Lexus RX hybrid SUV gets styling and equipment updates

Visual refresh, enhanced equipment and technical updates under the metal for the big Lexus hybrid SUV

Lexus RX

The Lexus RX and the larger RX L have been facelifted, introducing a raft of improvements to the large luxury SUV model.

The exterior of the revised RX features several changes, with new bumpers at the front and a new pattern on the grille, as well as slimmer headlights for a sharper look. The rear also takes on a sportier look, with subtle tweaks to the car’s edges and curves.

Inside, the biggest change is the addition of smartphone connectivity in the form of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto (as also added to the Toyota C-HR recently). A new smartphone holder and USB port should improve integration for drivers, with access to Siri and Google Assistant voice-control features on the move. There’s a new 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen in the dashboard, too.

Several safety upgrades are being introduced as part of Lexus’s Safety System+ package: a pre-collision system monitors the road ahead, while adaptive cruise control works in conjunction with lane-keeping assistance to help drivers stay in lane. Road-sign assistance also displays road signs on a head-up display, increasing the likelihood that drivers spot important warnings.

Buyers of the seven-seat RX-L, meanwhile, benefit from a second seating position for the third row of seats, which increases legroom for passengers in the rear.

Lexus has also worked on the ride and handling of the RX, with updates to the suspension and a stiffer chassis promising to make it more engaging to drive, according to the Japanese firm. Active cornering assistance is said to improve understeer in corners, while a new design of shock absorbers should make the RX less sensitive to bumps in the road.

The new Lexus RX is on sale now, offered in Premium Pack, F Sport and Takumi specifications, with F Sport only available in five-seat RX form and the other two either in five-seat RX or seven-seat RX L guise. On-the-road prices start at £52,705 for the RX Premium Pack, rising to £55,205 for the mid-range RX F Sport and £61,705 for the range-topping RX Takumi. The two version of the seven-seat RX L come in at £54,145 (Premium Pack) and £62,605 (Takumi).

New features standard on all models include a powered tailgate with hands-free kick sensor, a three-inch multimedia touchscreen display, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, a heated steering wheel, gearshift paddles, two additional front USB ports.

The RX F Sport gains performance dampers and both the F Sport and Takumi models are fitted with a new adaptive high-beam system. The RX and RX L Takumi also adopt a new 20-inch multi-spoke alloy-wheel design.