The Lexus RX was first unveiled to the world back in 1997 at the Chicago Auto Show. A mid-size luxury crossover 4×4 SUV, it was first sold in Japan under the Toyota Harrier moniker. In case you were wondering, Lexus is the luxury car division of Toyota.

It is currently in its third generation and has been since 2008. The third generation had a facelift a couple of years ago. Are you thinking of buying a Lexus RX? Maybe you’ve spotted one in the wild and have fallen in love with its styling? Here is an in-depth review of the Lexus RX to help you learn more about this popular luxury SUV.


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Under the bonnet

The Lexus RX is available in the United Kingdom as the Lexus RX450h. It is a hybrid petrol-electric car and comes with a 3.5-litre V6 engine that has variable valve timing. The beauty about this car is that it also features electric motor and battery technology.

Working with the 249 brake horsepower V6 engine is an electric motor. It is capable of delivering 68 brake horsepower. The whole system can switch between electric and petrol power when it needs to.

The Lexus RX’s engine works with a CVT (i.e. automatic) gearbox, and, in turn, connects to the car’s four-wheel drive setup.


As you would expect, the Lexus RX is a pretty capable car! Lexus claim that they drove the car on Germany’s world-famous Nürburgring track to put it through its paces. The “Premier” trim level even features electronic air suspension.

The air suspension setup on the Premier trim level is that it will lower the car to improve aerodynamics. But one feature I quite like is how it can lower the car to help you put stuff in the boot quicker!

Some people have complained about the ride quality being too “soft” at times. But you have to remember that this is a luxury SUV, not a utilitarian Land Rover Defender!


Motorists prefer cars of this class because of their practicality. Whilst you wouldn’t buy one if you live in central London, they are useful if you have a large family in tow.

According to Inchcape Lexus, the cabin space is cavernous, as is the boot, which boasts a capacity of 496 litres. The driver and up to four passengers will feel comfortable on long journeys in this car. The rear seat splits 40/20/40, to maximise practicality.


The SE boasts a 9-speaker CD audio system, and a leather interior with adjustable and heated electric front seats. Privacy glass and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror come as standard on the SE.

The Luxury adds front and rear parking sensors, and a DAB digital radio system with DVD player. Satellite navigation also comes as standard.

The F Sport adds an HUD (head-up display).

The range-topping Premier boasts an upgraded leather interior. For improved sound clarity, a 15-speaker surround sound system by Mark Levinson comes as part of the deal.