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Lexus RX 450h Towing Capacity: Can It Tow A Trailer, Boat, Or Jet Ski?

Lexus is a high-end luxury brand that manufactures multi-purpose vehicles of the highest quality. This article will discuss the towing capabilities of one of the most popular cars from Lexus, the RX 450h. Does this car have the ability to tow heavy-duty trailers? Let’s find out.

According to the official figures provided by Lexus, all models of the RX 450h have a maximum towing capacity of 3,500 pounds if the car is equipped with all-wheel drive and has the optional towing package installed. If the RX 450h has a 2-wheel drive or all-wheel drive without the towing package, then towing is not recommended.

In this article, we’ll look at the change in the towing capacity of this car over the years. We’ll then identify the weights of various types of trailers to compare them against the towing capacity of this car. Lastly, we’ll compare it against its competition and analyze its performance.

Also read: 6 Common Problems Of A Lexus RX450h Hybrid

Maximum Towing Capacity By Year

The following table highlights the towing capacities of various models of the Lexus RX 450h. Although Lexus has provided official towing numbers for this car, they do not recommend it for regular towing purposes when it’s not equipped with the towing package (referred to in the table as ‘TP’). Also, looking at the table, we can notice that there hasn’t been a change in the towing capacity of this car over these years. We can safely say this car will not likely see any towing improvements in the future either.

YearDrive SystemTowing Capacity (lbs)Note
20212WD / AWDNot recommended
AWD + TP3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20202WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
2019 2WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
2018 2WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20172WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP 3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20162WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20152WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP 3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20142WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP 3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20132WD / AWDNot recommended
AWD + TP 3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20122WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP 3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20112WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP 3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.
20102WD / AWD Not recommended
AWD + TP 3,500This towing capacity includes trailer weight plus cargo weight.

Can It Tow a Trailer, Boat, or Jet Ski?

The following table mentions the weights of several types of trailers in both empty and loaded conditions. You must know the weight of the trailer that you are looking to tow with your car.

All new and old models of the Lexus RX 450h can tow small and medium-sized trailers with a maximum weight limit of 3,500 pounds when they’re AWD and equipped with a towing package. It can tow both empty and loaded trailers, including Canoe/Kayak, Jet Ski, Teardrop, Small Open Utility, and Motorcycle Trailers. You can also tow a few large-sized trailers when they are NOT loaded.

Trailer TypeAverage Empty Weight (lbs.)Average Total Loaded Weight (lbs.)Can A Lexus RX 450h Tow It?
Canoe / Kayak Trailer200                                                 400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Jet Ski Trailer300                                              1,800Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Motorcycle Trailer500                                              2,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Teardrop Trailer1,700                                              2,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Small Open Utility Trailer700                                              2,500Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
A-Frame Camper1,700                                              2,900Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Small Enclosed Utility Trailer1,000                                              3,200Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Fishing Boat Trailer600                                              3,300Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Pop Up Camper2,300                                              3,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Small Travel Trailer2,800                                              3,600Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Tow Dolly600                                              4,000It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Enclosed Utility Trailer2,7007,100It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Small Horse Trailer2,900                                              7,200It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Travel Trailer6,700                                              8,300No.
Car Trailer1,900                                              9,000It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Flatbed Trailer3,000                                            10,400It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Boat Trailer2,200                                            13,600It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Dump Trailer4,500                                            16,900No.
Toy Hauler7,600                                            17,900No.
Large Livestock Trailer7,300                                            18,700No.
5th Wheel Camper12,700                                            18,700No.
Gooseneck Flatbed Trailer7,200                                            23,200No.
  • Kayak: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow a kayak trailer. On average, an empty kayak trailer will weigh 200 pounds. A loaded kayak trailer will weigh an average of 400 pounds with a maximum of 800 pounds which is well within the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Jet Ski Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow a jet ski trailer. On average, an empty jet ski trailer will weigh 300 pounds. A loaded jet ski trailer will weigh an average of 1,800 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds which is within the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Motorcycle Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow a motorcycle trailer. On average, an empty motorcycle trailer will weigh 500 pounds. A loaded motorcycle trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds with a maximum of 3,500 which is within the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Teardrop Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow a teardrop trailer. On average, an empty teardrop trailer will weigh 1,700 pounds. A loaded teardrop trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds which is within the range of the  Lexus RX 450h. Some teardrop trailers will weigh a maximum of 6,000 pounds, outside of the limits of the  Lexus RX 450h.
  • Small Open Utility Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow a small open utility trailer. On average, an empty small open utility trailer will weigh 700 pounds. A loaded small open utility trailer will weigh an average of 2,500 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds which is within the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • A-Frame Camper: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an A-frame camper. On average, an empty a-frame camper weighs 1,700 pounds. A loaded a-frame camper will weigh an average of 2,900 pounds with a maximum of 3,600 pounds which is within the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Small Enclosed Utility Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty small enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty small enclosed utility trailer weighs 1,000 pounds. A loaded small enclosed utility trailer will weigh an average of 3,200 pounds with a maximum of 7,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Fishing Boat Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty fishing boat trailer. On average, an empty fishing boat trailer weighs 600 pounds. A loaded fishing boat trailer will weigh an average of 3,300 pounds with a maximum of 6,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Pop-Up Camper: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty pop-up camper. On average, an empty pop-up camper weighs 2,300 pounds. A loaded pop-up camper will weigh an average of 3,400 pounds with a maximum of 4,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Small Travel Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty small travel trailer. On average, an empty small travel trailer weighs 2,800 pounds. A loaded small travel trailer will weigh an average of 3,600 pounds with a maximum of 4,500 pounds, outside of the range of the  Lexus RX 450h.
  • Tow Dolly: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty tow dolly. On average, an empty tow dolly weighs 600 pounds. A loaded tow dolly will weigh an average of 4,000 pounds with a maximum of 5,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Large Enclosed Utility Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty large enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty large enclosed utility trailer weighs 2,700 pounds. A loaded large enclosed utility trailer weighs an average of 7,100 pounds with a maximum of 10,000 pounds, outside of the range of the  Lexus RX 450h.
  • Small Horse Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty small horse trailer. On average, an empty small horse trailer weighs 2,900 pounds. A loaded small horse trailer weighs an average of 7,200 pounds with a maximum of 8,000 pounds, outside of the range of the  Lexus RX 450h.
  • Car Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty car trailer. On average, an empty car trailer weighs 1,900 pounds. A loaded car trailer weighs an average of 9,000 pounds with a maximum of 15,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Large Flatbed Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty large flatbed trailer. On average, an empty large flatbed trailer weighs 3,000 pounds. A loaded large flatbed trailer weighs an average of 10,400 pounds with a maximum of 26,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Lexus RX 450h.
  • Large Boat Trailer: All Lexus RX 450h with AWD and a towing package will be able to tow an empty large boat trailer. On average, an empty large boat trailer weighs 2,200 pounds. A loaded large boat trailer weighs an average of 13,600 pounds with a maximum of 34,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Lexus RX 450h.

Also read: Types Of Gas A Lexus RX450h Takes (Explained)

How Well Can It Tow Compared to its Competitors?

The following table highlights the towing performance of various luxury SUVs that compete with the Lexus RX 450h. We can note that this car is not as good as some of its rivals for heavy-duty towing.  For instance, the 2021 Audi Q7 provides a towing capacity of 7,700 pounds which is more than double the Lexus RX 450h. Similarly, the 2021 BMW X5, the 2021 Infiniti QX60, and the 2021 Acura MDX have higher towing capacities. Lexus needs to increase the towing capacity of this car by a great margin if they are looking to compete in this category.

Year / Make / ModelMin. Towing Capacity (lbs.)Max. Towing Capacity (lbs.)
2021 Acura MDX5,0005,000
2021 Infiniti QX605,0005,000
2021 Cadillac XT53,5003,500
2021 BMW X57,2007,200
2021 Audi Q77,7007,700