A seven-seat version of the Lexus RX SUV – named the RX L – is on sale now, with the first cars to be delivered in May.
Boasting a larger body than the standard Lexus RX and with two extra seats, the RX L will be a direct rival for similarly large and luxurious seven-seat SUVs such as the Land Rover Discovery and Volvo XC90.
The additional interior space has been made by increasing overall length by just 110mm, while a steeper tailgate window maximises headroom in the third row. Lexus says the folding third-row seats are designed to be as comfortable as those in the second row and are set fractionally higher to create more foot room for the sixth and seventh passenger in the rear.
The RX L will more or less match the smaller RX when it comes to specification across its SE Grade, Luxury and Premier trim levels, albeit with some extra standard equipment – power-operated third-row seats, three-zone climate control (with controls allowing passengers in the third row to adjust ventilation settings) and a rear centre console with cupholders (plus USB ports on some models). Luggage is kept out of sight thanks to a tonneau cover that operates on rails and the car is also fitted with curtain airbags that provide protection for occupants in all three rows of seating.
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It’s expected that all models will be powered by the same hybrid powertrain as before, comprising a 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine and electric motor producing around 300bhp. Exact performance and economy figures haven"t yet been released. As with other Lexus models, no diesel engine will be offered.
On-the-road starting prices have been released for each of the available trim levels. The range starts at £50,995 for the SE, climbing to £54,095 for Luxury and £61,995 for range-topping Premium. The RX L costs £2,350 more than the equivalent standard RX in SE and Premium trims and £2,450 in mid-range Luxury form.
The arrival of the RX L comes as Lexus prepares to release its compact SUV, the UX, which was revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in March. The new model will go up against the BMW X1, Audi Q2, Mercedes GLA and Volvo XC40 when it arrives towards the end of the year.