2016 Lexus RX 350 V6 Fuel Economy Tops Competitors’ 4-Cylinder Turbos
Auto manufacturers are turning to smaller, turbocharged engines en masse to squeeze out fractions of an MPG in their vehicle fleets. The story goes that smaller, modern four-cylinder turbocharged engines can match the power and fuel economy of the V6 engines they replace. While certainly true in the case of older V6 engines, those that are up to date, like the 2016 Lexus RX 350’s V6 engine, are more powerful and more fuel economical than smaller turbos. Here is a comparison.
The 2016 RX 350 AWD is rated at 22 MPG Combined by the EPA. This five-passenger crossover is a bit larger than the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Ultimate AWD we tested and loved last week. In many ways, the Santa Fe Sport Ultimate is a close match for the Lexus RX 350 AWD, and the Hyundai’s 2.0-liter turbocharged engine is a gem. However, it has only 240 hp compared to the Lexus RX 350’s 295 hp. Oddly, the Santa Fe Sport Ultimate AWD only earns an EPA Combined rating of 21 MPG.
To their credit, both the Lexus RX 350 and Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Ultimate use Regular unleaded gasoline and that is how the EPA rated them for mileage and power. Many crossovers with 2.0-liter turbocharged engines, such as the 220 hp Audi Q5, instead specify much more expensive Premium fuel. Using today’s AAA average prices, Regular fuel is priced at $2.36 and Premium at $2.84. That is a whopping 17% difference in fuel costs. The results are that the RX 350 has an annual fuel cost of just $1,600 compared to the Santa Fe Sport Ultimate’s $1,700, and the Audi Q5’s $1,850. (More on Page 2)
The V6-equipped, and much more powerful Lexus RX 350, tops its 2.0-liter turbocharged rivals in both power and fuel cost per mile, despite being the largest vehicle in the grouping.
Image courtesy of www.fueleconomy.gov