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Refreshing or Revolting: 2016 Lexus RX

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 5/8/2015 Megan Stewart

The 2016 Lexus RX made its official debut at the 2015 New York Auto Show, sporting a longer body and an exterior design more closely related to the all-new Lexus NX than the previous RX model. With aggressive styling cues, Lexus has updated its popular luxury crossover without taking away from what has made it one of the brand's best-selling models. But will the radical new design of the 2016 Lexus RX alienate its customers?

Refreshing or Revolting: 2016 Lexus RX

Lexus has increased the wheelbase by 1.9 inches and the length of the RX by 4.7 inches, giving the automaker more to work with when creating the new design. Looking at the front end of the new 2016 Lexus RX, the first thing you notice is the updated grille. While the spindle design is still present, only F Sport models feature the hexagonal mesh design. Moving up from the grille are the sharp LED running lights and foglights, which flow with the lines of the body to create an (arguably) more attractive appearance when compared to the outgoing model.

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Looking from the side, the new Lexus RX bears a striking resemblance to the new NX. However, with the larger dimensions, the sculpted character lines running the length of the body are not as pronounced. The rear largely mirrors the elements of the front end, from the L-shaped lights to the spindle design in the center of the liftgate. Overall, the design of the new model is elevated from that of the outgoing model.

Jump inside, and the first thing you'll see is the cleaned up center stack, with a new optional 12.3-inch infotainment display. Also new for the 2016 model is an optional head-up display. Thanks to the larger dimensions, the new RX offers more legroom and a panoramic moonroof.

For the 2016 RX, Lexus is taking a gamble on its best-selling model by giving it a more aggressive appearance. Do you think Lexus is going in the right direction? Let us know in the comments below.

Last week's Refreshing or Revolting featured the new 2016 Kia Optima. Needless to say, reviews skewed heavily in one direction:

"Revolting. Especially the interior. It went from a driver's interior to a generic interior. Rear end is okay, but the front fog lights took a step back in design. I'm a little disappointed," said shinlei.

2016 Lexus RX 450h© Provided by MotorTrend 2016 Lexus RX 450h

"Absolutely positively revolting. A big step back after an equally big leap forward for the previous generation model," said Seva25.

"It's a party on the outside and business in the inside, I'm not sure how I feel about that. I just know it needs to go back to the drawing board. Way too much chrome…I agree it's so-so. I don't hate though I don't love it," said Midosan.

"Not revolting, but nonetheless, a clear step back from the prior Optima (especially pre-refresh), which still looks good today. The previous clean lines of the previous one have been 'busied up' and the greenhouse shape has been dulled down a bit. A down-grade in the exterior, but the interior seems to be nice upgrade," said bdean.

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