The 2020 Lexus UX 250h Luxury is an excellent small crossover that is fun to drive, offers a nice collection of features, and includes an interior that lives up to the Luxury name on the model I tested.
This is a subcompact crossover, so rear legroom isn’t amazing, but the hatch helps with cargo space with the rear seats folded. This small vehicle also delivers a great driving experience and it’s surprisingly affordable even in the Luxury trim.
While the infotainment system does require some adaptation, the inclusion of Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Alexa are nice features that round out the technology offerings. There are three UX250h models, a base, the F Sport, and the Luxury.
Is the 2020 Lexus UX 250h Luxury worth buying? Here’s a closer look at how the UX 250h interior, how it drives, plus the tech and safety features.
Lexus UX 250h Interior
The UX250h Luxury interior is great with soft-touch surfaces and a very nice layout. The front is spacious with a slightly angled to the driver cockpit feel and a very nice armrest with convenient controls right at your fingertips. Controls are easy to reach and the two cupholders are out of the way at the front of the stack, but still easy to reach.
Front seats are power-adjustable with heat and ventilation to keep you at the right temperature. The seats are comfortable for longer drives and I appreciate the overall ergonomics. The back seats aren’t as roomy, but you can fit adults in the back comfortably on short to medium-length trips. It is not as small as you may expect at first glance. There are air vents for the back seat and there are two USB ports so passengers can stay connected.
The cargo area is quite usable given the size, and you get some extra room thanks to the hatch. There is a small area that you can store jumper cables and other gear under the floor in the hatch. There is an easy to remove top cover to hide what is in the back end. There is a 12V outlet so that you can charge things or power gear on a road trip. You’ll also find tie-down spots to secure cargo. It’s a very usable back end for a subcompact SUV.
Driving the Lexus UX 250h
The 2020 UX 250h is an all-wheel-drive compact SUV powered by a 2.0L 4 cylinder hybrid engine that offers 181 horsepower. It pairs up with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). While it isn’t fast, it is peppy and I felt confident getting into traffic with it. The combination does a good job of meeting your needs in the city and though the CVT has a bit of a droning noise at highway speeds it’s not a dealbreaker.
Steering and handling are both good, and drivers will appreciate the ease of maneuvering and steering weight for daily drives in the city and for weekend fun. The suspension soaks up most road imperfections for a comfortable ride. If you choose the F Sport trim, you get a sport suspension, F Sport 18-in rims and run-flat tires as well as interior and exterior F Sport trim pieces. It uses the same engine, so you can expect similar performance, but the F Sport features active sound control that pumps sound into the cabin to simulate shifts and make it sound sportier.
The fuel economy of this hybrid model is a big part of the draw. The EPA rating is 39 mpg combined, with 41 mpg city and 38 mpg highway. If you are looking for a competent urban crossover that handles nicely and is fuel efficient in the city, the UX250h Luxury is a nice option to consider, especially if you aren’t looking to go into a full electric vehicle.
Lexus UX 250h Tech & Safety
The 2020 Lexus UX250h is packed with tech and a 7-inch center display is standard across the lineup. The Luxury trim comes equipped with a beautiful 10.3-inch display that is easy to see. The Enform system is decent, though the remote touchpad controls take time to adjust to. I would prefer a standard touch screen setup, but now that you get support for popular services like Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Alexa it is easier to live with.
I relied on Apple CarPlay for most of my time in the UX250h, which provided easy access to my music, calls, messages, and my choice of maps. CarPlay is best on a touch screen, but it works decently with the touchpad, and after a week it starts to become second nature. Steering wheel controls and controls at the end of the armrest make it easy to handle common functions like volume and changing tracks.
The 8 speaker sound system that is standard on the Luxury system does a good job of filling the cabin and it works well for taking phone calls in the car. There are four USB ports total in the cabin and my loaner was equipped with an optional wireless charger. The optional head up display is easy to see and makes seeing your speed and other key information possible without taking your eyes off the road.
Additional tech includes a 3-year trial of the Lexus Enform app that allows you to connect to Alexa skills, remote start and stop or lock and unlock from your phone or Alexa. The car also features a hotspot that you can use to stay connected on the go.
You get the Lexus Safety System+ 2.0, which includes a Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Tracing Assist, Lane Departure Alert w/ Steering Assist, Intelligent High Beams and Road Sign Assist. These are all very handy features. Blind Spot Monitoring is standard on the Luxury trim and optional on the other models as part of the Luxury Package or Premium Package. This loaner came equipped with the optional Triple Beam LED headlights, a $1,660 upgrade, which includes three projectors as well as adaptive front lighting, which adjusts the angle of your low beams when turning for better overall visibility.
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