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Hello everyone,

I am thinking of buying an RX400h and would like to know from the (excuse the pun) horses mouth the reliability, running costs (servicing & tax) and build quality.

It would be a second hand and not new which prompts my first question, are there any problems with high milage ones?

I have read a number of reviews saying the stated mpg's are unrealistic compared to X5's and Q7's which could do better.

I don't quite understand how the engine/electric motors work together. I have read that on move off the electric motors propell the car and at some speed (never stated) the engine takes over and if you really welly it, both the elec motors and the engine work together.

Also in the colder months how does the heating come in play if the engine doesn't run most of the time and does it have parking sensors other than the rear view camera?

Sorry to put all this to you in my first post. I would have gone to a dealer with most of these questions but there's nothing like talking to an owner, right?

Most of my journeys are stop start and the occasional long stretch but I read it is the short journeys where the money is saved. True?

Many thanks, Keith.

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Hello everyone,

I am thinking of buying an RX400h and would like to know from the (excuse the pun) horses mouth the reliability, running costs (servicing & tax) and build quality.

It would be a second hand and not new which prompts my first question, are there any problems with high milage ones?

I have read a number of reviews saying the stated mpg's are unrealistic compared to X5's and Q7's which could do better.

I don't quite understand how the engine/electric motors work together. I have read that on move off the electric motors propell the car and at some speed (never stated) the engine takes over and if you really welly it, both the elec motors and the engine work together.

Also in the colder months how does the heating come in play if the engine doesn't run most of the time and does it have parking sensors other than the rear view camera?

Sorry to put all this to you in my first post. I would have gone to a dealer with most of these questions but there's nothing like talking to an owner, right?

Most of my journeys are stop start and the occasional long stretch but I read it is the short journeys where the money is saved. True?

Many thanks, Keith.

Hello, This topic should go into the RX section however having drove an RX400h as a courtesy car I can say that it was quite wonderful. A lot different to my GS though, in all aspects, apart from quality.

My impressions of the interior were quite good. I didn't like the centre console, the writing for aircon etc were a little crude. It also lacked some of the features that are standard in the GS. Driving was good, nice elevated view of the road. The hybrid engine is good quality too. When the engine kicks in it is not noticeable although when braking you can hear the whine of the regenerating motor Battery config.

These are not my cup of tea but the new RX450 looks like it could be a leap forward in design. Reliability should not be an issue, it is a Lexus.

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Also in the colder months how does the heating come in play if the engine doesn't run most of the time and does it have parking sensors other than the rear view camera?

...................

Most of my journeys are stop start and the occasional long stretch but I read it is the short journeys where the money is saved. True?

Many thanks, Keith.

The ICE (internal combustion engine) will always run when you start the car from cold in order to get the engine and cat up to working temperature hence you will always get heat for the cabin. What's more, for efficiency, the ICE is heated up as quickly as possible so the warmth starts to come through in a mile or so. The computers and gearbox seamlessly blend any combination of ICE and electric motors (there are two, honest!) to give optimum drive for the conditions your in. You'll never really notice unless you watch the multi function display.

Short journeys are inefficient because the engine has to heat up. I travel 6.5 miles to and from work each day on urban roads and get about 30 mpg everall though the last bit of the journey gets higher mpg than the start of the journey

Admittedly I'm in a GS not an RX but the technology is the same.

Malc

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Okay......I now have a headache looking through various RX400h threads.

There seems to be some conflicting issues with regard to MPG, when the elec motors shut down and the engine takes over. Also when the batteries are charged.

I just want to make sure buying an RX400h is the right decision for me and my driving habits. I currently own a Mitsubishi Pajero 2.8 diesel auto which doesn't do any better than 20mpg. I think a london bus does better. It doesn't help that diesel is dearer than petrol either. My neighbour has a twin turbo Cayenne and he gets more mpg than I do!!

Needless to say mpg plays a big part in my next car as well as running costs, build quality and reliability.

I already do the coasting part when driving to conserve fuel so this technique is already inbedded in me.

Some owners say that their engine cuts in from 10mph to 40mph. With my mostly short journeys (5-15 miles) will the batteries gain enough charge to even take over?

Some owners who drive like grannies achieve 21-27mpg where some who drive more spiritly achieve 34-38mpg. Looks like there is no rhyme or reason to it???? :duh:

Before the Pajero I had a 56 BMW 530dm sport auto which could do 0-60 in 6.5 secs and gave me 32mpg all day long, well until it started leaking oil.

Looks like I'll be buying used so would a high milage one have duff batteries through constant recharging, in the same theory as any other batteries (mobile phones, rechargable batteries etc...)?

I know it seems like I'm going on and on and I apologise for that, but I'm the kind of bloke who covers all bases before making a purchase like this, mainly because if I get it wrong I wont hear the last of it from er in doors. :sick:

Any kind of assistance will be very grateful.

Cheers everyone, Keith ;)

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It would probably pay you to discuss your concerns with a Lexus dealer. They want your business so I am sure you could persuade them to allow an extended testdrive (48 hours maybe?) if they think that you are serious about purchasing one.

Regards Dave

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The lovely thing about the hybrid models is that you don't have think about whether the Battery is this or the engine is that.It does its own thing is always running at its most efficient and all you have to do is selct D and steer!

Somtimes the car will run on just electric motoers,sometimes just the internal combustion engine and sometimes a combination of both,depending on conditions and any number of criteria.It is an extremely complex system,but soooo simple to use and so reliable.

Now,to go to some of your questions:Normal driving,and I've had mine for coming up to 4 years,I get 31 to 32 mpg.If you are very careful you can increase this to 34 to 35 mpg.

Sometimes the car will start in electric mode,depends on whether you "floor it" at the traffic lights or not.As mentioned before,from cold,the engine will start from scratch,so when you move off you'll probably be using both ICE and electric motors.You can tell by watching the real time display-very entertaining!

I have had the car running in electric motors only up to 60 to 70 mph for short periods of time,depending on road conditions-you don't have to worry about any of this,the hybrid synergy drive takes care of it all.When the Battery is getting low and needs recharging,the ICE will start up and use a generator to recharge the Battery as well as any braking you do will recover kinetic energy and use this to charge the Battery ready for it to be used when required(a bit like the KERS technology introduced into F1 this year).

All this is done seemlessly,without you having to worry about whether you are running on ICE,electric motors,or both-the system just uses the most efficient output in any given set of circumstances.You won't even notice it happening unless you watch the monitor-the system is very refined.

As to the variation in mpg people get-well that is the same with "normal" cars-a lot depends on individual driving style and technique.I do concede,however,that these differences may be more pronounced in the hybrids models as I do think that you have to learn to drive the hybrid differently to get the most out of it.

Hybrid Battery durability does not seem to be a problem.Theyt are guaranteed for 5 yrs/100,000 miles,but experience with the Toyota Prius(the first car to use this system) shows that batteries do not fail,do not become less efficient and these days are regarded as lifetime of vehicle components.In fact the hybrid technology seems to be very robust and reliable.

Have a test drive-I am sure you'll enjoy it!

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I couldn't agree more with Ullivi.

Had my 2 year old 400h for around 2 months and I live in a very rural area with narrow roads and very steep hills. In fact I cannot go anywhere without hills and yet I am averaging 29.9 mpg.

Have to say if you "floor" it, it lifts like the clappers.

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Hi,

I get 32 -33 mpg consistently on an even mix of motorway, urban and rural driving without being obsessive about fuel conservation. On stop/start urban journeys I can easily get 35mpg or better but on prolonged 80mph + motorway driving consumption climbs to 27-28 mpg.

Also, when comparing the fuel consumption of a diesel and petrol car remember that diesel has 10% more energy per litre - its a different fuel.

I suggest you give the RX a decent test drive. You will find it comfortable, quick, refined and easy to drive. Its not a car that rewards aggressive or sporty driving however so is not everyone’s cup of tea. Its also very practical with loads of room for kids, bikes, dogs or whatever you wish to transport. The hybrid bit is not that noticeable when driving but results in modest fuel savings which may or not matter to you.

So far no significant reliability problems with any of the Toyota hybrids, including high mileage Prius, so they are a safe bet in that respect. The only problem with the RX400H that regularly rears its head is the small 12V Battery (not the hybrid battery) which has a habit of going flat if the car is left for long periods or if you leave an interior light on for any length of time. This can be annoying but is a minor problem.

My only gripe is lack of full UK postcode entry on the satnav.

So far I've not met a hybrid owner who is disappointed by their Lexus.....

Best of luck with your purchase.

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I agree with everyone above. My experience of the 400h is from having one for 2 months now, and a 350 and 300 before that.

All of these RXs feel different with respect to things like the steering. None is better of worse, they are just different flavours. The braking on the 400h does feel different however.

I live in West Yorkshire and do a 15 mile commute with a variety of roads, many of them hilly, but no motorways. The 350 was better on fuel (and still had alot more power to call on than the 300), but I only got 23 mpg around town, and around 27-28 mpg on the motorway. In that respect, I doubt there would be much difference in economy between a 350 and 400h if they were running on a motorway most of the time. However, for my commute, I am getting 34 mpg in the 400h (versus the aforemention 23 mpg in a 350). So - the upshot is I now get around 360 miles to a brimmed tank in a 400h versus 250 miles in the 350, and fill up more like once a fortnight than once every 7-9 days.

Living with the 400h is easy. It is a flexible all round vehicle. Quick, spacious, quiet and efficient. I find myself being a very calm driver these days and getting stuck in a jam does not stress me. When the going is good, I can 'cruise' at 40 mpg on electric power only using a gentle right foot. It is rare that I can enjoy anything more than a clear road without traffic lights, roundabouts or other traffic, so I never seem to run low in Battery power (except for the very worst of motorway snarl ups).

Overall, I am really impressed with the hybrid. It works and works very well. It is different to a petrol only car, but not so radical as to make it feel like a risky purchase. I would have another.

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Just to add to all above ……. We have had the RX400h for a few months now. The best thing to do is forget the hybrid thingy and just get on and drive it normally. It did my head in when I first got it as I had the centre (sat nav) display set to look at the motor cum Battery display and also the display in the odometer set also to show the same thing .. It got too complicated to look at the two and drive at the same time. I switched them off and drove it like a normal car, from then on I was hooked on the comfort and the performance …. It is pretty difficult to tell when it is the electric motor or petrol engine that is doing the work. The only thing I would say is:

· Performance is terrific when both the petrol engine and electric motors take off together, I have wiped the smug smile off a couple of VW boy racers this week when they got left behind :D

· Be careful when driving round car parks, people can't hear you coming when only the electric motors are powering the vehicle

· We have been touring in it this week and managed 34.8 mpg, not bad for a SUV

· Towing is a breeze and the added torque from the electric side helps greatly at times

A great SUV and one that will be in our family for a long time to come.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi , I think all of the posts cover most of the points, If you don't need a heavy duty off-roader you'll be hard pushed to beat the 400h, Goes like a sports car when required but has the economy of a large diesel when ur not pushing it on. You can't help but grin from ear to ear when you floor it knowing there's not much out there to catch it but at the same time you can coast at 70 mph!!! with all the power units off. Like someone else said, you find yourself coaxing it along with the slightest amount off presssure on the accelerator and the car always feels like it totally effortless. You need to get a good test drive to appreciate how good the car feels. Go speak to a dealer you won't regret it but your wallet might lol

ps milage wise never under 27mpg but have managed over 40 when really watching what I'm doing and thats over the 30 minute period that the bar graph logs.

Like yourself I had all those questions before I bought one but drive one, buy one, and enjoy the car everything works just fine

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Also in the colder months how does the heating come in play if the engine doesn't run most of the time and does it have parking sensors other than the rear view camera?

...................

Most of my journeys are stop start and the occasional long stretch but I read it is the short journeys where the money is saved. True?

Many thanks, Keith.

The ICE (internal combustion engine) will always run when you start the car from cold in order to get the engine and cat up to working temperature hence you will always get heat for the cabin. What's more, for efficiency, the ICE is heated up as quickly as possible so the warmth starts to come through in a mile or so. The computers and gearbox seamlessly blend any combination of ICE and electric motors (there are two, honest!) to give optimum drive for the conditions your in. You'll never really notice unless you watch the multi function display.

Short journeys are inefficient because the engine has to heat up. I travel 6.5 miles to and from work each day on urban roads and get about 30 mpg everall though the last bit of the journey gets higher mpg than the start of the journey

Admittedly I'm in a GS not an RX but the technology is the same.

Malc

To also save on confusion, the RX400h also comes with ICE system, which is (in car entertainment) i.e. the monitors in the back of the headrests and DVD player under the passenger seat. the RX400h I brought did not have ICE in it, so I asked for it to be fitted by lexus as part of the purchase, Lexus sent it to "John Kleis Car Audio & Navigation" in Reading, Berkshire who fitted a better system than the original Lexus ICE system and did a perfect job of it.

Car overall is excellent!! Oh and very slightly quicker than the new RX450h

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