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2011 Lexus RX

Overview
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2011 Lexus RX Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.8

Some cars change radically from model year to model year, while others simply evolve. Evolution seems the safer course of action, but it also helps to build brand image among consumers. The 2011 Lexus RX 350 is such an evolving vehicle, easily recognizable at any distance and sharing a strikingly similar profile with the original RX that debuted more than 10 years ago. Consumers must like the design because RX sales continue to grow, even in the face of newer and more sophisticated designs such as the Audi Q5, Cadillac SRX and Mercedes Benz GLK 350. That the RX 350 continues to attract repeat customers is every bit a testament to the car's abilities as it is to Lexus' pampered treatment of its customer base. From the comfortable purchasing experience to the solid long-term reliability to the excellent resale figures, in the automotive world, buying an RX 350 is about the closest thing you can get to a sure thing.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a luxury crossover that doesn't require a degree in physics just to operate the radio, the simple yet elegant RX 350 makes a fine choice.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a hard charging, corner-devouring driving machine in CUV form, the BMW X3 or Audi Q5 might make a better choice.

What's Significant About This Car?

After a mild refresh last year, the only change of note for the 2011 Lexus RX 350 is the addition of Lexus' Smart Stop technology. Smart Stop is an override system that cuts engine power if the throttle and brake are being depressed at the same time.

Driving the RX

Driving Impressions The 2011 Lexus RX 350 may not be able to corner like a BMW X3, but it won't punish your kidneys on bumpy surfaces, either. The RX delivers a soft,...

quiet and comfortable ride, with just enough feedback from the electric power steering unit to qualify as sporty (as opposed to numb, a trait we attributed to RX steering setups in the past.) The double-wishbone rear suspension not only helps the RX 350 to handle better, its compact design also allows for more interior cargo space. Power is provided by a 3.5-liter V6 engine and routed to the wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission with direct-downshift control, which allows the transmission to skip over gears, thus producing a more immediate response when needed. The powertrain is amazingly responsive, whisper-quiet and impressively fuel-frugal.

Remote "Haptic" Touch
Somewhat like a keyboard mouse, this system, operated by a controller mounted next to the driver's seat, allows for the movement of a cursor across the dash-mounted display, giving sensory feedback when the cursor hovers over a clickable "button." The feeling is somewhat like rolling a marble over an indentation.

Easy-to-read Organic white Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) Display
Housed in the Multi-Information Display between the dash gauges, the OLED display is comprised of a thin film of organic molecules that create light with the application of electricity. It operates on less power than a conventional light-emitting diode (LED) display, and offers vibrant white characters that are easy to read from any angle.

2011 Lexus RX Details
2011 Lexus RX photo Interior

The RX's interior is a blend of the old and the almost new. The design is clean and uncluttered, especially the upwardly-sweeping console and high-mounted shift lever. But there are bits and pieces that feel eerily Toyota-like, such as the steering column-mounted cruise-control stalk that is difficult to see and nearly impossible to find at night. Nitpicks aside, the RX interior is a fluid blend of soft-touch surfaces, warm wood inlays and supple leather seating surfaces. And, when equipped with the available navigation system, the RX also gains a nifty remote touch controller that operates very much like a mouse. The driver need only rest his or her hand on top of the device to control the screen menus for climate, navigation, audio and phone. Front-seat comfort is first-rate while, in back, the second row is roomy enough for three adults and, when folded down, allows for 80.3 cubic feet of cargo space.

Exterior
2011 Lexus RX photo

The familiar RX silhouette is no accident. Lexus wants the RX to look similar to previous versions so that former and new customers alike can easily identify the vehicle. Sure, an up-close inspection shows more modern details, such as the striking halogen projector-beam (or optional HID) headlamp housings, the swept-back tail lamps and that faint hint of Lexus' L-Finesse design language that appears around the grille and hood. But, for the most part, the RX's shape breaks no new ground in the areas of styling. New colors and bright 18-inch alloy wheels are about the only improvements over last year's model, which speaks volumes about the excellence of last year's model (and the year before that, and the year before that, etc.)

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2011 Lexus RX 350 comes well-equipped with a selection of features to make driving a comfortable experience. These include heated side mirrors, 10-way power-adjustable front seats with lumbar support, reclining and sliding second row with 40/20/40 folding seats, automatic dual-zone climate control, a full complement of automatic up-and-down windows and a premium audio system with six-disc CD changer, Bluetooth streaming audio, XM Satellite Radio, a USB port and nine speakers. Standard safety features include 10 airbags, brake assist and Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with Traction Control.

Optional Equipment

If you'd like to up the sportiness of your RX, the Sport Package, with its sport-tuned suspension, 19-inch Superchrome wheels and electronic stability and traction control system with cutoff switch may be for you. If luxury is what you're after, the aptly-named Luxury Package includes a semi-aniline leather-trimmed interior, LED-illuminated front-door sills, power liftgate, headlamp washers, 19-inch alloy wheels and a wide-view side monitor to facilitate parking. Stand-alone options for the RX include a head-up display, HDD navigation system, heated and ventilated front seats, a Mark Levinson 330-watt premium sound system, all-wheel drive, Lexus' Enform telematics system, Intuitive Parking Assist and a Pre-Collision System with Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.

Under the Hood

The 2011 Lexus RX 350's 3.5-liter V6 produces 275 horsepower and 257 pound-feet of torque. The engine is mated to an efficient six-speed automatic transmission that uses direct-downshift control to allow for quick shifting when needed (such as rapid acceleration) from sixth to third or fifth to second, skipping gears for a more immediate response.

3.5-liter V6
275 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
257 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/25 (2WD), 18/24 (AWD)

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2011 Lexus RX Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.6
Out of 10

Based on 132 Ratings for the 2009 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.6/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    8.6/10
  • Comfort
    8.8/10
    Styling
    8.8/10

I don't like this vehicle very uncomfortable

By on Monday, October 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 4,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
2/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
2/10
Comfort
1/10

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

"Worst crossover I ever owned, I took a 24 month lease and I regret it. very uncomfortable, backup camera is very confusing lacks back up lines, the button for garage door opener works half the times, the car shacks on stop lights and when starting the vehicle the car wine for a second. I am starting to have back issues because of the uncomfortable seats."

6 people out of 11 found this review helpful

I LOVE THIS CAR!!!

By on Sunday, October 05, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

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
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Comfort, fit and finish, reliability"

Cons: "Lack of storage under cargo floor"

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

"I bought this car as a Certified PreOwned after the 2013 models came out. I can really find no fault in the car other than I was disappointed they had moved the spare into the back cargo area, taking up lots of cargo space I had in my Hyundai Santa Fe. I had the dealer update the Navigation software and data. The BlueTooth phone, Navigation and media work great. The A/C system keeps us cold in the Texas summer heat. And, if I don't drive over 65mph on the freeway I can squeeze 32mpg in the winter not using the A/C. I did have an outside company install parking/backup sensors/alarm which the car did not have."

2 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Best suv ever owned and I tested 4 of them

By on Wednesday, October 01, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 61,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "great price for a high end SUV"

Cons: "non"

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

"rides greats, handles well, no repairs needs at 61,000 miles good in snow back seats decline and carries well looks great"

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

releasing break pedal makes unoying sound ..

By on Thursday, September 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,000

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
Not Rated
Performance
3/10
Styling
4/10
Comfort
3/10

Pros: "none"

Cons: "break pedal ,lousy navigation"

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

"when i release break pedal it make very unoying sound .dealer said is normal i think is manufacture defect ride is ok why spend prime dollar just to drive lexus name tag ford and chevrolet makes same for lower price."

4 people out of 11 found this review helpful

I own 2 rx350's awd. A 2011 and a 2015.

By on Wednesday, September 24, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,500

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: "Ride, responsiveness, safe feeling vehicle, looks."

Cons: "None"

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

"I bought a 2011 rx350 AWD and felt it was the finest car I have ever driven for 3 straight years. Every time my wife drove it or in it she felt the same way. So we now own 2 RX350's AWD, since we purchased a second one this summer. The cars are amazing! They are quiet (the 2015 a little more so) and the ride is sensational. Every time you get in it, the car engulfs you with luxury. If you like your current luxury SUV do not test drive this car because you will be buying one!"

6 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Great Car... lots of great features..safe.etc

By on Tuesday, September 09, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 40,789

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "great ride.. lots of space good vision.cup holders"

Cons: "no sun glass holder... blind spots.."

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

"Goes good ..only draw back is need for premium fuel.. but that helps the environment so its all good.."

15 people out of 29 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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