Smooth ride; Lexus-worthy quiet cabin; plenty of room for people and cargo
The Lexus RX is categorized as a mid-sized luxury SUV, and it still carries enough amenities and horsepower to lead the segment a full 14 years after its 1998 introduction. The RX 450h features a hybrid drivetrain that can run on batteries alone for short distances to save fuel, which equates to 28 mpg city and 32 mpg highway. The RX 350 does all right on its own, achieving 18 mpg city and 25 mpg highway. With this mid-cycle refresh, Lexus has done more than enough to keep its popular SUV more than relevant in the luxury sport utility conversation.
The 350 and 450h both carry a 3.5L V6 under the hood. The 350 is rated at 270 horsepower, while the 450h can do a combined 295 horsepower, thanks to the assistance of the hybrid powertrain's electric motor. The 350 uses a conventional 6-speed transmission, but the 450h comes with a continuously variable transmission.
The 450h hybrid system includes a 288-volt battery pack that sits under the rear seat, sending power to the front mounted motor-generator that drives the front wheels. In all-wheel drive trims, a second motor-generator drives the rear wheels. Both models also carry an engine-driven generator that functions as a starter and a charger for the battery pack.
The Lexus RX350 F-sport package is a new for 2014 model that caters to drivers who want a more lively driving experience from their Lexus SUV. The biggest change is an 8-speed transmission, which gives the F-Sport improved acceleration. Wheels and exterior details have also been modified to help the F-Sport stand out in a crowd.
Lexus boasts a handling system called Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM); it's standard on the 450h and optional on the 350. If the system detects a loss of control, it uses an array of electronic systems--anti-lock brakes, brake assist, traction control, stability control and throttle control to help the RX get back on track.
Further safety options include adaptive headlights and a pre-collision system with Dynamic Radar Cruise Control to set the RX's speed in relation to the car ahead. The RX has 10 standard airbags, a rollover sensor to inflate side curtain airbags and active front headrests. Inside, the RX features push-button start, 10-way power seats with memory, steering-wheel mounted controls, Bluetooth connectivity, and the Lexus Premium Audio system. Options include a smog detector, leather seats, rear-seat entertainment system, 15-speaker Mark Levinson surround-sound system, navigation system and back-up camera.
For 2014, Lexus have introduced a Siri eyes free mode for the entertainment system. A new F-sport model has also been introduced, promising a more engaging driving experience. The RX though, is otherwise unchanged.
Vehicle Price: 47,335.00
*Estimated payments are for informational purposes only and don't account for acquisition fees, destination charges, tax, title, and other fees and incentives or represent a financing offer or guarantee of credit from the seller.
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