If you’re already a Lexus aficionado, you may not need this lesson in deciphering its letters and numbers lexicon of naming its models.
My latest tester was the 2019 Lexus UX 250h. Which means Urban Crossover with a 2.0L hybrid engine. It’s a luxury sub-compact four-wheel driver that seats five adults and delivers 39 miles per gallon in combined city/highway driving.
Let’s face fact. What percentage of the time do SUVs of all ilks spend off-road? My educated guess is low single digits. The UX 250h was designed with that fact in mind.
It’s geared toward young people (and the young at heart) and is the gateway to the Lexus brand.
“The Lexus UX is designed for the modern urban explorer seeking a fresh, contemporary and dynamic take on luxury driving,” said Chika Kako, executive vice president of Lexus International and chief engineer of the UX. “I wanted to positively overturn the image of a crossover and offer a car with nimble performance and excellent maneuverability that makes it as easy to drive as a sedan,” Kako said.
I’d say mission accomplished for the Japanese automaker with Toyota DNA. Driving the UX 250h felt like a four-door sedan. The vehicle’s low center of gravity and refined suspension endow the UX with exemplary handling agility and ride comfort, along with a distinctive driving personality.
The four-cylinder engine is paired with a new 10-speed direct shift with direct continuously variable transmission. Combined with a new fourth-generation hybrid drive system engineered specifically for this platform, the engine generates 181 total system horsepower.
Exterior features help create a luxury vibe starting with Lexus’ signature grille. Crisp, sculpted lines, dramatically flared front and rear fenders, and LED daytime running lights arranged in an arrowhead shape stand apart from the crowd. My tester came with a unique, Nori Green Pearl coat of enamel that was also easy to spot in parking lots.
The two most noticeable interior attributes were the quiet cabin and the front driver’s seat. Conversation is easy in the UX 250h as it doesn’t compete with road noise. And the heated and ventilated leather driver’s seat comes with lumbar support that disperses pressure from the sciatic area.
An endless list of creature comforts pamper and spoil at every turn. Highlights include Enform dynamic navigation with Siri eyes-free Google voice control, all-speed dynamic radar cruise control, premium sound system with eight speakers, dual-zone climate control, moon roof, and heated steering wheel.
Taking its cue from Toyota, Lexus delivers advanced safety technology to make the UX 250h a no-nonsense choice when it comes to protecting loved ones. The standard equipment includes a pre-collision system with pedestrian protection, lane-departure alert with steering assist, lane-tracing assist, road-sign assist and intelligent high-beam headlights.
Mine came with optional triple beam LED headlights with auto-leveling ($1,660), and rear cross-traffic alert with braking ($565).
Base Price: $40,225
Price As Driven: $42,775