The new Lexus RX has achieved the top five-star ranking in independent Euro NCAP crash testing. The results also mark the highest test score for pedestrian protection yet achieved by any large SUV.
Euro NCAP made special mention of the 79 per cent recorded by the RX in pedestrian impact testing, which included a maximum points score for leg and pelvic region protection and a notably high result for head protection.
In fact, the new RX goes even further to reduce the risk of accidents with pedestrians, beyond the boundaries of Euro NCAP’s current research. Its Lexus Safety System+ package of active safety and driver assistance features (provided as standard on all RX versions) includes a Pre-Crash Safety system with a pedestrian detection function. This means that, across a wide range of speeds, the RX will recognise the risk of a collision with a pedestrian in its path, alert the driver and prepare the brakes to deliver maximum stopping power. And should the driver fail to take action, autonomous emergency braking will be triggered.
Euro NCAP will begin assessing this type of system during next year, so at present it has no impact in the new RX’s overall performance.
Lexus Safety System+ also provides: –
- Adaptive Cruise Control, which helps keep the car a safe distance from the car in front, adjusting to even very low speeds in busy traffic.
- Lane Departure Alert/Lane Keep Assist, which monitors lane markings and warns the driver if the RX moves out of lane without the turn indicators being used, adding brief weight to the steering to help a return to the correct course.
- Road Sign Assist, which recognises principal motorway and major road warning and command signs and repeats them on the driver’s multi-information display.
- Automatic High Beam, which picks up the lights of oncoming traffic and vehicles ahead and automatically switches to and from high beam to maintain the best forward illumination without the risk of dazzling others (the more sophisticated Adaptive High-beam System on Premier grade models adjusts the pattern of high beam lighting).
The new RX also offers a Blind Spot Monitor, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and a 360-degree Panoramic View Monitor, to help the driver achieve a true all-round view of the car’s surroundings and nearby vehicles and hazards. A Sway Warning detects erratic driving behaviour indicating driver drowsiness or inattention and prompts an alert that driver might want to take a break from the wheel.
The vehicle’s excellent impact performance can be credited to the exceptional strength of its bodyshell. This makes extensive use of strong but lightweight high-tensile steel and a design that’s effective in absorbing impact forces and channelling them away from the cabin. Advanced laser screw welding and adhesive bonding techniques add to the car’s high rigidity and robustness, qualities that also contribute to its stable and rewarding handling.