The Lexus RX is a luxury brand Lexus SUV sold since 1998 in North America. This model is in fact a Toyota Harrier, sold in Japan, rebadged. This vehicle is the spearhead of the expansion of the brand belonging to the giant Toyota, with in particular its hybrid version which made it the first hybrid SUV in the world. In the American range of Lexus, the RX opens the line of SUVs, but it is the only representative of this category in Europe.
NB: The numbers located after the model name indicate the displacement (except hybrid versions), as at Infiniti, or Mercedes.
First generation (1998 – 2003)
The RX takes the general style of the SLV prototype presented by Lexus at the Chicago Motor Show in February 1997. It was released in March 1998 in North America after the official presentation in Los Angeles, then it appeared in Europe at the end of the year 2000.
There is only one petrol engine:
RX 300: V6 3.0 201 hp.
It has a four-speed automatic transmission with two or four-wheel drive.
Second generation (2003-2009)
The second generation of RX was officially presented at the Detroit Motor Show in January 2003 to be launched two months later in North America, then in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The RX grows about fifteen centimeters in length, two in width and a small centimeter in height. In 2005, a hybrid version based on the Hybrid Synergy Drive system appeared, making it, along with its twin the Toyota Harrier, the world’s first hybrid SUV.
The hybrid version of the RX was launched in March 2005 and became the first Lexus to benefit from such technology. This version uses the 3.3 L V6 of the American RX which develops 272 hp on it, and the Hybrid Synergy Drive system.
The vehicle is started using electric motors up to about 50 km / h, provided you have a light foot. When the demand for power increases, the gasoline engine provides most of the traction, with the electric motors sporadically supporting it when needed. Its batteries are recharged automatically through the engine and recovering energy during braking. Thus, the vehicle manages to emit less than 200 grams of CO2 per km despite high power and weight. Its fuel consumption is around 9 liters per hundred, making it the least fuel-efficient vehicle in its class.
In September 2013, the RX400h was the subject of a manufacturer recall concerning the welds of the transistor of the power module of the inverter of the hybrid system could deteriorate prematurely.
On these cars, Toyota explained that it will replace free of charge “the inverter power module (direct current / alternating current) of the hybrid system”. “Degradation of the welds of the inverter power module transistors could cause the vehicle to go into safe mode, limiting the power available for driving,” the group said in a statement. “In rare cases the fuse of the power circuit could be made inoperative, putting the hybrid system out of service,” he added.