JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 2:31 p.m.
feature_image

We’re spending a week with a Lexus RX 350h hybrid SUV in the “Luxury” trim, so you can ask any questions you like about it.

But, first, we have some questions. Mostly, why does Lexus insist on making their electronic driver aids so … present. The bottom line here is the RX is a perfectly okay everyday SUV. It’s got …

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Mndsm
Mndsm MegaDork
11/21/23 2:44 p.m.

Watching with interest. This exact vehicle (down to the trim level, though we're hoping for either Nori green or that goofy champagne color ) is #1 on swmbos shopping list. 

 

How is it from a distance driving standpoint, comfortwise? I know they feel very...cockpitty inside, does that translate into feeling cramped after a while? 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 2:57 p.m.
Mndsm said:

Watching with interest. This exact vehicle (down to the trim level, though we're hoping for either Nori green or that goofy champagne color ) is #1 on swmbos shopping list. 

 

How is it from a distance driving standpoint, comfortwise? I know they feel very...cockpitty inside, does that translate into feeling cramped after a while? 

Honestly everything dynamic about it is fine. I'd happily take it on a long journey and I never really felt cramped, and I'm pretty sensitive to claustrophobic cockpits. really the biggest annoyance would be the constant scolds that I'm not paying enough attention to the road. Honestly I never could figure out exactly what it wanted. If I stared straight ahead, it scolded me. If I scanned the road side to side, it scolded me. I'm starting to think it just doesn't like me.

glueguy (Forum Supporter)
glueguy (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand Dork
11/21/23 3:05 p.m.

It knows you're an imposter and not in the target demographics

 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 3:08 p.m.
glueguy (Forum Supporter) said:

It knows you're an imposter and not in the target demographics

 

I did wonder why I had to input my credit rating to tune in NPR.

Mndsm
Mndsm MegaDork
11/21/23 3:18 p.m.
JG Pasterjak said:
Mndsm said:

Watching with interest. This exact vehicle (down to the trim level, though we're hoping for either Nori green or that goofy champagne color ) is #1 on swmbos shopping list. 

 

How is it from a distance driving standpoint, comfortwise? I know they feel very...cockpitty inside, does that translate into feeling cramped after a while? 

Honestly everything dynamic about it is fine. I'd happily take it on a long journey and I never really felt cramped, and I'm pretty sensitive to claustrophobic cockpits. really the biggest annoyance would be the constant scolds that I'm not paying enough attention to the road. Honestly I never could figure out exactly what it wanted. If I stared straight ahead, it scolded me. If I scanned the road side to side, it scolded me. I'm starting to think it just doesn't like me.

Maybe it thought the bird was in charge? 

 

The safety nanny thing would be annoying as heck. I'll be curious as to what the return on MPG is at the end of this. Does it have the Levinson package? Does that stereo rip like it used to? Will it scold me if I play deathcore? 

gixxeropa
gixxeropa GRM+ Memberand Reader
11/21/23 3:40 p.m.

This car sounds like my nightmare, I can't stand things beeping at me, to the point I'd rather walk. My dad however would get along fine, as he can drive down the road for 30 minutes while his car beeps at him for not buckling up

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 3:52 p.m.
gixxeropa said:

This car sounds like my nightmare, I can't stand things beeping at me, to the point I'd rather walk. My dad however would get along fine, as he can drive down the road for 30 minutes while his car beeps at him for not buckling up

I tried to move it with the door open last week. It immediately locked the parking brake and wouldn't let me move until I both closed the door AND buckled up. All because I wanted a little more room between the car and the garage door to open the hatch.

I *hope* some of this stuff is defeatable via menu option diving. Honestly I feel bad ragging on it for this stuff because it's a solid and satisfying automobile, but the experience is brought down a few clicks by the constant minor annoyances of "assistance."

And, to be clear, I'm not completely anti-nanny. I think there's plenty of electronic assists that make life better and safer for a lot of drivers. I just think they need to be a little more transparent than the execution on this vehicle seems to be.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 3:53 p.m.
Mndsm said:
JG Pasterjak said:
Mndsm said:

Watching with interest. This exact vehicle (down to the trim level, though we're hoping for either Nori green or that goofy champagne color ) is #1 on swmbos shopping list. 

 

How is it from a distance driving standpoint, comfortwise? I know they feel very...cockpitty inside, does that translate into feeling cramped after a while? 

Honestly everything dynamic about it is fine. I'd happily take it on a long journey and I never really felt cramped, and I'm pretty sensitive to claustrophobic cockpits. really the biggest annoyance would be the constant scolds that I'm not paying enough attention to the road. Honestly I never could figure out exactly what it wanted. If I stared straight ahead, it scolded me. If I scanned the road side to side, it scolded me. I'm starting to think it just doesn't like me.

Maybe it thought the bird was in charge? 

 

The safety nanny thing would be annoying as heck. I'll be curious as to what the return on MPG is at the end of this. Does it have the Levinson package? Does that stereo rip like it used to? Will it scold me if I play deathcore? 

It didn't mind KMFDM, so it would probably give you a pass for some Whitechapel.

Mndsm
Mndsm MegaDork
11/21/23 4:02 p.m.

Alright. So....we need to shut the safety E36 M3 off, but the rest of it is a proper toyota excellent automobile. Good to know. 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 9:34 p.m.
Mndsm said:

Alright. So....we need to shut the safety E36 M3 off, but the rest of it is a proper toyota excellent automobile. Good to know. 

Nailed it. And it really isn't the safety stuff per se, as it's all valuable assistance for modern roadways and modern drivers. But some of the implementation of systems that should be transparent is decidedly noticeable, and that detracts from what would otherwise be an excellent experience.

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard GRM+ Memberand Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
11/21/23 9:44 p.m.

Can we talk about the styling? It looks a little bit like a Mazda CX-5 rear-ended a heating radiator. 

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
11/21/23 9:47 p.m.

One day I made an observation of this car, especially in black, and now I can not unsee it...  

That observation: the silver trim between the C & D pillars looks rather hearse-like.

Mndsm
Mndsm MegaDork
11/21/23 9:52 p.m.
Tom Suddard said:

Can we talk about the styling? It looks a little bit like a Mazda CX-5 rear-ended a heating radiator. 

the new front end is wild and i'm here for it. I don't know what toyota's doing over in their labs but man, they got some good guacamole. 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 10:16 p.m.
Mndsm said:
Tom Suddard said:

Can we talk about the styling? It looks a little bit like a Mazda CX-5 rear-ended a heating radiator. 

the new front end is wild and i'm here for it. I don't know what toyota's doing over in their labs but man, they got some good guacamole. 

Man I look a that front bumper cover and see body shops sending their kids to private schools. I just don't see any way to ding that thing that isn't a total writeoff for the cover.

secretariata (Forum Supporter)
secretariata (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
11/21/23 10:36 p.m.
John Welsh said:

One day I made an observation of this car, especially in black, and now I can not unsee it...  

That observation: the silver trim between the C & D pillars looks rather hearse-like.

Shh...you've caught onto their secret.  It's for almost dead people.  That's why JG is having such troubles with the nannys, he doesn't have enough gray hair. He isn't in the target demographic yet.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/21/23 11:38 p.m.
secretariata (Forum Supporter) said:
John Welsh said:

One day I made an observation of this car, especially in black, and now I can not unsee it...  

That observation: the silver trim between the C & D pillars looks rather hearse-like.

Shh...you've caught onto their secret.  It's for almost dead people.  That's why JG is having such troubles with the nannys, he doesn't have enough gray hair. He isn't in the target demographic yet.

I'm gonna switch from MSNBC to FoxNews and see if they all go off.

Mndsm
Mndsm MegaDork
11/22/23 8:51 a.m.
JG Pasterjak said:
Mndsm said:
Tom Suddard said:

Can we talk about the styling? It looks a little bit like a Mazda CX-5 rear-ended a heating radiator. 

the new front end is wild and i'm here for it. I don't know what toyota's doing over in their labs but man, they got some good guacamole. 

Man I look a that front bumper cover and see body shops sending their kids to private schools. I just don't see any way to ding that thing that isn't a total writeoff for the cover.

You're not wrong. Unfortunately, I see that with most modern vehicles. We've been cross shopping for close to a year now. It started with the Ford Escape, of all things. Then she wanted a hybrid. So- we started looking at stuff. I suggested Toyota because no one's been doing it longer, or better, than they have. We briefly considered the Koreans because they offer a LOT of jam for your clams- but the whole Kia boys debacle put me off those. (even if they do fix em, tiktokers aint so smart and it's not gonna stop em from tryin. I don't need that hassle) ANYHOW- obviously Toyota lead us to Lexus. 

 

The common thread I've seen in all these new cars is- they are not designed for me anymore. I like to work on my E36 M3. I like to know where stuff goes, I don't like nannies, etc. SWMBO likes buttons and gizmos and whatever. She's fine with dealer maitenance. She makes the money to afford it- and we have decent insurance. Sure we live in tourist hell and this thing will be an i-4 warrior. She just prefers a different tactic than I do. Repair costs and possible issues aside, I think it looks great. Finally some future lookin' ish. Looks awesome in the goofy champagne copper too.

gearheadE30
gearheadE30 Dork
11/22/23 11:21 a.m.

In the first pic in this thread, it looks like that schnozz is so long you could push down on the front of the hood and lift the back wheels right off the ground.

Mndsm
Mndsm MegaDork
11/22/23 11:37 a.m.

LOOK AT IT. 

 

I love the way it looks. 

 

I will admit though, Toyota's thrown a monkey wrench in my plans lately, in the form of.... another Toyota. I've been an outside fan of the Crown "sedan" for a minute now, and now for '25 they've unveiled the new Crown Signia- an SUV destined to replace the Venza, which admittedly was still sort of on the table. Supposedly the Signia comes with something like a 7500lb towing capacity, which sounds insane to me, but if that's true, that 100% takes an Escalade off the table for me, and possibly 10k (or more) off the sticker of the vehicle in the picture, which looks every bit like 65k. 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/22/23 1:19 p.m.
gearheadE30 said:

In the first pic in this thread, it looks like that schnozz is so long you could push down on the front of the hood and lift the back wheels right off the ground.

The 3/4 front view makes the back look a lot shorter than it actually is. There's reasonable rear overhang, but the corners swoop in and make the rear look pretty truncted from that front angle.

I'm honestly not sure how I feel about that grille and the surrounding neighborhood. There's a LOT going on there, but somehow it's kind of working in a weird way. It's almost like if they had done less it would look weird. So they overdid it, saw no way out, and just decided "well let's just keep adding details until it makes sense again."

thebigf
thebigf New Reader
11/22/23 5:23 p.m.

I think it's butt ugly.  I don't understand the grille that starts at the hood and ends at the air dam.

I had the displeasure of driving a new Ford Explorer this past Summer that fought back every time I changed lanes.  Annoying.  I had to turn off the selectable nannies every time I started it as it set them back on.  Grr.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
11/22/23 9:02 p.m.
thebigf said:

I think it's butt ugly.  I don't understand the grille that starts at the hood and ends at the air dam.

I had the displeasure of driving a new Ford Explorer this past Summer that fought back every time I changed lanes.  Annoying.  I had to turn off the selectable nannies every time I started it as it set them back on.  Grr.

Yeah this is the kind of stuff that frustrates me, because when you experience good executions of that technology it really shows you how good and transparent it can be. The lane assist on the Kia EV6, for example, never announces itself. You just start to feel like the car has great directional stability and the roads are in better shape than you remembered. 

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