2022 Lexus RX Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Explosive sunroofs, faulty airbags, and leaking fuel are issues that are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Toyota established the luxury Lexus brand in 1989 and has since sold millions of vehicles globally. The original RX luxury crossover debuted in North America in 1998. It now comes in four configurations that indicate powertrains, the RX 350 being one of them.

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NHTSA Complaints for the 2022 Lexus RX

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Unknown Or Other
Electrical System
Exterior Lighting
Air Bags
Fuel/propulsion System

RX stands for Radiant Crossover. The model name chosen to represent the bright new future for these cars at the start of the 21st century. There have been four generations of the RX, with the fifth scheduled for release as a 2023 model.

While the RX 350 is generally regarded as a reliable SUV, it’s far from perfect, as complaints to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and other platforms reveal.

Most Problems with the Lexus RX 350

According to NHTSA records, problems are varied. There are only five complaints on record as at mid-September 2022, but they highlight significant issues. These include malfunctioning airbags, explosive sunroofs, leaking fuel, and vibrating mirrors.

A complaint filed as an “unknown or other” problem describes how fire destroyed an RX 350 on an interstate highway in 20 minutes.

In addition to complaints to the NHTSA, negative reviews posted on Edmunds talk about road noise, vibrations issues, and jerky transmission.

One review that suggests consumers “look elsewhere for (a) mid-size SUV” says the decision to buy a 2022 RX 350 was because of “Lexus’ reputation for superior quality and reliability.” But after driving the SUV for a week, the verdict is that the ride isn’t smooth, and the transmission is jerky and surges at lower speeds. The SUV rattles and squeaks in multiple places and the rearview mirror on the driver’s side vibrates, making it difficult to use.

Rating the value of this SUV 2 out of 5 stars, the reviewer goes on to share dealership response. “I’m told transmission is ‘normal’, (the) mirror issue is known and has no fix, and not all of the squeaks/rattles were addressed.”

Lexus RX Airbag Problems

Airbags are part of every vehicle’s safety equipment. When they don’t work in an accident, people’s lives are at risk.

An Alabama-based complaint from a passenger who was in an accident states that the vehicle was struck from behind while in standstill traffic. The impact shifted the RX 350 and it was hit again on the front driver side of the vehicle. Both people in the car were wearing seatbelts at the time.

On impact, both airbags deployed on the driver’s side (front and back), but not on the front passenger side. As a result, the passenger was injured. “I suffered a concussion and a herniated disc.”

The NHTSA undertakes 5-star safety ratings on most cars so that anyone searching for a car knows which are safer than others. Their rating for the 2022 Lexus RX 350 frontal crash tests aren’t great. The front passenger side test gets a 4-star ranking and the front driver side only 3. So, it stands to reason that if the driver side airbag hadn’t deployed, the injuries could have been worse.

The airbags also didn’t deploy in the incident, mentioned above, where a fire wiped out an RX 350.

In May 2022, an owner from Michigan was driving on the Interstate 50 highway in Iowa with cruise control set at 70 mph. Suddenly the warning light for AWD failure came on followed by the engine light and all other warning lights. The driver coasted into the breakdown lane, noticing a “definite loss of power.”

At that moment, a “fellow motorist (was) running toward the car with (a) fire extinguisher. I saw black smoke and fire coming from (the) front of (the) car.” Forced to evacuate the car on the interstate, the owner says that “the car was consumed in about 20 minutes.”

RX 350 Explosive Sunroofs

After a dealer told a 2022 Lexus RX 350 owner from Florida that a sunroof that had exploded was covered by the vehicle’s warranty, Lexus denied the claim. Instead, she was told to claim on her insurance policy.

It was a brand new car with less than 4,000 miles on the clock when the incident happened in June 2022. The owner and her husband were traveling on the interstate at the time with no other cars around them. We “thought we had been shot.” Shards of glass fell on them when they tried to open the sunroof. The damaged glass was pointing upward and there was nothing in the space between the roof and the sunroof closer.

“There were no warnings and it scared the heck out of me and my husband. (We) followed (the) suggested cover for (our) return trip home, which just flew off.”

Fuel Tank Problems

An NHTSA complaint from an RX 350 owner in Texas maintains that the vehicle’s fuel tank is exposed underneath the car. Because of this manufacturing defect, something impacted the tank – probably “small debris” – and caused a leak.

They discovered the problem when they “smelled gas in the car and noticed fuel going low fast. I pulled off the freeway and tried to fill (up the) gas and noticed the gas was leaking from a hole in the exposed area of a corner on the tank. My family was able to safely jump out of the car, and 911 was called. There were no warning signs on (the) dashboard.

“I don’t drive off road or over any objects that I am aware (of) as there is no light or heavy damage underneath except (to the) fuel tank.”

But when they reported the incident, Lexus insisted “I did extreme off-road driving to cause this damage, which is not true. If a stone hits the tank to cause the hole and leak the gas, it’s a scary situation for everyone. Lexus doesn’t believe in my story. The gas tank is left exposed and that’s where it cracked. I drove almost 75 miles in a brand new Lexus RX 350 with fuel leaking, which was scary.”

Ultimately, the complaint states that Lexus is not very helpful and wants the owner to keep quiet! Photographs supplied to the NHTSA show the vehicle leaking fuel at the gas station.

Other RX 350 Problems

We mentioned the Edmunds complaint about a driver’s side mirror vibrating. An NHTSA complaint highlights this same issue. The concern is that it causes a double image while driving that affects safety.

An Edmunds review states: “I love the exterior and interior (of the) 2022 RX 350.

“I am not happy, however, with the road noise and instances when it feels the engine is sluggish! Also I feel a thumping at times! Took to dealer but no solution!”

What to do if your 2022 Lexus RX 350 is a Lemon? Your Lemon Rights

This post illustrates how one make and model vehicle can have a multitude of different issues. They don’t affect every vehicle and there’s no way a prospective purchaser can know in advance which individual vehicles are affected.

If your 2022 Lexus RX 350 has issues that impact its use, safety, or value, fill in our contact form or call us. We will evaluate your case free of charge and assess whether we think you have a lemon.

Lemberg Law has negotiated settlements for many clients, including vehicle replacements and refunds. We can do the same for you.

Complaint Data

CategoryElectrical System
DateFeb 11, 2023
This vehicle is brand new, and I constantly have issues with it not recognizing the key fob. It will lock automatically with the keys inside and not unlock, even with the other set of keys. I have been locked out multiple times with the keys in my hands. The vehicle is on, with the keys outside in my hands, and it locks and cannot be unlocked. Using the valet key in the door does not work. The app says the vehicle is in motion and cannot be unlocked. It had to be towed to the dealership, and the problem could not be found. There are no warnings or anything on the dash.
CategoryUnknown Or Other
DateDec 26, 2022
Sunroof randomly exploding. Causing danger for driver and people inside
DateOct 27, 2022
My 2022 rx , the driver side outer rear view mirror image vibration while driving on highway at speed around 60 mph +/- then start shaking. Report the issue to dealer when regular service, the mechanic report this is normal after inspect the problem, but this vibration and shaking is really annoying while driving on highway. Some drivers may have the same issue and cause some risks.
CategoryElectrical System, Exterior Lighting
DateOct 24, 2022
I have already contacted the dealer and lexus corporate. If you drive this car with polarized sunglasses all of your gauges disappear and you have no idea of anything with respect to the automobile such as speed or any of the other indications. I was told that they agree that this is a design defect but they will not do anything about it and if they do do something in the future then I should keep watching for a recall. I told them that being unable to wear sunglasses when you have sensitive eyes is unacceptable and not being able to see a single gauge including the heads up display is absolutely unacceptable. Their answer was basically too bad and
CategoryAir Bags
DateSep 11, 2022
I was a passenger in an accident. I was sitting in the front passenger seat. We were sitting in standstill traffic. Our vehicle was struck from behind; it caused the vehicle to shift and was hit again on front driver side of the vehicle. Airbag's deployed on the driver side (front and back) but not the front passenger. Seatbelts were worn. I suffered a concussion and a herniated disc.
CategoryUnknown Or Other
DateJun 27, 2022
Sunroof exploded on interstate with no other cars around. Thought we had been shot. Noticed air sound and started to open sunroof to have shards of glass fall on us. Closed roof. Pulled off as soon as we got to exit making sure that no one was behind us so that those pieces which were flying off our car would not cause a broken windshield for someone else or an accident. Took pictures of sunroof with huge hole with glass pointing upward. Nothing in the area between roof and sunroof closer. Took to dealer and were told it was covered only to find out that toyota/lexus denied. Denied by lexus. Told to turn it in to our insurance. This car is brand new, less than 4000 miles on it. There were no warnings and it scared the heck out of me and my husband. Followed suggested cover for return trip home which just flew off.
DateMay 28, 2022
Mirror of driver side vibration when driving. This cause of double image effected driving safety.
CategoryUnknown Or Other
DateMay 14, 2022
Driving on i80e in iowa with cruise control set at 70 mph, warning light for awd failure came on, followed by engine light and all warning lights. Coasted into breakdown lane and had definite loss of power. Became aware of fire by fellow motorist running toward the car with fire extinguisher. Saw black smoke and fire coming from front of car. Forced to evacuate car on interstate, smoke in east and westbound lanes. The car was consumed in about 20 minutes. Insurance company- aaa - has inspected car. Unknown if lexus has inspected. Remains taken to teo's towing 563-888-1988. Please inspect. Air bags did not employ.
CategoryFuel/propulsion System
DateMar 22, 2022
After driving normally we smelled gas in the car and noticed fuel going low fast . I pulled from the freeway and tried to fill gas and noticed the gas was leaking from a hole in the exposed area of a corner on the tank. My family were able to safely jump out of the car and 911 was called. There were no warning sign on dashboard. I don't drive off road or over any objects that I am aware as there is no light or heavy damage underneath except fuel tank . This is am sure is due to small debris hitting the exposed tank causing the tear although I did t recall . The tank is left underneath exposed and need to be investigated for manufacture defect . I called lexus to report it and they were not receptive saying I did an extreme off road driving to cause this damage which is not true , . If a stone hits the tank to cause the hole and leak the gas , it's a scary situation for everyone. Lexus doesn't believe in my story. The gas tank is left exposed and that's where it cracked.' I drove almost 75 miles on a brand new lexus rx 350 with fuel leaking which was scary. I hope you look into this immediately. Lexus is not very helpful and wants me to keep quite. The liquid you see in the picture in gas station was leaking fuel. You can use my information to contact lexus and I have a case number with lexus 220318001695

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Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 20 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

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  • Sharmi D

    Me and my sons were driving home from buying a new dryer and my Lexus rx350 caught fire. The SUV went up in flames in 20 mins. I just took the car to be checked for the winter months and the dealer said everything was fine with the rx350. I lost my phone, my son’s phone, all my keys and brand new dryer in the 🔥

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