Standard EquipmentTechnical SpecificationOptional ExtrasIndependent Review

Driver Convenience

  • Adaptive cruise control + pre-crash system
  • Analogue clock
  • Bluetooth system
  • Drive mode selector
  • Driver alert system
  • EPAS
  • Intelligent parking assist
  • Lane keep assist
  • Multi-information display
  • Premium navigation system
  • Push button starter
  • Remote touch interface
  • Reversing camera
  • Service interval indicator
  • Traffic sign recognition
  • Trip computer
  • Wireless Smartphone charger
  • Sway warning system

Exterior Features

  • Hands free power tailgate
  • 3 eye LED headlamps
  • Adaptive front lighting system
  • Adaptive high beam assist
  • Auto dimming interior mirror + dimming door mirrors
  • Body colour bumpers
  • Door mirror memory
  • Electric folding door mirrors
  • Electrochromatic rear view mirror
  • Front and rear electric windows
  • Front windscreen de-icer
  • Headlight washers
  • Heated door mirrors
  • Laminated front side windows
  • LED brake lights and rear lights with emergency brake signal
  • LED daytime running lights
  • LED front fog lights
  • LED rear lights
  • LED sequential scrolling front indicators
  • Panoramic glass sunroof
  • Power back door system
  • Privacy glass (rear side windows and rear screen)
  • Puddle lights
  • Rain sensor windscreen wipers
  • Rear wiper
  • Roof rails
  • Roof spoiler
  • Scuff plates
  • UV reducing glass

Entertainment

  • 12 speakers
  • 12.3" colour touch-screen display
  • Auxiliary input socket
  • DAB Digital radio
  • DVD System
  • Steering wheel mounted audio/telephone controls
  • USB connection

Interior Features

  • 2 bag hooks in luggage compartment
  • 2 way electric lumbar support
  • 3 rear headrests
  • 3 x 12V power sockets
  • 4 load securing hooks in luggage area
  • 60/40 split sliding rear seats
  • 8 way electric adjust front seats
  • Auto air recirculation
  • Card holder installed in driver and passengers sun visors
  • Carpet mats
  • Centre armrest with storage box
  • Clean air filter
  • Driver seat memory function
  • Driver/passenger temperature controls
  • Dual zone climate control air conditioning system with auto recirculation, pollen removal mode, nano technology and climate concierge
  • Electric adjustable steering column
  • Front centre armrest with 2 cupholders
  • Front head restraints
  • Front seat back map pockets
  • Heated and ventilated front seats
  • Heated leather steering wheel
  • Illuminated entry system
  • Isofix standard child seat restraint mounting
  • Leather gear knob
  • Leather gear lever
  • LED interior illumination
  • Lexus safety system +
  • Memory for steering column
  • Multi function steering wheel
  • Rear armrest with storage + cupholders
  • Rear door map pockets
  • Rear side window blinds
  • Sliding/reclining rear seats
  • Smooth leather upholstery
  • Sunglasses holder
  • Sunvisors with illuminated vanity mirrors

Safety

  • ABS
  • Curtain airbags
  • Driver/Front Passenger airbags
  • Driver/front passenger side airbags
  • Drivers knee airbag
  • EBD + Brake Assist
  • Electronic parking brake
  • Electronically controlled braking
  • Front passenger seat cushion airbag
  • Front/rear seatbelt pre-tensioners
  • Hill start assist
  • Passenger airbag cut-off device
  • Rear passenger side airbags
  • Three 3 point rear seatbelts
  • Traction control
  • Tyre pressure warning
  • WIL whiplash protection front seats

Security

  • Anti theft alarm
  • Deadlocks
  • Immobiliser
  • Locking wheel nuts
  • Remote central double locking
  • Security window etching
  • Smart keyless entry

Technical

  • VDIM
  • Vehicle Stability Control (VSC)

Trim

  • Gloss black inlay

Wheels

  • 20" Alloy wheels
  • Space saver spare wheel

Emissions

CO

0.133

CO2 (g/km)

134

HC

0.032

HC+NOx

Noise Level dB(A)

70.5

NOx

0.007

Particles

0.001

Standard Euro Emissions

EURO 6

Engine and Drive Train

Camshaft

DOHC

Catalytic Convertor

1

CC

3456

Compression Ratio

13.0:1

Cylinder Layout

V6

Cylinders

6

Cylinders - Bore (mm)

94

Cylinders - Stroke (mm)

83

Engine Code

2GR-FXS

Engine Layout

FRONT TRANSVERSE

Fuel Delivery

MULTI POINT FUEL INJECTION

Gears

1 SPEED

Number of Valves

24

Transmission

AUTO

Fuel Consumption

EC Combined (mpg)

47.9

EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies

1

EC Extra Urban (mpg)

48.7

EC Urban (mpg)

47.1

General

Badge Engine CC

3.5

Badge Power

313

Based On ID

Coin Description

h

Coin Series

Premium pk + Pan Rf

Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07

41E

Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years

12

Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years

3

NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %

91

NCAP Child Occupant Protection %

82

NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09

5

NCAP Pedestrian Protection %

79

NCAP Safety Assist %

77

Safety Concerns?

1

Service Interval Frequency - Months

12

Service Interval Mileage

10000

Special Edition

1

Special Order

1

Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage

60000

Standard manufacturers warranty - Years

3

Vehicle Homologation Class

M1

Performance

0 to 62 mph (secs)

7.7

Engine Power - BHP

313

Engine Power - KW

230

Engine Power - RPM

6000

Engine Torque - LBS.FT

247

Engine Torque - MKG

34.2

Engine Torque - NM

335

Engine Torque - RPM

4600

Top Speed

124

Tyres

Alloys?

1

Space Saver?

1

Tyre Size Front

235/55 R20

Tyre Size Rear

235/55 R20

Tyre Size Spare

SPACE SAVER

Wheel Style

Wheel Type

20" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

Height

1685

Height (including roof rails)

Length

4890

Wheelbase

2790

Width

1895

Width (including mirrors)

2180

Weight and Capacities

Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres)

65

Gross Vehicle Weight

2715

Luggage Capacity (Seats Down)

924

Luggage Capacity (Seats Up)

453

Max. Loading Weight

615

Max. Towing Weight - Braked

2000

Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked

750

Minimum Kerbweight

2100

No. of Seats

5

Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb

13.8

Summary

This isn't the most capable luxury SUV you can buy. It isn't the sportiest to drive. And it's not the most affordable to buy. But despite all of that, it will continue to attract a significant following in this segment. Once you've bought the thing, after all, its running costs can be usefully less than even the most frugal of its diesel competitors. While other manufacturers dithered over hybrid technology, Toyota's Lexus division got on and developed it. Their first hybrid RX was an impressive achievement and this one has added a more stylish, spacious cabin and extra technology to existing strengths of comfort, refinement and a high specification. Overall though, the reasons you'll want to buy this car really haven't changed very much. Comfort, efficiency and class. As ever with Lexus.

Background

In an era where other brands trumpet hybrid engines in the luxury SUV segment as if they're the latest thing, Lexus can afford to feel rather smug. Toyota's luxury brand has been selling petrol electric power in its RX model in this market sector since 2005 and has further refined that technology in the fourth generation version we're going to look at here. Surprisingly, the brand has chosen - for the moment at least - not to follow rivals in offering buyers hybrid power with a Plug-in option, but it has that technology at its fingertips for the future. Of course, not every buyer in this part of the market wants a hybrid, hence Lexus' decision to also provide RX customers with a conventional engine option this time round. From a sales point of view, dealers would doubtless have liked this to be the kind of turbodiesel unit that competitors offer, but this Japanese brand doesn't hold with black pump motoring. So instead, there's a turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol model which we can expect to be a very rare sight indeed on British roads. Engines apart, this larger, smarter, more hi-tech-savvy MK4 model RX looks tempting, though it still won't be the first choice for those prioritising driving dynamics.

Driving Experience

So what's it like? Well assuming you're in the 450h hybrid version that most will choose, you get in, luxuriate in the beautiful leather seats and enjoy the commanding SUV-style driving position before pressing the starter button to be greeted by.... nothing. The engine's running, true enough. It's just that at this point, it's doing so silently under battery power alone and if you've a gentle right foot, that's all it will continue to use at speeds of up to 30mph before the 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine kicks in, controlled via a six-speed CVT auto gearbox. This mechanical package is much as it was before, though this time round, power has risen from 295 to 308bhp and there's a useful 335Nm of torque for towing. It sounds better too, thanks to a sound generator system that creates a performance-style air intake roar. The E-Four 4WD system's functions have been tuned for better response when accelerating through bends: there's no mention of off piste ability. Lexus doesn't think potential buyers will be interested - and they're probably right. If you are interested in the conventionally-engined RX 200t variant, you'll get yourself 235bhp and Lexus' proactive AWD system, assuming you avoid the entry-level 'S' version, which is 2WD-only. Across the RX range, the steering and suspension have been uprated but other rivals still offer a more involving drive. The RX is still one of the most comfortable, refined SUVs in its class though.

Design and Build

This fourth generation RX is completely new, its stiffened and extended all-steel platform a sizeable 120mm longer than the old version, with half of that extra length added within the wheelbase in order to deal with the previous model's major shortcomings: a lack of cabin space. It's sleeker-looking too, with stylish external creases and curves that capture the design language evident in the sheet metal treatment of other recent Lexus models, such as the IS, NX and RC. At the front end, there's a fresh interpretation of Lexus's signature spindle grille, contained in a chrome-finished frame and flanked by LED headlights. The sharply tapering front and rear wing flares add muscle to the RX's appearance, while the main body section displays a diamond shape that flows out from the front spindle grille and back to the tailgate. Inside, there's a classier, more spacious cabin that sits its passengers 19mm lower for better headroom. Lexus has paid special attention to the comfort of rear seat passengers, and by lowering the rear floor section has produced a seating position that bears comparison with the LS limousine. Cargo capacity is much as before and remains slightly compromised in hybrid guise, though will be sufficient for most owners. There's also a slightly lengthened RX L seven-seat bodystyle if you want it.

Market and Model

List prices start at around £40,000 for the RX 200t in base 'S'-spec form, a car which comes only with two-wheel drive. If you want drive to all four wheels in your RX 200t, you'll need the mid-range 'Luxury' variant, which is available for around £45,000, plus there's a 'Sport' model on offer for just under £50,000. As we've been saying though, most potential buyers will want the full-hybrid RX 450h petrol electric version. Here, 4WD is standard across the range and prices start from around £47,000 for the base 'SE' model, rising through the 'Luxury' and 'F Sport' trim levels most will want to the top-of-the-range 'Premier' derivative that'll set you back around £58,000. That's still decent value though, compared to notable rivals like BMW's X5, Mercedes' GLE and the Range Rover Sport. Buyers choose between the standard five-seat model or the alternative 'RX L' seven-seat variant. All RX models, as you'd expect, are very well equipped. Across the range, you'll find standard features like dual-zone climate control, rear privacy glass heated front seats, the Lexus Navigation system with an eight-inch display screen, a nine-speaker audio set-up with DAB, a reversing camera, LED headlamps, roof rails and dual chrome-tipped exhausts. Hybrid versions get full-leather upholstery and powered seats.

Cost of Ownership

The returns on offer from this RX450h - 54.3mpg on the combined cycle and 120g/km of CO2 with 18-inch wheels fitted - look very good indeed and offer a big improvement on the outgoing model. Go for a conventional petrol-engined RX 200t petrol variant and you're looking at 36.2mpg and 181g/km with 18-inch rims. Go hybrid and you're essentially looking at diesel-style running costs with cheaper green pump fuel, plus the kind of CO2 figure that'll really make a difference when it comes to the bottom line figure on your tax return. Of course, much of the time - when you're waiting at a traffic crossing for example with the engine seamlessly disabled and battery power in motion - you won't be emitting any CO2 at all. Electric-only use doesn't just eliminate CO2 dirtiness: it also gets rid of NOx exhaust emissions too, green-friendliness today's government wants to incentivise. As a result, Lexus reckons that ownership of this car could save higher-rate tax payers a considerable amount when they compare this car against some of its less efficient diesel rivals. At the same time, the companies they work for will benefit from a handy 20% write-down allowance against tax.