2022 Lexus RX450h Sports activities Luxurious evaluation
An all-new Lexus RX is on the way in which, likely due sometime in the first half of 2023, however till then the current-generation stays on sale in Australia within the hotly-contested luxurious SUV market.
It might be a veteran of the phase, however the present RX (which dates again to 2015) nonetheless manages to be one of many extra in style choices, with key rivals together with the BMW X5, Mercedes-Benz GLE, and Volkswagen Touareg.
Right here on check we have now the five-seat flagship, the 2022 Lexus RX450h Sports activities Luxurious, which is a six-figure funding within the Australian market, and solely supplanted by its seven-seat RX450hL equal in flagship standing throughout the vary.
Is it price taking a punt on the effectively established however ageing present mannequin, or do you have to await the brand new one?
The second-dearest RX variant is priced from $110,460 plus on-road prices, with the 450h V6 hybrid variant commanding a near-$9000 premium over its 350-badged V6 petrol equal.
2022 Lexus RX pricing:
- Lexus RX300 Luxurious: $73,136
- Lexus RX300 F Sport: $88,136
- Lexus RX350 Luxurious: $83,013
- Lexus RX350 F Sport: $95,513
- Lexus RX350 Sports activities Luxurious: $101,713
- Lexus RX450h Luxurious: $91,760
- Lexus RX450h F Sport: $104,260
- Lexus RX450h Sports activities Luxurious: $110,460
- Lexus RX350L Luxurious: $86,513
- Lexus RX350L Sports activities Luxurious: $103,713
- Lexus RX450hL Luxurious: $95,260
- Lexus RX450hL Sports activities Luxurious: $112,460
Costs exclude on-road prices
Whereas comparatively inexpensive for a flagship variant, the six-figure price ticket places the RX450hL Sports activities Luxurious amongst some very robust competitors hailing from Europe.
The Volkswagen Touareg, which shares premium DNA with the Audi Q7, Bentley Bentayga and Porsche Cayenne, might be had in 210TDI Magnificence guise for $106,990 plus on-roads, however wants about $10,000 of choices to correctly match up towards the Lexus’s prolonged tools record – extra particulars additional down.
If you need a hybrid, there’s solely actually plug-in choices out there elsewhere in the event you low cost the array of 48V mild-hybrid choices that may’t truly drive the wheels on e-power.
There’s the BMW X5 xDrive45e ($138,400), Range Rover Velar P400e ($138,800), Porsche Cayenne e-Hybrid ($147,400) and the Volvo XC90 Recharge Plug-in Hybrid ($118,990). Whereas dearer, these autos all supply a good quantity of electric-only vary whereas the Lexus can solely go for small distances in EV mode at low speeds.
Whereas it might really feel somewhat like a step again in time, the RX’s cabin in flagship trim is a hark again to old-school Japanese values, specializing in high quality and craftsmanship.
From the semi-aniline leather-based seats and electrically adjustable steering wheel to the woodgrain steering wheel end and analogue clock sitting proudly within the sprint fascia, that is Lexus in its purest type.
Sure the design is dated, the litter of buttons feels pointless, and the instrument cluster lacks a digital speedometer readout (in the event you low cost the usual head-up show), however the RX nonetheless has a little bit of character and allure to it.
The whole lot feels constructed to face years, if not a long time of wear and tear and tear. The switchgear is strong and well-damped in operation, there’s a heavy clunk to how the gearshift operates, and the sleek, supple leather-based doesn’t pinch or crease when sat in.
I personally would go for a lighter inside choice, however the black-on-black theme in our check automobile with matching darkish wooden could be a terrific choice in the event you plan on carting individuals round typically, significantly youthful kids susceptible to spilling drinks or dropping sugary snacks on the upholstery.
There are countless choices to get snug, with full electrical adjustment and reminiscence for the entrance seats and steering wheel with a variety. The simple entry/exit operate additionally slides the seat again and pushes the steering wheel ahead on exit, then remembers your earlier settings when you press the starter button.
Additional facilities embody heating and air flow features which might be set to Auto and tie with the local weather controls, the aforementioned head-up show with a number of layouts, and the essential if very Toyota-looking driver’s supervision show with numerous menus and knowledge readouts.
Numerous the switchgear and typeface may be very clearly from the Toyota steady, one thing that has been a Lexus criticism up till the newest technology of fashions. Yet one more apparent instance of the RX’s ties to its mother or father is the low-mounted stalk for the cruise management, which has executed service in outdated RAV4s and Klugers for a while.
A key replace for the mid-life refresh was the usual 12.3-inch infotainment show now with contact performance. It has loads of options on paper, however in execution it’s typical outdated Lexus in that it feels a technology or a number of behind a number of the newest German items.
The contact inputs imply you don’t have to make use of that naff trackpad-esque controller on the centre tunnel, however the placement of the show (whereas relocated for higher comfort) continues to be fairly removed from straightforward attain. I ended up simply utilizing the trackpad more often than not to keep away from leaning ahead and making an attempt to the touch the display screen whereas driving.
Lexus’s older Enform software program is somewhat laggy and convoluted, and simply lacks the readability and intuitiveness of rival techniques. The native satellite tv for pc navigation is straight out of Toyota’s catalogue simply on a bigger show, and like different fashions throughout the Toyota/Lexus empire there’s that annoying lockout function – so you may’t have a passenger enter a vacation spot deal with whereas the car is shifting, for instance.
A saving grace for the RX’s infotainment system is that attractive 15-speaker Mark Levinson premium audio system, frequently a spotlight in higher-end Lexus fashions. Crisp, clear sound couple with deep, thumping bass means the RX performs your favorite tunes higher than simply about some other car for the cash – candy candy fantasy child.
Regardless of being somewhat smaller than one thing like a BMW X5 or Mercedes-Benz GLE, the five-seat Lexus RX’s second row continues to be fairly accommodating, simply becoming two adults and three at a pinch.
Whereas there’s a big sunroof in play right here, headroom isn’t actually compromised even at my top (6’1), and there are handbook rear sunshades to, as the youngsters say, “block out the haters”.
Serving to issues is that comparatively flat centre seat and minimal transmission hump, whereas the rear bench might be electrically reclined which is a pleasant contact.
There are directional air vents on the rear of the centre console, although oddly no separate local weather controls even within the top-spec Sports activities Luxurious trim – although the outer rear seats are heated. A sign of this car’s age, there aren’t any USB energy shops within the rear both.
Airline-style map pockets behind the entrance seats are the obvious storage choices, whereas a fold-down centre armrest with cupholders and a storage cubby add to the rear facilities. There are additionally bottle holders within the doorways.
The five-seat RX’s sporty tailgate design means it’s one of many smallest boots within the Premium Giant SUV class, quoting simply 453 litres to the highest fringe of the rear seatbacks with the second row in use.
Drop the rear seats and that quoted quantity ups to 924L, which once more is behind the tempo for the phase, in addition to smaller measurement segments.
In the event you go for the longer three-row RXL, the five-seat baggage capability grows to 652L.
The Lexus RX450h comes with a space-saver spare wheel.
The RX450h and RX450hL workforce an Atkinson cycle model of the RX350’s 3.5-litre V6 petrol, which makes 193kW and 335Nm, with 123kW/335Nm entrance and 50kW/139Nm rear electrical motors, in addition to a nickel-metal hydride (Ni-MH) battery pack.
System energy output for is quoted at 230kW, with no system torque determine quoted as is typical Toyota vogue, and drive is shipped to an ‘E-4’ electrified all-wheel drive system – petrol engine drives the entrance, 50kW e-motor drives the rear. The transmission is an e-CVT with six simulated ‘steps’.
The hybrid is essentially the most environment friendly and the quickest RX variant, in accordance with Lexus, with 0-100km/h taking a claimed 7.7 seconds within the RX450h and 8.0 seconds within the RX450hL.
By way of effectivity and emissions, the RX450h quotes mixed gas consumption of 5.7L/100km and CO2 output of 131g/km. The 65-litre gas tank calls for dearer 95 RON premium unleaded at least, with all RX engine variants in Australia assembly Euro 6 rules.
Disclaimer: this was my first time driving a hybrid-powered Lexus RX.
Having spent loads of time in Toyota and Lexus’s newest hybrid merchandise that includes the corporate’s newest TNGA base structure and new-generation four-cylinder hybrid techniques, the RX’s old-school V6-based petrol-electric setup is displaying its age.
The petrol V6 engine has a pleasant brassy tone to it, and positively isn’t as coarse as a few of Toyota’s four-cylinder hybrid motors, however whereas it’s silky easy and fairly responsive, gas consumption will not be a patch on the brand new stuff.
We noticed excessive sevens to low eights throughout our week with the RX450h, and lots of it comes all the way down to the car’s reluctance to depend on electrical energy, presumably all the way down to the age of the driveline and setup.
It appears the e-motor gained’t have interaction above 70km/h, so that you gained’t see the EV mode image gentle up except you’re within the metropolis or suburbs.
You’ll additionally discover the RX450h will lean on the V6 petrol engine fairly early too, so don’t count on to be rolling alongside silently in visitors if you could get alongside at a good tempo. The e-CVT flares up revs shortly to get you going, and whereas any transition between e-power and petrol energy is impressively seamless, it’s simply not as economical because it might be.
In contrast to the RX350 with its slick-shifting eight-speed computerized, the RX450h’s e-CVT isn’t as participating as you’d count on. It does have what sound like ‘steps’ programmed in if you’re pushing somewhat more durable, however the hybrid is way from sporty regardless of being essentially the most highly effective and quickest engine variant on supply.
Being a Lexus, consolation and refinement is clearly the precedence right here. In contrast to some rivals, significantly out of Germany, there’s no phantasm of sportiness within the character or really feel, a minimum of with this Sports activities Luxurious model.
The smooth suspension tune takes the sting off the massive 20-inch alloy wheels and 235/55 tyres, however over successive bumps and undulations it could get a contact wallowy. It’s an identical story within the bends, the place you may really feel its 2.2-tonne mass shifting backward and forward – it’s removed from sharp and lithe.
Steering really feel is somewhat on the heavier facet and it’s at occasions somewhat imprecise, which just like the smooth trip encourages you to take it straightforward and waft alongside slightly than driving it exhausting.
Refinement is a robust level, an outdated Lexus hallmark. Insulation from wind and highway noise is splendidly suppressed, and even engine noise is saved to a minimal although the V6’s observe is nicer than most four-cylinder hybrids.
Switching the eight-speed auto out for an e-CVT helps this additional, given the revs drop into close to silence when you’re off the throttle, and beneath 70km/h it’ll normally swap off the engine solely and coast in EV mode.
From a driver help angle, the RX is absolutely kitted out on paper however being a technology behind another merchandise throughout the Toyota/Lexus steady the performance of stated techniques isn’t fairly as much as the tempo of rivals.
The adaptive cruise management with cease/go works nice however might be fast to brake if a car cuts into the lane forward of you, and retains fairly a conservative distance even in its shortest distance setting.
Lexus’s Lane Tracing Help operate likewise isn’t the sharpest lane-centring know-how in the marketplace, nevertheless it’s pretty good at doing what it says on the tin and retains the RX on the straight and slim simply nice.
Maybe essentially the most useful help features in day by day use are the encompass digital camera system with 3D view, although once more the cameras aren’t as sharp as some rivals, and the blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic techniques assist compensate for the thick rear pillars and small rear home windows.
RX300 Luxurious highlights:
- 18-inch alloy wheels
- 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system
- Wired Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
- Satellite tv for pc navigation
- Reversing digital camera
- Entrance and rear parking sensors
- Nuluxe leatherette upholstery
- 10-way energy entrance seats
- Keyless entry and begin
- DAB digital radio
- Bi-LED headlights
- LED daytime working lights
- 12-speaker sound system
- Twin-zone local weather management
- Rain-sensing wipers
- Heated facet mirrors with reminiscence
RX350 and RX450h Luxurious add:
- 20-inch alloy wheels
- Real leather-accented upholstery
- Reminiscence operate for driver/entrance passenger
- Heated/ventilated entrance seats
RX300/RX350/RX450h F Sport provides:
- F Sport 20-inch alloy wheels
- F Sport leather-accented upholstery
- Head-up show
- 8.0-inch instrument cluster show
- Adaptive suspension
- LED headlights (triple stack)
- BladeScan adaptive excessive beam
- LED cornering lights
- 15-speaker Mark Levinson premium sound system
- 360-degree digital camera system
- Panoramic sunroof
- Rear window sunshades (handbook)
- Sequential LED indicators
** F Sport not out there for RX350L/RX450hL
RX350/RX450h Sports activities Luxurious provides:
- Sports activities Luxurious 20-inch alloy wheels
- 14-way energy entrance seats with reminiscence
- Semi-aniline leather-accented upholstery
- Heated second-row outboard seats
** removes F Sport digital instrument cluster
All variations of the RX vary put on a five-star ANCAP security ranking from 2015 off the again of Euro NCAP testing.
The vary acquired an grownup occupant safety rating of 83 per cent (regardless of a 0.0 from 3 outcome for AEB Metropolis), 82 per cent for youngster occupant safety, 79 per cent for pedestrian safety and 74 per cent for security help (with 0.0 out of three for velocity help system).
Customary help tools consists of:
- Autonomous emergency braking (AEB)
- Pedestrian detection (Day/Night time)
- Bike owner detection (Day)
- Ahead collision warning
- Blind-spot monitoring
- Rear-cross visitors help (reverse AEB)
- Auto excessive beam
- Entrance and rear parking sensors
- Lane-keep help
- Lane Hint Help
- Visitors signal recognition
- Tyre stress monitoring
There’s additionally a nifty Drive Begin Management that reduces energy in the event you seize the flawed gear between transmission drive modes (for instance, Drive to Reverse). The ten-airbag suite encompasses twin entrance, driver’s knee, entrance passenger cushion, in addition to twin facet and curtain protection for the primary and second rows.
All Lexus autos bought from January 1, 2022 are coated by a five-year, unlimited-kilometre guarantee.
Additional, hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electrical fashions get high-voltage battery cowl for as much as 10 years and limitless kilometres.
RX patrons get a complementary three-year subscription to the Lexus Encore ownership benefits program, which incorporates three years of capped-price servicing, service mortgage vehicles, and Drive Care – i.e. roadside help.
The Lexus RX vary requires servicing each 12 months or 15,000km (whichever comes first). These first three visits will price you $595 a pop – Lexus doesn’t promote capped-price servicing past three years like different manufacturers.
As for real-world gas consumption, we averaged an indicated 7.9L/100km over every week’s price of driving masking greater than 480 kilometres in combined circumstances, together with day by day commuting to and from the workplace. That’s fairly a bit up on Lexus’s 5.7L/100km mixed declare, nevertheless it’s nonetheless about 5.0L/100km lower than what you’d get within the RX350 petrol.
With that stated, you’ll get higher economic system (and efficiency) from European rivals with high-tech turbo-diesel engines, once more a transparent indication of the RX’s age. The following-generation mannequin will supply each closed-circuit hybrid and ultra-efficient plug-in hybrid variations, so if all-out economic system is a key precedence it is perhaps definitely worth the wait.
It’s straightforward to see why the Lexus RX has lengthy been a well-liked selection within the luxurious SUV market. It’s well-sized, well-equipped, and has a popularity for bulletproof high quality and reliability.
The RX450h particularly was a trailblazer for hybrid know-how at this finish of the market, with European rivals solely lately beginning to supply electrified drive – albeit with extra subtle and extra highly effective PHEV choices.
Spending $9000 over the RX350 feels a bit steep although, on condition that type of value distinction is normally the worth you pay for a plug-in hybrid over an equal petrol or diesel engine. The RX450h’s hybrid system appears to even be barely extra environment friendly to a number of the gruntier V6 turbo-diesel engines provided by European rivals.
In the event you’re eager to get right into a present RX, the candy spot for many Lexus fashions is the mid-spec F Sport, and within the case of the RX the entry-level RX300 2.0-litre turbo has respectable sufficient efficiency however is extra environment friendly than the V6 ‘350’ within the real-world.
An RX300 F Sport is a whopping $15,000 cheaper than the RX450h F Sport, too.
In any other case, it might be finest to attend for the all-new RX which is probably going due within the early levels of 2023.
A lighter, extra dynamic platform with newer, extra environment friendly four-cylinder powertrains shall be provided, together with the RX450h+ plug-in hybrid in addition to the warm-performance RX500h which is able to debut Lexus’s new turbocharged hybrid system and “excessive output” eAxle rear electrical motor.
It’ll additionally sport a recent new inside with much less buttons and higher display screen know-how, and shall be a way more well-rounded bundle towards the likes of the Audi Q7 and Q8, BMW X5, Mercedes-Benz GLE and Volkswagen Touareg.
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