Luxury Leader -- In 1997, the original RX created the luxury crossover segment. Twenty years later, it's still the most popular model in the segment.
Why is the Lexus RX the most popular luxury utility vehicle on the market? Perhaps because it delivers a high level of practicality without compromising the brand’s legendary luxury.
That was true in 1997, when Lexus launched the original RX and created the luxury crossover segment. And it’s still true now, when such vehicles have never been more popular.
Today, at the Los Angeles Auto Show, Lexus pushed this particular envelope even further. It took the wraps off the new RX 350L model that incorporates a third-row seat that can accommodate two more passengers. And it also revealed a new LX 570 that removes its third-row seat to make room for more cargo.
The common thread: Even more utility, no less luxury.
“RX remains the most popular luxury utility vehicle in America,” says Jeff Bracken, group vice president and general manager of the Lexus Division. “And while our customers love it, they tell us there’s one thing that could make it better: more of it.”
Triple Play -- The RX's new available third-row seat can accommodate two adults in comfort.
Room for More People
Rather than simply insert a third-row seat into the RX’s existing platform, Lexus engineers lengthened the rear of the body by 4.3 inches and adopted a more steeply-raked tailgate window. They also raised the second-row seats slightly to provide more foot room for the backseat passengers. And they extended the roofline to ensure plenty of headroom.
Add it all up and two more people can ride in comfort in an RX L than in a standard RX. Real people.
“This third row can accommodate everyone from kids in child seats to full-grown adults,” says Bracken.
Customers will have a choice between six- and seven-passenger configurations, depending on their preference for a three-person bench seat or two captain’s chairs in the second row. Either way, each third-row passenger can dial in their preferred settings in the RX’s tri-zone climate control system. And each has their own cup holder.
Even with the third-row seat in use, the RX L still provides enough cargo space for a stroller or sports equipment. When not needed, the seat can be split 50/50 or folded completely flat at the touch of a button to make room for even more stuff.
The clincher? All of this interior functionality and flexibility was achieved without sacrificing the RX’s distinctively sleek exterior profile.
The 2018 RX 350L, powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine, will go on sale shortly. The hybrid version will follow in the spring. Complete details can be found by clicking here.
Cargo Cavern -- Customers who opt for the new LX 570 with two rows of seats gain a 15 percent boost in cargo carrying capacity.
Room for More Stuff
Meanwhile, Lexus also responded to LX 570 customers who’ve been asking for more cargo room. Without the third-row seat, this new model offers 50.5 cubic feet of carrying space, a 15 percent increase. For added versatility, this LX 570 also comes standard with a roof rack with rails.
Lexus is offering the LX two-row in mono-spec trim, so customers can order simply by choosing exterior and interior colors.
Also, this new configuration will carry a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $84,980, approximately $12,500 less than a similarly equipped 3-row LX. The lower price point could attract customers who previously might not have included this premium SUV on their shopping lists.
Look for this new LX to arrive in dealership showrooms in December. Just click here to learn more about it.
By Dan Miller