This Lexus J201 Concept Is The Overlanding Beast We All Need

Lexus points out the 'J201' is an 'inside baseball' reference — did you catch that?

Even with all its luxury trimmings, Lexus’ old-school SUVs haven’t completely forgotten their rugged roots. The GXOR concept proved that last year, as the company took the overlanding brush to their 4Runner-twinned GX 460. Now, for 2020, they enlisted Expedition Overland‘s help to create this beast: the Lexus J201 Concept.

And make no mistake, it is a beast.

Why? Mainly because of what’s under the hood. This overlanding vehicle is based on the large LX 570 SUV, and it does still have that 5.7-liter V-8 engine. That said, we’re not talking about a paltry 383 horsepower and 403 lb-ft of torque here. Instead, the minds behind this concept threw a Magnuson supercharger into the mix. Now this LX 570 produces a much beefier 550 horsepower and 550 lb-ft of torque. All that power is still sent to all four wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission and 4.30 performance differentials with ARB air lockers.

It’s not just a power upgrade, either

Add to that the plethora of other off-road kit, and this LX is certainly no mall crawler. Up front, there’s a WARN Zeon 10-S winch integrated into the CBI Offroad lightweight bumper. Speaking of CBI, they also are responsible for the skid plates, rock sliders, and dual swing-out rear bumper system with a jerry can mount, spare tire and ladder on the back. Underneath, the J201 rides on upgraded Icon Vehicle Dynamics suspension and has StopTech drilled brake rotors with performance pads to bring it to a halt. As far as rubber’s concerned, the J201 uses General Grabber X3 tires wrapped around 17-inch EVO Corse DakarZero wheels.

Other accessories like a RIGID Industries 40-inch light bar integrated into the Prinsu Design roof rack system round of the J201’s upgrades. The low profile roof rack allows for Maxtrax storage, and there’s also a Goose Gear drawer module for storage in the back. An ARB twin on-board air compressor fitted in a Slee Off-Road compressor mount system allows the flexibility you need to air down off-road. And despite all the changes, it is still a luxurious LX 570 inside.

Sadly, this vehicle is, as its name makes clear, a concept. It’s not likely Lexus would ever consider putting this into production. What is nice, though, is that they do occasionally cater to off-road Land Cruiser and LX enthusiasts and folks like those at Expedition Overland prove just how capable these rigs can be, when you build them up. That is, if you have the cash to spend — bear in mind this would cost well north of $100,000 if you did actually fancy something like a J201, or have the wherewithal to build it yourself.

The Lexus J201 Concept will compete in the 2020 Rebelle Rally, a 2,000-kilometer desert race that begins on October 8.

Check out the GXOR concept to see what they did with last year’s GX below: