Making its North American debut at the 2012 New York International Auto Show, Lexus revealed the all-new 2013 RX 350 F Sport.
Available in All-Wheel Drive (AWD), the Lexus RX 350 F Sport features an eight-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, F Sport-tuned suspension, unique sport front bumper and mesh grille, 19-inch split five-spoke wheels in a Dark Graphite finish, and exclusive interior enhancements.
"The RX 350 F Sport challenges pre-conceived notions about luxury crossover utility vehicles," said Mark Templin, Lexus group vice president and general manager. "RX F Sport is not just an appearance package, but a full-fledged performance package."
The Lexus RX 350 F Sport teams a 3.5-liter V6 engine with an eight-speed Electronically Controlled Transmission with intelligence (ECT-i) for an output of 270 horsepower at 6,200 rpm. Dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i) is used to control both intake and exhaust camshafts independently; optimizing engine performance at many speeds and loads.
The Lexus RX 350 F Sport's eight-speed automatic transmission has paddle shifters as standard equipment. It yields quick shifting response with help from miniature high-flow linear solenoids that allow more precise clutch operation. The torque converter uses a low-speed lockup damper to enable lock-up from first to eighth gear to help improve the fuel economy.
The RX 350 F Sport model features an electronically controlled Active Torque Control AWD system. Active Torque Control AWD uses an electronically controlled coupling ahead of the rear differential to vary torque distribution anywhere from 100:0 to 50:50 front to rear, depending on driving dynamics and road conditions. When accelerating, or starting off on a low-grip surface, torque is quickly provided to all four wheels. At steady speeds, torque is sent only to the front wheels, enhancing fuel efficiency. The model is expected to earn EPA ratings of 19 mpg city, 25 mpg highway, 21 mpg combined.
The F Sport suspension provides firmer shocks and springs for a more engaging driving experience. A unique lateral performance damper system absorbs and minimizes body vibrations, resulting in a more linear steering feel and enhanced ride comfort. In lieu of conventional fixed bracing, this system features a front performance damper and a rear damper connecting the left and right sides of the rear structural frame. The eight-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, allows for more driver input, while increasing fuel efficiency.
VDIM handling technology is standard on the Lexus RX 350 AWD F Sport. VDIM anticipates loss of vehicle control and governs all of the vehicle's dynamic handling systems - the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Brake Assist (BA), Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and Traction Control (TRAC) - with the electronic throttle control system. The system employs them collectively and seamlessly to help make corrections while allowing higher dynamic capability.
The RX F Sport will be exclusively equipped with 19-inch split five-spoke wheels with 235/55R/19 tires.
A New, Sporty Appearance Inside and Out
The new distinctive and contemporary front of the RX F Sport is highlighted with Lexus' signature spindle grille and a bolder sport bumper, featuring an F Sport exclusive mesh design. The upper edge of the grille is set lower than the upper edge of the headlamp assembly to establish a more aggressive look. The standard LED daytime running lights and combination rear lamps reflect the "L" design motif. Fog lamps are integrated into the sculpted lower front bumper fascia.
Pronounced front fenders flow into the doors, and integrated rear fender flares neatly sweep around to pull together the taut rear corners of the vehicle. The lower body emphasizes the standard 19-inch wheels. Distinctive F Sport exterior badging adorns the sporty exterior.
The RX F Sport features a unique interior design treatment with perforated black leather-trimmed seats with white perforation holes. White contrast stitching accentuates the seats, center console and door armrests. A new Ebony Bird's Eye Maple trim adds a touch oF Sporty elegance. A black headliner, a perforated leather-wrapped steering wheel showcasing the "F" logo, and aluminum pedals complete the interior enhancements.
The Lexus RX F Sport can accommodate a variety of music sources, providing auxiliary and USB inputs, BluetoothÂ® Audio wireless connectivity and a standard integrated SiriusXM Satellite Radio receiver (90-day trial subscription included). Standard voice recognition and BluetoothÂ® technology allow phone calls to be made and received once paired with a compatible smartphone. When an iPodÂ® is attached via the USB port, information such as artist name, track and album can be displayed on the available navigation or headunit, while the iPod can be controlled through the audio system. The large center console storage box easily accommodates a variety of electronic devices while keeping wires out of sight.
The available next generation Hard Disc Drive (HDD) navigation system eliminates the need for DVD map discs and offers a unique voice recognition system, which accepts casual-language inputs on certain functions. The system includes Lexus EnformÂ® with Safety ConnectÂ® (includes complimentary one-year trial subscription), Voice Command casual-language voice recognition, HD Radio with iTunes tagging and automatic Bluetooth phonebook download. The system is controlled by a new, second generation Remote Touch Interface (RTI) that is more intuitive in its design and use. The Remote Touch allows the user to operate the climate, audio, phone controls, navigation system and more. The screen menus are selected with a controller conveniently located within easy reach on the center console. Remote Touch also reduces eye movement and helps users operate functions with reduced effort and distraction.
Lexus EnformÂ® with Safety ConnectÂ® now comes with the next-generation Lexus EnformÂ® Application Suite, the system that leverages the customers' mobile phone technology to provide a new level of connectivity and information management. A complimentary one-year trial subscription is included. Users can conduct local searches through Bing, or utilize voice-enabled apps to make restaurant reservations through OpenTable, get movie tickets via MovieTickets.com or tap into internet radio, including PandoraÂ® or iHeartRadio.
Users will also appreciate the ability to check-in on Facebook places, and search for various business reviews including restaurants on Yelp. SiriusXM data services offer information on stocks, traffic, weather, sports and fuel prices. EnformÂ® is supported on iPhone, Android and Blackberry. SiriusXM data services offer a complimentary one year trial subscription. Separate audio and data subscriptions are required.