FRONT SEAT-A GOOD RIDE – Designers ‘discover’ Lexus RX350
The most solid, dependable, conservatively styled SUV has been, arguably, the Lexus RX350.
Few flaws dot its history, which is filled with “most aspired to” SUV/crossover year after year.
Its numbers in the crowded parking areas at Cherry Creek shopping center exceed those of other makes, almost always.
Well, no need to stare, but notice for 2016, the blandness is gone from the vehicle’s exterior.
The stylists have taken charge and redesigned the RX far beyond expectations.
With the new Lexus RX350 F Sport, which I drove recently, a huge spindle grille is so dominant it is distracting. I wonder what’s on the inside looking out.
Even more radical, though, is a floating rear pillar, a styling glass band that flows from the side windows to the rear window.
Take a look. If you like it, buy it, for you’ll find the interior as comfortable and luxurious as ever and performance from its 295-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 and eight-speed automatic transmission is as smooth as anything on the market.
Perforated front leather seats are heated and cooled and a 12.3-inch multimedia display atop a low-riding dash offers navigation and Lexus Enform Destination assistance from a live-response center agent. Also, premium audio with Lexus Enform App Suite accesses the driver’s favorite mobile applications.
A drive-mode select system allows the driver to choose from eco, normal, sport, sport S or sport S Plus for response, shifting and steering.
The Lexus averaged 22.7 miles per gallon; its EPA estimate is 19/26.
The RX350 with F Sport trim carries a base price of $49,125; options including blind-spot monitor, triple-beam LED headlamps, touch-free rear liftgate, moonroof and heated steering wheel boosted sticker price to $56,995.
Lexus is the luxury builder for Toyota. The RX350 is built in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada.