Lexus continues its RX line of luxury SUVs with an extensive 2010 update that reconfigures the suspension, adjusts styling, and adds a whole new cabin tech suite.
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With the 2010 update, Lexus brings the RX more in line with its Finesse styling language, marked in this picture by the points on the top corners of the grille.
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The RX 350 is powered by a modest 3.5-liter engine, putting out only 275 horsepower. It moves the RX 350 adequately, but we would like to see Lexus go to direct injection for greater power-train efficiency.
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Rather than add a third row of seats, as many competitors have done, Lexus chose to keep the RX a five seater.
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We were impressed by the ride quality in the RX, which damped out bumps in the road well.
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There is a good-sized cargo area with the rear seats up, and much more room with those seats folded down.
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The fit and finish in the cabin is all of high quality, and the materials used lend to the feeling of luxury.
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Lexus tightened up the steering in the new RX 350. With the previous generation, it was overpowered, and you could turn it with one finger, but now it feels more like a real car.
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Lexus' electro-luminescent instruments are simply designed, and lend to the look of quality in the car.
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A six-speed automatic is the only transmission option. Along with its drive mode, it also has sport and manual modes. But the sport mode isn't particularly sporty.
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The new Remote Touch controller works like a mouse, with this joystick letting you move a cursor on the car's LCD. It is very easy to use.
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This main menu comes up when you push the menu button on the Remote Touch controller. Unfortunately, this menu is the only way to get to the audio and phone menus.
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The input screens still use predictive text, but the new controller lets you push a cursor around to select letters and numbers.
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The navigation system is new, with maps stored on a hard drive. It has traffic information integrated, and you can tell it to reroute around traffic jams, although it takes a few button pushes.
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Weather is another data feed included with the new navigation system.
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iPod integration is a new feature with this electronics suite, and lets you choose music by artist, album, and genre.
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Bluetooth phone integration has also been improved in the new RX 350. This system downloads phone contacts and lets you dial by name with the voice command system.
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The back-up camera is fairly basic for the RX, with no overlay showing distance or wheel turn.
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