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Lexus RX300 Luxury SUV – a lower entry price with improved driving dynamics and features.

Lexus last October updated their large RX SUV. Now Lexus’s No 2 seller the improvements have further lifted the RX and also answered some of the criticisms of the first series. Let me say at the outset the quality on the entry five-seat RX300 Luxury I tested was first class – at $71,920, $1,600 below the old model, this front drive SUV offers a big saving over equivalent German entries and on first glance wants for little in features. The RX300 gets a 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder with 175kW of power, 350Nm of torque mated to a six-speed automatic – the performance excellent, smooth and fuss free, quiet too but it can get a little thirsty if you push it hard and it requires 95 RON petrol.

I found it hard to match Lexus’s claim of 8.1 L/100 on the combined, city/country cycle, achieving a figure of 10.6. The styling updates are minimal – subtle styling mods front and back, new lights and a cleaner grille  – Lexus’s spindle grille always draws comment – a divisive element for many buyers but its less noticeable in this latest model. New standard features – a hands-free kick sensor for the power tailgate, front cornering lights, a big lift in driving dynamics and ride quality, a 12.3 inch colour infotainment screen up from 8 inches and Apple Car play and Android Auto functionality. Warranty 4-years/100,000 kilometres.

I’m David Berthon

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