Lexus unveiled the new 2020 RX luxury SUV, revealing changes to the brand’s core model, which helped establish the luxury SUV segment when it was first introduced in 1998. The 2020 RX is scheduled to go on sale in late August 2019.
The 2020 RX exterior retains a sporty appearance, while the character line that runs from the front of the vehicle to the rear has been improved, giving the RX’s overall appearance flow and consistency. The result is an elegant, dynamic exterior that emphasizes Lexus’ new design language.
In terms of the RX’s driving character, it embraces Lexus’ performance following the path of LC and LS flagship coupe and sedan, as the engineers scrutinized every part of the vehicle, and made enhancements to the rigidity of the body and suspension system, as well as adding a new shock absorber and brake control system. The result is a vehicle with an excellent handling feel and precision, allowing users to accurately trace their desired driving lines. Also, the new RX is equipped with the world’s first BladeScan Type AHS and the latest generation of Lexus Safety System +.
- Newly sculpted front and rear bumper designs achieve a flowing integration of character lines from front to rear, elevating the RX’s dynamic appearance.
- Connecting the rocker panels to the bottom of the grille in a straight line delivers a feeling of heightened strength and stability.
- Designers linked the lower bumper with the rear fenders, which blend with the window graphic on the bottom section of the rear pillar, lending a distinctively elegant and powerful shape to the rear. Furthermore, by presenting components such as the muffler and the underbody shield to accentuate the vehicle’s width, the designers were able to provide the RX with a sporty, aggressive rear.
- The signature Lexus spindle grille adds modulation to the ‘L’ pattern mesh and a new frame that blends into the side of the front bumpers providing a unified profile.
- New slender headlamps give the front fascia a newfound sharpness. In the rear, combination lamps feature an “L” shape motif.
- The third-row seats now feature two different seating positions. In addition to the traditional seating position, even more leg space can be had with the new setting when the situation demands it.
- The second-row seats of the three-row model have been reconfigured to include a Captain Seat, helping to create a spacious and comfortable cabin for RX’s rear-seat occupants.
Enhanced stability and linear steering feel with the RX’s signature ride comfort
One of the biggest changes to 2020 RX is the significant enhancements that contribute to driving pleasure resulting from changes to the suspension and increased body rigidity. Lexus Chief Engineer Takeaki Kato was determined to deliver a pleasurable driving experience through agile handling and exhilarating driving pleasure, and his engineering team worked closely with the production team to achieve this goal.
- Laser Screw Welding (LSW) and spot welding have been extensively employed throughout the vehicle, along with the increased use of high-strength adhesives (4.2 meters of strategically placed adhesive). In combination with the stiffening of stabilizer bars (now hollow and 1mm wider) and enhanced hub rigidity, the result is a more immediate response to steering inputs.
- The new RX features Active Cornering Assist (ACA) that suppresses understeer when stepping on the throttle in mid-corner, as well as dramatic improvements in the tuning of the EPS, all of which result in a truly linear steering feel, allowing the RX to accurately trace the desired driving line in all types of conditions.
- The redesigned RX’s shock absorbers are now equipped with a new Friction Control Device (FCD) which further reduces high-frequency vibrations caused by minute road surface imperfections. The shock absorbers also enable the RX to conduct flat cornering and achieve exceptional responsiveness.
BladeScan Type AHS
Lexus is a pioneer in automotive lighting technologies, and was the first automaker to equip vehicles with LED headlamps and the Adaptive High beam System (AHS) to enhance safety with oncoming traffic. In the new RX, Lexus once again introduces a world’s first with BladeScan Type AHS. LED-sourced light shines onto a blade mirror spinning at high speed, and the light is transferred to a lens to illuminate the road ahead. While the light does not appear to be moving, the BladeScan Type AHS precisely controls light distribution by synchronizing the rotation of the blade mirror and switching the LED headlamps on and off.
Because the effect of the high beam can be expanded in a more natural manner, the system illuminates spots that may be difficult to see with conventional high-beam systems, such as the shoulder of the road. It also allows the driver to recognize pedestrians and road signs much earlier, without impeding the visibility of drivers in the vehicle, or drivers traveling in the opposite direction. BladeScan Type AHS is not yet available in all markets due to regional regulations.
Lexus Safety System +
The 2020 RX also comes equipped with the latest version of Lexus Safety System +, featuring advanced safety and accident prevention technologies. Main features of Lexus Safety System + include:
- A Pre-Collision System uses an in-vehicle camera and front-grille-mounted millimeter-wave radar to help spot bicyclists during daytime and pedestrians during low-light conditions.
- Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) and Lane Tracing Assist (LTA) combine to make the new RX easier for the driver to keep in the lane. If the system detects a potential lane departure, then LTA alerts the driver with a visual warning and either an audible alert or steering wheel vibration (it may also apply a small steering correction).
- The Adaptive High-beam System (AHS) which automatically reduces brightness in specific regions ahead of the car to avoid harshly illuminating oncoming vehicles or those in front of the vehicle.
- Road Sign Assist (RSA) acquires road sign information using a camera and navigation maps and displays them on the heads-up display and multi-information display, which reduces possible driver failure to recognize signs, and encourages safe driving.
Connectivity technology adds Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Baidu CarLife, as well as touchscreen and touchpad options
- The 2020 RX features a new touch-display screen in addition to the Lexus-original remote touch interface (which changes from controller-type to trackpad-type)
- Smartphone usage is incorporated into the design, with a new phone holder and USB port, plus connectivity to Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Baidu CarLife
- Voice control is enabled via native cloud connection, or customers’ phones to Apple Siri*6, Google Assistant, or Baidu CarLife systems. Likewise, drivers can select either Lexus navigation or smartphone versions.