For a quarter century, the Lexus RX has been a key player in the mid-size luxury crossover category, where it has established itself with quiet, smooth performance; attractive prices; and strong reliability inherited from the brand’s Toyota parent.
What’s New/Key Changes From Last Year
This year, the fifth-generation RX arrives with new, sportier styling; all-new powertrains; and the promise of a more engaging drive to better compete performance-wise with European competitors.
The 2023 Lexus RX range starts with the RX 350, powered by a 2.4L turbo four-cylinder engine; next is the RX 350h hybrid, which combines a 2.5L four-cylinder engine with electric motors; finally, the RX 500h mates the electric components with the 2.4L turbo to create the highest-performance RX variant. All-wheel drive is standard with all three powertrains.
A plug-in hybrid RX 450+ will eventually join the lineup, but hasn’t made it to Canada yet.
RX 350 and 350h models come with passive keyless entry, a rear camera washer, power tailgate, LED headlights/taillights/fog lights, power-folding side mirrors with driver’s-side auto dimming mirror, a sunroof, rain-sensing wipers with de-icer, and 19-inch alloy wheels. Inside, there’s 12-speaker audio, a 9.8-inch touchscreen, connected services, a heated/power-adjustable steering wheel, three-zone A/C, digital gauges, heated/ventilated/power-adjustable front seats, and an auto-dimming interior mirror.
Standard in all RX models is the Lexus Safety System+ 3.0, which comprises lane departure alert with steering assist, oncoming vehicle detection, road sign recognition, radar cruise control, forward collision mitigation, emergency steer assist, and automatic high beams. Also included are blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and park assist with automatic braking.
The RX 500h gains upgraded brakes, wireless phone charging, a hands-free tailgate, digital key, a head-up display, heated/ventilated rear seats, a digital rearview mirror, panoramic roof, and 21-inch wheels.
RX 350 and 350h options start with an F-Sport 1 package (upgraded brakes, 21-inch wheels, adaptive variable suspension, a head-up display) and a luxury package (wireless phone charging, panoramic roof, heated/ventilated rear seats, a 14-inch touchscreen); the F Sport 2 pack effectively combines these two packages.
An ultra luxury package builds on those items with front cross-traffic alert, lane change/traffic jam assist, auto-levelling headlights, surround-view cameras, a hands-free tailgate, a digital rearview mirror, headlight washers, digital key, and adaptive high beams. An F Sport 3 bundle combines the ultra luxury pack with the features in F Sport 2 models.
The executive pack adds to that with four-way lumbar, a power rear sunshade, upgraded leather upholstery, 21-speaker audio, advanced park assist, and a 10-way passenger seat.
Lexus’s fuel consumption estimates for the RX start at 6.3/6.8 L/100 km (city/highway) for RX 350h models; next up is the RX 500h at 8.7/8.4 L/100 km; and the RX 350 is rated for 11.2/8.4 L/100 km.
Watch for the new RX to compete more aggressively with mid-size luxury models like the BMW X5, Volvo XC90, Mercedes-Benz GLE, Buick Enclave, Infiniti QX60, Acura MDX, Lincoln Nautilus, and Audi Q7.