Lexus' Climate Concierge is as persnickety as you are

We put a sensor-based climate control system to the test during a New England autumn

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Autumn in New England might be ideal for leaf peeping and apple cider—but dressing for the weather can be a challenge. That’s why I was interested in driving a Lexus LX570 equipped with the Climate Concierge system during the last week of October.

New Englanders know to wear in layers in the fall, when the mornings can be frigid but the afternoons feel downright balmy. Similarly, Climate Concierge makes little adjustments to keep the passenger compartment at a constant temperature without loudly blasting heat or air conditioning.

LX570 Climate Concierge Control
Credit: Reviewed.com / Keith Barry
One touch of the Climate Concierge button is all it takes to tell your Lexus to keep the interior as warm or cool as you want it to be.

Climate Concierge first debuted on the flagship Lexus LS sedan back in 2012. It works thanks to a software algorithm that relies on up to 13 sensors and multiple climate control zones, plus control over ventilation, surface heating, and cooling. Together, they act like a virtual fairytale protagonist—the perfectionist kind who demands that porridge, glass slippers, and pea-free mattresses all be just right.

At least, that’s what Lexus promises. Considering that a Climate Concierge-equipped LX 570 with heated and cooled seats and four-zone climate control costs a hair over $90k, I wasn’t going to let that claim go untested.

Lexus LX570 Seat Heater Controls
Credit: Reviewed.com / Keith Barry
Even the seat heaters can be set to automatic mode, where they'll turn on and off depending on the cabin temperature.

So, on a cold fall morning after an overnight frost, I got into a Lexus whose interior was even colder than the outside temperature.

Normally, I’d crank up the heat and wait. Even on a luxury car with automatic climate control, though, the blower motors would work overtime to loudly blast lukewarm air throughout the cabin. Eventually, I’d get too hot and have to fiddle with the car’s controls, which would take my hands off the wheel and my eyes off the road—a solution as attractive as a sweater vest.

Lexus Remote Touch Screen Climate Control
Credit: Reviewed.com / Keith Barry
Lexus promises that won't have to fiddle with this manual climate control screen if you turn on Climate Concierge.

Instead, I left all the LX’s dials set to Auto and all climate zones set to 72ºF. Despite the car’s massive 158.9-cu.-ft. interior, the Lexus warmed me up before I’d left my neighborhood. The heated seats and steering wheel automatically got as hot as they could, then slowly cooled down. As the massive 5.7L V8 engine warmed up, the vents gradually started blowing warm air towards my feet—but never once drowning out the soft tones of Morning Edition.

Climate Concierge automatically mixed heating and cooling to keep the car precisely at 72ºF. Tweet It

When I got back in the car after a sun-drenched afternoon, the Climate Concierge automatically mixed heating and cooling to keep the car precisely at 72ºF. More importantly, it ensured that I didn’t have to make any mid-commute temperature adjustments. Had the day been even warmer, the seat coolers might have gone on automatically, cooling my body down well before the air conditioning had a chance to change my surroundings.

The verdict was in: Climate Concierge is a great fit for spring and fall in New England. Of course, the system wouldn’t be as inconspicuous in the dead of winter or on a stifling August day, when the heat or AC would have to kick on full blast.

LX570 Fuel Economy
Credit: Reviewed.com / Keith Barry
After a week of driving, the gigantic LX570's massive V8 got just 12.5 mpg in combined city and highway usage.

It also wouldn’t work as well on a car with a smaller engine: Although the LX570’s V8 was only good for 12.5 mpg during a week of combined city and highway driving, at least it threw a lot of heat that could be used to warm the cabin.

Still, in climates where the temperature swings widely throughout the day, the system does take some of the frustration out of managing an automotive microclimate. That means you can spend more time enjoying leaves and cider, and less time fiddling with the air conditioner.

LX570 Rear Seat Climate Control
Credit: Reviewed.com / Keith Barry
The LX570 has four-zone climate control, including two zones for the rear seats.
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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