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Is the 2022 Lexus RX getting three hybrid powertrains? BMW X5, Volvo XC90 SUV rival set to be greener than current model - report

The new-generation RX could adopt some design cues from the 2018 Lexus LF-1 Limitless concept.

Lexus looks set to capitalise on the sharp uptick of hybrid sales globally by offering not one but three hybrid powertrain options for the next-generation RX.

The new rival to the BMW X5, Mercedes-Benz GLE, Genesis GV80 and other large premium SUVs is expected to surface this year in fifth-generation guise ahead of an Australian on-sale date early in the second half.

According to reports from Japan’s Magazine X and Creative 311 blog, the next-gen RX will drop the 221kW/370Nm 3.5-litre V6 engine from the RX350 that has been used in multiple Lexus models over the years, including the IS sedan and NX medium SUX.

It will be replaced with the new 2.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine that is debuting in the NX this month, pumping out 205kW/430Nm. This will retain the RX350 moniker.

The reports also suggest that Lexus could also drop the RX450h and replace it with a new flagship plug-in hybrid, dubbed RX500h, that pairs the 2.4-litre turbo with an electric motor, offering some all-electric driving range.

The current RX450h is a series hybrid that uses the 3.5-litre V6 and pumps out 230kW/335Nm.

Another new model, the RX450h+ will pair a naturally aspirated 2.5-litre petrol engine – likely the same one from the NX350h – with an electric motor and lithium-ion battery.

The current Lexus RX has been around since late 2015. The current Lexus RX has been around since late 2015.

The entry-level RX350h hybrid option will likely match the NX350h by using the 2.5-litre engine and an electric motor. In the NX this powertrain has a power output of 179kW. Both the RX450h+ and RX350h are series hybrids, according to the reports.

The new RX is expected to be underpinned by the Toyota New Global Architecture medium-to-large (TNGA-K) platform that already forms the basis of the NX SUV and ES sedan, as well as the Toyota Kluger, Camry and RAV4.

It will continue to be offered with the option of a third seating row, ensuring it competes with the likes of the Volvo XC90, Audi Q7 and others in the premium large-SUV segment.

Design wise, it could take cues from the Lexus LF-1 Limitless concept that was revealed at the 2018 Detroit motor show, but is expected to adopt some design elements from the new NX.

The new RX follows the February launch of the new NX, but it’s not expected to land before the flagship Toyota LandCruiser-based LX.

The current fourth-generation RX has been around since late 2015 and is underpinned by a version of Toyota’s old K platform that’s been around since the early 2000s.

It is the second most popular Lexus mode by sales in Australia, capturing 1908 registrations (+1.5%) last year, but not as many as the NX (3091).

Among its rivals, it outsold the Audi Q7 (1646), Range Rover Sport (1475), Volkswagen Touareg (1261) and Volvo XC90 (1323) last year, but couldn’t beat the Mercedes-Benz GLE (3591) and BMW X5 (3173).