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Invite to Lexus marriage

Created on 26/07/2017 @ 09:18

Test Drive by Graham Breeze

If you are looking for a striking four-seat coupe look no further than the Lexus RC - and you can even enjoy hybrid motoring while still catching the eye.

Because Lexus has married dramatic styling with economic performance in the RC 300h and what a coming together this relationship has proved to be.

The RC 300h Premier is a stunning car, it’s a s simple as that. In this marriage Lexus has mastered the dangerous game of combining two-door coupe looks with top level performance and economical motoring and after the courtship guests are queuing to attend the ceremony.

If you haven’t driven a Lexus you won’t be familiar with the top-quality interior, but you will certainly be impressed..

It’s not quite best in class but gets pretty close with a solid and easy to use dashboard completed with quality material and a seven inch screen which displays everything from the sat-nav system to in-car entertainment system, controlled by a joystick or touchpad.

Unique touches include strips of ambient lights on the doors and interior lights and ventilation controls which come on with a swipe of your finger.

There’s armchair comfort up front but it’s not so in the back where passengers were complaining of a lack of space and feeling too confined – but this is a coupe after all. Access isn’t easy either though the front seats do move electrically to let passengers in.

Boot space is surprisingly good, even with the hybrid version where batteries reduce the space from 366 litres from the petrol version’s 377 litres – plenty big enough to house the golf clubs, though smaller than the main opposition.

The unexpected bonus was that the rear seats split 60-40 to help cope with the bigger loads.

Rivals such as BMW, Audi and Mercedes offer diesel options in this sector but Lexus has only petrol and hybrid with the latter clearly the most efficient choice offering 56mpg and CO2 emissions of just 116g/km from the 2.5litre

The RC300h hybrid gets you to 62mph in an effortless 8.6seconds and you can expect a top speed of 118mph if you can anywhere to put the figures to the test.

The hybrid drive system combines a 2.5-litre, four-cylinder Atkinson cycle petrol engine with a powerful electric motor and produces maximum power of 220bhp (164kW).

The electronic continuously variable transmission (E-CVT) has a six-step, sequential Shiftmatic gear change function and as a full hybrid, the RC 300h offers the benefit of a fully electric EV driving mode for ultra-quiet running with zero emissions.

AS always safety comes high on the Lexus agenda and you get curtain airbag, ABS with electronic brakeforce distribution and brake assist, vehicle stability control, vehicle and stability control, hill-start, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alerts, automatic dipping lights, stop/start system, and tyre pressure monitoring.

For driver and passenger comfort you get drive-mode select, cruise control, smart entry and start, dual climate control, DAB radio, DVD player, parking assist monitor, Bluetooth connectivity, rain sensing wipers and front and rear parking alerts.

There’s a price to pay of course and the RC 300h Hybrid on test hits the road at £41,495.

Will it sell? Well the suits at Lexus aren’t targeting massive numbers and this premium two-door coupe delivers a lot to please and looks to die for. Lexus may just have found the perfect marriage.

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