Model Tested: Lexus RX 450 hL — All Wheel Drive LUX
Engine: 3.5-liter 24-Valve DOHC V-6 Hybrid Drive
Transmission: Electronically Controlled Continually Variable Transmission (CVT)
Horsepower: 308 • Torque: Unavailable
EPA Rating: 29/City 28/Highway 29/Combined
Base Price: $54,655 • As Tested: $63,765
The RX was a game-changer for Lexus, featuring sharp, aggressive, and sleek styling with an edge — and touch of wrathfulness in its stance and signature grille, proudly showcasing its angles.
Great fuel economy.
The RX 450hL hybrid uses a less powerful version of that V-6 than the gas-only version that’s married to a pair of electric motors driving the rear wheels.
The RX gets high marks for almost everything in the cabin: comfort, roominess, quiet — and Lexus’ usual flawless fit and finish.
Comfortable, supportive, heated/ventilated front seats. Heated rear seats.
Leather seating and genuine wood trim.
Instrumentation features big gauges that are clear and easy to read, along with a huge 12.3-inch high-resolution infotainment display.
Color Head-up display.
Mark Levinson premium surround-sound audio with 15-speakers and Sirius-XM satellite radio.
12.3 inch screen controlling infotainment and navigation
Good driver and front passenger legroom.
Wood and leather heated steering wheel with power tilt/telescopic steering column.
Behind The Wheel:
The RX delivers a smooth supple and pleasant highway ride. Respectable acceleration and power — especially for a hybrid using a CVT.
Eco, Normal, Comfort and Sport drive modes.
Handles well. Steering is light and direct; however, it seemingly offers more feel in Comfort mode than Sport.
Impressive safety equipment — NHTSA top safety pick
The Mark Levinson sound system that kicks butt
Touch-free power rear hatch
Rear window sunshades
Windshield wiper deicer and headlight cleaner
Capable AWD system
Triple-beam, auto leveling, LED headlights
Automatic High-beam dimmer
4 USB Ports
The RX L model — our test driver — offers less third-row seating space than expected.
The Lexus RX 450hL is a best seller for good reason. It’s sleek and striking, offering little to find fault with. It features a great hybrid powertrain, excellent fuel economy, confident handling, and comfortable ride in a luxurious environment.