RX Chronology & Awards

MILESTONES

• March 1997 – Lexus announces the official production name of its new luxury sport utility vehicle (SUV). Based on the Sport Luxury Vehicle (SLV) concept unveiled one month earlier, the mid-sized luxury SUV will be called the RX 300. The RX 300 is slated for production in the first half of 1998.

• January 1998 – Lexus unveils the production version of the 1999 RX 300 at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit. This groundbreaking SUV combines the most desirable aspects of both luxury sedans and 4x4's. It provides off-road ground clearance and available full-time four-wheel-drive for poor weather and road conditions, yet step-in height is lower than other SUV's for more convenient entry and exit.

• March 1998 – The new RX 300 goes on sale.

• December 1998 – With the help of the RX 300, Lexus records sales of 156,260, an increase of 60 percent from the previous year.

• April 2000 – Lexus announces that production of the RX 300 mid-size SUV would be added in North America. By 2003, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada, Inc. (TMMC) will build the RX 300 at its Cambridge, Ontario facility in Canada, making it the first plant outside Japan to produce a Lexus model.

• January 2001 – An RX Silversport model featuring a Euro-tuned sport suspension, a special grille, unique interior luxury items and exclusive colors is introduced.

• January 2001 – Toyota announces plans to produce RX 300 engines and transmissions at its Buffalo, West Virginia, plant.

• April 2002 – Lexus and Coach fine leather partner to offer a special edition RX 300 model.

• May 2002 – Four years into its product cycle, the RX 300 continues to be the top-selling luxury SUV in the United States and has sparked many competitors to introduce similar luxury car-based SUVs.

• January 2003 – Lexus announces that the new RX 330 will become the first Lexus vehicle to be manufactured in North America.

• March 2003 – The second generation RX is introduced in the North American market as the RX 330. The new RX 330 is available in both two-wheel and all-wheel drive configurations, the second generation RX is 6.1 inches longer overall and has a larger 3.3-liter V6 engine.

• April 2004 – Lexus achieves its two-millionth vehicle sales milestone – a 2004 RX 330 luxury SUV sold by JM Lexus in Margate, Fla. Lexus presented the new owner with a luxury spa and golf vacation package to Pebble Beach, Calif., and made a $25,000 donation to two local charities in the name of the selling dealer.

• January 2005 – The world's first luxury SUV hybrid, the Lexus RX 400h debuts at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

• April 2005 – The RX 400h, the world's first luxury hybrid vehicle, goes on sale featuring a gas/electric powertrain and new Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) stability control system.

• December 2005 – The front-wheel drive model of the RX 400h is introduced.

• February 2006 – The 2007 RX 350 model replaces the RX 330 with a new 270-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine and enhancements in standard and optional equipment.

• September 2007 – RX models feature revised front styling and additional interior wood trim choice, VSC cutoff switch added, and the RX 400h receives additional hybrid badging.


AWARDS AND RECOGNITION


• September 1998 – The RX 300 is named "Most Appealing Luxury SUV," in the J.D. Power and Associates APEAL Study.

• October 1998 – RX 300 is named the inaugural "Sport/Utility of the Year" by Motor Trend magazine. This marked the first time the magazine separated its "Truck of the Year" award into two categories, truck and SUV. This change reflects the growing popularity of SUV's.

• September 1999 – The RX 300 finishes second (behind LX 470) in the "Most Appealing Luxury SUV" category in J.D. Power and Associates' APEAL Study.

• April 2001 – Consumer Guide names the RX 300 a "Best Buy."

• May 2001 – The RX receives top honors in the J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study (IQS).

• January 2002 – The Car Book lists the RX 300 as a "Best Bet" for American car buyers.

• March 2002 – The Ultimate Car Book rates the RX 300 a "Best Buy."

• May 2002 – RX 300 takes second place in the J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study (IQS).

• February 2003 - The RX 300 is awarded as IntelliChoice's "Best Overall Value" for an Intermediate SUV over $30,000.

• May 2003 – The RX 300 is the highest ranked vehicle in the Luxury SUV segment of the 2003 J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study (IQS).

• July 2003 – The RX 300 is the highest ranked vehicle in the Luxury SUV segment of 2003 J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS).

• October 2003 – The RX 330 is the highest ranked vehicle in the Luxury SUV segment of 2003 J.D. Power and Associates Automotive Performance Execution And Layout (APEAL) study.

• February 2004 – For the second year in a row, the RX 330 is named IntelliChoice's "Best Overall Value" for an SUV over $30,000.

• September 2004 – The RX 330 is touted as the "Most Appealing" luxury sport utility vehicle by the J.D. Power and Associates APEAL StudySM for the second year in a row.

• December 2004 – Consumer Guide awards the Lexus RX 330 a "Best Buy" award for premium mid-size SUV.

• February 2005 – For the third year in a row, the RX 330 is named the IntelliChoice "Best Overall Value" for an SUV in its class.

• May 2005 – The RX 330 is the highest ranked vehicle for the second year in a row in the entry luxury SUV segment of the J.D. Power and Associates IQS.

• June 2005 – The RX 300 is named the "Most Dependable Entry Level Luxury SUV in the J.D. Power and Associates' Vehicle Dependability StudySM (VDS).

• June 2005 – The RX 400h is the "Most Appealing Entry Level SUV" in the J.D. Power and Associates APEAL (Automotive Performance Execution And Layout) Study.

• September 2005 – The RX 330 is selected by Consumer Guide as a "Best Buy" in the Premium Mid-Size SUV category.

• January 2006 – The RX 300/330 and RX 400h receive the Polk Automotive Loyalty Award for the 2005 model year in the mid-size SUV segment.

• RX 330 – Car Book 2006 Best Bet.

• RX 330 – IntelliChoice/AutoPacific's Motorist's Choice Award, Luxury Crossover Sport Utility.

• RX 350/400h – Consumer Guide Automotive Best Buy, Premium Midsize Sport-Utility Vehicle.

• June 2007 – The RX 350/RX 400h is Highest Ranked Multi-activity Vehicle (MAV) in J.D. Power® and Associates Initial Quality StudySM (IQS).