Lexus RX 450h is the Second Example of How Lexus Revolutionized the Luxury Utility Vehicle Category


After revolutionizing the luxury SUV category with the first RX model in 1998, Lexus next revolutionized SUV propulsion with the first RX hybrid model in 2004. Projecting a bold presence with its Lexus spindle grille, the 2014 RX 450h hybrid continues the evolution of this groundbreaking vehicle, which offers an impressive 32 mpg city, 28 mpg highway and 30 mpg combined EPA fuel economy (30/28/29 MPG with AWD).

The clear leader in luxury hybrids, with five different models in its line, Lexus also knows how to imbue these fuel-conserving, ultra-low emission vehicles with an engaging driving spirit. Case in point, the RX 450h hybrid offers the performance of 295 combined system horsepower, with substantial torque at all speeds. 

Convenience and ease of use make another leap in the 2014 Lexus RX 450h with the addition of available Siri® Eyes Free Mode technology licensed from Apple®. Compatible with the iPhone® 4S and iPhone 5 models forward, Siri lets you call contacts, select and play music from iTunes®, get turn-by-turn navigation through Siri and Apple maps, and much more. To help you keep your eyes on the road and hands on the wheel, Siri can read notifications and calendar information and allow you to add reminders, calendar appointments and notes.
 
Hybrid Technology Leader
A full hybrid, the RX 450h can operate in electric-only, gas-engine-only, or combined gas and electric modes. The Hybrid Synergy Drive combines the power of a 3.5-liter Atkinson-cycle V6 engine with a front-mounted 116-kW electric motor generator, with power from both channeled through a planetary-type continuously variable transmission. The model with all-weather drive uniquely powers the rear wheels with a dedicated 50-kW electric motor, and this combination yields even quicker performance.

The RX 450h driver can choose from four selectable driving modes, including EV, which allows the vehicle to operate on electric-only power at low speeds under certain conditions. Normal mode provides an ideal blend of performance and efficiency for everyday driving. Eco mode favors fuel economy, and Sport mode, which was added in the 2013 redesign, increases powertrain responsiveness for a more engaging driving experience.

For either model, the Hybrid Synergy Drive uses a 288V DC nickel metal hydride (Ni-MH) battery pack that does not impinge on cabin or cargo room. In fact, the RX 450h offers the same cargo room as the gasoline RX 350 model, 40 cu. ft. with the 40/20/40 split rear seatbacks in use and doubling that to 80.3 cu. ft. with the seatbacks folded.
 
High Standard of Standard Luxury
In the Lexus tradition, the RX 450h comes with a long roster of standard luxury features. The 10-way power front seats, ebony or espresso bird's eye maple and dual-zone automatic climate control set the tone for the luxury feel found throughout the cabin. The RX 450h upholds another Lexus tradition, the inclusion of premium audio as standard equipment. The nine-speaker Lexus Premium Audio System offers a multitude of music source choices, including an in-dash CD player, Bluetooth® audio streaming, USB/iPod® control and SiriusXM® Satellite Radio (complimentary 90-day trial subscription included).

The Display Audio/Rear Backup Camera Package upgrades the audio system to 12 speakers. For the ultimate in mobile sound, Lexus exclusively offers Mark Levinson® audio systems, a brand revered by audiophiles. The optional 15-speaker Mark Levinson Surround Sound system will delight discerning ears, no matter the music choice. The system delivers 330 total watts of power with an incredibly low 0.1 percent total harmonic distortion (THD). A rear seat entertainment system with dual seven-inch LCD screens ensures that passengers will enjoy long drives perhaps more than the driver does.

The standard SmartAccess system combines push-button starting and touch-sensitive exterior door handles. When the driver turns off the ignition, the seat automatically slides up to two inches rearward and the power tilt/telescoping steering wheel tilts upward and slides forward to ease exit. The next time the driver is seated and pushes the “On” button, the seat and steering wheel return to their preset positions automatically.
 
Connected, Informed and Entertained
Lexus has expanded connectivity in its vehicles while helping to reduce driver distraction. The foundation of this capability, Lexus Enform, can make a compatible Bluetooth smartphone even smarter. The available Enform service, with Destination Assist, eDestination, and App Suite, comes with the Navigation System/Mark Levinson Audio Package.  Lexus Enform provides access to the subscription-free App Suite.  These voice-enabled apps let you search the Internet through Bing, make restaurant reservations through OpenTable®, get movie tickets via MovieTickets.com, listen to Internet radio, including , Pandora®, and  iHeartRadio, search business reviews on Yelp®, and check in on  Facebook Places.

The RX 450h’s telematics system, Lexus Enformwith Safety Connect® is available by subscription. Complimentary one-year trial subscriptions are available on all purchases of new Lexus vehicles equipped with these features. Safety Connect is standard on all vehicles while Lexus Enform with Safety Connect is on all vehicles equipped with the optional Navigation system. The Lexus Enform and the Safety Connect response centers operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—every day of the year.

Lexus Enform vehicles are factory ready for subscriptions to a variety of innovative SiriusXM services including NavTraffic, NavWeather, Sports, Stocks and Fuel Prices. SiriusXM services offer complimentary one-year trial data subscription.
 
Exemplary Safety
All Lexus RX models are equipped with 10 standard airbags, including roll sensing side curtain airbags, front seat-mounted side airbags, rear side airbags (for the outboard seating positions) and knee airbags for the driver and the front passenger.

The standard Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) anticipates loss of vehicle control and governs all of the vehicle’s dynamic handling systems – the Anti-lock Braking System, Brake Assist (BA), Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and Traction Control (TRAC) – coordinating with the electronic throttle control system. VDIM employs these systems collectively and seamlessly to help make corrections while allowing higher dynamic capability. The system also provides a limited slip differential effect.
           
The optional Pre-Collision System (PCS) with Dynamic Radar Cruise Control uses millimeter-wave radar to measure and help maintain a pre-set following distance from a vehicle traveling directly ahead. The radar sensor can detect certain obstacles in front of the car, and a PCS computer with vehicle-speed, steering angle and yaw-rate inputs helps to determine whether a collision is imminent. In such a situation, PCS preemptively retracts front seat belts and pre-initializes Brake Assist so that increased braking will be applied the instant the driver depresses the pedal.


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