Lexus is redefining its most popular SUV (2023)

The argument from logic versus passions provides a useful lens for examining many of them.Lexus Line. Undeniably built to more reliable standards than many of its luxury counterparts, the Japanese brand has long steered its marketing towards the left side of the brain in pursuit of a premium vehicle that ticks all the trim boxes while avoiding the angst of repeated visits to the dealer's service bay. That rigid approach to building a high-end car certainly does the job, but it comes at the expense of the emotional connection with the driver that has been a hallmark of European engineering for decades.

Fortunately for Lexus, there was a segment where ignoring emotions and focusing on executing the expected game plan yielded exceptional financial results. The Lexus RX has long been not only the best-selling model with the diagonal L logo, but also one of the best models among similarly sized luxury SUVs. In a part of the market where pulsing performance and flashy style are often secondary to babywear maximizing pampering, the RX stands out for its feature-rich set of options and the remarkably frugal history of hybrids.

For 2023, Lexusdebuts the new RXthis remains almost entirely scripted. While the mechanical and metallic details may have changed, conceptually the RX pays homage to its predecessors, embodying the same laboratory essence that has driven sport utility vehicles since their introduction in the late 1990s. This cloning program has helped remove over 100,000 Party RXs over the last year, and judging by what 2023 has to offer, the science of selling SUVs isn't going to falter any time soon.

Lexus is redefining its most popular SUV (1)

Regardless of angle, the 2023 Lexus RX (which I tried in the 350h Hybrid trim) is instantly recognizable as coming off the loins of last year's model. With a more prominent mouth sculpted into the front edge of the bonnet and a slightly longer wheelbase helping to extend the proportions down to the nearly crowded hatch rake, the RX retains the understated visual personality that has long been its hallmark.

The world swallowed its indignationpowerful Lexus radiator grillethat adorns just about every model at this point, and the tinted glass and trim used to raise the RX's roofline isn't quite as extroverted a hint as it used to be when other sports equipment sported similar setups nearly a decade ago. Not exactly pretty, but certainly within the bounds of conservative taste, the Lexus still exudes a subdued personality that helps it blend into the urban landscape.

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Inside, it's a similar story, albeit with a slightly larger exclamation mark for longtime Lexus buyers. The RX's cabin is tastefully decorated with fine-tuned leather on the seats, door panels and console, but the latter has lost the touchpad interface for the infotainment system, reverting to a much more useful touchscreen setup. It's a change that immediately increases a vehicle's attractiveness by a factor of 10: this finger-like trackpad like a mouse was the most frustrating experience in interacting with modern cars.

The rest of the RX is moving in a similar direction, with my tester's head-up display tasked with showing various menu options accessible via the touch buttons on the steering wheel. Much of that content would be better served by the instrument cluster than the cramped drop down area above the hood, but as most of that functionality is duplicated by the main infotainment screen, that's a minor complaint.

Lexus is redefining its most popular SUV (3)

Large Leather Bucket

More important than how the Lexus RX looks (or where the driver's eye is drawn) is the fact that just about everything else in the 350h comes together to cover all the important quadrants of any computer-generated matrix of customer needs that guided him from the clipboard to the boulevard.

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Lift the RX's tailgate and you'll be as surprised as I was to discover just how much trash can be crammed into it from floor to ceiling, especially with the forward-tilted second row of seats. In my case, it was a full palette of plants destined for my back deck garden, accompanied by a huge suitcase on wheels, a fold-out queen bed, and a huge piece of carved wood artwork, all of which left room for groceries and more. on the way home from the hardware store and glove compartment.

All that hardware didn't rattle once during the trip, thanks to the RX's super-smooth approach to suspension tuning. Forget anything resembling a link to the road below, and instead enjoy a chassis that does its best to quell the noise and hustle of your daily commute. Returning shoppers will feel right at home; everyone else is welcome to the Lexus sensory deprivation chamber.

Lexus is redefining its most popular SUV (4)

An unexpected Grindcore soundtrack

In addition to the infotainment refresh, there's another big change under the hood for 2023, and here the result is more mixed. On the one hand, the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that replaces the RX's traditional V6 engine is a benchmark for efficiency and, when combined with an array of electric motors and all-wheel drive, manages to recover up to 37 mpg in city driving (a figure according to my own experiences).

Unfortunately, on its way to generating 246 usable energy, the entire shebang is shockingly difficult. Many times, when stepping on the gas at low speed, I turned off the sound so that I could determine whether the unwanted grinding in my ears was coming from the steering or the engine itself.

That gritty aspect of the RX 350h's powertrain was truly unexpected, and its repetition over and over again during my time behind the wheel rather detracted from the calm evident elsewhere in the SUV (especially when compared to the quieter highway ride). If you'd rather trade mpgs and raw handling for a little more oomph, the turbo version of the RX starts at a few thousand less than the $50,550 350h price tag.

Lexus is redefining its most popular SUV (5)

A game for the crowd

Everything about the 2023 Lexus RX 350h seems to be focused on retaining existing owners. No effort was made to make the hybrid model a good seller, nor did Lexus see fit to build the electronics-laden interior that is currently in vogue in some corners of the campus for luxury SUVs. It simply continues the game of a model whose determined appeal to the left brain has so far landed it deep in the Lexus record books.

The RX's many upgrades perpetuate what most Lexus fans already liked about the vehicle, wrapped in a package that maximizes interior space and, in addition to the sonic onslaught of the new four-cylinder hybrid, minimizes interference from the outside world. For an automaker that sees no need to do more than tweak a copy/paste spec sheet that regularly dumps six-digit sales numbers into a spreadsheet, the redesigned RX does exactly what it needs to do, no more and no less. Whether that appeals to you as a potential luxury buyer depends entirely on which side of the cerebellum holds the strings for your monthly SUV payment.

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What is Lexus most selling SUV? ›

FAQs. What Is The #1 Selling Luxury Car In America? The Lexus RX SUV is the best-selling luxury car in America for 2022.

Which SUV is better Lexus or BMW? ›

No matter which way you look at it, Lexus SUVs offer greater value, performance, comfort, safety, and versatility than BMW.

Where does the Lexus SUV rank? ›

Rankings & Research. The 2023 Lexus RX 350's #15 ranking is based on its score within the Luxury Midsize SUVs category.

Why is the Lexus RX so popular? ›

The Lexus RX has been America's best-selling luxury vehicle for over a decade. It offers a brilliant balance of excellent build quality, strong resale value, and a ride so supple it's like sitting on a cloud, not in a traffic jam. The RX is all-new for 2023.

What is the #1 selling luxury car in America? ›

Tesla was the USA's best selling luxury car brand in 2022, beating BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

What is the most luxurious Lexus SUV? ›

The most luxurious Lexus SUV without a doubt is the Lexus LX. The full-size flagship SUV is convenient, powerful, and luxurious. Here are some of its features: Massaging function in the front and back seats.

Is Lexus more luxurious than Toyota? ›

Lexus's parent company is Toyota, and the brand exists to offer a line of more luxury vehicles compared with Toyota's more utilitarian offering. That means that Lexus and Toyota have a lot of similarities in design and construction, but that Lexus vehicles tend to have higher-end components and a more expensive design.

Which is cheaper to maintain Lexus or BMW? ›

“It's not even a close contest. BMW is in the first place, with an average maintenance cost over 10 years of $17,800.” Lexus enjoys 28th place on this list at only $7000 barely losing to its close cousin Toyota at 30th with $5500 maintenance cost per 10 years.

Who is Lexus biggest competitor? ›

Lexus and Mercedes-Benz are two of the most well-known brands for luxury cars.

What is Lexus equivalent to Highlander? ›

Since 2001, the Highlander has become one of Toyota's most popular SUV models. With its plethora of technology, performance, and safety features, few other SUVs on the market compare. Only the Lexus RX 350 provides a similar product to the Toyota Highlander.

Which state sells the most Lexus? ›

Number of Lexus dealerships in the United States in 2023

The state with the most number of Lexus locations in the US is California, with 39 dealerships, which is about 16% of all Lexus dealerships in the US.

Is Lexus top of the line Toyota? ›

Lexus expertly combines superb craftsmanship and exaggerated styling throughout its diverse lineup. It functions as the luxury division of the well-known Japanese automaker—Toyota—but with significantly higher levels of character and desirability.

Why do people choose Lexus? ›

Lexus cars offer some of the best resale values on the market. In fact, Kelly Blue Book states that Lexus vehicles offer “Excellent resale value, world-class comfort, and exceptional reliability.” Lexus has also topped their Luxury Car category for over 10 years.

What's so special about Lexus? ›

Lexus proves that technologically-advanced luxury vehicles can also be very reliable. It comes in second overall in our most recent annual auto reliability brand rankings. Interiors are mostly well finished; the engines are smooth and fairly powerful; and hybrid models are very fuel efficient.

Why Lexus has high resale value? ›

Why do Lexus cars hold their value so well? It's simple – the quality. Lexus has an enviable reputation for excellence, both aesthetically and technologically. These are superb quality vehicles with years of research and development behind them.

Which state buys the most luxury cars? ›

Which states have the most luxury cars?
Ranking of States by Share of Luxury Cars – iSeeCars Study
RankState% Share of Luxury Cars
1New Jersey29.9%
48 more rows
6 days ago

Who sold the most cars in the USA? ›

The top three U.S. car brands are assembled and distributed by the leading manufacturers in the U.S. market: Ford Motor Company, Toyota Motor Corporation, and General Motors (GM).

What is the most sold vehicle brand in America? ›

2022: Top automakers in U.S. car sales
  • GM (16.2%)
  • Toyota (15.2%)
  • Ford (13.3%)
  • Other (37.0%)
  • Honda (7.1%)
  • Stellantis (11.2%)
Jan 10, 2023

What is Lexus the high end version of? ›

Lexus is the luxury wing of Toyota. Its vehicles range from small sedans to full-size SUVs. The automaker also makes numerous hybrid vehicles, including hybrid versions of the NX, UX, and RX.

What is Lexus flagship SUV? ›

Engineered to elevate the driver and drive to unprecedented heights, the 2023 LX is the definitive chapter of flagship luxury. Its exterior, a study in sophistication and strength, exhibits a silhouette that perfectly complements any road, on-road or off.

What is the oldest Lexus SUV? ›

When it first debuted in 1998, the Lexus RX 300 was the world's first-ever luxury crossover utility vehicle (CUV). By combining the best features of a luxury sedan and a sport utility vehicle (SUV), the RX ushered in a new standard of comfort, design and performance for manufacturers worldwide.

Is Audi better than Lexus? ›

When looking at the Audi vs. Lexus comparison, we need to determine which brand performs better as a luxury vehicle. According to Carvana once again, the performance of each vehicle is as follows: Audi: Audi offers more variety in their lineup and outperforms Lexus vehicles on average just slightly.

What is the Lexus equivalent to the crown? ›

Both cars have all-wheel drive systems for enhanced traction. They're exceptionally powerful, with a horsepower output of 203 on the Lexus ES and 236 on the Toyota Crown. The 2023 Crown also comes as a hybrid standard for more fuel efficiency.

Is Lexus better than Infiniti? ›

Lexus vehicles outperform INFINITI in terms of safety when comparing 2023 IIHS Top Safety Pick awards. J.D. Power and Consumer Reports have each recognized Lexus vehicles for their exceptional dependability and reliability ratings.

Why is Lexus oil change so expensive? ›

Lexus oil change is expensive because it requires the use of high-quality synthetic oil and specialized filters, the expertise of certified technicians, luxury vehicle maintenance standards, genuine Lexus parts and fluids usage, state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment, extended maintenance intervals, complimentary ...

Are Lexus more expensive to insure? ›

Lexus is owned by Toyota, but a Lexus costs about twice as much to insure as a Toyota-branded vehicle ($2,132 per year, on average). Luxury cars generally have higher insurance costs than less expensive cars.

Do I really need to service my Lexus every 5000 miles? ›

As a general rule, you should expect to bring your Lexus in for routine maintenance service every six months or every 5,000 miles (whichever comes first) for common activities like getting your oil changed or having your fluids checked and replaced as needed.

Who is the largest Lexus dealer in the United States? ›

Lexus of Arlington devotes 170,000-square-feet and both floors to more than 1,000 new and 600 used Lexus models. The parts and service department has 48 bays.

Is Lexus a high end vehicle? ›

As the luxury division of Japanese automaker Toyota, Lexus fits the bill for one of the industry's best–and most reliable—luxury car brands.

Is it Lexus a good choice? ›

Consumer Reports named Lexus the most reliable new car brand. Lexus dealerships were ranked #1 in overall dealership experience, a testament to the hard work done by local dealerships to make your car buying and service experience an exceptional one, every time.

Is Lexus a fancy Toyota? ›

Yes, the Lexus brand is owned by the Toyota Motor Corporation, which is headquartered in Japan. In many ways, however, the luxury vehicle brand operates independently from the Toyota Motor Corporation. Explore how Lexus came to be, and where the manufacturing of quality parts and vehicles takes place.

What is the Lexus version of the RAV4? ›

2023 Toyota RAV4 vs. 2023 Lexus RX 350 - Car Comparison.

What is the Lexus version of the 4Runner? ›

If you're looking for a robust SUV to hit the roads of Larchmont, New Rochelle, and Yonkers, New York, then two popular vehicles may come to mind: the 2021 Lexus GX 460 and the Toyota 4Runner. Both vehicles are coveted for their powerful performance and compelling design.

Does Lexus outsell BMW? ›

Lexus Knocks BMW From Spot As Luxury Brand Americans Consider First. More luxury car shoppers considered a Lexus than any other brand in the fourth quarter of 2021.

What brands compete with Lexus? ›

Lexus competitors include Audi, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Ltd, American Honda Motor, Volvo Car Corporation and Jaguar Land Rover. Lexus ranks 1st in Employee Net Promoter Score on Comparably vs its competitors.

Does Lexus outsell Mercedes? ›

Toyota Motor Corp.'s Lexus brand outsold luxury rivals Mercedes and BMW in the latest quarter as inventory shortages triggered by the pandemic hampered the German brands. The new Lexus IS 2021 sedan.

What does RX stand for in Lexus? ›

The RX model name stands for Radiant Crossover. The word Radiant represents the bright new future Lexus envisioned at the car's launch at the start of the Millennium. The model was the first sports utility vehicle that marked a Crossover point between a luxury saloon and an off-roader.

What do Lexus letters stand for? ›

That said, if you're new to the Lexus brand then you might be wondering what the letters at the end of the Lexus model names stand for. “S” means Sedan or Sport. “C” means Coupe. “T” means Touring. “X” means SUV.

Where are Lexus made in USA? ›

Are any Lexus models made in the US? A majority of Lexus models are made in the brand's three production plants in Japan. All models except for the ES, RX and RX Hybrid are produced in Japan. Lexus has a plant in Lexington, Kentucky, that produces its ES model.

What age group buys Lexus? ›

The brand says its average buyer age is 53 years old, the exact same age as five years ago. Lexus' buyer loyalty is among the strongest in the industry at 60 percent.

What kind of person drives a Lexus is? ›

Most Lexus drivers live in the city, work in finance or banking and are older than 65 years. They also enjoy sushi, think public transport is gross and want to look young and feel attractive. Most Lexus drivers also enjoy attending sporting events and are big fans of Starbucks.

What do Japanese think of Lexus? ›

In a survey on dream cars in Japan, the Toyota Lexus came out in front of a Porsche or Ferrari. The car rental company Park24 questioned 5,225 of its users and Lexus took sole top position for favorite car brand with 16%. Porsche ranked second with 10%, while Ferrari, BMW, and Mercedes all tied in third with 9%.

Is Lexus a status symbol? ›

A Few Things You Didn't Know About Lexus. The Lexus is great. It looks great, it drives great. It's quite the status symbol.

What is Lexus best seller? ›

The Lexus RX SUV is the best-selling luxury car in America for 2022.

Does Lexus need premium gas? ›

With that said, you're probably asking yourself, “Does Lexus require premium gas?” For most (but not all) of the Lexus lineup, the answer to that question is yes. Most Lexus models require you use at least 91 octane (premium) gasoline, while there are a few that can use 87 octane regular unleaded.

Can you negotiate Lexus prices? ›

Negotiation-free Pricing-Lexus Plus dealers will provide negotiation-free, market-value prices for every offering available for purchase at a dealership. This transparent pricing approach includes new and pre-owned vehicles, service packages, accessories, and more.

What is bigger Lexus NX or RX? ›

While the RX offers more cargo space, the smaller size of the Lexus NX may make it slightly easier to parallel park or drive through busy city streets. You can see that from the dimensions below: Lexus NX length/width: 182.7/73.6 inches. Lexus RX length/width: 192.5/74.6 inches.

What Lexus is comparable to Toyota Highlander? ›

Since 2001, the Highlander has become one of Toyota's most popular SUV models. With its plethora of technology, performance, and safety features, few other SUVs on the market compare. Only the Lexus RX 350 provides a similar product to the Toyota Highlander.

Do Lexus SUV hold their value? ›

Brand-new cars depreciate in value the moment you drive them off the dealership's lot, but some vehicles do so faster than others. The Lexus RX 350 is consistently rated as one of the very best luxury vehicles when it comes to maintaining value, which means it depreciates in value much more slowly than its competitors.

Is the RAV4 bigger than the Lexus NX? ›

As you can see, the Lexus NX is only slightly longer, a little shorter, and about the same width as the RAV4. However, the cabin of the NX is roomier, particularly in the front. The Lexus NX comes equipped with many technology features found on the RAV4, plus a few that are exclusive to the NX.

Is a Lexus NX considered a Luxury car? ›

The NX 350 is an all-around solid compact luxury SUV boasting an upscale, high-quality interior and plenty of standard driver assist features.

Which is best between Toyota and Lexus? ›

Lexus's parent company is Toyota, and the brand exists to offer a line of more luxury vehicles compared with Toyota's more utilitarian offering. That means that Lexus and Toyota have a lot of similarities in design and construction, but that Lexus vehicles tend to have higher-end components and a more expensive design.

What brand of SUV holds the most value? ›

The SUVs With the Best Resale Value:
  • 2022 Kia Telluride. ...
  • 2022 GMC Yukon. ...
  • 2022 Toyota 4Runner. ...
  • 2022 Volvo XC40. ...
  • 2022 Mercedes-Benz GLB. 5-year resale value: 41.1% ...
  • 2022 Range Rover Velar. 5-year resale value: 36.0% ...
  • 2022 Lincoln Aviator. 5-year resale value: 41.5% ...
  • 2022 Lexus LX. 5-year resale value: 45.2%
Mar 15, 2023

Does Lexus have a luxury SUV? ›

2023 Lexus RX – Luxury SUV.


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