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What is it like on the inside?

It’s all well put together and the quality is as you’d expect, but there’s no doubt it’s starting to feel slightly dated compared to rivals in places: the steering wheel is a little chunky and old school, the gear lever could easily be a toggle switch, and the part digital, part analogue instrument cluster is bettered by rivals.

Which probably explains why back in mid-2022, Lexus upgraded the standard infotainment system to an 8in number (up from 7in), with upper spec models getting a 12.3-inch (up from 10.3-inch) unit. Both are also now far crisper visually and sit slightly closer to the driver, the primary reason being the displays are now touchscreens. And the old trackpad has gone. In its place lie controls for the heated steering wheel and front seats or a small storage cubby, depending on spec.

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Uh oh…

Wait, don’t panic: it’s a much welcome upgrade, with the previously fiddly touchpad controls leaving the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto (standard) connections infuriatingly hobbled. Even better, the button row of climate controls positioned underneath the screen has been retained. Hooray for common sense.

The system is also pleasingly user friendly with a permanently displayed column of shortcut buttons down the right side, while the nav is visually up there with the best we’ve used, on par with Google Maps. Additionally you get Lexus’ voice recognition assistant, allowing you to make phone calls, operate the audio and climate control – you get the gist – handsfree, which works well enough.

What’s it like for space?

It’s plenty roomy up front, and the electrically adjustable seats on higher spec models make it easy to get comfortable. There’s decent space for two adults in the back, but bear in mind that this is still a fairly small car. The central seat in the back is for small people or short distances only. 

The boot has been nibbled at by the hybrid gear, with a high sill and shallow bay that will quickly fill up with stuff. You can lift the boot floor to find a bit of extra space in the middle of the boot that will take a few shopping bags, and underneath here there’s a yet-smaller cubby for stashing something you don’t mind forgetting about entirely. Of course, if you opt for a 4WD model then these nifty extra storage spaces will be eaten up yet further.

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