2006 Lexus RX 400h Long-Term Road Test


2006 Lexus RX400h: Sexy?

November 13, 2007

I won't pretend I didn't groan a bit when handed the keys to our Long-Term RX400h for the weekend. It's not that I don't like the car, but I had a dinner party to attend Sunday night. I wanted to show up in something fun, something cool. At least the Lexus would make a fine chauffeur vehicle for my Designated Driver duties.

I was having a fine time when a young woman I'm friends with, who knows the perks of the job, asked me what I was driving tonight. "A Lexus RX400h", I said. Her eyes glazed over. Clearly she was lost in the alphanumeric nomenclature. Trying to move on, I filled in, "Some hybrid crossover thing. It's nice enough."

"Ohhh, that one!" she exclaimed, "It's sexy."

"Sexy?"

"Yeah, the hybrid one is."

"Just the hybrid one? What's sexy about adding 300lbs of batteries and electric motors?"

"It just is!"

The conversation moved to things that made more sense, but I was rocked and couldn't find my footing after that. The RX is quiet, very smooth, reasonably good on gas, and well styled, but it's not sexy.

Am I wrong here?

Mike Magrath, Vehicle Testing Assistant @ 28,500 miles.

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