August 29, 2007 - Torrance, CA - The Lexus RX 350 remains the most popular vehicle in the car-based luxury utility vehicle segment that it established in 1998. The RX has proved to be not only the segment sales leader, but a quality leader, as well. For 2007, the RX 350 and RX 400h was highest ranked midsize premium multi-activity vehicle in the J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality StudySM (IQS), an honor its predecessor models garnered several times as well.
For 2008, the trend-setting RX 350 receives minor exterior and interior trim enhancements, including a revised front grille, chrome door handles, new 7-spoke 18-inch alloy wheels and two new colors, Desert Sage Metallic and Brandy Wine Mica. The latter is available with a choice of four interior colors.
The RX 350 delivers all-weather performance in both front- and all-wheel-drive models. Engineered at the outset to accommodate a hybrid powertrain, the RX 350 shares its platform with its hybrid counterpart, the RX 400h. The RX 350 is produced both in Japan at the Kyushu plant and at Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Canada.
"Lexus established the winning formula for its segment with the original RX model a decade ago, and the latest RX 350 continues to deliver the winning combination of luxury, performance, safety and quality that has kept this model the segment leader for so long," said Mark Templin, Lexus group vice president and general manager.
The RX 350's new 3.5-liter V6 engine produces 270 horsepower and 251 lb.-ft. of torque. Featuring all-aluminum construction, the V6 harnesses the benefits of advanced technologies to improve performance and fuel efficiency as well as to reduce emissions. Dual Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence (VVT-i) helps optimize torque for quick and powerful response at all engine speeds. The Electronic Throttle Control with intelligence (ETC-i) helps to manage idle speed, cruise control, Traction Control (TRAC), and Vehicle Stability Control (VSC).
The FWD RX 350 can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in just 7.3 seconds; the AWD model in 7.4 seconds. The RX 350 achieves Ultra-Low Emissions Vehicle II (ULEV II) certification.
Full-Time All-Wheel Drive with Vehicle Stability Control
The all-wheel drive RX 350 uses a viscous limited-slip center differential to enhance drivability in all types of driving conditions. The full-time AWD system works with TRAC to evenly distribute power to both axles with a constant 50/50 front-to-rear power split. If slippage occurs, the viscous coupling differential directs torque to the wheels with the most traction.
Both RX 350 models come standard-equipped with the Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) system, which helps control loss of lateral traction while cornering. VSC helps keep the vehicle going on its intended course by detecting front- and rear-wheel slide during cornering, attempting to control either condition with torque intervention and, if necessary, by applying brake pressure to individual wheels.
VSC and Brake Assist work with the standard Anti-lock Braking System (ABS). Brake Assist is designed to determine if the driver is attempting emergency braking. If the driver has not stepped firmly enough on the brake pedal to engage ABS, the system applies increased braking power until the driver releases pedal pressure.
Serene Driving, Agile Handling
Lexus' RX models have set the benchmark for smooth, quiet ride quality in their segment for a decade. A rigid body structure, vibration-canceling engine mounts, strategically placed sound-absorption materials, an acoustic glass windshield, and refined aerodynamic details all contribute to maintaining that standing.
The high-strength platform, standard 17-inch wheels and tight steering control help optimize handling response in the RX 350. Eighteen-inch wheels are also available. An optional air-suspension system provides automatic leveling with four height settings to allow the driver to tailor the RX 350 to specific driving conditions or needs.
In "normal" mode, the system automatically lowers the RX 350 by 0.3-inch at speeds over 62 mph for better ride quality. Selecting the "low" mode lowers the ride height by 0.6-inch to enhance handling response, while "high" mode raises ground clearance by 1.2 inches for driving over rough surfaces at speeds under 30 mph.
An "access" mode lowers the RX 350 by 1.2 inches to provide easier entry, exit and loading. All RX 350 models with the air suspension system are equipped with a multimode sequential automatic transmission.
The Lexus Safety Standard
A high-strength cabin design and comprehensive Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) are designed to help provide a high level of crash-energy management for all occupants. SRS includes advanced driver- and front-passenger airbags, a driver's knee airbag, and front-seat-mounted side airbags designed to help protect the torso, abdomen, and pelvis. The front airbag technology takes into account several factors, such as crash severity, passenger weight, and driver-seat position. Standard side-curtain airbags employ a roll sensor and can inflate if a predetermined threshold of vehicle-roll angle is detected.
The RX 350 offers options designed to help improve visibility for night driving and poor weather conditions. In addition to rain-sensing windshield wipers and high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights, the RX 350 also offers the Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS) for better illumination in turns and curves. With AFS, a central controller calculates the optimum lighting direction based on input from vehicle speed and steering angle and then swivels the right and left headlights independently. The left beam can rotate from zero to 15 degrees in a left turn while the right beam remains in the center position. The right beam can rotate from zero to five degrees in a right turn while the left beam remains in a center position.
A direct-type Tire Pressure Monitor (TPM) system alerts the driver via a warning light on the instrument panel if a critical drop in tire pressure is detected in any of the tires.
Versatile Utility and Convenience
The RX 350's 106.9-inch wheelbase and 186.2-inch length yield an easy-to-drive, easy-to-park vehicle that provides roomy comfort for five occupants. The rear seatbacks feature a versatile 40/20/40-split design and offer both sliding and reclining adjustments. The 38.3-cu.-ft. rear-cargo capacity expands to 84.7 cu. ft. with the rear seatbacks folded down, while an automatic retracting tonneau cover adds security and convenience.
The standard power rear lift gate can be programmed for one-click opening via the keyless remote control for a hands-free cargo-area opening. While a beeper sounds when the door is opening and closing, a touch sensor will also sense if something is impeding the hatch and stop it from closing.
An auto-dimming rearview mirror with an integrated digital compass is standard, as are auto-dimming and heated exterior mirrors. The integrated HomeLink® transmitter can control a variety of compatible home-security devices and systems. Additionally, the RX 350 offers an available Dynamic Laser Cruise Control system, which measures and helps maintain a set distance from a vehicle traveling ahead.
Lexus Navigation System
The optionally available Lexus Navigation System allows the driver to input a desired destination by voice command while driving. A central VGA screen features a high resolution 800x480 pixel display in 32,000 colors. On-screen details are crisp and clean, and maps and roads include 3D shadow effects.
Text-display choices include English, Spanish and French, and the user can select the language preference at system start-up. System functions include multiple route calculation, route preview, simplified highway-junction graphics and a dual-map screen mode. The DVD map database contains more than five million points of interest. The database for Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, and New York includes a "building footprint" display feature that can show graphic representations of buildings and structures to help the driver identify surroundings.
The navigation system also integrates Bluetooth® wireless technology. When combined with a compatible phone, Bluetooth allows the driver to transfer personal phone books to the navigation system and make hands-free phone calls through its touch-screen control panel.
Lexus Benchmark Luxury
Lexus craftsmanship and renowned attention to detail provide sumptuous comfort by design in the RX 350. Standard dual-zone automatic climate control, 10-way power front seats with available memory, adjustable light in the visor vanity mirrors, and wood interior trim set the tone. Luxury extends to the smallest details, such as illuminated front cup holders and a wood- and leather-trimmed steering wheel with integrated audio system and trip computer controls.
Premium options include a power tilt and telescoping steering wheel with memory, and an illuminated entry system that lights the door handles, scuff plates, and front foot wells.
A wide-opening, multi-panel moonroof is an optional alternative to the conventional moonroof. The multi-panel moonroof is made of three separate glass panels and provides an open area that is 150 percent larger than a normal moonroof and an illumination area that is 250 percent larger.
The RX 350's hushed interior provides a superb listening environment for the standard premium, satellite radio-ready, eight-speaker AM/FM/CD audio player with in-dash six-disc CD changer. The system is compatible with MP3/WMA-formatted CDs and includes an Automatic Sound Levelizer (ASL), Radio Data System (RDS), and a digital signal processor.
An 11-speaker Mark Levinson® Premium Audio System is available. This audiophile-pleasing system features an in-dash six-disc DVD/CD changer, DVD-audio, and DVD-video playback as well as remarkable sound clarity at all volumes, with 210 watts at 0.1% THD, 20-20,000 Hz.
All new Lexus vehicles come with a 48-month/50,000-mile basic limited warranty with roadside assistance for
48 months/unlimited miles. Powertrain and restraint system coverage is provided for 72 months/70,000 miles. Corrosion perforation protection is covered for 72 months, regardless of mileage.
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