Upcoming Lexus RX L revealed at LA Auto Show
A larger, 7-seat version of the Lexus RX has been revealed at the LA Auto Show. Lexus calls it the RX L and it will be available in six and seven-seater options with the addition of a new reclining bench in the boot. To make space for the extra passengers, the model aimed for the US market is 110 mm longer than the regular RX. Length aside, the RX L can also be distinguished from the standard RX by its tailgate that sits at a steeper angle to meet the roof.
In international markets, the RX L will be offered with two power-train options. The first is a 3.5-Litre V6 engine producing 294hp and 352Nm of torque. The second, with similar specifications, will be coupled with two electric motors, delivering a combined power output of 308hp. “It’s a clear extension for the Lexus lineup,” IHS Markit senior analyst Stephanie Brinley said. “Consumers respond to three-row SUVs.
It gives Lexus a competitor for the Audi Q7.” In addition to the increased body length, engineers gave the RXL a standard power folding rear seat. The back window is steeper than in the 5-seat RX, generating a new profile and more headroom for third-row passengers. Other changes to lodge more passengers include a three-zone climate system with separate controls for the third row. The second row is accessible as a 40/20/20-split bench — for 7 passengers — or with two captain’s chairs that slide forward for easy access to the back seat. Lexus will offer gasoline and hybrid versions of the RXL. The RX 350L has a 3.5L 290-hp V6 and eight-speed automatic transmission. The RX 450L catches 308 hp from the same engine and an electrically powered back axle. It uses a continuously variable automatic transmission. Second-row captain’s chairs are standard in the hybrid. EPA fuel economy ratings aren’t available yet, but Lexus better have them soon if it plans to have the RXL on sale in December.
A cutaway model of the 2018 Lexus RX 350L is on show at the Los Angeles Auto Show, Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, in Los Angeles. (Photo: Jae C. Hong, AP) Lexus will not say how much weight stretching the RX added, but the RXL offers a long list of features, including standard 18- or 20-inch wheels; audio systems that include a 15-speaker, 825-watt Mark Levinson unit; automatic high beams; wood trim; aluminum roof rails; a hands-free tailgate; and leather first and second-row seats.