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New Lexus RX 450h+ in South Africa – Pricing and specifications

Lexus has added a new model to the RX line-up in the form of the 450h+ plug-in hybrid.

While it is not the first electrified model in the RX family, it is the first to have a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) powertrain, in contrast to the traditional hybrid systems used by the 350h and the 500h.

It has a starting price of R1,629,300, making it the second most expensive unit in the series behind the flagship 500h F Sport.


Underpinning the 450h+ is a 2.5-litre, four-cylinder, naturally-aspirated petrol engine, which receives assistance from a pair of electric motors powered by a high-capacity 18.1kWh lithium-ion battery.

The system has a combined output of 227kW, which is distributed to all four wheels via an e-CVT transmission.

This allows the SUV to race from 0-100km/h in 6.5 seconds, and its battery affords a range of 66.5km on nothing but electricity.

As a result, Lexus claims it is possible to average a staggeringly low fuel consumption of just 1.3l/100km, provided that owners take advantage of the electrical systems whenever possible.

Making this process easier is the fact that the car switches seamlessly between the e-motor and the engine whenever the battery is depleted, allowing the petrol plant to recharge the cell on the move and ensuring greater efficiency.

By default, the car boots up in EV (electric vehicle) mode and remains this way until the battery runs dry. It does not automatically switch to the petrol engine under heavy acceleration like with other PHEVs, said the company.

It’s only when you select HV (hybrid vehicle mode) that the engine comes into play through user input, and the combustion plant also features a stop/start function to minimize fuel usage further.

The Lexus comes with two cables, a Mode 2 for home charging and a Mode 3 for fast public charging. The former can achieve an 80% charge in 7.8 hours, while the latter can do the same in just 2.7 hours.

The full-time electronic all-wheel-drive system benefits from front and rear torque distribution to suit the road conditions and the user’s driving style, and adaptive variable suspension assists with maximizing comfort at all times.

The hybrid battery is centrally mounted under the floor, too, for better weight distribution and a low centre of gravity.


Like with the rest of the RX units, the 450h+ uses the brand’s signature spindle grille, but can be identified by its 21-inch, 20-spoke alloy wheels with a dark metallic finish.

There are nine colours to choose from – White Quartz, Sonic Titanium, Morello Red, Graphite Black, Opulent Blue, Terrane Khaki, Sonic Chrome, Sonic Iridium, and Sonic Copper.

The PHEV is considered a flagship unit alongside the 500h F Sport, which means it benefits from the same Takumi treatment (the Japanese term for master craftsmen).

What this translates to is a minimalist interior with leather upholstery, heated and ventilated electronic front seats, a panoramic sunroof, ambient lighting, a heated wood-and-leather steering wheel, a heads-up display, a digital driver’s display, a 14-inch infotainment screen, voice commands, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a charging pad, and a 21-speaker Mark Levinson stereo with noise cancellation.

Other features include adaptive LED headlights, a hands-free tailgate, blind-spot monitors with a safe exit function for passengers, hill assist, traction control, rear cross-traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, a 360-degree camera, lane-trace assist, parking assist, and dynamic radar cruise control with Stop & Go.


The South African pricing for the updated Lexus RX series is as follows:

Each purchase comes with a 7-year/105,000km warranty and maintenance plan, with an additional 8-year/195,000km battery warranty for the 450h.

Lexus RX 450h+


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