2012 Lexus RX 350 Review

The Car Connection Expert Rating Breakdown?

8.0
on a scale of 1 to 10
Styling
7.0
Expert Rating
Performance
7.0
Expert Rating
Comfort & Quality
9.0
Expert Rating
Safety
9.0
Expert Rating
Features
8.0
Expert Rating
Fuel Economy
8.0
Expert Rating
2017
The Car Connection
2017
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

A safe luxury-crossover choice for many good reasons, the 2012 Lexus RX 350 offers a serene driving experience and lots of cool tech features.

The 2012 Lexus RX 350 plays it safe and comfortable in the luxury crossover segments. It's been a longtime favorite because of its smooth performance and pleasant looks, not to mention Lexus' reputation for dealer service and reliability. It's essentially unchanged for the new model year, as is the case with its hybrid companion, the Lexus RX 450h.

The RX's shape is familiar for a reason--it's a careful evolution of the look that spawned the luxury-crossover class back in the 1990s. Redone in 2010, the RX still aims for pleasant rather than inspired. It has a more blunt nose now, and its shoulders sit higher, but the same smooth design essence is still present inside and out. The luxurious tall wagon adopted Lexus' latest interior design two years ago, too, and it's built around a single sweeping line that divides the dash into driver and passenger zones. Aside from that, there's isn't much visual drama, and when compared to the Lexuses of the past, the RX's interior materials seem just the slightest bit less rich than before.

Comfort comes before performance in the RX 350. It's relatively responsive and refined, but not at all exciting or nimble. Power comes from a 275-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission; front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive an option. Even with the heavier AWD system, the RX 350 steps off the line quickly and smoothly, with buttery transmission shifts. The RX doesn't offer serious drivers much feedback in the steering or brakes, though it's better than its hybrid counterpart in that respect--it specializes in muting the outside world as much through its controls as through its luxury accoutrements.

The RX's cozy interior leaves no doubts as to why it's such a popular luxury wagon. It's easy to step in and out of the RX, given its ideal height, and four adults will be very comfortable, with good knee room in back and in front. The tallest passengers might find it a bit tight on headroom. The high standards for seating set by other Lexus vehicles is met with available leather upholstery that's less highly treated than in the past, giving it a more individual look and feel. An upgraded wood trim package is almost opulent.

Plush and well stocked, the RX 350 has standard power front seats; power windows, locks and mirrors; AM/FM/XM/CD player; Bluetooth; and dual-zone climate control. Major options include leather; a USB port; navigation with real-time traffic; a rear-seat DVD entertainment system; and a superb Mark Levinson sound system. Lexus has adopted a "Remote Touch" controller bundled with its navigation system; it acts like a computer mouse to control audio, climate, GPS and other systems. It's yet another distinct take on infotainment interfaces, albeit one that takes less time to learn than the knob-style systems from Germany, or the voice-command-driven MyFord Touch system.

The Car Connection Consumer Review

1 Review
5 star
100%
4 star
0%
3 star
0%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
Rate and Review your car for The Car Connection! Tell us your own ratings for a vehicle you own. Rate your car on Performance, Safety, Features and more.
Write a Review
Thursday, July 16, 2015
2012 Lexus RX 350 AWD 4-Door

The Rx350 is a very well built vehicle, the fourth Lexus we have owned in ten years.

  • Overall Rating
  • Interior/Exterior
  • Performance
  • Comfort and Quality
  • Safety
  • Features
  • Fuel Economy / MPG
  • Reliability
Over the past 45 years I have driven many upper end vehicles. The Lexus is the vehicle I enjoy the most. A very well built unit. It would nice if Lexus advertized more. GO LEXUS!!!!!
people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Yes
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
2016 Lexus RX 350 AWD 4-Door

excellent vehicle

  • Overall Rating
  • Interior/Exterior
  • Performance
  • Comfort and Quality
  • Safety
  • Features
  • Fuel Economy / MPG
  • Reliability
I am pleased with every aspect of this vehicle. Criticisms of non working features are generally the result of not reading the owner's manual. For example, I thought that the hatch opening feature did't work... + More »
people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Yes
Saturday, April 2, 2016
2016 Lexus RX 350 AWD 4-Door

Top in my book

  • Overall Rating
  • Interior/Exterior
  • Performance
  • Comfort and Quality
  • Safety
  • Features
  • Fuel Economy / MPG
  • Reliability
I have had a Lexus before but this new 2016 RX 350 is the best
people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Yes
See all user reviews »
Looking for other models of the Lexus RX 350?
Read reviews & get prices
Compare the 2012 Lexus RX 350 against the competition
Compare All Cars
Related Used Listings
Browse used listings in your area
See More Used
s