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2008 Lexus RX

Overview
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2008 Lexus RX Review

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One of the most successful crossover SUV offerings in the history of the genre, the mid-size RX series continues to attract buyers with its distinctive combination of style, luxury, comfort and safety. This line of car-based five-passenger family haulers includes both the volume-leader RX 350 and the RX 400h Hybrid (reviewed separately), and offers V6 power in both front- and all-wheel-drive configurations. Key RX 350 competitors in the prolific mid-size premium SUV/crossover segment include the Acura MDX, BMW X3 and X5, Cadillac SRX, Infiniti FX35 and FX45, Lincoln MKX and Mercedes-Benz ML350.

You'll Like This Car If...

With its luxury-sedan sophistication, SUV versatility, first-class creature and safety features plus a premium Lexus pedigree, the RX 350 deserves serious consideration from anyone shopping for a single vehicle with a truly multifaceted personality.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Those who regularly plan to head off-road would be happier with a more SUV-like alternative like a Land Rover LR2 or Mercedes-Benz ML350. When towing duties matter most, the Acura MDX and BMW X5 both offer greater maximum capacity.

What's New for 2008

The RX 350 receives only detail changes for 2008, including two new exterior colors, chrome door handles and a revised grille design. Inside, black bird's-eye maple wood trim is now available with the light grey interior and a positive shutoff switch has been added to the standard Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) system.

Driving the RX

Driving Impressions Given its primary mission as a luxury-oriented carryall, the RX 350's cabin is well isolated from wind and road noise. With chassis tuning focused more on ride comfort than precision...

handling, it's also better suited to effortless cruising than to attacking a twisty two-lane. However, a relatively compact 37.4-feet turning circle makes the RX 350 fairly easy to maneuver in tighter confines, while the available four-position air suspension can raise itself to clear obstacles, lower itself for cruising and even dip for easier entry and exit. A viscous center coupling in the optional all-wheel-drive system can transfer power fore or aft from the normal 50/50 split to instantly compensate for changing traction conditions. All RX 350s come with an effective Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) package that gets a new positive cutoff switch to indulge more enthusiastic drivers and the anti-lock disc brakes excel in short, drama-free stops.

Power Rear Liftgate
This thoughtful standard opens and closes the RX 350's large one-piece liftgate at the touch of a button on the key fob or the dash, making it quicker and easier to load and unload the cargo bay.

Optional Multi-Panel Moonroof
Available in place of the conventional power moonroof, this three-element alternative is 150 percent larger and lets in 250 percent more outside light but creates no additional wind noise. It comes in a package that also includes leather upholstery, corner-following bi-xenon Adaptive Headlamps and a power tilt and telescoping steering column.

2008 Lexus RX Details
2008 Lexus RX photo Interior

Living up to its Lexus heritage, the RX 350's space-efficient cabin has a quality appearance with an impressive level of fit and finish. Standard cloth upholstery, signature Optitron electroluminescent gauges and real wood trim are complemented by a major assortment of comfort and convenience touches. This sophisticated five-passenger transporter pairs supportive 10-way power seats with a 40/20/40 rear bench that splits, folds, slides, reclines, and will comfortably handle two full-size adults or a trio of kids. Accessed by a power liftgate, the RX 350's cargo bay can hold 38.3 cubic feet of your carry-on items with the rear seat up and 84.7 cubic feet with the seatbacks flipped forward and down.

Exterior
2008 Lexus RX photo

Consciously avoiding the harder angles and squared-off edges favored by traditional SUVs, the RX 350 celebrates its crossover character by matching rounded body contours with well-defined accent lines and passenger-friendly proportions. Its smartly raked windshield and large glass area help improve driver sightlines while both front and rear doors are large enough to ensure easy access to all seats. Crystalline head- and tail-lamp covers, subtle chrome highlights on the grille and door handles and S-rated 225/65 all-season tires on handsome 17-inch alloy wheels emphasize its upscale personality.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Passenger-pleasing appointments abound in the RX 350, starting with ivory-colored cloth upholstery, walnut or bird's-eye maple wood accents, a mega-roster of power assists headed by 10-way power seats and a power liftgate, dual-zone automatic climate control and an eight-speaker AM/FM/CD unit with six-disc changer. Other highlights include a driver information system, cruise control, numerous modest storage cubbies plus a large locking glovebox, dual 12-volt powerpoints and an anti-theft system. Leading the list of safety features are Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with Traction Control (TRAC), antilock disc brakes with Brake Assist (BA) circuitry and front, front-side and side-curtain airbags plus a driver's-side knee airbag.

Optional Equipment

The RX 350 offers several grouped upgrades, beginning with a Premium Package that includes leather upholstery, a power moonroof, power tilt and telescoping steering column and memory for the driver's seat, mirrors and steering wheel. The Premium Plus Package adds bi-xenon Adaptive Front Lighting (AFS) to that mix while the Performance Package brings special 18-inch wheels with V-rated 235/55 tires, four-mode air suspension and a five-speed sequential automatic transmission. Other extras include an oversize multi-panel moonroof, 11-speaker/210-watt Mark Levinson premium audio system, voice-activated navigation system with rear backup camera, rear-seat DVD entertainment system, rain-sensing windshield wipers, distance-maintaining Dynamic Laser Cruise Control and a towing package.

Under the Hood

Both front-drive and all-wheel-drive RX 350 models use an identical 3.5-liter all-aluminum V6 that features Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i) to help bolster low and mid-range responsiveness. Smooth and free-revving, it makes a very enthusiastic 270 horsepower and 251 pound-feet of torque. The standard transmission is an equally efficient five-speed automatic, and included in the Performance Package is sequential shifting. That matchup allows both front and all-wheel drive RX 350s to run from zero to 60 miles per hour in less than 7.5 seconds and still earn class-competitive fuel economy numbers from the EPA. Step up to the optional towing package and the trailering capability on either RX 350 variant jumps from 2,000 to 3,500 pounds.

3.5-liter V6
270 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
251 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/23(FWD), 17/22(AWD)

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Buying this car?

2008 Lexus RX Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.1
Out of 10

Based on 500 Ratings for the 2004 - 2008 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.0/10
    Quality
    9.3/10
  • Reliability
    9.4/10
    Performance
    9.0/10
  • Comfort
    9.3/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

Great road car, smooth and quiet, high cost repair

By on Saturday, September 27, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 242,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Reliable, smooth on road, quiet and efficient"

Cons: "High cost to repair"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Car has been very reliable, quiet and smooth on the road, but very expensive to do dealer repairs. Still running and driving well at almost a quarter million miles, without any transmission or engine major repairs."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Love it

By on Friday, September 26, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 65,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Easy to drive, great looking, reliable"

Cons: "Cost is high to buy"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I love my Lexus and if I ever need another car I will buy another Lexus. Bought this one used and have never been disappointed. I lived in Massachusetts until recently and it is excellent in snow. Conveniences are great. Lexus repair/maintenance is outstanding."

Love MY SUV HYBRID Lexus

By on Thursday, September 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 79,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "safe comfort"

Cons: "careful with the purchas price might pay more then"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Itis classy ,has great comfort and luxury all in one Gas saver and smooth ride.I feel very well protected in any bad weather , have not had a accident yet in it soI am not able to coment . But it has plenty of air bags to feel safe when a accident occures. Fabulous on long drives. Great music sound,and have a moon roof to enjoy light. The back up camera has been awsome in many occassions."

Solid Performer

By on Saturday, September 20, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 42,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Reliability, quality interior/exterior"

Cons: "Front seat cushions too short, steering very numb"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Stone cold reliable. Inexpensive to service. High quality interior and paint hold up well. Driving experience more sedate than exciting. Interior comfort good, but short cushions on front seats are not appreciated by anyone over 5'10". Steering is typical Toyota/Lexus numb. Braking, acceleration and stability are all excellent. Gas mileage is about what is on the sticker. Holds its value really well. If you are more interested in comfort and luxury, RX350 is for you. If you are interested in an "exciting to drive" car, don't waste your time on this model."

2 people out of 4 found this review helpful

A great car for a Realtor in town driving.

By on Wednesday, September 17, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 76,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Always like the look of it."

Cons: "Just the highway driving."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I've had two 430 Sedan's and this one crossover. I have never liked the overall driving of my SUV on highways. More road noise than the sedan inside. I'm not tied to Lexus. If I weren't a Realtor I would go back to a sedan, but alas , I need that cargo space. It's been a overall good car and I purchased an extended warranty which helped. I would have had $3000 to $4000 in repairs if I had not purchased the extended warranty. That would be a big ouch right after you paid the car off without the extended warranty."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

This car has been flawless

By on Wednesday, September 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 148,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Really a great car"

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Car has needed only routine maintenance except that the AC compressor was changed at 125K miles. Interior has held up amazingly well - still looks like new. Love this car"

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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