Lexus UX 250h Takumi

E-Four AWD

Lexus UX 250h, 2021, nose
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, side
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, front
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, rear
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, interior
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, badge
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, rear seats
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, engine
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, display screen
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, instrument panel
Lexus UX 250h, 2021, boot

ALL good things come in small packages the saying goes, and never was that more accurate than with the Lexus UX.

Not that this luxury hybrid is small. It's a good five-seater family car but it is the smallest model that Lexus makes and therefore most people's introduction to the prestige range.

But while its dimensions might be slightly less than those of its larger siblings the quality is very definitely not.

And with its dramatic angular sports styling, imposing deep grille, vertical air ducts and flared headlights it's not your average SUV.

And in many ways that's the point. For while the UX is classed as an SUV it doesn't look like one from either the outside or inside.

In fact Lexus has gone to a lot of trouble to ensure that while it does have the higher seating position and flexibility of an SUV - the style that's so popular today - the cabin has the ambience and feel of a traditional luxury saloon.

When you first open the door it's hard not to be impressed with the up-market interior of the top-of-the-range Takumi E-Four version driven here.

From the top quality electrically adjustable leather heated and cooled front seats and heated steering wheel to the easy to use laptop-style touch pad near the gearshift for operating the numerous functions displayed on the 10.3-inch central display screen.

The traditional clocks displayed in front of the driver sit in a seven inch TFT display screen and are dominated by a digital speedometer with a three-dimensional effect.

If you change the UX's driving mode from normal to sport a rev counter appears wrapped around the speedometer for those looking for more sporty driving.

In addition to all that there's a head-up display projected into the windscreen showing your speed as well as the speed limit of the area you're in, not to mention a compass.

And audio enthusiasts will be impressed by the 13-speaker Mark Levinson premium sound system with full surround sound.

Power for the UX comes from a clever hybrid system which uses a 2.0-litre petrol engine and an electric motor. A second electric motor is built into the rear differential on four-wheel-drive models like the one driven here to ensure sure-footed grip on slippery surfaces as well as improving general performance and stability.

The engine and two motors combine with a cvt gearbox to give super smooth responsive performance and almost silent motoring not to mention fuel consumption of a very respectable 47 miles per gallon..

And the nice thing about this suv is its almost sportscar-like handling, thanks in part to its low centre of gravity. In fact it has the lowest centre of gravity of any car in its class and that translates into enjoyable driving with the ability to corner at speed with confidence and hardly any body roll.

It's one of those cars that feels relaxed whether you are cruising at speed on the motorway or powering on with urgency along winding country roads. And it's all so well put together, the doors closing with the gentlest of pushes.

If the UX falls down in any aspect it's in its space - or lack of space - for luggage.

With the batteries tucked under the boot floor you're still left with plenty of room for the weekly shop but potential problems for large suitcases.

Just 283 litres of luggage space is available, just slightly more than with a 5-door MINI, although if you drop the rear seatbacks it does increase to 1,194 litres.

Other features include a front and rear view camera - combined with a 360 degree view - for easy parking, a glass sunroof, a powered tailgate and a wholes raft of safety features.

FAST FACTS

Lexus UX 250h Takumi E-Four AWD

Price:£41,420

Mechanical: 150bhp, 1,987cc, 4cyl petrol engine plus electric motor driving all wheels via cvt automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 110 mph

0-62mph: 8.7 secs

Combined MPG: 47

Insurance Group: 26

C02 emissions: 136 g/km

Bik rating: 31%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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