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Long Anticipated Lexus RX 330 Goes on Sale

TORRANCE, Calif., March 26 -- Lexus raises the bar once again as the all-new 2004 RX 330 luxury utility vehicle goes on sale today. The RX 330 provides more of what made the award-winning RX 300 successful and adds some new twists of its own.

"The original RX 300 became the template for a new kind of luxury vehicle, one that many competitors are now following," said Denny Clements, Lexus group vice president and general manager. "The RX 330 was designed to surpass its successful predecessor in every way and set a new benchmark in the segment."

Several new features help the RX 330 raise the standard in the entry-luxury SUV segment. Highlight features include: an Adaptive Front lighting System, included in the available sport package, that swivels the headlights independently to improve visibility on curving roads; a power rear liftgate operated by the key remote or an interior switch; an adaptive cruise control system; a rear backup camera that projects an image from behind the vehicle onto the navigation screen when the vehicle is in reverse.

The sleek new RX 330 has more room than the previous generation afforded by a 6.1-inch longer body and a wheelbase that is almost four inches longer. Width has also grown by 1.1 inches while height has grown by just under half an inch. Sliding split folding 40-20-40 rear seats and under-floor storage bins enhance cargo area utility.

A larger 3.3-liter V6 engine provides increases in horsepower and torque and is backed by a new 5-speed automatic transmission. The results are exemplary performance in class with a 0-60 mph time of 7.7 seconds and class- leading fuel economy of 20 mpg city/26 mpg highway (2WD models). The four- wheel drive model uses a sophisticated new traction control system that eliminates the need for viscous control of the center differential.

Improved suspension systems, standard 17-inch wheels and tires, and a new, stiffer body structure provide better steering and handling while maintaining a supple ride. An optional sport package that includes an adjustable-height air suspension system with 18-inch wheels and tires further improves ride and handling, and provides automatic load leveling as well as aiding vehicle access.

Safety features on the all-new RX include a new driver's side knee airbag, multi-stage front airbags, side-curtain airbags and a large new side airbag for the front seats designed to protect the torso, abdomen and pelvis. Anti- lock brakes (ABS) and brake assist are also standard, along with a new tire pressure monitoring system and Vehicle Stability Control (VSC).

Smart design, extensive luxury amenities and unexpected utility grace the RX 330 interior. The new instrument panel features high contrast electroluminescent gauges and a redesigned center stack with metallic trim. A large-capacity sliding center console adds an unusual measure of utility to the front seat area. Standard genuine wood trim and optional leather surrounds the occupants. A dual-zone automatic climate control with dust filter is standard and is complemented by an available one-touch open/close power moonroof or a wide-opening multi-panel moonroof.

Rounding out the luxurious interior environment is a high performance premium audio system or an available Mark Levinson 11-speaker sound system with an in-dash CD changer. A DVD-based navigation system and rear seat DVD entertainment system are also available.

With all of its improvements, the all-new RX 330 will continue to offer outstanding value with a base MSRP of $35,025 for the two-wheel drive model, a full $100 less than its predecessor. The four-wheel drive version will carry an MSRP of $36,425, or $500 below current pricing. The delivery, processing and handling fee remains at $575 for both RX models.