Tech Spec: 2016 Lexus RX 350

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In late 2015, Lexus released an all-new redesigned RX 350.

The exterior of the RX features a new design. The front view of the new RX is characterized by an emboldened version of Lexus’ signature spindle grille, featuring triple L-shape-LED headlamps. A compact Bi-LED headlight is standard. Also, Intelligent High Beam is available as part of Lexus Safety System+. Intelligent High Beam helps ensure optimal forward visibility during nighttime driving and automatically turns off the high beam headlamps when another vehicle is detected. When no other vehicle is present, the system turns on the high beams.

Other new exterior features are flush-fitting headlight washers, panoramic moonroof design, solid roof rails, redesigned SmartAccess door handles and convenient door handle illumination. Also, three new colors have been added: Caviar, Autumn Shimmer and Nightfall Mica. A choice of three distinct 20-inch wheels are now available with the RX.

Inside, there have been a number of enhancements to the interior trim. Available interior trims include Matte Bamboo, Espresso Walnut, Matte Linear Dark Mocha Wood, Striated Black Trim or Gray Sapele Wood with Aluminum.

The 2016 Lexus RX 350 features a 3.5-liter direct-injected V6 gasoline engine mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Power is rated at 295 horsepower at 6,300 rpm with 267 pound-feet of torque at 4,700 rpm.

The RX 350 uses an all-new cylinder head design with reshaped intake ports and combustion chambers for added efficiency in the engine’s combustion process, a D-4S fuel injection system that enables direct injection to the cylinders with high fuel pressure and a quick-shifting eight-speed automatic transmission, whose gear ratios have been tuned to provide excellent punch off the line and robust passing power while maintaining excellent fuel economy.

To maximize torque throughout the rev range, Variable Valve Timing with intelligence Wide (VVT-iW) has been included on the intake side, while the exhaust side features VVT-i. The inclusion of VVT-iW has enabled the adoption of the Atkinson cycle to further benefit fuel economy, without sacrificing engine start-up in extremely cold conditions and during wide open throttle driving.

For the RX 350 all-wheel-drive, Dynamic Torque Control AWD has been adopted, which processes information from a number of sensors, including wheel-speed sensors and steering angle sensors, and instantaneously routes engine power to the rear wheels to help maximize tractability on varying surfaces and road conditions. Torque distribution levels at the front and rear of the vehicle, as well as to each individual wheel, are displayed on the multi-information display when the system is in operation.

Although the new RX utilizes basically the same underbody platform of its predecessor, it has been given revamped front engine mounts to the sub-frame structure. The side engine mounts have been relocated to enhance the vehicle’s lateral responsiveness, resulting in the engine sitting tight in the compartment, which provides for sharper steering feel and enhanced overall cornering reacting of the chassis.

To simultaneously enhance performance and ride quality, the distribution of the stiffness in the springs and sway bars were changed from the previous model to provide an ideal balance of stiffness and compliance. Along with the changes to the engine mounts, the rigidity of the front sway bar was increased. By changing the front and rear spring rate balance, the vehicle was able to maintain a flat posture and decrease vertical pitching.

A dual-stage brake servo booster was adopted, which provides clear feedback when the brakes begin to work as well as moderate feedback force, realizing excellent brake feel and enhanced controllability. A new actuator was added to decrease stroke when the brake pedal is applied.

A premium equipment option, adaptive variable suspension (AVS), adjusts the damping force according to road conditions and irregularities. By adding a linear solenoid with an oil pressure valve to the AVS shock absorber, a shock-free variable suspension system was made possible. Actively changing the absorbance level allows the suspension to respond quickly, as it helps the RX to achieve a flat riding feel in a broad range of driving environments.  The suspension also responds to acceleration, braking and steering initiated by the driver, allowing the person at the wheel to feel one with the car.

A number of optional advanced driving aids and safety technologies are available on the new Lexus RX, including dynamic radar cruise control, lane departure alert with steering assist, vehicle sway warning, intuitive parking assist, panoramic view monitor, intelligent high-beam system, blind spot monitor with rear cross traffic alert and adaptive variable suspension.

A new RX 350 with front-wheel drive carries a starting MSRP of $43,020, while the all-wheel drive version starts at $44,420. A top-of-the-line RX 350, complete with the luxury package, a panorama glass moonroof, navigation, rear-seat entertainment system package, heated seats, triple-beam LED headlamps, blind spot monitor, running boards and a touch-free power open/close rear door carries a price tag of nearly $62,000.

Servicing the 2016 Lexus RX 350

Every six months or 5,000 miles:

• Inspect and adjust all fluid levels

• Program Lexus Personalized Settings, if requested

• Reset scheduled maintenance reminder

• Rotate tires

• Visually inspect brake pads, calipers and rotors

• Check installation of driver’s floor mat

• Inspect wiper blades

• Road-test vehicle


Every 12 months or 10,000 miles:

• Replace engine oil with 0W-20 oil; replace oil filter

• Replace cabin air filter

• Reset oil maintenance reminder, if oil was changed


Every 18 months or 15,000 miles:

• Inspect and adjust all fluid levels

• Replace Smart Key battery

• Re-torque nuts and bolts of drive shaft (AWD)

• Inspect axle shaft boots

• Inspect ball joints and dust covers

• Inspect body

• Inspect brake lines and hoses

• Inspect engine coolant

• Inspect exhaust pipes and mountings

• Inspect rack-and-pinion assembly

• Inspect rear differential oil (AWD)

• Inspect steering linkage and boots

• Inspect transfer case oil (AWD)

• Inspect wiper blades


Every 36 months or 30,000 miles:

• Replace brake fluid

• Replace engine air filter

• Inspect brake rotor thickness and runout

• Inspect fuel lines and connections, fuel tank band and fuel tank vapor vent system hoses

• Inspect fuel tank cap gasket

• Inspect transmission fluid cooler hoses and connections

• Inspect transmission for signs of leakage


Every 72 months or 60,000 miles:

• Replace spark plugs

• Inspect drive belt


Every 144 months or 120,000 miles:

• Replace vacuum pump for brake booster


If you drive primarily under any of these special operating conditions, perform these additional maintenance items:


Driving off-road, on dirt roads or on dusty roads

Every 6 months or 5,000 miles:

• Inspect axle shaft boots

• Inspect ball joints and dust covers

• Inspect engine air filter

• Inspect steering linkage and boots

• Re-torque nuts and bolts of drive shaft (AWD)

• Tighten nuts and bolts on chassis


Towing a trailer, using a car-top carrier or heavy vehicle loading

Every 6 months or 5,000 miles:

• Re-torque nuts and bolts of drive shaft (AWD)

• Tighten nuts and bolts on chassis


Every 18 months or 15,000 miles:

• Replace rear differential oil (AWD)

• Replace transfer case oil (AWD)


Every 72 months or 60,000 miles:

• Replace transmission fluid


Driving on roads on which road salt has been applied

Every 6 months or 5,000 miles:

• Re-torque nuts and bolts of drive shaft (AWD)



Fluids and Specifications

Motor Oil: ILSAC GF-5 SAE 0W-20; capacity 5.8 quarts (5.5 liters) – with filter change, for vehicles with towing package; capacity 5.7 quarts (5.4 liters) – with filter change, for vehicles without towing package; capacity 5.6 quarts (5.3 liters) – without filter change

Coolant: Toyota Super Long Life Coolant; capacity 9.5 quarts (9.0 liters) – without towing package; capacity 10.5 quarts (9.9 liters) – with towing package

Transmission Fluid: Toyota Genuine ATF WS; capacity 7.2 quarts (6.8 liters)

Differential Oil: Toyota Genuine Differential gear oil LT 75W-85 GL-5 or equivalent  S



[[At a glance: 2016 Lexus RX 350

Motor Oil: SAE 0W-20

Capacity: 5.8 quarts (5.5 liters) – with filter change and towing package

Coolant: Super Long Life

Capacity: 10.5 quarts (9.9 liters) – with towing package]]


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