Lexus RX 450h – First pictures and driving impressions

Lexus RX 450h – First pictures and driving impressions


Who would believe that? Despite its large size and its price could not be higher, the RX has for many years been the best-selling Lexus model in France, with more than 12,000 units registered since 2005. Suffice it to say that the French branch of Toyota’s premium division. waiting for the fifth generation, the first delivery of which is expected next January.

Lexus RX 450h – First pictures and driving impressions

This large SUV invented, in 2005, a genre that has since flourished and achieved its success: the hybrid. And if he waited 17 years to afford a rechargeable version, it is finally available for this fifth generation that arrives in Europe in a few months. We went to California to discover it and thus visually, from a height of 4.89 m, it adopts the stylistic principles of its younger brother NX, it marks a further step in the simplification of Japanese design. Gone with the tortured side, make way for a more refined look. In the cabin too, buttons disappear to make way for a large screen that houses the controls. We are open to find in this interior, Lexus to touchbased on advanced equipment and fully assembled.

The most powerful line of large SUVs is next to the coupe.
The most powerful line of large SUVs is next to the coupe.

Under the hood, sits a 2.5-liter gasoline engine, accompanied by two other electric blocks that provide the machine with 306 hp. Not too much to move 2.2 tons of machinery. Fortunately, the 18.1 kWh battery can cover 65 kilometers in electric mode. On the rough roads of California, these crews do more than respect thanks to the experimental suspension that perfectly absorbs the imperfections.

However, they do not succumb to the terrifying effect of the smooth American-style chassis and the rising effects it produces. Here, durability is perfectly combined with comfort. In fact, there is a famous automatic transmission box, a specialty of the house, which only asks to be carried when it is requested very strongly.

A techno interior, with its large 15-inch screen and yet, a very well-made finish.
A techno interior, with its large 15-inch screen and yet, a very well-made finish.

This version will not be the only one available in France, as the 500h will also be available. But this simple hybrid, 360 hp, obtained from a turbocharged 2.4 liter, will be decorated with a penalty of more than 10,000 euros and should represent only 5% of the 700 RX copies that Lexus intends to sell in France. .

The first 450 timepieces will be presented next January in the first configuration called the Opéra de Paris and are available in 50 copies. This very limited series has a high quality Exclusive and will be sold for 98,500 euros. High price? As a consolation, the first buyers will be given two tickets to the show at the Palais Garnier, of which Lexus is a partner. They will be able to applaud the ballerinas before leaving the helm of their 2.2 ton weight.