The Toyota Harrier is a mid-size crossover SUV sold since December 1997 by Toyota in Japan, and was exclusive to Toyopet Store Japanese dealerships. In export markets, the Harrier was rebadged as the Lexus RX from March 1998. At this stage, Toyota had yet to retail the Lexus brand to its Japanese customers.
The second generation model debuted in February 2003, along with the export Lexus version. The third generation Lexus RX arrived in late 2008, while the Harrier continued on in second generation form unchanged. Lexus had by now made its debut in Japan as an independent marque, thus the third generation RX was sold in the domestic market in the same livery as its export counterpart.
Toyota refreshed the Harrier in 2013, when it morphed into an independent model line constructed on a separate platform from the Lexus RX but retaining a visual link with the RX.
The Harrier is named for the eastern marsh harrier, a bird of prey common to Hokkaidō and northern Honshū called the chuki in Japanese, and an emblem depicting the bird in stylized profile can be found on the grille.
Lexus RX paralleled models:
First generation (XU10; 1997–2003)
Second generation (XU30; 2003–2013)
Released on 2 December 2013 in Japan for the gasoline model and 15 January 2014 for the hybrid, the XU60 series Harrier replaces not only its XU30 series namesake, but also the Toyota Vanguard (XA30). Unlike the second and third generation Lexus RX built on the K platform, the XU60 Harrier derives from the RAV4’s New MC underpinnings.
Grades available in Japan include the Premium, Elegance and Grand for both the petrol and hybrid models as well as an Elegance G’s variant, a sportier version of the Elegance which includes a bodykit, lowered sport suspension, bigger wheels and brakes and new sports seats. The top-of-the-line Premium Advanced Package comes with JBL Greenedge audio with T-Connect 8″ touchscreen entertainment system with navigation and sensing features. A Style Mauve special edition and subsequently the Style Ash special edition was released after that.
The XU60 series Harrier was facelifted on 8 June 2017. For the facelift model, the Grand variant was removed and the Elegance became the base variant. A new variant Progress replaces the Premium as the high end variant. A Turbo model was also introduced with a 2.0 Turbocharged engine (8AR-FTS) and a 6-speed ECT transmission, while the 2.0 Naturally-aspirated and 2.5 Hybrid engines remain.
Toyota Safety Sense P safety features (adaptive cruise control, lane departure assist, pre-crash safety system, automatic high beam) are now standard across the board. New interior colours were also introduced.
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