Evaluation of the 2024 Lexus UX250h: An Urban Commuter’s Delight

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Evaluation of the 2024 Lexus UX250h: An Urban Commuter's Delight
2024 Lexus UX250h

Toyota has encountered challenges in crafting a successful small hybrid for Lexus, despite the Prius’s triumphs. The HS250h sedan and the CT200h hatchback may not ring a bell for many, reflecting their relatively limited impact. However, since 2019, the UX has emerged as the go-to Lexus model for those seeking a blend of Prius-like efficiency and luxury.

Last year, Lexus streamlined its UX lineup by exclusively offering hybrid variants, discontinuing the nonhybrid UX200. Additionally, a front-wheel-drive iteration of the UX250h became available alongside the existing all-wheel-drive model.

In contrast to Lexus’s previous small hybrid offerings, the UX is marketed as a subcompact luxury SUV. However, it bears a closer resemblance to a slightly elevated hatchback, akin to the Mercedes-Benz GLA. Consequently, the front-wheel-drive configuration aligns better with the UX250h’s urban-oriented nature.

Notably, the UX lacks any pretense of off-road capability, emphasizing its suitability for city driving, where its compact size enhances maneuverability and facilitates parking—although visibility from the rear is somewhat limited, necessitating reliance on the camera system.


With a total of 181 horsepower available, four-wheel traction becomes unnecessary to effectively transfer power to the pavement. Surprisingly, this front-drive variant outpaced our previous test of the all-wheel-drive UX250h, reaching 60 mph in 8.2 seconds compared to the AWD model’s 8.6 seconds.

However, it still trails behind more potent rivals like the Audi Q3 (7.3 seconds), the GLA250 (6.3 seconds), and the Volvo XC40 B5 (6.1 seconds).

Evaluation of the 2024 Lexus UX250h: An Urban Commuter's Delight
2024 Lexus UX250h


Strengths of the UX include improved fuel efficiency, Lexus-like ride comfort, and enhanced maneuverability in urban settings. Equipped with a continuously variable transmission, the UX sometimes exhibits delayed throttle response and can produce a droning sound during acceleration, registering at 73 decibels under wide-open throttle.

While an EV mode button is available, the small battery often lacks sufficient charge to activate it. Nonetheless, the UX seamlessly transitions between engine modes—a feature most drivers are unlikely to notice.

This adaptability contributes significantly to the UX250h’s impressive fuel economy, particularly evident in the front-drive variant compared to its all-wheel-drive counterpart. According to EPA estimates, the front-drive UX250h is expected to achieve 42 mpg combined, surpassing the AWD version’s 39 mpg.

However, our real-world testing fell short of these figures, with an average of 35 mpg overall and on the highway at 75 mph, compared to EPA estimates of 41 mpg. Nevertheless, this represents a 4-mpg improvement over the all-wheel-drive model’s average and an 8-mpg increase in highway efficiency compared to the XC40 B5.

While the UX doesn’t require you to crouch upon entry, its driving experience leans more towards hatchbacks than SUVs.

Its compact size and agility, coupled with a balanced ride and handling akin to larger Lexus models, are noticeable behind the wheel. The car’s ability to absorb bumps is commendable, thanks in part to its modest 18-inch wheels wrapped in tires with ample sidewall cushioning.

Evaluation of the 2024 Lexus UX250h: An Urban Commuter's Delight
2024 Lexus UX250h

Body movements are effectively managed, and although the steering lacks a sporty feel, it is appropriately weighted. On the skidpad, grip measured a modest 0.81 g, trailing behind the AWD version’s 0.86 g, while braking from 70 mph took 174 feet, albeit with noticeable brake fade after repeated hard stops.

Weaknesses and Challenges

Drawbacks include sluggish acceleration, a cramped rear seat, and limited cargo space. Despite being slightly longer overall, this petite Lexus boasts a shorter wheelbase than its Audi, Mercedes, and Volvo counterparts. Consequently, the rear door opening feels restricted, and taller passengers may find it challenging to enter the back seat comfortably.

The cargo area is similarly compact due to its high load floor and sloping hatchback design. In comparison to the GLA and XC40, the UX accommodates fewer carry-on cases, with room for only four instead of six.

Entering its sixth model year, the UX sees some improvements within the cabin. Notably, it features a conventional shift lever instead of the unconventional flipper found in most Toyota hybrids, including the larger RX.

The climate-control system retains physical buttons, along with additional controls on the console for seat heating and cooling, as well as the heated steering wheel.

One notable change is the elimination of the cumbersome remote touch interface, replaced by a touchscreen for the large center display. Although Lexus retains a volume knob, there’s no tuning knob.

The NuLuxe synthetic-leather upholstery offers a luxurious feel comparable to genuine leather from other automakers, with pleasantly padded surfaces that provide comfort for knees and elbows.

Also read: 2024 Toyota Land Cruiser vs Lexus GX 550: Pricing, Powertrains, and Off-Road Capabilities


By Annie Linardos

I'm a journalist student and completed my masters in Journalism and Mass Communication. With a strong track record as an intern at Mathrubhumi News and The New Indian Express as a reporter and content writer, I'm creative, motivated, and have a keen eye for the truth and attempting to use the expertise and talents to contribute to the emerging field of journalism. I have also been working as a freelance writer and have the capability of producing interesting and bold articles.

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