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Lexus RX300

Lexus RX 300 Fun Facts

  • Want to know how the Lexus RX 300 crossover concept came to be? Well, it originated from the result of a market research study. The study found out that only a measly 7% of SUV owners utilized their vehicles for off-roading. This led Toyota to develop an on-road SUV, which would later turn out to be the RX 300, of course.

  • In Japan, the Lexus RX 300 was known as the Toyota Harrier.

  • During the RX series' earlier years, the Lexus RX 300 was the only Lexus that was constructed outside of Japan. Most variants of the RX 300 were built at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada plant in Cambridge, Ohio.

  • Since it debuted in 1998 and until the Lexus RX 350 took its place after a few years, the Lexus RX 300 has been the United States' best-selling luxury SUV (it was also Lexus' best-selling model). That isn't surprising since it sold nearly 400,000 in its first five years in the market. In fact, the 330i's popularity pushed rival makes to launch crossovers of their own.

  • The Lexus RX 300 was an award magnet, which wasn't really that surprising considering its impressive capabilities. Here are some of the notable accolades that it received: J.D. Power and Associates' Most Appealing Luxury SUV (1998), Motor Trend's Sports/Utility Vehicle of the year (1999), Money Magazine's Best Deal on the Road in the SUV class (1999), and Kelley Blue Book's Best to Hold Value awardee (1999 to 2001).

  • In 2002, Lexus introduced a limited Coach Edition RX 300 (which was of course inspired by Coach, the American luxury leather goods manufacturer). Naturally, this special edition featured lots of fine perforated leather in the interior. On top of that, it also had a unique honeycomb grille, Coach badges in both interior and the exterior, and a bonus set of Coach luggage. Sweet.

  • Because of its widespread popularity, it's pretty much impossible for the Lexus RX 300 to not find itself appearing in movies and television shows. Some of its small screen and big screen sightings include South Park, Frasier, Bra Boys, Alaska State Troopers, The Beast, The Starter Wife, Everwood, Anna's Eve, The Firm, Tiger & Bunny, Stick It, Gone, Wildfire, 25th Hour, Freaky Firday, Parks and Recreation, GCB, and Franklin & Bash. Whew.

Lexus RX300 Articles

  • Lexus RX 300 Problems

    The Lexus RX 300 is one of the very first crossovers in the market. The RX 300 is a trailblazer to an extent, as its success pushed rival makes to launch their very own crossovers. While it's recognized as one of the best luxury SUVs in the market for its reliability and consistent performance, the RX 300 wasn't without problems. Below were some of its most common ills.


    Some Lexus RX 300 owners reported automatic transmission fluid leaks within the transmission system. Also, transmission failures were somewhat a common occurrence. What's worse is when that happens, the torque converter will stop working as well.

    Poor Fuel Efficiency

    Since fuel efficiency is a big thing for most automotive owners, the Lexus RX 300's rather poor mileage didn't sit well with some owners. The RX 300 rated at around 17 mpg. Its considerable weight (which was almost 2 tons) significantly affected the RX 300 in this category.

    Headlights and Taillights

    The headlights and taillights often bugged Lexus RX 300 owners. When the headlight switch was set to AUTO, both the headlight and the taillight wouldn't always illuminate automatically when subjected in conditions where there's low ambient light. This led to momentary (at least until drivers manually switch on the headlights and the taillights) road vision impairment.

    Rear-view Mirror and Side-view Mirrors

    The Lexus RX 300's rear-view mirror and side-view mirrors did not meet the federal motor vehicle safety standards. And because of that, they tend to create excessive glare for drivers, thus impairing road vision when driving at night. Needless to say, this issue could be particularly dangerous.


    The Lexus RX 300 occasionally made unnecessary and annoying noises. Suspension noise, squealing brakes, and rackety sounds from the moon roof (which was a result of the awkward placement of the luggage rack's cross bars) often plagued the RX 300. The last one can be easily solved by modifying the cross bars though.

    The Temperature and Trip Display

    Although this is a very minor issue, many owners didn't appreciate the unnecessarily large temperature and trip display in the Lexus RX 300's center console. They found it distracting and a waste of space.