2010 Lexus RX 450h Long Term Report: Weeks 2 & 3

2010 Lexus RX450h in Winter

Travelled: 1077km (669 miles)
Gas Mileage: 8.8l/100kms (26.7 mpg)

The second and third week of my 2010 Lexus RX 450h road test blended in together as I powered through day after day of holiday visiting, a pile of snow and ice, and a lengthy head cold. It was in this blur of activity that I started to get a real feel for the crossover.

I took the opportunity to drive friends and family around as much as possible, and the RXh was optimal in every regard—the interior is spacious & inviting, but without the drawback of a vehicle that’s hard to manoeuvre or park. Driving is a brisk, pleasant experience; the RXh performs exceptionally well as a barrier from the elements.

Lexus RX 450h in Salt

The biggest change over the last couple weeks wasn’t with the RXh at all, it was the weather. There’s plenty of snow now, and this is where the crossover’s impressing me the most. The AWD drive system locks the RXh down in extremely slippery conditions—I’ve yet to feel even a slight wobble while driving, and the braking is straight as an arrow. Add the LED headlamp brightness and it’s safe to say there’s been absolutely no drama in winter driving.

Some other random points:

2010 Lexus RX 450h in Winter Badge

  • The RXh has an ECO mode that adjusts various vehicle settings in order to improve fuel economy, and one of changes is a controlled throttle response. This ECO mode makes acceleration a clumsy affair at the best of times, but combination of the cold weather & the continually variable transmission (CVT) destroys almost all driving enjoyment with no visible improvement in gas mileage.
  • The driver has access to three cup-holders but no change container—that’s starting to bug me.
  • I don’t know why, but I can’t get the gas mileage away from 8.8l/100km, even after trying my best to mimic a stereotypical eco-hippie driver. My absolutely best result, halfway through a tank, was 7.6l/100km, and that didn’t last long. I’m blaming the cold weather and the holiday’s numerous short trips and extended stops.
  • The passenger-side camera is perfect, providing just the right angle for curbside parking. I’m using it all the time, especially given the button’s convenient spot on the steering wheel.
  • My wife loves the RXh tech—at a Christmas dinner, I overheard her talking up the power liftgate and heated side mirrors.

I’ll get an idea of the interior storage capacity this week when I pick up the inlaws’ new LCD TV—and then next week, I’ll be taking a road trip to the North American International Auto Show in Detroit to see the LFA for the first time (more on that later).

Lexus RX450h Rear