In the start, Lexus created the 1998 RX 300 — the primary luxurious crossover SUV — and it was good. More than 20 years later, the RX is Lexus’s finest promoting mannequin, but in addition finds itself in a really crowded market filled with compelling premium and luxurious SUVs. The fourth-generation mannequin provided stable efficiency and luxury, however awkward and outdated expertise had grow to be the Lexus’ Achilles’ heel. Thankfully, the refreshed 2020 Lexus RX that debuted earlier this 12 months goals to shore up that weak point with a a lot wanted replace to the dashboard and security expertise.Much of what is new for 2020 occurs beneath the sheetmetal, the place the RX’s chassis has undergone important stiffening. Lexus tells me that there is been a tenfold improve in structural adhesive in and new “laser screw weld” method that permits the automaker to squeeze in twice as many welds factors with out damaging the chassis’ metallic as a result of overheating. The result’s a firmer platform, which allowed Lexus’ engineers to stiffen the dampers, roll bars and different shifting bits for a claimed enchancment in dealing with.
On the street, the adjustments the driving dynamics are sufficiently subtle that I had a tough time noticing any enchancment with a back-to-back experience within the 2019 mannequin. Turn-in feels a hair sharper and extra responsive, however general this nonetheless looks like the identical RX as earlier than. New “active corner braking” stability management ought to help at close to the restrict dealing with, however there wasn’t a lot of that in my pretty relaxed day of driving.However, I did discover a a lot bigger discount in cabin noise at pace. There’s rather a lot much less street and wind noise and the thump over bumps can also be much less pronounced, which makes the SUV a way more enjoyable commuting cocoon.Externally, the RX’s design has been sharpened and simplified with a bunch of tweaks to the entrance and rear fascias which have improved the aesthetic of the the nonetheless aggressively styled SUV. The elective LED headlamps have new look and the grille’s design has been cleaned up a bit. Lexus’ design language has began to develop on me and this refresh is a step in the fitting course, nevertheless it’s nonetheless not fairly my cup of tea. The sharp look is not everybody’s cup of tea, however the 2020 replace hones a number of the rougher components.
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My favourite new enchancment to the 2020 RX method is the obtainable 12.3-inch break up display show on the dashboard. It’s now contact delicate and sits nearer to the driving force for simpler attain. (The outdated, set-back infotainment design was simply awkward and left the dashboard feeling enormous and empty.) The bigger, nearer display additionally seems to have a better decision and extra vibrant colours that pop extra clearly in daylight.In addition to touching the display, drivers may also use the Remote Touch Pad on the middle console to manage the infotainment system. I discover this convenient for clicking round whereas driving because the pad falls properly on the hand at my driving place, however different members of Roadshow’s employees have discovered the contact pad to be extra distracting than useful. 
The Lexus Enform software program and its menu construction have barely improved. Drivers even have the choice to connect with Apple CarPlay to deliver their very own apps on the street. The 2020 RX can also be the primary ever Toyota/Lexus car to help Android Auto and one of many first autos I’ve seen to help the brand new widescreen help for Google’s smartphone software program. Both telephone mirroring applied sciences are customary on all RX fashions, even with the bottom 8-inch show that I used to be unable to check.Speaking of recent customary options, the Lexus Safety System+ 2.0 can also be now customary tools throughout lineup. In addition to pre-collision detection and computerized emergency braking, this era of the automaker’s driver help suite upgrades with new street signal detection, daytime bicyclist detection and low-light pedestrian detection.The 2020 RX comes with extra security tech as customary tools.
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Lane-keeping steering help has additionally been upgraded to Lane Tracing Assist, which helps preserve the RX centered in its lane somewhat than ping-ponging backwards and forwards between the markings. The system is now ready to make use of a number one automotive as its information for lane maintaining if street markings are lacking or not seen. The system works properly with the gap sensing adaptive cruise management all the best way right down to cease and go speeds.Pretty a lot the remainder of the Lexus RX expertise is unchanged for this 2020 mannequin 12 months refresh. Interior quantity for individuals and cargo can also be unchanged for 2020 and the SUV remains to be obtainable in 5 and seven-passenger configurations. Lexus expects that the three-row RX L fashions will make up a bigger share of gross sales for this era, however that is a change in buyer habits.The RX 350’s 3.5-liter direct-injected V6 engine has gone untouched and rocks the identical 295 horsepower and 268 pound-feet of torque as earlier than. It’s nonetheless obtainable in front- or all-wheel drive configurations, returning 23 and 22 mixed miles per gallon, respectively. Meanwhile, the hybrid-powered RX 450h continues with the 3.5-liter V6 and twin electrical motor all-wheel drive setup. Output is regular at a mixed 308 horsepower and gasoline financial system steps as much as 30 mixed mpg.The refreshed 2020 RX meets the unique luxurious crossover, a 1998 Lexus RX 300.
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The 2020 RX fashions ought to hit the street in fall 2019.  The replace retains intact its easy powertrain choices and even improves its comfy, quiet experience. And infusion of tech — for each infotainment and security — helps to maintain the luxurious SUV aggressive for a number of extra years whereas Lexus works on a way more daring alternative for its hottest mannequin. Pricing should not stray too removed from the present $44,845 beginning worth for the RX 350 and $47,270 for the RX 450h, however count on extra concrete figures nearer to launch. If you are on the fence concerning the 2019 RX proper now, it’s going to be well worth the few months’ watch for the marginally improved 2020 mannequin. Editors’ be aware: Travel prices associated to this characteristic had been coated by the producer. This is frequent within the auto business, as it is extra economical to ship journalists to automobiles than to ship automobiles to journalists. While Roadshow accepts multi-day car loans from producers to be able to present scored editorial evaluations, all scored car evaluations are accomplished on our turf and on our phrases.The judgments and opinions of Roadshow’s editorial crew are our personal and we don’t settle for paid editorial content material.

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