LEXUS RZ450e REVIEWED: Is this some kind of yoke, Lexus?
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Read the Lexus RZ450e review:
At first glance, it’s easy to think that the Lexus RZ450e is little more than rebadged and posher version of the Toyota bZ4X, which isn’t a car which has overly impressed us.
But while the Lexus does share a great deal of its big bits with the Toyota, it also offers a lot more technology, luxury, performance and refinement. In particular it has two fascinating features which are set to be seen on all the cars we will be driving in the future.
But there’s one big talking point that we can’t ignore. The RZ doesn’t have a component which has been considered essential since the invention of the car – a steering column. There is no mechanical connection at all between the driver and the wheels. This is the first car to have that.
Lexus calls it One Motion Grip, or (appropriately) OMG for short. It’s going to be available as an option from 2025, so there is still a wait before you can get your hands on it. The cost is not yet known either.
The tech raises a lot of questions, so let’s deal first with how it works. On cars fitted with OMG, the traditional round steering wheel is replaced with a yoke, like you’d find in an aeroplane cockpit.
Tesla had a yoke on the new Model S and X, but that was just a conventional steering system with a funky steering wheel. This means it has drawbacks and owners have found it tricky to use.
In the RZ, the yoke is connected to sensors and a motor, which then tell another motor down by the wheels what to do via a wire.
The clever part is that the ratio of movement can change depending on the situation. If you are pulling out of a parking space, it takes just a quarter turn to get full lock. Turning from full lock left to all the way right is just 150 degrees, so there is never a need to cross over your arms or shuffle the steering wheel through your hands.
Join Tom as he delivers the first real-world verdict on the RZ450e and THAT steering system. Would you choose a car with a set-up like this? Has Lexus gone too far? Let us know in the comments below.
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