Lexus interior designers handily bring a sense of calm and order inside the new '10 RX 450h hybrid CUV — no small feat considering the technology inside.
Contributing to the serenity are enough artistic flourishes to warrant a special exhibit at the Guggenheim.
Take the dramatic swoops and bulges that make up the instrument panel. The lack of symmetry and the absence of a conventionally arrayed center stack make for a visually arresting experience that simultaneously soothes and engages.
For this unique achievement, Ward's editors bestow on the new RX a special-achievement award for Design Harmony.
It's more than the instrument panel that impresses. Throughout, the vehicle demonstrates a new aesthetic that relies not on straight lines intersecting at right angles but on unconventional shapes that serve as strong design cues.
A shining example is the door panel. In the new RX, the upper part of the 2-tone panel is trimmed to resemble the wing of a bird in flight.
The color scheme contributes to the tranquility, with ivory as the dominant shade, beautifully accented with deep grayish brown. Supple surfaces abound, highlighted with glossy cherry-tone wood.
Enabling the clutter-free look is the new remote-touch device in the center console that functions like a computer mouse and controls the stereo and heating/air conditioning. The flat, joystick-like knob allows the driver to control numerous vehicle functions displayed on a menu on the navigation screen.
The previous RX was a success, but the interior sorely needed updating.
The new RX fits the bill handsomely and sets a new standard for artistic achievement within the automotive interior.