NEW FOR 2016:

– All-new model.

Lexus introduced the world to the concept of a luxury crossover during the late 1990s, and has remained a top player in the segment ever since. For 2016, it enters its fourth generation ready to divide opinions.

Gentle curves and an ovoid profile give way to origami creases and abrupt angles on the new RX. The signature Lexus “spindle grille” dominates the front end – it’s the largest incarnation of it yet. The rear-end is equally as curious; blacked out rear pillars give the illusion of a floating roof, a similar trick featured on the Nissan Murano. Like it or not, the new RX is anything but drab.

Under the edgy sheetmetal is a chassis that’s been stretched in length, width, and wheelbase to provide a more spacious cabin. The interior is less dramatic than the exterior, but the change is no less noticeable. It’s much improved with better outward visibility and higher-quality materials. Laser-etched wood trim, and two new interior colour schemes add a premium feel, as does the available and massive 12.3-inch centre infotainment display. Other niceties on offer include power reclining and heated rear seats, a rear-seat entertainment system with dual 11.6-inch screens, a 360-degree parking camera and a plus-sized panoramic sunroof.

The RX 350 is powered by Lexus’ standard-issue and ultra-smooth 3.5-litre V6 engine. It produces 295 hp, up from 270 hp; an eight-speed automatic is now standard on all gas-powered RXs. The RX 450h returns for 2016 using the same powertrain configuration with a gasoline engine powering the front wheels and an electric motor driving the rear wheels. Total power for the system is up slightly from 295 hp to 308 hp.

Lexus has also put greater effort into the F Sport trim, available on both the RX 350 and 450h. Adaptive dampers and active anti-roll bars make for a sportier ride that doesn’t compromise on comfort, but there are no additional power gains. F Sports also receive an even bolder styling, 20-inch wheels, and a nifty reconfigurable instrument cluster inspired by the LFA supercar.

The RX is available in RX 350 and RX 450h models.

Standard equipment on the RX 350 includes 18-inch wheels, aluminum roof rails, front and rear splash guards, power moonroof, rear spoiler, rear privacy glass, power windows with auto up/down for all windows, auto-dimming power heated side mirrors with integrated turn signals, power folding mirrors, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, illuminated vanity mirrors, rain-sensing wipers, full LED headlamps, LED fog lights, LED brake lights, selectable drive modes, four 12-volt power outlets, cruise control, garage door opener, overhead sunglass storage, proximity key with push-button start, power tailgate, rear parking sensors, first aid kit, blind-spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, heated steering wheel, power tilt and telescoping steering column, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, aluminum scuff plates, dual-zone climate control with filter, rear seat heater ducts, perforated leather upholstery, eight-way power front seats, heated and ventilated front seats, driver memory system, rear-seat recline, 60/40 split folding rear seat, heated rear seats, tonneau cover, 4.2-inch TFT instrument cluster display, 8.0-inch display audio system, reverse camera, 12-speaker audio system with AM/FM/CD/MP3, satellite radio, Bluetooth, dual USB audio inputs.

F Sport Series 2 adds 20-inch F Sport alloy wheels, automatic air recirculation control system, Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM), F Sport grille and badges, 12.3-inch infotainment display, navigation, Remote Touch controller, F Sport Meter, cornering lights, Premium LED headlights, Premium LED tail lights, paddles for manual shifting, F Sport steering wheel, F Sport seats, adaptive variable air suspension, F Sport shift knob, aluminum pedals, and F Sport scuff plates.

Luxury Package adds 20-inch alloy wheels, automatic air recirculation control system, rear door sunshades, 12.3-inch infotainment display, navigation, Remote Touch controller, cornering lights, Premium LED headlights, Premium LED tail lights, 10-way power adjustable front seats with power four-way lumbar support, and LED illuminated scuff plates.

Executive Package builds on Luxury Package and adds 15-speaker Mark Levinson surround sound system, hands-free power tailgate, wireless charging, panoramic sunroof, head-up display, 360-degree camera system, pre-collision warning, lane-departure alert, automatic high beams, dynamic radar cruise control, power rear reclining seat, power folding rear seats.

F Sport Series 3 builds on F Sport Series 2 and adds 15-speaker Mark Levinson surround sound system, hands-free power tailgate, wireless charging, panoramic sunroof, head-up display, 360-degree camera system, pre-collision warning, lane-departure alert, automatic high beams, dynamic radar cruise control, power rear reclining seat, power folding rear seats.

RX 450h builds on RX 350 and adds hybrid powertrain, hybrid-specific instrument cluster, 20-inch wheels, blue accented exterior badges, premium LED headlamps, auto-leveling headlamp system, premium LED tail lights, heated wood steering heel, automatic air recirculation control, in-dash DVD player, premium leather upholstery, 10-way power adjustable front seats with four-way power lumbar, 12.3-inch infotainment display, navigation, Remote Touch controller, illuminated front scuff plates, and Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM).

F Sport Series 3 adds 20-inch F Sport alloy wheels, F Sport leather seats in natural leather upholstery, three-spoke F Sport steering wheel, F Sport shift knob, F Sport scuff plates, F Sport front grille, F Sport badges, F Sport instrument cluster, selectable drive modes with Sport S+ mode, 15-speaker Mark Levinson surround sound system, hands-free power tailgate, wireless charging, panoramic sunroof, head-up display, 360-degree camera system, pre-collision warning, lane-departure alert, automatic high beams, dynamic radar cruise control, power rear reclining seat, power folding rear seats, and paddles for manual shifting.

Executive Package builds on RX 450h and adds 15-speaker Mark Levinson surround sound system, hands-free power tailgate, wireless charging, panoramic sunroof, head-up display, 360-degree camera system, pre-collision warning, lane-departure alert, automatic high beams, dynamic radar cruise control, power rear reclining seat, power folding rear seats.

Executive Plus Package adds rear-seat entertainment system with dual 11.6-inch LCD displays, dual wireless headphones, 120-volt 110-watt power outlet.

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