Cars 2020 Lexus RX 450h review: dependably different

14:45  25 november  2019
14:45  25 november  2019 Source:   motoringresearch.com

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The Lexus RX 450 h is a luxury SUV with hybrid power. This mid-life update builds on its traditional strengths of comfort, refinement and reliability. No less than 1,400 engineers were assigned to the project, driving 450 prototypes more than 2.7 million miles. Almost 1,000 development engines were

Inside, the 2020 Lexus RX 450 h Hybrid will have a modern, well-equipped, and attractive cabin as its forerunner. The dashboard will be fitted with an 8.0-inch touchscreen while the larger 12.3-inch touchscreen will be available on the higher trim levels. Furthermore, RX 450 h L will get the standard

a car driving down a dirt road: Lexus RX 450h © Provided by Motoring Research Ltd Lexus RX 450h In 1983, Toyota’s CEO challenged his company to build “a car that is better than the best in the world”. The benchmark Eiji Toyoda had in mind was almost certainly the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. And the Lexus LS 400, revealed six years later, duly went above and beyond. Its near-silent V8 and peerless build quality led to many a sleepless night in Stuttgart.

The herculean effort put into the LS 400 makes you wonder if it ever made money. No less than 1,400 engineers were assigned to the project, driving 450 prototypes more than 2.7 million miles. Almost 1,000 development engines were tested, too. Oh, and 24 types of wood were assessed for the interior. This was perhaps the closest a ‘mass-production’ car has come to being built without compromise.

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See 2020 Lexus RX pricing info here. When I first landed in Liberia, Costa Rica, to drive the updated 2020 Lexus RX , I wasn't During our drive we also got behind the wheel of the RX 450 h , which is still propelled by the 3.5-liter V-6 mated to an electric motor and a CVT that sends power to all four wheels.

The 2020 Lexus RX 450 h and 3-row RX 450 hL benefit from the same chassis improvements, giving the hybrid versions of Lexus ’ popular luxury crossover similar handling and ride-quality improvements. The 2020 Lexus RX 450 h comes with standard all-wheel drive while the RX 350 is offered in front- or

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The LS 400 wasn’t simply about being the best, though. Its real raison d’être was to launch Toyota’s then-new luxury brand. Thirty years on, the success of Lexus owes much to this flying start. However, the subsequent RX also deserves much credit. When it debuted in 1997, the RX 300 was the original luxury crossover: an SUV with no pretensions to going off-road. The RX 400h of 2004 was another milestone, offering a hybrid alternative to diesel for the first time in its class.

a car driving on a mountain road: Lexus RX 450h © Provided by Motoring Research Ltd Lexus RX 450h
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Today, 95 percent of Lexus cars sold in the UK have hybrid power, while the RX is well into its fourth iteration. Which brings me, somewhat circuitously, to the new RX 450h. The time when this SUV had a sector to itself is long gone – competitors include the BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz GLE – so Lexus has given it a mid-life update for the 2020 model-year.

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Halfway through its current life cycle, the Lexus RX is getting a mild refresh in the form of some styling, tech and equipment updates. The 2020 Lexus RX

The 2020 Lexus RX 350 and 450 h hybrid get updates that improve the pairs styling and infotainment. The updated model doesn't look all that different than the 2019 model, especially from the profile. That said, the front and rear fascias have both been smoothed out, taking cues from the

You could be forgiven for not spotting the differences straight away. Pointier headlights – now with ‘Bladescan’ adaptive high-beam tech – frame a subtly redesigned grille, while the bumpers are better blended with the bodywork. Still, the RX remains a striking design: angular, aggressive and unmistakably Japanese. It looks particularly svelte in F Sport trim, with dark chrome, 20-inch alloys and a sportier chassis. More on that shortly.

Inside, the big news is the arrival of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which lets you operate your phone, including music and messages, via the touchscreen (I gave up on the skittish touchpad controller). Quality seems good enough to satisfy even a nit-picking LS 400 engineer, but the cluttered dashboard shows its age. Even if I was perversely pleased to discover a new car that still has a CD player.

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The Lexus RX Hybrid is ranked #4 in Luxury Hybrid and Electric SUVs by U.S. News & World Report. See the review , prices, pictures and all our rankings. RX Hybrid Crash Test Results. The 2020 RX 450 h earned an overall safety rating of five out of five stars from the National Highway Traffic Safety

2018 Lexus RX 450 h Review : The Original Luxury Crossover SUV. 2018 Lexus RX 350L Review : More Junk In Its Trunk. Can you spot the design differences up front? How about back here? Although the revisions to the 2020 Lexus RX are relatively minor, the mid-size luxury crossover SUV’s

a close up of a car: Lexus RX 450h © Provided by Motoring Research Ltd Lexus RX 450h

I grab the keys to seven-seat RX 450hL and glide away in silent EV mode. Around town, Lexus says up to 50 percent of driving is electric and emissions-free, although the snarling 3.5-litre V6 kicks in when you reach the open road. The E-CVT gearbox reacts promptly, without the ‘rubber band’ lethargy once a hallmark of hybrids, and a combined 313hp petrol/electric output makes for effortless overtaking. However, while a ride softer than a freshly-plumped pillow is lovely in a straight line, it all goes a bit awry in the corners.

To be blunt, the standard RX feels like a car built for America. And indeed it is – this is the bestselling luxury SUV there by a huge margin. Most UK buyers, however, opt for the F Sport, and rightly so; stiffer dampers and beefier anti-roll bars really transform how it drives. It’s still less engaging than, say, a BMW X5, but it no longer feels you’re grazing the door handles on a rural road.

With public opinion turning against diesel, the RX feels more relevant than ever. As a ‘self-charging’ hybrid, it isn’t as cheap to tax as newer plug-in rivals – particularly for company drivers – but it majors on the original Lexus strengths of comfort, refinement and reliability. The LS 400’s legacy lives on.

Price: £55,205

0-62mph: 7.7sec

Top speed: 124mph

CO2 G/KM: 172

MPG combined: 35.3-35.7

Lexus RX 450h: in pictures

Click to view slideshow.

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