The United States was No. 1, with 302,713 units sold in 2021, followed by China with 226,122 and Japan with 51,118, according to Martin Gilbert, director of the Lexus Division at Toyota Canada Inc.
Since Lexus launched the world’s first luxury crossover, the RX300, in 1998, more than 150,000 RXs have been sold in Canada, according to Gilbert.
“The reliability of the product sets it apart. It’s a bullet-proof product, since day one,” said Gilbert. “Maybe the design was polarizing at the time because it was a unibody construction – most of the SUVs were still built body-on-frame, so it was a departure.”
The 2023 RX gets a major redesign inside and outside, more technology and connectivity features, and four new powertrains – three are electrified and include the RX’s first plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV). All models, except the plug-in hybrid, will be built in Canada. The PHEV will be made in Japan.
The four powertrains include: a 275 horsepower 2.4-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder engine in the base RX 350 AWD; a 246 horsepower 2.5-litre inline-four two-motor hybrid in the RX 350h AWD; a 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine with an 18.1-kWh lithium-ion battery in the RX 450h+ AWD PHEV. (Many details, such as the horsepower and electric range, still aren’t available yet)
There will also be a high-performance hybrid version with a 2.4-litre turbocharged inline-four mated to a single electric motor that produces 366 horsepower and 406 lb.-ft. of torque – that’ll be in the RX 500h AWD.
The 2023 Lexus RX goes on sale later this year, while the RX 450h+ PHEV won’t be available until later next year. Pricing will be announced closer to the on-sale date.
The Cambridge plant is the first and only facility outside of Japan to produce the RX. More than 1.6 million Lexus RX and RX Hybrid vehicles have been built on Canadian soil since production started in 2003, according to Toyota Canada spokesman Scott MacKenzie.
About 300 RXs are built every day at TMMC. “We roll an RX off the line approximately every two minutes. We make about 105,000-110,000 every year,” said MacKenzie during the recent international press launch of the all-new 2023 Lexus RX in Santa Barbara, CA. Approximately 10 per cent are sold in Canada; 90 per cent exported to the United States.