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MCridl

RX400h Question

13 posts in this topic

Hi, just joined up so apologies if this has been asked before, but I did do a search with no luck.

Interested in getting a RX400h, but would be an older model. My question is, can you run just the petrol engine, for instance if there was an issue with the Hybrid system?

I noticed on the Lexus website:

"Either of them can power the car on their own, or the power from both units can be combined"

From here: http://blog.lexus.co.uk/how-does-lexus-hybrid-drive-work/

I'm only asking as a major sticking point in me buying one would be that the hybrid element would fail and leave me ££££ out of pocket.

Thinking of buying an older one, so the warranty would be no use anymore

Thanks in advance for any help

Mark

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I pondered this too before going the hybrid route but I learnt the technology is actually very impressive and reliable. Whilst there must be some degree of wear on the batteries, all batteries will degrade, there appear to have been very few cases of battery failure. Think of all the Prius taxis with 400K miles still on original batteries. 

Unless going for hyper mile examples or very poorly maintained cars that's not an area of concern. If you find a well cared for example I would snap it up. The main areas of concern seem to be brakes and suspension, and even then no worse than any other manufacturer.

Good luck and good hunting

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Hi Mark, welcome to the forum.

The Hybrid system can be warrantied up to 10 years from manufacture, the annual check is something like £60 and performed free as part of a Lexus service.  

So how old is the vehicle you are looking at?

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In answer to your first question, you cannot just run on petrol by choice. The two systems are inherently linked and need one another to run.

AS stated by others, the hybrid system is extremely reliable. It seems that every other component will have fallen apart before the hybrid system gives up!

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23 minutes ago, Farqui said:

Hi Mark, welcome to the forum.

The Hybrid system can be warrantied up to 10 years from manufacture, the annual check is something like £60 and performed free as part of a Lexus service.  

So how old is the vehicle you are looking at?

It would probably be 2006-7 but I would imagine it would be over the 100k miles for the warranty as my budget is only up to about £5k

Thanks all

Mark

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Ah okay, understood.  You never know, you might be able to find a vehicle that is still viable for a Hybrid warranty.

There are specialists that can diagnose and fix Hybrid issues cheaper than dealers, so I didn't let it be a deal breaker (I've recently acquired a GS 450H).

Have you test driven any yet?

Good luck in your search.

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2 hours ago, MCridl said:

Hi, just joined up so apologies if this has been asked before, but I did do a search with no luck.

Interested in getting a RX400h, but would be an older model. My question is, can you run just the petrol engine, for instance if there was an issue with the Hybrid system?

I noticed on the Lexus website:

"Either of them can power the car on their own, or the power from both units can be combined"

From here: http://blog.lexus.co.uk/how-does-lexus-hybrid-drive-work/

I'm only asking as a major sticking point in me buying one would be that the hybrid element would fail and leave me ££££ out of pocket.

Thinking of buying an older one, so the warranty would be no use anymore

Thanks in advance for any help

Mark

To answer your main question, yes in some instances you can get the petrol engine to run on its own

Few owners on the GS side have had hybrid system failures and ran the car on petrol only for a while until fixed.

On a side note - 

Lexus extended warranty:

Key Features:

  • Coverage available on Lexus models up to 10 years old or 140,000 miles*. 
  • All policies include Lexus Roadside assistance with European cover.

Basically get yourself a mid-late 2007 model with less than 140k and you should be fine. Also worth remembering that as long as the first warranty is started before 10 years old/140k miles, you can keep extending it year after year.

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20 hours ago, rayaans said:

To answer your main question, yes in some instances you can get the petrol engine to run on its own

Few owners on the GS side have had hybrid system failures and ran the car on petrol only for a while until fixed.

 

I stand corrected if this is indeed the case. I was convinced that this was only theoretically but not practically possible because the car relies on the hybrid system to support braking and other essential systems and components.

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The only way the petrol engine (ICE) can be started is via the hybrid traction battery, so if that has failed it will not start. There is no conventional starter motor on the ICE, there are several good videos on YouTube that show how the motor generators interact to split the power from battery to ICE. On the 400h and 450h there are 3 motor generators, two coupled to the ICE, one to start the ICE and charge the HV battery and one coupled to the front wheels to provide motive power and regen breaking. There is also one at the rear to drive the rear wheels and regen breaking.

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59 minutes ago, Gliderpilot said:

The only way the petrol engine (ICE) can be started is via the hybrid traction battery, so if that has failed it will not start. There is no conventional starter motor on the ICE, there are several good videos on YouTube that show how the motor generators interact to split the power from battery to ICE. On the 400h and 450h there are 3 motor generators, two coupled to the ICE, one to start the ICE and charge the HV battery and one coupled to the front wheels to provide motive power and regen breaking. There is also one at the rear to drive the rear wheels and regen breaking.

It depends on the circumstances and what has failed. There's no one size fits all here and the car can run on its own without the hybrid system as shown by owners on the GS side of this forum

 

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23 hours ago, rayaans said:

To answer your main question, yes in some instances you can get the petrol engine to run on its own

Few owners on the GS side have had hybrid system failures and ran the car on petrol only for a while until fixed.

On a side note - 

Lexus extended warranty:

Key Features:

  • Coverage available on Lexus models up to 10 years old or 140,000 miles*. 
  • All policies include Lexus Roadside assistance with European cover.

Basically get yourself a mid-late 2007 model with less than 140k and you should be fine. Also worth remembering that as long as the first warranty is started before 10 years old/140k miles, you can keep extending it year after year.

Yes that's what I have done, bought an 09 with 81k and full history for 7.5k plus £995 for Lexus warranty 👍👍👍👍

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The most vulnerable part for failure is the battery, this has a definite lifespan but in my 10 year old example the display has only lost 1 bar so i'm not overly worried about that - even if it did go bad the cost for (independent) repair is about the same as a turbo on a diesel alternative. Inverters have also been known to have issues but again these were mostly pre a warranty callback and are now very rare. Even so a 2nd hand inverter and fitting would be on a par with a clutch or gearbox issue on another car. The gearbox itself is not a known point of failure on these cars.

There are other lesser issues (seizing brakes, heated seats, etc.) but these are all easily fixed with a bit of knowledge and access to a good independant mechanic - lexus will just charge you the earth to replace the problem part when not strictly necessary.

Don;t be scared of the hybrid system, they are very reliable.

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