Lexus has launched the all-new RZ 450e, its latest EV and the first built on Toyota’s e-TNGA architecture. The crossover is available in two grades – Premium and Luxury. Pricing starts at $59,650 for the Premium model with 18-inch wheels (and $60,890 for the same model with 20-inch wheels), with the Luxury version offered at $65,150.

e-TNGA offers the EV a variety of benefits – including an optimal placement of mass and high body rigidity, as well as stability and comfort by the mounting of its battery pack under the floor. The 71.4 kWh pack itself enables the vehicle’s maximum power output of 308 hp (226 kW) and 220-mile (354-km) range when equipped with 18″ wheels. When fitted with 20″ wheels, the RZ 450e offers a range of up to 196 miles (315 km). Adopting the DIRECT4 all-wheel drive system first introduced in the 2023 RX equips the new EV with a 201 hp (150 kW) motor in the front and a 107 hp (80 kW) one in the rear.

In the future, U.S. users will be able to benefit from an all-new Steer by Wire system. On the RZ 450e, it enables the electronic exchange of steering and road surface information between the advanced steering control and tires through electric signals, as opposed to mechanical linkage.

The RZ 450e is equipped with a Level 1 charging cable for 120-V outlets, with all models offering a CCS1 socket for home and public charging as standard. With a Level 2 charging cable, Lexus has said that the EV’s battery can be fully recharged in approximately 9.5 hours, while a 0 to 80 percent charge with a DC fast charger is expected to take around 30 minutes.

Inside, the EV’s cockpit is spearheaded by a standard 14-inch HD touchscreen. An available 10-inch HUD projects key vehicle information in front of the driver’s field of vision, while its positioning can be linked to the position memory function of the driver seat. A dial-type shift knob on the center console can be used to scroll through and select its drive modes, while an Active Sound Control system cancels out noise from outside the vehicle to provide a further comforting user experience. The 450e’s cabin is also equipped with five USB-C ports – with three on the lower instrument panel, with a wireless charger beneath, and two for rear passengers at the bottom rear of the center console.

The RZ 450e’s standard suite of connected features includes Bluetooth phone connectivity, support for wireless Apple CarPlay and Android, as well as audio from HD Radio, USB data, and a three-month trial subscription to SiriusXM’s Platinum Plan. Further connectivity is enabled through an available Wi-Fi Connect subscription – offering 4G connectivity for up to five devices. An Integrated Streaming feature allows customers to link their separate Apple Music and Amazon Music subscriptions to the vehicle for onboard control.

Further connectivity features can be unlocked with a trial or paid subscription to Nissan’s Drive Connect premium service package. Here, a cloud-capable navigation system utilizes Google POI data to provide up-to-date search results, directions and alternate routes based on current traffic conditions. An offline mode works to detect a potential loss of signal, downloading applicable maps and services beforehand.

Drive Connect also grants access to Lexus’ Intelligent Assistant. The virtual assistant has been designed with dual microphones, improved noise cancellation, and seat detection capabilities to enhance the accuracy of its voice-recognition system. Activated with the ‘Hey Lexus’ voice command, the assistant allows users to control certain vehicle functionality – including the navigation, multimedia, and climate control systems.

Continuing this optional feature offering is Remote Connect – a similar premium package for Lexus owners. With an active Remote Connect subscription, a Digital Key function allows the user’s smartphone to be utilized as a vehicle key, working through the OEM’s mobile app. While able to lock and unlock the vehicle doors, Digital Key provides further usability when car sharing, during valet parking, or when delivering packages to the RZ’s cargo area.

The Lexus mobile app, offered on iOS and Android devices, is available through an active Remote Control trial or subscription. In addition to housing the Digital Key, the app can also be used to remotely start the vehicle, adjust the climate control, check the vehicle health, and more. The app also provides remote charging capabilities – including the ability to check charging status, start or stop charging a vehicle that is already plugged in, edit home charging schedules, and locate nearby public charging stations. The app also offers a Service Connect trial, which can connect a compatible Lexus with a dealer to provide detailed maintenance reminders and Vehicle Health Reports.