The Lexus 400h was the first premium SUV to be offered as a hybrid. It is sign of just how far Toyota/ Lexus are ahead of the game that they have launched the successor and it still has no rivals.
What Lexus has managed with the 450h is impressive. Fuel consumption has been reduced by 28% which is remarkable given that the outgoing 400h was a full hybrid. This has been achieved because Lexus hasn’t used its development money to make it quicker but has used it to make it more efficient.
A strategy we wholeheartedly support.
Performance is almost exactly the same with the 0-62 mph dash dispatched in 7.8 seconds and a top speed of 124 mph, which, let’s face it, is more than adequate. However the reduction in CO2 emissions means that the 450h has respectable CO2 emissions in outright terms whereas the 400h is only good in context.
The 450h is also more practical with boot space increased to 496 litres and interior storage up by 21 litres. Interior space is increased too whilst the rear seats can slide forwards and backwards and can also be reclined. There is no reason to expect that build quality will be anything less than first class.
The Lexus RX 450h represents a big step forward for the petrol electric hybrid format. By not wasting the developments on increasing performance Lexus has unlocked the full fuel-saving potential of the system and in the process has dramatically strengthened the case for the RX 450h.