Lexus UX250h 2019 f sport +ep1 hybrid

2019 Lexus UX250h F Sport long-term review: Interior comfort and space

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The Lexus UX features a compact, if comfortable cabin that offers a properly premium ambience.
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We're a few weeks into our time with 'Forest' the Lexus UX250h F Sport, so we're going to talk about the part of the car you spend pretty much your whole time in – the cabin.

Lexus models are well renowned for first-class fit and finish, and the new entry-level UX lives up to that reputation... mostly.

One of the first things you'll notice are the leather-accented sports seats unique to the F Sport trim grade. They look fantastic – particularly in the black leather with red top-stitching we've got – while also being comfortable and feeling high quality.

Nice touches include the perforated seat inserts, along with the F Sport logo embossed into the headrests. There's also 10-way power-adjustment for the driver's seat and eight-way for the front passenger pew, and full electric adjustment for the steering column – which is pretty rare at this end of the market.

Up front there's a cockpit-like feel to the dashboard layout, given the driver-oriented infotainment screen and controls, and every switch and button is within arm's reach.

Material quality and tactility is right up there with the best in class, too, with an abundance of soft-touch and nicely textured surfaces, including the leatherette dashtop and brushed metal-look trim inserts. You won't find any of that fingerprint-attracting piano black stuff, either.

Like the seats, the sports steering wheel and gearshift are trimmed in perforated leather with red top-stitching, and feel great in the hand. As mentioned before, there's power adjustment for the steering wheel, which can also be saved using the driver's memory function (which also stores the seat position).

Thanks to the wide range of adjustment for both the seats and steering wheel, it'd be quite difficult to not find a good driving position.

It's no secret the UX shares its TNGA underpinnings with the Toyota C-HR and Corolla, though you'll be hard pressed to find shared cabin elements, bar the odd lane-keep assist button on the steering wheel or window switches.

The fabric headliner is also lovely to look at and to touch – though you're probably not going to do the latter often – while the windows have a soft-close function for that extra dash of class.

Meanwhile, the large, widescreen 10.3-inch infotainment system with satellite navigation and DAB+ digital radio offers high resolution and relatively quick response times. It's a shame there's no smartphone mirroring – though that should be addressed at the end of the year – and the trackpad used to toggle it on the centre tunnel is fiddly to use. More on the infotainment in the 'Infotainment and Technology' report coming soon.

Storage is okay up front, with a decent cubby under the centre armrest, two decent-sized cup holders under the centre stack, and some shallow door pockets with bottle holders.

Overall the front-end of the UX's cabin feels spacious yet sporty, and it feels a little more special compared than the majority of its rivals.

Moving to the back, things aren't quite as plush. The seats get the same leather trim but not the cool red stitching you see up the front, and the door cards get hard (though solid-feeling) plastics rather than the soft-touch materials the driver and front passenger get.

There's also no door pockets unlike at the front, though you do get air vents and a fold-down centre armrest.

It's a little short on space in the back too, which probably isn't as much of a priority in a premium compact crossover, though still worth noting. Headroom is fine though legroom can be quite tight if you sit an above-average size adult behind a taller driver.

Being a compact SUV designed for singles and empty nesters, it can probably get away with not prioritising rear passengers.

There are decent amenities in the rear, though, with air vents and two USB charge points for mobile devices, something that a number of rivals can't match.

Moving further back, the boot area measures a claimed 364L with the second row in place – up from the UX250h Luxury's 324L due to the removal of the spare tyre (F Sport and Sports Luxury models get run-flats).

It's a bit small for the class, and the sloping roofline and tailgate eat into available space further. You'll be able to fit the weekly shop or a couple of suitcases just fine, though we'd venture a pram would be a squeeze.

Lexus doesn't quote a maximum figure with the rear seatbacks folded either (which go down 60:40), though it does create a decent, flat load bay for larger items. On the second day with the UX, I helped my best mate transport four 19-inch Renault Megane wheels with tyres, and we even managed to squeeze another friend in the back with one of the back seats up.

Under the boot floor, there's a hidden storage area where the spare wheel in Luxury models would reside. The collapsable luggage partition fits nicely in this area, and there's enough space for small bags and other items too.

All told the Lexus UX250h F Sport is a bit of a mixed bag in the cabin comfort and practicality stakes, though has arguably one of the most well-finished interiors in its class this side of a Volvo XC40.

2019 Lexus UX250h F Sport (FWD)

  • Kilometres since start: 1559.1km
  • Fuel consumption (indicated): 6.3L/100km

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