FeaturesLexus RX: Third Generation

2016 Lexus RX 350 & RX 450h Information

Lexus RX 2016 Press Release

The next-generation Lexus RX has debuted at the New York Auto Show — let’s jump straight to the details with the full press release and a selection of photos.


Lexus has shown that it has once again redefined the luxury sport utility segment with the unveiling of the all-new RX at the 2015 New York Auto Show today. As the best-selling model in the brand’s 26-year history—with global sales of more than 2.1 million units—the RX represents three out of ten vehicles ever sold by Lexus.

Lexus RX 2017 Rear

The 2016 RX builds on that trend with a completely new, luxurious interior to match its fresh, new, chiseled body style. The large dose of Lexus brand DNA that’s been artfully incorporated into the details can not only be seen, but also felt. The new fourth-generation RX also boasts exceptional on-road performance and safety technologies that include the innovative Lexus Safety System+.

“With the new Lexus Safety System+, we offer drivers an added level of occupant safety in a conveniently bundled package that leverages some of the latest accident prevention technology. We certainly expect the proliferation of these features to continue throughout the luxury vehicle market and our Lexus lineup as the industry remains steadfast in the pursuit of enhanced vehicle safety,” said Jeff Bracken, Group Vice President and General Manager Lexus Division.
           
Takayuki Katsuda, the Chief Engineer of the new RX said, “Our ambition has been to make a bold and completely new statement in this segment while building on and staying true to the pioneering values of previous RX generations.”
 

A Bold Exciting New Look

Lexus RX Side Profile

The RX with all-new sheet metal makes a powerful visual statement at first glance. A completely new front end is highlighted by an emboldened spindle grille, more aggressive front bumper and available triple L-shaped LED headlamps. Together with the all-new LED fog lamps and LED daytime running lights, the RX has a more sophisticated and advanced look. Muscular front fender flares add to the vehicle’s sporty attitude. 

When seen from the side, the sharp character line that runs from the front fenders to the rear end, together with a flowing roofline, give the RX a dynamic profile. All of this helps make the vehicle sure-footed at high speed and reduces wind noise. A truly distinctive styling cue is the blacked-out C-pillars, which provide the illusion of a floating roofline never before seen on a Lexus product. Also, newly available 20-in. aluminum wheels with larger tires improve the vehicle stance and proportions and replace the current model’s 19-in. options. These 20-inch wheels can also be customized with body color-matching inserts to emphasize the driver’s individuality. 

Lexus RX Rear Side

The new RX’s rear appearance has been sharpened, now exuding a sense of chiseled, rock-solid stability with the design highlighted by LED L-shaped taillights that wrap around the sides of the vehicle, creating a wider, more authoritative presence when illuminated. When lit, a brilliant glow spans laterally from the body to the back door, a Lexus-first.  Integrated dual exhaust pipes have been added to the gas model for a more premium appearance.

Lexus RX Interior
 
Inside, RX’s new luxurious cabin with elegant, high-quality trim exudes warmth and class. Specially finished Yamaha laser-cut ornamentation is available for those who appreciate an additional dimension of interior refinement. An available color heads-up display (HUD) projects pertinent vehicle information to the driver’s windshield, while the information display area, featuring an available 12.3-in. monitor with full-screen map, is situated atop the center stack. The shift lever, complete with leather boot, has been positioned away from the front of the instrument panel to optimize operability and create more space for the driver.

Lexus RX Interior Screen

Rear-seat occupants are treated to more leg and knee space. The RX now offers heated outboard rear seats and a 60/40 power folding second row to enhance comfort and convenience. A newly available retractable power panorama moonroof enhances the RX cabin’s spaciousness and provides occupants with a refreshing open-air experience. The available rear seat entertainment system now includes 11.6-in. dual screens affixed to the back of the front headrests.

“Even while ensuring a high level of luxury and space within the cabin, the RX’s silhouette remains sleek and dynamic, while the interior has been designed for easy operation with luxurious execution,” said Gen Ikeda, Lexus RX chief designer. 
 

Smooth, Powerful and Efficient Engines Under the Hood

Lexus RX Engine

Under the RX 350’s hood is an upgraded and more powerful 3.5-liter V6 aiming to deliver 300 hp with direct injection, mated to a new eight-speed automatic transmission. Based on this enhanced powertrain is the RX 450h’s Atkinson-cycle 3.5-liter V6. When combined with the electric motor generator, the combined output results in around 300 hp. All RX engines have been tuned in anticipation of high fuel economy ratings and low carbon emissions.
 

Enhanced Handling and Straight-line Stability

Lexus RX Driving

When it comes to delivering precise, controlled handling, the new RX offers impressive dynamic capability. The entire chassis has been fortified to provide enhanced straight-line stability and control through turns. The vehicle’s body structure has been strengthened with added stiffness, helping to enhance its handling response while reducing engine and road noise in the cabin. Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) is standard, while Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) is available on select models.  Each system is designed to help recognize loss of vehicle control, and help mitigate potentially dangerous situations with automatic and often transparent adjustments to help the vehicle maintain optimal traction. The RX also is offered in All-Weather Drive to help the RX’s handling performance and control on dry and slick surfaces alike.

Lexus RX Driving 2

The RX’s fully independent suspension system, which consists of MacPherson struts up front and a double wishbone setup at rear, has been tuned and reinforced to enhance handling while keeping ride quality remarkably smooth. Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) is available on the RX for the first time. AVS electronically monitors and adapts the shock absorber damping and steering to help ensure optimal handling and ride depending on the driving conditions. The system is also designed to produce less body lean through corners, providing an engaging driving experience.

In the U.S., the RX is available with specifically designed Michelin Premier tires featuring EverGrip™ technology.  EverGrip™ technology has a high traction compound, expanding rain grooves that widen over time and emerging grooves which open as the tire wears.
 

Safety is a Priority with Lexus Safety System+

Lexus has always stressed safety in all of its vehicles, so it should come as no surprise that the new RX is enhanced in the areas concerning the well-being of its occupants. Among the changes is Lexus Safety System+, which can help avoid or mitigate collisions across a wide range of vehicle speeds under certain conditions.

Introduced globally, Lexus Safety System+ integrates several of the brand’s existing active safety technologies. These include the Pre-Collision System (PCS) that is designed to detect sudden stops initiated by the preceding vehicle and can engage automatic braking in certain circumstances; Lane Departure Alert (LDA), which issues an audible signal if it determines that the vehicle has strayed from its intended lane; and Automatic High Beam (AHB) that helps ensure optimal forward visibility during nighttime driving.

As part of a multi-faceted approach to active safety, the Lexus Safety System+ package utilizes a millimeter-wave radar that works together with a camera to help keep the RX in its intended driving lane via the Lane Keep Assist feature (LKA) and enhances target detection for the Dynamic Radar Cruise Control with full stop capability under certain circumstances. Other available features that can help the driver include Adaptive High-beam System (AHS), a Panoramic View Monitor (PVM) and Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA).
 

RX F SPORT

Lexus RX F SPORT Front

For those who prefer even more excitement and performance in their luxury utility vehicles, there is the RX F SPORT (AWD models only), which will be available with both models’ engine offerings for the first time. Lexus vehicles designated with the F SPORT badge are equipped with a number of special visual and performance features that set them apart from other versions. In the RX’s case, the spindle grille and lower center piece of the rear bumper incorporate an “F” mesh design, instantly giving the vehicle a sportier flair. New 20-inch alloy wheels with graphite finish, exclusive to the F SPORT, also help give the RX a commanding presence. Inside, the driver is treated to a custom F SPORT instrument cluster with a TFT Multi Information Display (MID) as well as a sport steering wheel, featuring perforated leather trim, an F SPORT emblem, and paddle shifters. Exclusive colors and trim pieces are also part of F SPORT.

Lexus RX F SPORT Gauge

The RX F SPORT’s performance on the road has been enhanced by an active stabilizer system whose cutting-edge technology helps keep the vehicle’s body amazingly flat through corners. The aforementioned AVS, which also helps keep the vehicle planted to driving surfaces through turns, is standard on RX F SPORT. The driver can select the AVS-enhanced Sport S+ mode, in addition to the standard Eco, Normal and Sport settings, on the Drive Mode Select control located on the center console. 
 

The Luxury SUV Bar Has Been Raised Yet Again by the New RX

Whatever version of the RX you choose, one thing is perfectly clear: Lexus’ best-selling vehicle has dramatically raised the bar yet again in the mid-size luxury utility segment, flawlessly combining bold luxury styling inside and out, and engaging driving performance. 

“The pioneering spirit of Lexus drives us to create new technology and gives rise to new ideas. It allows us to introduce new vehicles with leading-edge features. And indeed, we are committed to bringing ‘progressive luxury’ to the world. I believe this new RX will not only surprise new customers, but will also delight and satisfy our loyal customers, whose high expectations will be met by many new innovations,” said Katsuda.

2016 RX Preliminary Specifications

  • Overall length: 192.5 in.
  • Overall width: 74.6 in.
  • Overall height: 66.5 in.
  • Wheelbase: 109.8 in.
  • Tread (Fr/Rr): 64.6 in./64.2 in.
  • Wheels: 18-inch 20-inch available
  • Tires: 18”- 235/65 / 20”- 235/55
Comments
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    LefliJ'leta
  • April 1, 2015
Yes! Been refreshing the page for the past 30 mins for this article! Gonna read now. Thanks!
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    flipside909
  • April 1, 2015
Is it wrong to say i'm more intrigued about the new RX than GS F?
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    Lexus Cohen
  • April 1, 2015
Finally! I love it so much, great job Lexus!
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    christian
  • April 1, 2015
Oh my God! I like This!!!
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    christian
  • April 1, 2015
Oh my God! I like this it..!!!
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    Chase C.
  • April 1, 2015
Has anyone noticed on the drive mode select knob there's now a Normal and Customize setting?? We may actually be able to customize the driving dynamics for the first time on any model. Quite stunning this is (potentially) being introduced on the RX, and I feel as if this really expresses the direction Lexus wants the RX to go in. Any thoughts?
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    Tinhinnh
  • April 1, 2015
So the turbo didn't make it?
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    Chase C.
  • April 1, 2015
Looks like we're getting a frameless mirror, too.
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I'm happy to see an slight change to the original style remote touch interface instead of using the touch pad. I and my customers are not big fans of that device.
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    RDS
  • April 1, 2015
Absolutely love the whole design , in my opinion it looks better than Lexus NX , or what I first expect on the fourth generation Lexus RX ... I wish "RX200t" will be launch in Asia to replace the RX270 that kinda make no sense for tax-heavy country . Anyone know if the LFA-style gauge is only for certain model like F-Sport only ?
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    LefliJ'leta
  • April 1, 2015
I'm surprised by how similar it looked like the renderings from the Japanese magazines. Someone must have been leaking information to them.
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    corradoMR2
  • April 1, 2015
WOW. What a vehicle. No disappointments whatsoever. Loving the interior cabin design, materials and details, especially the console's "lined" and curved wood finish. I love the F Sport's front-end and wheels, but dare I say I equally love the the non-F-Sport, in particular the rich-looking interior. In addition to Chace C's observations on the customization of the Drive Select mode and frameless mirror, anyone notice 1. the sunglass holder in the ceiling ahead of the dome lights? 2. the door lock is the "retro" pin knob on the top of the door panel? 3. the "German" / "IS/RC"-like accelerator pedal ? 4. the F Sport seats are from the NX/IS/RC F Sport? 5. the F Sport spindle grill looks 98% the LF-NX's?
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Nice.
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    Hemi
  • April 1, 2015
I was a bit sceptical about it from the first picture but this is a really good job from Lexus. However, I dont get why didnt they put the touchpad. Even though that some people didnt like there were also those who didnt like the previous one. It a steps further and impose better image of the brand from technological frame.
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    rjw972
  • April 1, 2015
Absolutely exquisite and beautiful! Very clean design and love the transition of the C and D pillars. The renders that were circulating are very close to this new unveiling. No doubt its going to fly of the Lexus dealerships. Interesting they didn't divorce the DTRL from the head lights but I guess loyal RX buyers want a more conservative design; regardless stills looks very slick! Don't get me started on the interior; nice departure from the current generation but this one is a little more mature and classy to my eyes. Thank god they added the 12.1 inch display to give it a more streamlined look. I'm shocked they kept the old generation remote touch interface unless buyers will have an option to upgrade to the touch pad.? I've tried all 3 (GENs) and of course the first generation remote touch was the best and easy to use IMO; the touch pad is simple too but takes a little getting used to but once you do its like working a laptop touch pad. Also, the loads of soft touch materials from what I can see is very classy and luxurious; works well with the dashboard down to the center console, very appealing. Not sure if it was mentioned but I sure hope the hybrid can be optioned with the F-Sport package. Would be a shame if it can't but then again the standard model already looks so good especially the rear end that's reminiscent of the RC coupe.
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    Chase C.
  • April 1, 2015
I noticed those locks but couldn't make them out initially.. Also, can't really justify why they'd do that. I guess maybe they aren't the actual locks but the LS style red flashing light that are in the same spot. Odd that a new model has the previous gen RTI with a couple of improvements (back button and physical enter buttons) rather than the updated trackpad interface. I saw they had this controller on the GS F but thought it made sense since it already had the previous generation in the GS and suspected it would take some sorry of redesign. Interesting to think about all this technical stuff, though.
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    Black Dynamite
  • April 1, 2015
I fully expect a RX200t in the 2019 mid-gen refresh Autoblog is starting the rumor that a 3rd row RX will be brought out for 2017. BD
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    spwolf
  • April 1, 2015
Lexus and Toyota, in all of their models, dont take one size fits all approach... so we will likely see some cars have touchpad and some have mouse controller, depending on requirements. Did anyone notice how nav screen is now high res and reworked completely? It looks beautiful.
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    Wicus Kriel
  • April 2, 2015
Thanks krew and team for the neat presentation of all this exciting information! I can smell it already, the sensational odour of that brand new RX450h F-Sport as I slowly peel off the protective plastic film and gently open the driver's door for the first time... ;p
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    Trexus
  • April 2, 2015
Sophisticatedly amazing!!!
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    Hemi
  • April 2, 2015
Another surprise for me is that the led light are not detached as on all new Lexus models. Anybody can explain why?
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This new RX looks real good...definitely much higher level of quality and style than the last gen ....my only complain is that I think the overhang is a tad too long on both ends...makes the profile look a little "boat-ish" ....
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    Dan
  • April 3, 2015
Wow, love it. I noticed there is a Brake Hold button...my favorite among many features. Should be on every model.
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    Car Fan
  • April 5, 2015
Someone please explain to me why the all-new RX doesn't have the new RTI (Remote Touch Interface) like in the NX & RC? Is it too advanced for most of the target audience? Same goes for the GS F...

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