The Lexus UX is a premium family SUV with sharp styling outside and in and a choice of 2 hybrid engines and all-electric power, all of which give it low running costs. It’s ideal for young families and anyone who’s keen to minimise their impact on the environment.
Lexus has adopted a bold approach with the styling of its models for several years, and the UX is no exception. Its face is dominated by a deep, X-shaped grille (Lexus called this its spindle grille) and sharply angled headlights with LED headlights and daytime running lights. There are numerous creases along the sides and across the rear of the UX, with taillights that span the entire width of the SUV.
Alloy wheels, squared-off cladding on the wheel arches, tinted rear windows, a rear roof spoiler and chrome highlights complete the look. The UX doesn’t look like any other family SUV on the road, which is why owners love it so much.
The UX doesn’t look like any other family SUV on the road.
What’s it like to drive?
The Lexus UX comes with a choice of 2 hybrid petrol models and an all-electric drivetrain. The UX 250h features a 2.0-litre petrol engine and an electric motor, both of which send power to the front wheels. There’s also an ‘E-Four’ version of the 250h which adds another electric motor to power the rear wheels in addition to the front ones. The UX 300e is the all-electric version.
All UXs are enjoyable to drive, with the body leaning very little on roundabouts and the electric motors/engine providing plenty of power; they’re paired with an automatic gearbox. All versions can run on electric power in town but the 250h’s engine kicks in when you need more acceleration.
All UXs are enjoyable to drive.
Lexus is the premium arm of Toyota, and you get a quality interior with the UX. Most of the surfaces are covered in expensive-feeling fabrics, plastics and leather, with a wide choice of colours available when new. As standard, the seats are covered with black fabric but higher trims such as F Sport bring leather upholstery.
The top of the dashboard is dominated by a neatly integrated colour widescreen (7.0 inches as standard, 10 inches on some versions), with an analogue clock next to it. The screen is controlled by a touchpad and shortcut buttons – sat-nav is fitted to some models and Android Auto and Apple CarPlay appeared on some models from 2020.
Examples with the Tech and Sound pack and the Takumi trim level add an impressive Mark Levinson stereo system plus a head-up display for the driver and wireless smartphone charging (if your phone is compatible). Other goodies found on most models include a reversing camera, climate control, rear parking sensors, cruise control and heated seats.
It won’t take long to find a good driving position, especially with the Tech and Sound’s electric seat adjustment, and the F-Sport’s sport seats are really comfortable. Legroom and headroom up front and in the back are good (although tall adults will prefer the front seats), and a 5th passenger can sit in the centre rear seat, as long as they don’t mind less legroom.
You’ll find room for your odds and ends in the glovebox, in the front door bins and under the front central armrest, and there’s a cubby for a phone and 2 cupholders. Those in the rear have pockets in the back of the front seats.
The boot is about average compared with rivals, although the BMW X2 can carry more. The UX 250h E-Four has the least room, because of its extra electric motor, and you’ll be able to fit 2 or 3 carry-on suitcases; choose the regular 250h and you’ll be able to add a squashy bag or 2. The rear seat backs are split 60/40 and fold to boost the load space considerably – ideal for transporting bulky loads.
The UX 250h has a braked towing capacity of 750kg, which is adequate for a small trailer rather than a caravan.
Running costs and reliability
The front-wheel-drive Lexus UX 250h has an official average economy figure of up to 53.3mpg, while the UX 250h E-Four is rated at 47.1mpg. Expect to be able to get close to those figures, because they were measured using the more accurate WLTP regulations. The all-electric UX 300e has an official range of 196 miles and takes about 7 hours to fully charge from a home wall box and around an hour using a public fast charger.
What cinch loves
We love the Lexus UX’s styling. It’s genuinely unlike any other family SUV and its high-quality interior looks really special. We also love its strong safety rating from Euro NCAP – it has the maximum 5 stars and very good adult occupation and child occupant ratings.
Most models have automatic emergency braking, 8 airbags, road sign assist (which displays the speed limit in front of the driver), pedestrian detection, lane keep assist and lane departure alert. This makes it ideal for family motoring.
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Distinctive styling, a quality interior, a strong safety rating and impressive economy set the Lexus UX apart from other family SUVs. Lexus also has a terrific reputation for reliability, which is the cherry on the cake for families who prioritise trustworthy transport.
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