The 2020 Lexus RX isn’t all-new, but it gets a much-need update to its technology and a bit of a facelift. The new design isn’t a dramatic change and you might not see the differences at a glance, buy side-to-side it’s clear the new RX does have a new look.
Changes start with a new front and rear fascia and new standard 18-inch wheels. Lexus made the headlights thinner and matched it with thinner taillights that create a more streamlined design. There’s also an updated grille with a new pattern to the mesh design.
Inside there are bigger changes. The most notable is a standard 8-inch touchscreen with an available 12.3-inch touchscreen. Yes, the touchpad system that receives so much criticism is still there, but the addition of a touchscreen should make using the system much easier.
Smartphone connectivity also gets an upgrade with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto making this the first Lexus with Android Auto functionality. Tech is a key feature in today’s vehicles and giving the RX a touchscreen and Android Auto is a solid move.
Standard safety includes new advanced technologies. There’s low-light pedestrian detection, lane-tracing assist, and a pre-collision warning system that can detect vehicles, pedestrians, and even bicyclists.
Finally, Lexus improved the overall drive of the RX with a few changes. This includes new stabilizer bars to reduce body roll and shock absorbers that Lexus says will produce a smoother ride.
A stiffer suspension system makes the Lexus RX more responsive and reduces road noise for a more comfortable ride. Lastly, the existing F-Sport package also gets an upgrade with active variable suspension.
This isn’t an all-new version of the RX, so it’s not a huge overhaul that takes everything that was and throws it out the window. Instead, this is a mid-cycle refresh that aims to keep the RX current and competitive.
The modest design changes do move the RX forward so it continues to be an attractive luxury crossover that has a decidedly sporty vibe. Those changes are nice, but it’s really what Lexus did inside that matters most.
Infotainment systems are no longer an afterthought for consumers. They need to work and they need to work easily without causing unnecessary distraction and frustration. As nifty as touchpads seem, they are a challenge to use, especially on rough road surfaces.
Making the move to a touchscreen, even though the touchpad is still there, is a big change and one consumers are likely to embrace. Adding Android Auto functionality makes the system even more attractive.
The 2020 Lexus RX is set to start production later this year with pricing announced closer to the on-sale date.