With new-generation BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz GLE models in its sights, Lexus has rolled out a comprehensive upgrade to its big RX SUV.
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The facelifted and updated 2020 Lexus RX range goes on sale in Australia from October 2, bringing more tech and sharpened pricing to compete with a renewed line-up of popular rivals.

The 2020 Lexus RX range opens again with the RX300 Luxury, now $1600 cheaper at $71,920 before on-road costs.

For the spend, buyers get a new 12.3-inch display (replacing an 8-inch unit), along with new touch-display and touchpad controls, more USB ports, and… wait for it… Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. At long last. (Watch for the ES and UX to follow with updates before year's end.)

The Lexus Safety System adds night-time pedestrian and daytime cyclist detection to the pre-collision safety alert and autonomous emergency braking systems, while its all-speed active cruise control is linked in with lane-trace assist and road-sign assist functions.

The list goes on. There is now a new parking support brake system that uses intelligent clearance sonar and rear cross-traffic sensors to avoid, or at least mitigate, collisions during parking.

All of this is now standard from the entry RX300 to the RX350 and RX450h in Luxury, F Sport and Sports Luxury grades, along with the seven-seat RX 350L and RX 450hL variants available in Luxury and Sports Luxury grades.

F Sport and Sports Luxury models now also get an LED adaptive high-beam system, using a new 'blade-scan' technology that can cast a brighter light further down the road than older adaptive high-beam systems.

Ride and comfort is also improved, Lexus says, thanks to 10 engineering updates ("some grade-dependent") designed to soften vibrations and reduce bodyroll.

As though to make the point, Lexus confirms the addition of 4.2 metres of extra body adhesive and 36 new weld points, used to increase body rigidity.

All RX300 and hybrid variants now also gain dynamic dampers, again intended to quell road vibrations. All grades add a new friction control device at the front and rear shock absorbers, using a rubber lip to mitigate high-frequency vibration from uneven roads.

F Sport and Sports Luxury models again get a special focus, with standard adaptive variable suspension (AVS) operating over a wider range, along with new performance braces at the front and rear.

Other performance enhancements include improved hub bearings, thicker-diameter rear stabiliser bar, active cornering assist on all models, and revised electric power steering with tighter on-centre feel.

All models get paddle shifters on the steering wheel, and new additional smartphone storage.

Carry-over features include smart entry and start, power steering column, rear privacy glass, satellite navigation, DAB+, wireless smartphone charging, 12-speaker audio, back guide monitor, automatic headlamps and wipers, automatic high beam, 10 airbags, blind-spot monitor and rear cross-traffic alert brake.

For buyers seeing seven-seat practicality, the RX350L and RX450hL models gain a power-fold function, adding 94.3mm of legroom as needed.

Power in all models remains unchanged, the front-wheel-drive RX300 getting a 175kW/350Nm turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine with a six-speed auto, while the all-wheel-drive RX350 gets a 221kW/370Nm petrol V6 with an eight-speed auto.

Stepping up to the all-wheel-drive hybrid RX450h means power is provided by a 230kW/335Nm (combined output) V6 petrol-electric system.

2020 Lexus RX pricing

  • RX 300 Luxury - $71,920
  • RX 300 Luxury + EP - $77,950
  • RX 300 F Sport - $86,800
  • RX 300 Sports Luxury - $92,700
  • RX 350 Luxury - $81,890
  • RX 350 Luxury + EP - $86,390
  • RX 350 F Sport - $93,970
  • RX 350 Sports Luxury - $99,870
  • RX 450h Luxury - $91,090
  • RX 450h Luxury + EP - $95,590
  • RX 450h F Sport - $103,440
  • RX 450h Sports Luxury - $109,340
  • RX 350L Luxury - $85,000
  • RX 350L Luxury + EP - $88,500
  • RX 350L Sports Luxury - $101,600
  • RX 450hL Luxury - $94,470
  • RX 450hL Luxury + EP - $97,970
  • RX 450hL Sports Luxury - $111,070