In a word: comfortable. That is the best one-word summary of our long road trip in the Lexus HS 250h. Two words? VERY comfortable.

Our road trip was from metro Detroit to Cedar Point, a round trip of about 250 miles, mostly on the freeway using cruise control. Our average miles per gallon was 37.6, which meant we made the entire trip, including rest and food stops, on about ¾ of a tank of gas. The ride was smooth and comfortable, no complaints from the pre-teen and teenager in the back seat about lack of leg room, no arguing over who was touching whom. There was plenty of room back there for them, their tiny electronics, handbags, snacks, and small cooler.

(Read my first impression of the HS 250h and my review after a day of running errands in the Lexus here.)

My only complaint, now that I’m used to the armrest, is that the button on the key fob that is supposed to open the trunk doesn’t work. The other buttons, the ones that lock and unlock the car, work perfectly, so I don’t’ think it’s the battery… but the trunk button stubbornly refuses to open the trunk. This complaint may seem minor until your arms are full of amusement park necessities and you’re fumbling with the key fob in the dark.

I keep coming back to the comfort of the vehicle, wanting to say more about it. The front seats adjust in seemingly endless combinations, and the controls are very easy to use. The seats feel plush, cushy, like they were designed for a long ride. Both front seats have their own temperature control to cool or heat the seat. There’s no need for a separate lumbar pillow or to get out and stretch my legs. The driver’s seat is that comfortable.

The performance and handling are also remarkable in that I can think of nothing negative to say. Michigan is famous for its highways, pock-marked with potholes, but the HS 250h absorbed all of the shock so the ride was incredibly smooth. The braking was quiet and responsive, the thin whirr of the regenerative braking barely noticeable. Pick-up was immediate, smooth, and fast, without hesitation.

Ironic that I wanted the ride to the amusement park to be smooth, then spent the entire day being jerked around and abused by a dozen roller coasters that could only dream of being as enjoyable a ride as the HS 250h.