Save fuel with these Lexus hybrid driving tips

Driving a self-charging Lexus hybrid car offers many benefits, including quieter running and lower tail-pipe emissions. Our hybrid driving hints and tips will help ensure you get the very best from your car’s engine and save fuel.

These Lexus models available in the UK are available as a self-charging petrol-electric hybrid. However, whichever of these you have set your heart on, the following guide will help you maximise the vehicle’s range.

The basics

It’s not just hybrids that benefit from the first seven tips – these will help you to save fuel in any type of car:

1. Tidy the boot! Removing unnecessary weight from the car will boost performance immediately
2. Consult the handbook. Ensure the car’s tyres are correctly inflated
3. Plan your journey – avoid jams or getting lost
4. Close windows and sun roof at higher speeds (above 45mph)
5. Remove unused roof racks, boxes and bike racks
6. Maintain a steady speed, and do not exceed speed limits
7. Avoid sudden braking and acceleration

Save fuel: Lexus Hybrid driving advice

The following tips are for hybrids only:

  1. Familiarise yourself with the hybrid information display so you can monitor how much energy is being used
  2. Be gentle with the accelerator – press it lightly but consistently to help keep the car in EV mode
  3. Use ECO mode for improved efficiency – this evens out aggressive use of the throttle
  4. Gentle, early braking boosts regenerative braking, which allows you to use EV mode for longer periods of time
  5. Do not shift the gear selector into Neutral when stationary as this will stop the hybrid battery from being charged
  6. Consider using cruise control to maintain a steady speed
  7. If using climate control, recirculation mode can reduce energy use
  8. Maximise your use of EV mode when it is appropriate to do so
  9. Heavy use of ancillaries such as air conditioning, lights and windscreen wipers will increase energy consumption
save fuel

Hybrid driving: Drive modes

The Lexus Hybrid Drive powertrain provides four drive modes in Lexus hybrid cars. When you first turn on your hybrid, the car will be ready to drive in a default drive mode. This will automatically choose the most efficient use of both the engine and the battery. Using the car’s different ‘on-demand’ drive modes (see image below) will help achieve better fuel consumption.

When you first turn on the car, the hybrid system automatically begins in the default drive mode, which automatically chooses the most efficient use of both engine and battery. However, the driver can opt to select different one of the four on-demand drive modes to suit prevailing conditions: EV Mode (encourages the car to be powered solely by the battery when city driving), ECO Mode (the car reduces A/C output and dampens harsh acceleration), Normal Mode (the default drive setting in everyday motoring) and Sport Mode (which uses the battery to help boost acceleration along with the use of the engine).

The shift lever offers four positions: R (Reverse), N (neutral), B (engine braking) and D (drive). Position B introduces engine braking and can be used to help slow the vehicle, such as when descending a hill. But we do not recommend leaving the car in this mode for normal driving as it can use more fuel over time. For normal driving we recommend you move the shift lever to D.

Lexus hybrid driving, save fuel

Save fuel: Read the road ahead

When driving your hybrid, the aim is to utilise the car’s electric power as much as possible. A way to do this in urban driving is to accelerate to your required speed and then come off the accelerator before gently easing it back on again. In many conditions, you’ll see the ‘EV’ light come on to inform you that the petrol engine is switched off and you’re maintaining momentum on electric power.

The trick is to try and maintain a constant speed, so it is important to read the road ahead. This will reduce the amount of unnecessary braking and accelerating and will therefore use less fuel. Slow and gentle braking will best utilise the regenerative braking system on the car to help keep the hybrid battery topped-up.

save fuel

Other factors to consider

If the weather is cold, your car will use more fuel to warm up and reach optimum operating temperature. This means you will usually achieve better fuel economy figures in summer rather than winter, traveling on the same route. During winter months you are also more likely to use accessories such as the air conditioning system, radio, lights and windscreen wipers, all of which use electric power drawn from the battery.

For further advice on hybrid driving tips, we recommend visiting the Hypermiler website.

Please note that these hybrid driving tips are published as a general guide on how to get the best fuel economy from your Lexus hybrid. Lexus encourages and supports safe driving at all times, so please adhere to the rules of the road.


  1. I have a 2020 ES300h a d I try to drive it in EV mode but when my battery is nearly full and I talk off at 2mph the car turns the EV off right away. It never stays in EV mode since I’ve had it
    I asked Lexus about this when it was getting serviced and they said it would work better in the summer months when not using aircon lights radio etc
    I dont use that all the time anyway and the car still does not run in EV mode
    What is the reason for this please

    1. Hello Daniel,
      Thank you for contacting Lexus.
      There are lots of factors that affect when EV mode is on.
      A way to activate EV mode in urban driving is to accelerate to your required speed and then come off the accelerator before gently easing it back on again.
      We hope this helps.

      1. Surely you are wasting petrol by accelerating and then easing off? I drive my LEXUS ES and I just drive it nice and gently and I average 46 to 53 mpg so my advise is just don’t have a very heavy right foot

  2. My Lexus UX250H never says in EV, It always tells me my battery is low, and it either says I’m going to fast for EV or it stays on for a min until I go over 17 on the speed limit. Please advice if I need to take it in to the dealership or if that’s normal. Idk what’s the best speed for the EV mood.

    1. Hello Nayan,
      Thank you for contacting Lexus.
      There are many factors which can affect whether your UX is in EV mode or not.
      We would recommend following some of the advise in this article, this should help you to increase the amount of time you spend in EV mode.

  3. I have the new nx450 takumi and it is the best car I have ever owned it has done 900 miles and only used a quarter of a tank of fuel .I would recommend them to everyone .

    1. Hello Paul, thanks for your feedback.

      We appreciate your kind words and are glad you love your new car!

      We wish you many more happy miles.


        1. Hello Mark, thanks for your question.

          In order to maximise fuel efficiency, we advise following some of the tips listed in this article.


    2. Hi Paul, obviously you don’t do short trips. I have driven 650 miles in my new NX and used nearly two tanks of petrol!

  4. We have a 2022 plate NX F-sport, absolutely love the economy. I found it useful to drive in Eco-mode initially, to get used to when / how the EV mode comes on and stays on or goes off. Now I drive in all 3 modes and understand when it will and when it wont, I particularly like using active cruise control and it going into EV mode too !
    Disppointed with Lexus sat nav and will not use it , strange that ApplePlay needs a cable to phone and not wireless… maybe in the next release!

    1. Having previously owned Lexus IS250, CT, RX and now NX, across all these models the Satnav guidance instructions and the intuitiveness of the software leaves a lot to be desired. To be told “take the next slight right” is just daft. Come on Lexus, you can do much better than this.

      1. I agree with you. My NX300 satnav is pants. I’m in the U.K., it will only accept the first part of the postcode. I can get to a town but not a street and often not even a district. Recently I was travelling in the western isles. Searching for an address, it tried to send me to the Isle of Skye, 50 miles and a 3 hour ferry ride away. Not good, in fact ridiculous.

  5. I have always driven with an eye on economy (mainly for ecological not financial reasons). My 2022 ES300h is averaging just over 55mpg after 6 months. Driving for economy doesn’t mean driving slowly. I just make sure I accelerate gradually and don’t leave braking until the last minute.

  6. In this month’s newsletter, Lexus are advocating saving fuel by “Consider using cruise control to maintain a steady speed”.
    This is not viable when you approach inclines as the engine will do it’s best to maintain the current speed for as long as possible then increase revs to maintain the speed. Surely a better approach is to maintain the throttle pressure, even if this means a slight drop in speed.
    Naturally this can only be achieved if you are not holding up traffic behind you.

  7. Does the Lexus ux250h sport design 2023 model
    Have auto folding door mirrors when you lock the doors when Leaving the car ?
    Also does it have the paddles on the steering wheel?

    1. Hello Neil, thanks for your question.

      The UX 250h F Sport Design has auto-folding door mirrors. In regards to your second question, the F Sport Design does not have paddle shifters.


          1. An increasing number of automakers are offering low-speed cruise control with stop-and-go. In traffic, when the car ahead stops, so does yours, and when the car ahead moves yours does too, while maintaining the set distance away from it.
            Does the 2023 ux 250h sport design have this feature

          2. Hello Neil, thanks for your question.

            The UX 250h has this feature as part of its cruise control system. This is across all grades.


  8. Hello all, I see here a lot of conversation. Whatever anybody knows me, how much save fuel hybrid Lexus car. Day by day, fuel marketing is increasing high. I’m worried about this. Thank you all.

  9. I have ordered a new Lexus NX 450h Plug in Hybrid to arrive in July.
    My dealership offered British Gas to install an EV charge point in my garage.
    On December 15 I received an email from British Gas with a reference number and order details.
    Have spoken to British Gas today and told a new email will be sent to complete the order.
    Instead received an Email from Local heroes to say the engineer had cancel the contract and would not fit the unit ???
    What is happening between Lexus and British Gas??

    1. Hello John, thanks for your order.

      We can confirm that Lexus are still working with British Gas. We would recommend contacting your Lexus Centre regarding this.


  10. I ordered an ES300h Takumi in January 2022 and I am still awaiting delivery. When I ordered it I was told delivery would be around six months. Now I am told it might be July ‘23 – a year later than originally promised. Very disappointed with this level of service from Lexus. I think you need to be more honest with your customers.

    1. Hello David,
      Thank you very much for your patience.
      Unfortunately, factors outside of our control are causing delays and longer lead times than we would like.
      Your Lexus Centre are best placed to provide you with updated ETAs of your order.

      1. Why are they best placed? No they aren’t. Lexus is best placed because you manage the build schedules and know when my car is going to be built. The dealer has really no idea as evidenced by a succession of delivery dates that have been promised and then missed. You have above underlined my comment about poor customer service and lack of honesty.

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