The RX has always been a household name among luxury SUV and it is still one of the best-selling models in the segment, despite that the current generation is older than most competitors. However, its age doesn’t mean we can count on the 2021 Lexus RX redesign.
The crossover has recently been updated and we presume that the current generation will remain in production for a couple of more years, despite the fact that it is one of rare Toyota models that still waits for a new TNGA architecture.
The ’21 RX will carry over the minor revisions that came with the 2020 refresh. These included reshaped front and rear fasciae, a different pattern for the grille’s plastic inserts, thinner headlamps, and new wheel designs.
Unfortunately, Lexus’ design choices are at odds with some of the RX’s luxury and convenience features. For example, exaggerated grille causes a problem for the available front-obstacle detection system. The position of its sensors allows snow, ice, slush, even dirt, to build up more than with most vehicles.
In our test, this triggered a system-inoperative alert. We were able to dismiss it, but the notification reappeared within seconds. We had to disable the system during our evaluation, and that required a deep dive into an instrument-cluster menu.
The 2020 update didn’t alter the ’21 RX’s most important dimension, its wheelbase, which remains below average for the class. On newer rivals, this distance between the front and rear axles averages about 114 inches; on the RX, it’s 109.8 inches.
The interior is definitely one of the strongest points of this mid-size crossover. The first thing you’ll notice is a classy cabin, full of hi-quality materials and plenty of styles. There are many rivals that look better than the RX from the inside.
The dashboard is attractive and well-built, while the excellent final touch can be noticed across the whole cabin. Also, the seats are comfortable, while the second row is spacious as well. If you need extra seats, you can pick the RX L, which is longer and adds the third row.
The only major complaint about the interior goes to the cargo area. You can count on about 18.5 cubic feet behind the rear seats, while the overall cargo space goes up to 56.5 cubic feet. These are subpar ratings for the class. Also, rear seats don’t fold flat, which creates an uneven floor.
We may see a couple of additions to the list of standard equipment, but things will generally remain the same. Base models will come with synthetic leather and power-adjustable front seats. Higher trims add genuine leather upholstery.
Besides leather seats, you get leather-wrapped steering wheel, power-folding and reclining second-row seats, heated second-row seats, and a heated steering wheel, etc.
When it comes to tech features, all models come standard with a new touchscreen, while the infamous Remote Touch is still available. Things like Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, Android Auto, a nine-speaker sound system, satellite radio, HD Radio, Bluetooth are also standard in all models.
Typically for Toyota models, there is a generous list of standard safety features. You can count on things like rearview camera, forward collision warning, forward automatic emergency braking.
Pedestrian detection, automatic high-beam headlights, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, and adaptive cruise control. Additionally, you can get blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, a surround-view parking camera system, etc.
2021 Lexus RX Engine
Under its hood, we expect the 2021 Lexus RX to retain its standard 3.5-liter V6 engine that pumps out 295 horsepower. This power flows through an eight-speed automatic transmission and out to the front or all four wheels. The RX 450h will include a hybrid powertrain that pairs a 3.5-liter V6 with two electric motors for a combined 306 hp.
The current Lexus RX comes loaded with tons of standard safety equipment, including automatic emergency braking, forward-collision warnings, automatic high beams, adaptive cruise control, and active lane control.
These features combined with “Good” crash-test scores and “Acceptable” headlight ratings lead to its IIHS Top Safety Pick rating. We expect the same ratings and features from the 2021 RX.
Given that the next year probably won’t bring too many changes, we presume that the 2021 Lexus RX release date will be scheduled for the last quarter of the next year. When it comes to the price, base models will go around 45.000 dollars.