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I've been wondering about this for a while and finally decided to look into forums about it. How many people out there actually take their RX off road beside me? If you do, drop a message about what mods you're running, I'm curious to see what others do with theirs

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Mine NEVER goes offroad, at least not by plan or intention, but I have done a mod which definitely helps during the wintertime NW mountain pass driving.

1.5" wheel spacers all around and 17X8 wheels with michelin cross-terrain tires, 235/65-17. The spacers provide enough additional space between the tire and strut at the rear allow me to use snowchains SAFELY when necessary. During the winter months two sets of snowchains go where the RX goes.

Personally I would NEVER intentionally take an RX (or an HL) offroad.

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Mine NEVER goes offroad, at least not by plan or intention, but I have done a mod which definitely helps during the wintertime NW mountain pass driving.

1.5" wheel spacers all around and 17X8 wheels with michelin cross-terrain tires, 235/65-17. The spacers provide enough additional space between the tire and strut at the rear allow me to use snowchains SAFELY when necessary. During the winter months two sets of snowchains go where the RX goes.

Personally I would NEVER intentionally take an RX (or an HL) offroad.

We use our SUV very much as a Lexus spokesman has said,

"Lexus owners do not take their SUVs where the paint might get scratched."

We just wanted a larger and more comfortable passenger compartment than

what sedans offer.

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The RX is not at all designed to be taken offroad lol

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I have taken my '99 Lexus AWD RX300 on the dirt roads of Southern CA and Baja. Handled the rough, washboard roads well but I wouldn't personally take it anywhere you couldn't go in a two wheel drive vehicle. I was looking on this forum to see if anyone could recommend a better tire for light off road driving.

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I have taken my '99 Lexus AWD RX300 on the dirt roads of Southern CA and Baja. Handled the rough, washboard roads well but I wouldn't personally take it anywhere you couldn't go in a two wheel drive vehicle. I was looking on this forum to see if anyone could recommend a better tire for light off road driving.

These would be my top choices

Yokohama Geolandar A/T-S

Michelin LTX M/S

Dunlop Radial Rover A/T

Goodyear Wrangler HP

But you'll likely suffer the consequences of more road noise and probably a bit less street performance (braking, roadholding and such)

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Check out the Firestone Destination LE tire at tirerack.com. Best truck/SUV tire for the money on the market right now. Had it on my wife's previous 2000 RX300 AWD and have it on my daughter's 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4WD. Great ride, superb wet traction, excellent snow traction, long-lasting treadwear, does extremely well in light off-road driving, and so very affordable (especially when you ask your local Firestone dealer for a "buy three get one free" deal like I did)....

I like the Dunlop Radial Rover A/T, I have this tire on my 1999 Dodge Ram pickup, but the treadwear mileage longevity can't compete with the Firestone Destination LE. When my Dunlops finally bite the dust by late 2009 or early 2010 (when they will be 7 years old), I'll put a set of Destination LE's on my Ram....

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I take mine off road now and then. it handles puddles and bumps fine. The allwheel gives it good control. And it has a warning beep that lets you know if youre starting to slide. But its kind of pointless, as you will probably know if your RX is sliding. I put it into the 2nd gear setting and it moves pretty good down the sandy roads hear in the Jersey Pine Barrens. Only downer is the clearance isnt that great, and the tires are not made to grip anything other than asphalt. So if youre driving through loose sand(or sugar sand) no matter what Dont STop! or youll probably get stuck. I got stuck on the beach one time, and killed my transmission trying to get out. But my warranty covered a new tranny so it worked out for the better:)

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I've got 3 RX300's. Two stay on the straight, narrow and paved. The third is my hunting and fishing vehicle. You would not believe where I've taken it. It isn't lifted and it's on factory sized tires but the thing almost never gets stuck. It has 485,000 miles on it and just keeps going. It needs new struts all the way around, so I bought a set of strut spacers to give an extra 40mm lift and 2" wheel spacers and I'll be putting BF Goodrich K2's on it. These are an amazing AWD vehicle and definitely built for and capable of off road use.

 

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This seems to be a polarizing subject among Lexus owners?  I made my living doing erosion and trail condition surveys for CA State Parks/OHMVR Div (the off-road side).  I have literally driven thousands of miles of trails in a stock Ford Ranger 4x4 Pick-up and my own personal 88 Big Bronco (both had Lo-range and Posi, no lifts).  The company truck ran street tires.  My Bronco ran BFG A/T's.  Very, very seldom got stuck.  But you gotta use your head ...

The reason I'm on the Lexus forum is that the old Bronco is long in the tooth (230K - original 5.0 engine and AOD tranny), and now that I'm old enough to draw SS and a pension, I am selling the Bronco, and will buy a 2008~9 RX 350. I really want the comfort of a luxury cross-over.  As far as I can tell, the RX will do just fine.

I have been doing a ton of research on what will actually work off road, and be very pleasant on the street?  So many cross-overs have this deficiency or that ...  I won't be doing any black diamond trails (toughest rating), or rock crawl events. But I will be going to the SoCal deserts to finish off a book my Mom started about WW-II training areas and such. That means routes more difficult than gravel/dirt roads.  It means sandy washes and scree slopes.  I know the routes, but I want to get there (photo locations) in comfort. It's a 1,400 mile round trip, before I go on the dirt.

Yes, I could buy a toy like a built CJ-5.  But I also want to travel and pull my boat (16' outboard) out of state.  So comfort is top of the list. Now seeing the crazy Russians in mud and snow, and yah-who kids with older RX's crawling Utah and blasting mud, I'm convinced that the RX is the best of both worlds.

The plan is to have two sets of wheels/tires.  A bit more rugged for known trips involving off road scenarios.  And a set for daily driving and on road trip taking.  So recommendations gladly accepted? 

I'm thinking factory 17x8 alloys and maybe +1 size for daily driver scenarios.  For off road trip set-up I need  more info/ideas/recommendations ??

I don't mind dropping a few $ on wheels, but I don't want something that will look out of place.  So maybe 17x8 alloys with some positive offset to move the tire outboard a bit, and a larger/fatter tire ??

Edited by Broc Luno
grammer

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