Best Bet
  • (4.5) 11 reviews
  • MSRP: $16,593–$32,073
  • Body Style: Sport Utility
  • Combined MPG: 29-30
  • Engine: 245-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 (premium)
  • Drivetrain: All-wheel Drive
  • Seats: 5
2012 Lexus RX 450h

Our Take on the Latest Model 2012 Lexus RX 450h

What We Don't Like

  • Road noise
  • Leather seats not standard
  • Joystick-operated navigation system

Notable Features

  • 30-32 mpg city mileage
  • 10 airbags
  • FWD or AWD
  • Optional wide-view side monitor
  • Optional head-up display

2012 Lexus RX 450h Reviews

Vehicle Overview

Lexus redesigned its five-seat RX crossover for 2010, with the gasoline RX 350 carrying over a similar V-6 drivetrain. Because its electrically assisted V-6 grew to 3.5 liters from 3.3 liters, the RX 400h became the RX 450h. Slight exterior tweaks differentiate the RX 450h from its non-hybrid sibling.

Front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive optional. The non-hybrid RX 350 is covered separately in the Cars.com Research section.

New for 2012

There are no significant changes for the 2012 model year.

Exterior
Though it's a few hairs taller than its predecessor, the RX 450h looks more carlike than ever; its dimensions give the crossover a wagonlike stance. In back are frosted taillight effects similar to those on the previous RX. Eighteen-inch alloy wheels are standard, with 19-inchers optional. Exterior features include:

  • Blue-trimmed Lexus logos
  • Unique grille and front bumper design
  • Blue-tinted headlights and taillights
  • Optional LED headlights


Interior
Like Lexus' other hybrids, the RX 450h's display screen can show the power flow between the drivetrain's electric motors, engine and battery. In place of the RX 350's tachometer is a gauge showing electric-motor assist versus battery recharging. Other features include voice-recognition software that Lexus says will pick up conversational prompts rather than traditional formal, specific commands.

High-tech options include a head-up display with LED lighting that's purportedly bright enough to read on a sunny day. The optional navigation system features Lexus' Remote Touch interface, which uses a joystick-like device to navigate menus on the dashboard screen. Interior features include:

  • Cloth seats standard, leather optional
  • Real wood trim
  • 10-way power front seats


Under the Hood
The RX 450h uses a gasoline 3.5-liter V-6 that's assisted by electric motors, creating 295 combined horsepower. It can cruise on electric-only power at low speeds. Like other hybrids, its electric motors draw power from the friction of deceleration, called regenerative braking. Mechanical features include:

  • Standard front-wheel drive
  • Optional all-wheel drive
  • Separate motors power front and rear wheels in all-wheel-drive models
  • Continuously variable automatic transmission
  • Towing capacity of 3,500 pounds with optional package


Safety
Ten standard airbags include four in front — the two required chest airbags plus two knee airbags — as well as seat-mounted side-impact airbags for both rows. Head-protecting side curtain airbags cover both rows. Other standard safety features include:

  • Active front head restraints
  • All-disc antilock brakes
  • Traction control
  • Electronic stability system

 

Consumer Reviews

4.5

Average based on 11 reviews

Write a Review

The best automobile that I have ever owned.

by Davinci from on September 20, 2017

This automobile is one great piece. There is nothing negative that I would say about it. Buy one! You will love it!

Read All Consumer Reviews

2 Trims Available

Photo of undefined
Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2012 Lexus RX 450h trim comparison will help you decide.
 

Lexus RX 450h Articles

2012 Lexus RX 450h Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports

IIHS Ratings

Based on Lexus RX 450h Base

Head Restraints and Seats
G
Moderate overlap front
G
Roof Strength
G
Side
G

IIHS Ratings

Based on Lexus RX 450h Base

G Good
A Acceptable
M Marginal
P Poor

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
G
Overall Rear
G
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
G

Moderate overlap front

Chest
G
Head/Neck
G
Left Leg/Foot
G
Overall Front
G
Restraints
G
Right Leg/Foot
G
Structure/safety cage
G

Other

Roof Strength
G

Side

Driver Head Protection
G
Driver Head and Neck
G
Driver Pelvis/Leg
G
Driver Torso
G
Overall Side
G
Rear Passenger Head Protection
G
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
G
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
G
Rear Passenger Torso
G
Structure/safety cage
G
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers. IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests. IIHS also evaluates seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts.

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Lexus RX 450h Base

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Lexus RX 450h Base

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating
Driver's
Passenger's
Front Seat
Rear Seat
Side Barrier
Side Barrier Rating Driver
Side Barrier Rating Passenger Rear Seat
Side Pole
Side Pole Barrier combined (Front)
Side Pole Barrier combined (Rear)
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $3,000 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage

Bumper-to-Bumper

48mo/50,000mi

Powertrain

72mo/70,000mi

Roadside Assistance Coverage

48mo/unlimited

Free Scheduled Maintenance

12mo/10,000mi

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained

Bumper-to-Bumper

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

Powertrain

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years