The facelifted fourth generation Lexus RX300 was introduced into the Malaysian market in mid of 2019 but only until recently did we have the opportunity to take one for a short drive up to Genting Highlands.
We got our SUV from Lexus Sg Besi – Wing Hin Auto Carriage on Jalan Sungai Besi last week and after completing the necessary documentation and a cup of latte, we were on our way to Genting in a sparkling Terrane Khaki Mica Metallic Lexus RX300 Luxury variant.
All of the Lexus RX300 variants are powered by a 2.0 liter twin-scroll turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that churns out a good 235hp and 350Nm of torque. The engine feature the ESTEC (Economy with Superior Thermal Efficient Combustion) technology paired with D-4ST (Direct injection 4-stroke petrol engine Superior version with Turbo) to enhance combustion efficiency and better fuel economy for a more dynamic driving experience while the Dynamic Torque Control AWD system automatically switches from front-wheel drive to All Wheel Drive (AWD) depending driving conditions to enhance handling.
On the exterior, the Lexus RX300 exudes elements of seduction as well as strength while the design retains its aggressive stance while emphasizing its elegant lines. The newly sculpted front and rear bumper design elevates the dynamic appearance of the RX while the flowing character lines enhanced with rocker panels accentuates its strength and stability. The Lexus signature spindle grille with the L-shaped block mesh along with the slender DRL headlamps also gives the front fascia a newfound sharpness while the set of Lexus signature L-shaped rear tail lamps and sequential turn signal, emphasizes further the Lexus brand identity.
Going inside into the interior, one will be greeted with a mixture of the plushness of cushioned surfaces on the dash and the armrest while pleasing design elements like the swooping aluminum trim zig-zags its way from the instrument cluster to the passenger side of the center console. The 3-spoke steering wheel with leather and Shimamoku wood trim gives its a luxury sensation and at the tip of your hands are the switches to conveniently operate the safety systems, hands-free telephone services, audio system, cruise control, voice recognition and the Multi-Information Display.
The facelifted RX comes with an upgraded 12.3 inch luxury infotainment system with route navigation system which features a Remote Touch Interface as well as a Mouse-like Touchpad Controller where you can touch, drag, scroll and pinch to zoom the buttons on screen. I find this a little distracting while driving but I guess one will get used to it. You can also use voice command to for driving directions, messaging and phone calls.
The center console features a nice wireless Qi charging (one of my favorite feature of the car) and a telephone holder (I felt they should incorporate the wireless Qi charger here for convenient), a couple of cup holders, drive selection dial, the mouse-like touchpad controller and your seat cooling switches.
There are abundance of USB port in the RX (for front passenger as well as rear passenger). Digital climate control is available for the driver and passenger while the rear passenger just get adjustable air vents. The back seat are also power-adjustable for maximum comfort as well as a convenient one-push button to fold-down for optimum cargo space.
Safety wise, my RX300 comes with Lexus Safety System+ that includes the Pre-Collision System (PCS), Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) with Stop and Go function, Lane Tracing Assist (LTA), Lane Departure Alert (LDA) and the Adaptive High Bean System (AHS) with BladeScan along with 10 airbags, rear view camera, 360 panoramic view monitor, Active Cornering Assist (ACA), Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TC), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), Hill Start Assist, Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) and Rear-Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA).
So how did I enjoy my drive from Kuala Lumpur to Genting and then to Rawang and back to Kuala Lumpur? Firstly good seats are the start of a good driving experience and Lexus somehow always manages to combine the comfort of a lounge chair and yet still holds you firmly while placing you in a great driving position.
As for the performance, the 2.0 liter turbo-charged engine is responsive but not snappy and while the ride comfort is good, I thought the body control could be better as you get the wobbles through speed bump, roundabouts and tight roads, but once the the RX300 hits the highway, it cruises beautifully.
I also had the change to test out a few of the Lexus Safety System+ functionality, especially the Dynamic Radar Cruise Control with Stop and Go function and I would say its one of the smoothest I have ever tried while the Lane Tracing System and Lane Departure Alert worked very well.
Overall, I am happy with the performance and ride of the RX300 and would be considered one of my favorite choice for a SUV in that price range.
Special thanks to Lexus Sg Besi – Wing Hin Auto Carriage for the opportunity to try out the Lexus RX300 Luxury and if you are looking for your Lexus here in Kuala Lumpur, you can get in touch with them at 03-9222 2268 or visit their Facebook page here.