The Lexus RX 350L AWD SUV is the latest version of the best-selling Lexus mid-sized SUV. Naturally, the brand has continued to improve the vehicle through the years as the brand continues to offer its owners the chance to “Experience Amazing.” Has the streak continued, or have we hit an impasse? Follow along as Napleton.news takes you along for the ride.
WHAT IS IT?
The 2020 Lexus RX 350L AWD is a four-door SUV with a hatchback and a multi-configurable interior with seating for up to seven passengers. Featuring crisp, origami-styled cuts and angled body panels, it is a crossover with few peers.
For our week with the RX, we were able to sample the RX 350L AWD SUV, which is powered by Lexus’s award-winning 3.5-liter V6 engine. It produces 290 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque. Power is distributed to the all-wheel-drive (AWD) system by an 8-speed automatic transmission. There are other options, including the higher performance RX 350 F Sport with adaptable suspension and the RX 450h Hybrid model with 3.5-liter V6 and a 123-kW electric motor for added assist and high fuel economy.
WHAT IS THE “L” FOR?
The L in the name, RX 350L AWD SUV, is designed to let you know this one goes to 11. Not really. It doesn’t even stretch the wheelbase either. What it does is extend the overall vehicle length by 4.3-inches, which frees up a little bit of space behind the second row. But beware: The seating area is tight for everyone who is not a pre-teenager. There several models and trim levels available ranging from the standard-length RX 350, RX 350 F Sport and the RX 450h Hybrid vehicle. For those needing the third row, they can check out the RX 350L, RX 350L F Sport and the RX 450hL Hybrid.
WALKING AROUND THE RX 350 L AWD
A quick walk around the RX 350L AWD reveals a series of complex panels and interesting shapes that were sadly missing on earlier generations of the vehicle. The boldness of the spindle grille remains, updated to look more at-home on this contemporarily-designed vehicle. The new design of the RX includes sharply squinty LED headlamps, vertical front vents and sweeping rocker lines that rise towards the rear hatch.
One of the most interesting features on the RX 350L AWD is in the area of the C-Pillars. What are C-Pillars, you ask? Simple: Imagine the upright frames holding the windshield in place as the A-Pillars, the pillars between the front and rear doors as the B-Pillars and finally the pillars behind the rear doors as the C-Pillars. In this case, the C-Pillars appear to be blacked-out, giving the appearance the roof is just floating in air over the top of the RX.
It’s a trick played on the eyes (Trompe Les Yeux in the French) and by and large, it succeeds nicely.
INSIDE THE RX 350 L
The interior of the Lexus RX 350L has never disappointed us…um except when it comes to the console-mounted touchpad controller. More of a distraction than a haptic helper, we found our eyes always reaching over to make sure where our hands were going.
With that little distraction aside, we were impressed with the overall fit and finish inside the cabin. From the multi-control steering wheel to the heated and ventilated front seats and third-row passenger seating, the car looked every bit as buttoned-up as its Teutonic competitors.
Our RX was equipped with a 12.3-inch Navigation System that included a Mark Levinson 15-speaker premium audio system. The extra-wide screen offered clean, high-definition visuals, although we wish Lexus would update their map graphics already.
Cargo space behind the third-row seating is only 6.2 cubic feet. Fold the third-row seat flat and that number grows to 23 cubic feet. Finally, folding both rows forward will yield an impressive 58 cubic feet.
BEHIND THE WHEEL
Our first impression behind the paddle-shift equipped steering wheel of the Lexus RX 350L AWD SUV was, “man, is this is a quiet ride or what?” Because it really is. The cabin is one of the most comfortable cocoons you will find in an SUV anywhere. When combined with the bonus of the Mark Levinson audio system, the Lexus takes on a persona more akin to Carnegie Hall on wheels. It’s literally a rolling concert hall.
Power from the 3.5-liter V6 engine is perfect for a vehicle of this size. Come on now! It’s nearly 300 horsepower! The engine is stout enough to provide plenty of get-go that will deliver you onto the highway in rapid order or wherever you need to go.
What you don’t have in this RX 350 is a track-day ‘bahn burner that will give local race track heroes a run for their money. That just isn’t going to happen. Instead, you will have a vehicle that delivers you, your charges and your contents in safety and comfort to your destination. Did we mention the Lexus Safety System +2.0? It’s here as well and offers state-of-the-art safety that includes pre-collision warning with pedestrian and bicycle detection, lane keeping and lane departure warning, road sign assist, and radar-based adaptive cruise control.
At Napleton Lexus, we have your RX 350L AWD ready for you today. We offer touchless delivery and online purchasing to make your Lexus purchase an experience like no other. Browse our online inventory and contact our Lexus specialists for more information today.