Review and Test Drive: 2018 Lexus RX 350

By Jonathan Spira on 21 August 2018
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Introduced some 20 years ago, the Lexus RX 350 is now in its fourth iteration. RX stands for Radiant Crossover and the RX was a pioneer in the luxury crossover segment. The updated RX (unveiled in 2015 at the New York International Auto Show) builds on this foundation, sporting a new “floating roof” design and Lexus’ updated spindle grille.

Indeed, the RX, Lexus’ best-selling nameplate, is manufactured in North America, namely in Ontario, Canada, for the U.S. market, and it’s also the best-selling luxury vehicle in the United States as well, beating out such venerable nameplates as the Mercedes-Benz GLC, the BMW X5, and the BMW 3 Series.

Our Satin Cashmere Metallic RX arrived at our New York City offices on a mild summer day. The RX’ cabin is a delight for the senses. Driver and passenger are cosseted in the finest leather seating surfaces, rich materials abound, and it’s clear how much attention was paid to the tiniest of details.


Every switch, lever, or knob has a premium feel to it – there are no leftover parts from the corporate parts bin here.


The RX 350 is powered by Lexus’ venerable 3.5-liter V6, developing 295 horsepower and 268 pound-feet of torque. That won’t break any speed records – getting from a standstill to 60 mph (96 km/h) will take 7.9 seconds – but it more than sufficed for our purposes.

Once underway, it was clear something was missing, namely noise. The cabin was practically library quiet and this made for a rather serene driving experience. The 8-speed automatic was perfectly matched to the V6 and provided well-timed and extremely smooth shifts; the steering was spot on although devoid of any meaningful feedback.

Click here to continue to Page 2Infotainment and a Serene Driving Experience

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