Lexus has announced the 2023 Lexus UX Hybrid for the U.S. market. The 2023 Lexus UXh not only gets more equipment but has also undergone upgrades to the mechanicals to enhance its performance. With Lexus targeting reduced emissions, the non-hybrid Lexus UX models will no longer be on sale once the 2023 Lexus UXh enters the American market—the UX will only be offered with an electrified powertrain in the United States.
Since it’s the luxury brand’s most compact crossover and with the target audience mostly consisting of modern urban buyers, the ‘UX’ name stands for Urban Crossover. Here’s everything we know about the 2023 Lexus UX Hybrid:
F Sport Package
Lexus will retain the F Sport package offered on the MY2022 Lexus UX. The F Sport Design package brings 10-spoke steel gray alloy wheels, a sportier black spindle grille, dark roof rails, black roof, and body-colored wheel arch molding. The package also adds more features like a moonroof, rain-sensing wipers, fog, cornering lamps, and automatic headlamp leveling.
The F Sport Handling package adds performance dampers and an Active Variable Suspension (AVS). Lexus says the rear dampers minimize body flex by absorbing road undulations to sharpen handling and improve comfort. The AVS helps the SUV ride flat despite the bumps and imperfections of the road. Lexus has also added a brace to the steering gear to improve overall steering response.
The 2023 Lexus UX hybrid interior with the F Sport package appears more sporty than the regular model. The brand has added aluminum footrests and scuff plates, exclusive red sports seats with premium stitching, and F-Sport badging on the steering wheel and red stitching on the gear knob. It also gets aluminum pedals. More premium equipment includes digital key and mirrors with heating, memory and auto-dim functions.
Lexus has focused on making the 2023 Lexus UX Hybrid driver-focused. The structural rigidity of the hybrid has been improved by adding 20 spot welding points on the body—the calibration of the electronic power steering and suspension was subsequently adjusted. The improved body rigidity should allow tighter body control when the SUV goes over uneven surfaces and improve handling in the corners. Moreover, Lexus improved noise-vibration-harshness (NVH) levels by using new run-flat tires wrapped around 18-inch wheels.
The 2023 Lexus UX hybrid will continue using the 2-liter four-cylinder engine paired with a rear-axle-mounted electric motor. The combined output from this hybrid powertrain is 181 hp, enough to propel the SUV to 60 mph in 8.6 seconds—0.3 seconds quicker than the model without electrical assistance. It has a top speed of 110 mph. The Lexus UX 250h is primarily front-wheel-drive, but power can be sent to all-wheels when the system detects slip thanks to its rear axle-mounted electric motor and the electronically controlled CVT.
The hybrid powertrain makes the SUV more efficient in the city and highway. Lexus has mentioned a combined fuel efficiency of 41 mpg for the UX 250h, 12 mpg more than the non-hybrid model. Hybrids are significantly more efficient in the city where customers can use EV mode. Toyota’s strong hybrids bring fuel savings by driving on pure electric mode at slow speeds and in stop-and-go situations. Moreover, when the engine is idle, it charges the battery, which gets recharged with brake energy recuperation.
Upgraded Lexus Interface
The 2023 Lexus UX hybrid gets a larger touchscreen display with a crisper resolution. The standard 8-inch or optional 12.3-inch touchscreen is positioned closer to the driver and gets an anti-reflective coating to reduce glare while navigating through the menus. The screens also respond to voice commands, thanks to the new Voice Assistant. Customers can say “Hey Lexus” to awaken the Voice Assistant. However, this is not the same screen seen on the all-electric Lexus RZ.
Lexus says the system has been designed with dual microphones, improved noise cancellation, seat detection, and speaker location capability. Customers can also subscribe to Connected Services Drive Connect to access Cloud Navigation, Destination Assist, and more features. Moreover, the system will also keep the passengers up to date with the latest information about traffic and points of interest.
The system also supports Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and Bluetooth. Moreover, the MY2023 version comes with Connected Car services like Emergency Assistant (SoS) button, Roadside Assistance, Automatic Collision Notification, Stolen Vehicle Location, Vehicle Health Reports, and Maintenance reminders, among other features.
The 2023 Lexus UX hybrid comes with Advanced Driver Assistance (ADAS) systems under the Lexus Safety System+ 2.5, equivalent to Toyota’s Safety Sense+ 2.5. The suite of safety features includes Pre-Collision System (PCS) that uses a camera and a radar to detect cyclists, pedestrians, and oncoming vehicles. The SUV also gets emergency steering assist (ESA) and Lane Tracing Assist (LTA), which help the driver keep the car centered in the lane.
The 2023 Lexus UX hybrid also gets Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) with speed tracking. The SUV can follow the vehicle in the front while keeping a safe distance—DRCC also decelerates or accelerates the car depending on the speed of the vehicle in front. DRCC uses a curve speed control function that reduces the vehicle speed when it approaches a corner, minimizing body roll and lateral movements.
The Lexus UX 250h is not a volume driver for Toyota Motor North America. In Q1 2022, Lexus sold only 2,497 units of the 2022 UX hybrid in the U.S., down 15% compared to the same period in 2021 when Lexus sold 2,898 units. The MY2023 refresh might make it more appealing to hybrid buyers.
Price & Release Date
Lexus USA has not announced the 2023 Lexus UX 250h price. However, we expect prices to be close to current model, starting at around USD 38,000—the market launch is scheduled in late summer 2022.
2023 Lexus UX Hybrid FAQs
What is the 2023 Lexus UX Hybrid release date?
Lexus has confirmed the availability of the improved UX for late summer 2022.
What is the 2023 Lexus UX Hybrid price?
We expect the prices to start at around USD 38,000
Which are the competitors to the 2023 Lexus UX?
Alternatives include the Mercedes GLA, Audi Q3, BMW X2, and the Range Rover Evoque.
Featured Image Source: Lexus