is clearly an SUV you should investigate if you’re in the market.




2019 Honda Pilot AWD Elite

Effortless people mover that can be more overbearing than second generation trust fund mother-in-law. That’s how I would begin my description of the slightly redesigned 2019 Honda Pilot.

Sometimes situations dictate how much you will get to use these program cars for their intended purpose. This week certainly qualified. I have a little brother who just jumped all of the way in the deep end of the pool acquiring a beautiful fiancé and a home within three months’ time. No better feeling as a big brother than to possess some skills that your younger brother does not possess. In my case that’s easy because he’s an attorney so, except for case law that means I know more about everything else. Well, I’m good at hanging art anyway. So, like any good brother I load up my SUV with all of the tools necessary to hang a home full of art. One thing my brother and I share is a love of art. I throw my fifteen-year-old in the front seat and hit the road.

Almost immediately my kid commands the 10-speaker audio system and punches in Shaggy or Slippy, or dopey, or whoever is offering the latest in non-instrument inspired, sort of rap music. I notice right away that the tech on the Pilot is easy to navigate and offers more choices of environment than an afternoon in Texas.

Within minutes we were immersed in music or a reasonable facsimile of music and the voice recognition navigation system was in full effect. It’s important to note that the navigation system is the least intrusive and most enjoyable component to the Honda Sensing Safety Suite. This suite offers more security than an Afghan military base. Make no mistake, when on the highway the 2019 Pilot is firmly in control. The Pilot dares you to change lanes without using your blinker. A slight (not really) shimmer in the steering wheel lets you know that you’ve done wrong. If I had a suggestion to Honda it would be to diminish the severity of the warnings.

There are somethings computers are not great at. The first is subtlety. For instance, if a driver in front of you is turning out of your path, to the right and catches the front warning sensor just right, the Pilot thinks the car is directly in front of you and applies the brake accordingly. Problem is there is no longer a car in front of you.
I really want to move on from the safety tech however, because under all of that is really a great little SUV. Gas mileage was very good given the two-ton dry weight of the Pilot. I averaged eighteen miles per gallon, in the city and, given the speed limits in the great state of Texas, the highway mileage was excellent. The 2019 Pilot has an extremely smooth ride that has a quiet cabin. One cool feature is Cabin Talk allowing the driver to be heard even by the passengers in the third row seats.

Once in the city the Pilot really shines. Easy to maneuver, and in the city the Safety Suite becomes more useful. Let’s list the ways. The Pilot has more acronyms than the 2020 democratic presidential hopefuls.

Here’s the list:
ACC – Adaptive Cruise Control
CMBS – Collision Mitigation Braking System
RDM – Road Departure Mitigation
VSA – Vehicle Stability Assist
EBD – Electronic Brake Distribution
And on and on……..

After a long day of art hanging, furniture placement and TV mounting it was time to take the Pilot and the group out to dinner. A dinner paid for by my little brother (good man). So, now there are six of us headed to dinner. The pilot gathered all of us in extreme comfort while we drove to our very congested, parking strained dinner area of choice. Cloaked in leather seating and endless interfacing device hookups, including a cordless phone charger for the driver and front passenger we arrived to our destination relaxed and informed.

My relaxed state was surprising considering the entire trip was made in torrential rain making the AWD feature stand up and be counted.

Parking was made easy by yet more tech and the trip home was as comfortable as the ride there.
Let’s review. I threw my tools and a man child in the 2019 Pilot and headed to spend a day in the city with friends and family. I returned feeling rested and happy. Isn’t that what you buy an SUV for?

The Pilot needs a complete refresh as this model is now long in the tooth but, make no mistake, if your needs dictate that you move people and things around in larger than normal numbers the 2019 Honda Pilot AWD Elite has to be in the discussion.
Price as tested was $49,015.00 and in my mind worth every penny.




2019 Toyota Tundra Pro Crew Max

I’d like to start off by mentioning the humor is not lost on me that the first review I do back on the BB, is me reviewing a blue truck. Welcome home, Lonnie. It’s not just any blue it’s Voodoo Blue. So, yeah, let’s just get these reviews going with some voodoo blue. It’s so blue almost everyone that sees it comments on it immediately. Something like, “Man, that trucks blue”. It is to blue what Hendrix was to guitar picks.

But, let’s not judge a truck by its color. Once I got used to it, I actually thought the Voodoo Blue matches this trucks personality perfectly. The truck is fun, just like the color. Easy to drive and, as you would expect with most full-size trucks, very hard to park at the grocery store. I’ve said it before, parking these trucks in Tyler isn’t too bad, but trying to park them at an event in the metro-plex would be absolutely brutal. One of the opportunity costs of being able to drive around, in what amounts to your living room, is that your living room is hard to park.

The interior is actually a great place to begin the breakdown of the 2019 Toyota Tundra Pro Crew max. Auto writers get all of the loaded cars and trucks so we can let you guys know about the cool the tech, and comfortable seats. Both play a big part of Toyota’s presentation of this truck. The Bluetooth is effortless and very user friendly. I think it took this fifty-two-year-old 15 to 30 seconds to give the Voodoo colored truck complete access to all of my personal information on my I-phone. That’s got to be a record. Once the phone was connected it became obvious how much sound engineering thought went into the Entune Premium Audio. Within seconds I had Joe Bonamassa making more noise than Mr. Kelly-Anne Conway. The bass was crisp and deep and the system as a whole was effortless to tune.

I really liked the red highlighted charcoal interior. Several passengers made comments about how much leg room exists in the rear of the Tundra, and the steering wheel mounted controls were effortless to operate. Which reminds me. Toyota, please move the cruise control onto the steering wheel like the rest of the controls. The cruise stick is harder to find than witnesses at Neverland.

From the comfort of the seats you feel in command, with a ridiculous ride height and endless power. With that power comes abysmal mileage. Funny I always associate Toyota with great fuel mileage. Not so in this case. Thank God for the huge fuel cell or this truck would make more pit stops than the old man reviewing it,
The reason for this lackluster mileage might well be the endless torque and power of the 5.7 I-FORCE V8 DOHC 32V with Daul independent VVT with 381HP and 401 lb-ft of torque. It sounds fantastic. Good job, again by Toyota engineers for making the 2019 Tundra V8 sound almost as good as the sound system.

The torque might also have felt more impressive because of the 4.30 gear ratio matched with the extremely smooth 8-speed Automatic transmission.

Look, if you’re in the market for a good looking tough 4×4, Toyota is again a perfect choice. Go ahead pick up one today at Classic Toyota, on the loop in Tyler. Price as tested is $350.00 short of $50,00.00. If you’re into blue, cool. Do the Voodoo that you do.






BG Logo