New RX 350 Looks More Lamborghini Than Lexus

2016_lexus_rx_350

If Lamborghini had made an SUV 10 years ago, this is what it might have looked like.

This isn’t a Lamborghini concept from the past, though. This is the modern, and surprising, incarnation of the Lexus RX, a vehicle not traditionally known for outrageous design.

There was a time in my life when I owned a 2004 Lexus RX 330, a vehicle more fitting for an aging real-estate agent than a young family man. It was a nice looking car, but quite staid and always seemed to smell like an old lady’s perfume inside.

This new RX should lead the way in bringing Lexus to a new generation, though that old-lady smell may never go away.

Redesigning the RX is a bold move, because it’s the best-selling vehicle in the Lexus stable. A move to such an attention-demanding design might work to bring in younger buyers, but it might turn-off the older, and incredibly loyal, RX crowd.

Brian Bolain, marketing manager for Lexus, doesn’t think that will happen. He told Automotive News at the press launch for the fourth-generation RX:

What we’ve heard from people who have had three and four and five models, they’re actually ready for a change…. They’re actually a bit happy or relieved that they can continue to buy what they like but one that now makes them feel like it’s progressed.

While the looks have definitely progressed, the rest will stay pretty much the same. Lexus will even continue with the RX 350 and the RX 450h nomenclature.

The 350 will use the same 3.5-liter V6 engine, but horsepower will jump by 25 for a total of 295 hp. The once-optional 8-speed automatic transmission is now standard on all RX 350s.

Meanwhile the hybrid 450h jumps 13 hp to 308 total horsepower.

Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is optional on all RX models. Pricing is said to start at under $45,000 with sales starting this fall.

Will the new look of Lexus convince you to take a test drive?

-tgriffith

Find Certified Pre-Owned Cars and Used Cars in your area at CarGurus.

Used Lexus RX 330
Used Lexus RX 350
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