Skip to content

The Lexus RX 450h+ is plug-in hybrid refinement at its best

  • by

With softer lines than its predecessor, lots of standard equipment and a healthy dose of Japanese Omotenashi, the fifth-generation Lexus RX makes an even stronger case for itself against the established German rivals. Its plug-in hybrid powertrain gets a useful battery range, too.

This is the all-new lexus rx it’s the company’s flagship model in europe and it’s going to come primarily in this 450 page plus guys which is a plug-in hybrid it’ll have 309 horsepower and up to 65 kilometers or thereabouts of electric only driving range it’s got a lot of equipment and quite a lot of safety features which we’ll come back to in a moment but first of

All we want to talk about the design around the front it has an all new look similar to what we’ve seen in the nx and what’s coming with the or zed fully electric suv it’s got slander headlights and it’s got a wider track 15 millimeters wider central gravity has also come down by 15 millimeters as well to improve handling but the overall size doesn’t really change

It’s the same length as before but thanks to its new platform the wheelbase has grown by 60 millimeters that means there’s more room in the front and in the back in ireland there will be two specification grades luxury and premium but really regardless of which one you choose you get an awful lot of equipment that includes 21 inch alloy wheels as standard and inside

There’s a ton of really nice gear which we’ll talk about in a moment there’s a lot of interesting and tacky features like these door handles which are you know pulled them out just press the button and it automatically electrically opens the door very smart and it’s very nice to use but the design overall is well it’s softer than before we’ve had lexus cars that

Have really been defined by sharp creases taut lines and it’s kind of softened up you see it the way it rises up here and how this all comes back it’s similar to the previous generation it’s just evolved a little bit more around the rear you’ve got a light bar that goes all the way across and the lexus name is now spelled out there’s no more l badge and this is a

Trend that we see across the industry from a lot of different brands the boot is electrically operated as standard and inside there’s no reduction in boot space because lexus designed this to be a plug-in hybrid from the outset so there’s no compromise when it comes to how much boot space you have you can also drop the rear seats down electrically by these buttons

On the back just adds to the sense of convenience when it comes to interiors lexus has a very solid reputation and it’s no different inside this model the fit and finish of everything is absolutely top-notch properly premium quality everywhere you look from the stitching to this soft material on the doors and the seats incredibly comfortable adjustable electrically

In every possible way as is the steering wheel as well so you can adjust this up or down to find your ideal driving position the layout of this is pretty much the same as what we’ve seen in the nx so you have this really large central touchscreen display it’s nicely positioned it’s got everything you’d want in it you can have your apple carplay your android auto

In there you’ve got a partly digital instrument display in front of you again all the essentials are there and a very good high definition head-up display as well that’s all adjustable via these touch pads on the steering wheel and normally i don’t really like touch pads but it actually works pretty well on this because as you’re going through rather than having

A fish stone of buttons as you touch them it will present to you in the head-up display exactly what it’s doing so you’re not having to look down you’re not having to take your eyes off the road speaking of your eyes there’s also a driver facing camera system here you can’t really see it it’s behind this infrared panel but that keeps an eye on what you’re doing so

It’s making sure you’re not looking down at your phone or distracted or maybe if you’ve had a medical incident for example it can detect what you’re doing it will give you an alert if it detects that hey you’re not looking at the road if there’s more of an issue more something more serious it can even stop the car and alert the emergency services so that’s good

To know that it does have a lot of safety features the interior layout in the center console then you’ve got well two big cup holders you’ve got usb c charge ports here you’ve got a wireless charging pad in here more usbc and a charge force and a 12 volt socket you can get everything topped up and charging here there’s even more in the back but it’s all just so

Nicely put together in here that’s really the thing that sets this apart from some of the other premium models the quality and the finish it’s very nicely thought out it’s very well laid out and it just looks the part in the rear there’s loads of space and this is where the difference between this and the slightly smaller nx comes into play that stretch i mentioned

Of 60 millimeters in the wheelbase means i’ve more leg room in here for reference i’m five foot nine and i’m sitting behind a driving seat as i would be sitting in a driving seat so i’ve i can just about touch the seat in front of a lot of room here headroom is very very good as well thanks to the way they’ve shaped the interior and it’s just very comfortable to

Sit here the seats are nice and wide they come out far enough i’ve got a good bit of support under my leg even the middle seat is actually fairly wide so anyone sitting in the middle they’re not going to feel like they’ve gotten the short straw there’s ventilation in the back here you can even change the position of the front passenger seats by this button on the

Side very useful if you’re already sitting in the back you’ve got usbc charge ports here in this particular version i’ve got heated and cooled rear seats and even a 220 volt power outlet so there’s no reason why you can’t be back here either as kids enjoying having all your devices or as a mobile office it’s got everything every time you begin your journey in the rx

It starts and it’s fully electric mode code that you can at touch of a button choose to have it drive in purely electric mode and it will do that most of the time but you can also save the battery level if you need it for further long in your journey say you’re driving into a city that has a zero emission zone means you can always have enough battery charge there

Speaking of the battery once that is fully charged you’re going to have around 65 kilometers of pure ev driving now that’s slightly less than what you get in the nx even though they share the same powertrain it’s mainly just due to the difference in weight between the vehicles impressively you can drive at motorway speeds in pure electric mode and in that ev mode

It is very very quiet there’s very little in the way of road noise even though it’s got 21 inch wheels even when you do want to have a bit of fun on some of the twisty roads it can stay in fully electric mode and give you all that torque right away even though this is a big car and it does have a bit of weight it does hold its line quite well there’s a nice degree

Of feedback from the steering which i like it gives me a better idea of what the front end is doing out of electric mode the petrol engine comes on stream very very smoothly it’s very quiet in its operation so long as you’re not trying to ring every bit of horsepower from it and the latest transmission is much more enjoyable to use than previous cvt version so it

Does feel more like a traditional automatic in that sense in that hybrid mode well it’s still every bit as smooth and refined and if you’re only driving on power throttle in most cases in traffic you’ll barely be able to notice the difference between whether you’re using the electric motor or you’re using the petrol engine and ride quality is so comfortable this is

Not a car that tries to be very very sporty it doesn’t have firm suspension to give you an idea of it being more dynamic this car is all about comfort and it’s all the better for it if you’re considering something like an x5m sport it’s going to be very different to this car but that’s where the lexus shines through it is all about the finer things quality comfort

Enjoyment it’s such a relaxing car to drive as well that’s one thing you can do two three hours in this car and you’ll get out feeling like you’ve just driven down to the shops and it’s that comfort refinement and well luxury that sets this apart from the usual german rivals that it’s going to be pitched against it is very very different in many aspects and that’s

The kind of thing that is probably going to appeal if you’re interested in this car that fact that this isn’t one of the usual german brands it’s a little bit different and and it’s that quality of the materials inside how it’s all put together it really is impressive that’s our first drive review of this new lexus rx plug-in hybrid it really just oozes quality

It’s so refined on the move it’s got a useful electric driving range as well which means you can pretty much do your average monday to friday in another work commute without really ever having to touch the petrol engines that’s really good news for people as well it is really a proper alternative to some of the more established german cars as well if you’re looking

For something different this is definitely one to consider if you want to know more about this car or any of those rivals head to our website it’s you’ll find it linked in the description below and it’s a great resource for finding your next new car in the meantime we’d love to know more about what you think about this character do get involved in

The comments below let us know what you think thanks for watching thank you

Transcribed from video
The Lexus RX 450h+ is plug-in hybrid refinement at its best By