Driving the Tour of California in a Lexus SUV #3

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With two days remaining in the nine-day Amgen Tour of California bicycle race, I stopped for my third refuel of the trip. The 2015 Lexus NX 200t F Sport had taken me from Sacramento to Santa Clarita, and the new luxury sport utility had done well for itself.

The weather in the previous week included predicted warm and windy conditions and also a two-hour trek in a nasty rainstorm near Los Angeles. The inclement conditions were only outdone by the nastiness of the mess called the Southern California freeway system.

And exactly why is it that some drivers speed up when there’s standing water on the freeway and a steady cross wind?

My third fill-up 12.89 gallons was priced at $3.99 per gallon or a total of $51.50. I had traveled 365 miles and averaged 28.3 mpg.

The 2015 Lexus NX 200t F Sport is a new luxury SUV with  super modern exterior appearance.
The 2015 Lexus NX 200t F Sport is a new luxury SUV. All images © James Raia/2015

My second refuel was 12.75 gallons at $4.29 per gallon, a total of $54.75 and 26.1 mpg.

My first refuel was 12.1 gallons at $3.89 per gallon, a total $47.25 and 24.5 mpg.

The EPA mpg estimates for the Lexus NX 200t F Sport are 22 mpg in city driving and 28 mpg on the freeway.

I didn’t fill-up the new Lexus a fourth time, but I drove the vehicle from Ontario to Sacramento the day after the bike race end. I primarily drove along Highway 101 for about six hours and then Highway 680 from San Jose to my Sacramento home.

I drove the Lexus NX 200t F Sport more than 1,300 miles. Most of the mileage was on freeways and I used the air conditioner often.

I described the drive and navigation system in previous posts, but throughout my time with the vehicle I had one prevailing thought: Despite its impressive comfort and drive, I wondered why the exterior of the new Lexus is so edgy?

For me, the design is too busy. It’s all sharp angles and abrupt cuts. The oversized grille is too big for the car. I long for a manufacturer who looks at rounded contours and elegance of cars of yesteryear and incorporates those styling touches into cars of the future.



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