Lexus announced the world premiere of the all-new NX, the first model of Lexus’ next-generation range. The NX, as well as the forthcoming model lineup, comes with new, electrified versions and the latest safety technology.
Since its establishment in 1989, Lexus has been committed to the spirit of innovation and has continued to take on the challenge of providing new technologies and values to its customers. With the launch of the first-generation RX in 1998, Lexus created a new category of luxury crossover SUV and has been a leader in the realm ever since. In 2014, Lexus launched the NX, based on the concept of “Premium Urban Sports Gear.” Since then, the luxury crossover has been well-received by customers for its agile driving performance and powerful design. As of the end of April 2021, the NX has sold a cumulative total of approximately 1 million units in more than 90 countries and regions, and together with the RX, has grown to become a core global model for Lexus.
The new NX is the first model to introduce the next generation of Lexus and is based on the development concept of “Vital x Tech Gear.” This concept combines vital dynamism (Vital) with advanced technology (Tech). The new NX features improved linear response thanks to the strengthening of the car’s fundamentals, a design that attracts attention with athletic proportions, and many advanced, new technologies. Also, in order to establish the unique driving experience to be found in future electrified vehicles, Lexus focused on thoroughly improving driving control, aerodynamics, and weight reduction. In addition, based on the “Lexus Electrified” electrification vision, the new NX will be available as both HEV and―a Lexus first―PHEV, further accelerating the rollout of electrified vehicles. In addition, Lexus will respond to the diversifying needs of customers by offering a wide lineup of powertrains, including models powered by a 2.5-liter naturally-aspirated or a 2.4-liter turbocharged engines, among others.
Lexus has drawn on more than 15 years of hybrid technology expertise to produce its first plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV), the new NX 450h+. The new model will accelerate the roll-out of electrified vehicles under the Lexus Electrified strategy.
The halo electrified model in the new NX range, it features a four-cylinder 2.5-litre hybrid engine and a rechargeable lithium-ion battery with 18.1 kWh, the highest capacity in its class. An additional rear electric motor enables full-time all-wheel drive. The plug-in system produces 306 DIN hp and is expected to give 0-100 km/h acceleration in a little over six seconds. By contrast, estimated CO2 emissions (WLTP combined cycle) of less than 40g/km and fuel economy of less than 3 l/100 km are set to be the best in the NX’s class.
The battery’s size and capacity and Lexus’ electrified efficiency know-how combine to deliver a class-leading EV driving range of 63 km and enable all-electric driving at speeds up to 135 km/h.
The performance and efficiency of the hybrid NX 350h have been taken to a higher level with the introduction of fourth generation Lexus hybrid technology. This provides 22% more power than system in the current model, taking output to 242 DIN hp and improving 0-100 km/h acceleration by 15% to 7.7 seconds, while at the same time giving an expected reduction in CO2 emissions of around 10%.
The NX 350h will be available with both front and all-wheel drive. Towing capacity for the FWD model has been increased to 1,500 kg, matching the capability of the AWD version.
The E-Four electric all-wheel drive system in the new NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid electric and NX 350h hybrid has been upgraded so that the rear electric motor is always operational, providing more torque and giving the driver a greater sense of the car gripping the road.
Both the new 2.5-litre and 2.4-litre turbo petrol engines are available exclusively with AWD. On the 2.4 turbo the electronically controlled full-time system’s capability is increased with pre-torque loading and Dynamic Torque Control, giving the NX impressive performance in low-grip conditions, and stable, faster exiting from corners in on-road driving.
Two new petrol engines will strengthen the new NX’s competitiveness in Russia and Eastern European markets.
The line-up features a 2.4-litre turbocharged unit in the NX 350, developing 279 DIN hp and 430 Nm of torque. Its strength is matched by the rapid response of a Direct Shift eight-speed automatic transmission with new, shorter ratios.
The new NX marks the introduction of a completely new Lexus multimedia platform. The new platform introduces smart services, including advanced cloud navigation (where the local market supports the technology) via the car’s data communication module (DCM). This provides real-time journey information and traffic event updates without using up the owner’s data plan (a four-year data package is included in the car’s purchase price). The system also provides a new ‘Hey Lexus’ assistant, which responds to natural voice command dialogues as if you are conversing with the car.
The standard system Lexus Link Connect, uses a 9.8-inch display with an anti-glare touchscreen and additional buttons for intuitive access to the most frequently used functions. It gives significantly quicker response, with computing power much faster than the previous system.
The Lexus Link Pro system uses a new 14-inch display – one of the largest in it class. It is standard on high grade models and available as an option elsewhere in the new NX range. The high-definition screen presents clear graphics in all lighting conditions, while the speed of CPU (central processing unit) is 3.6 times faster than the current system.
Convenience for everyone on board is addressed with four USB ports in the cabin, two front and two rear. Of these, three are USB-C standard and can be used for device charging. Where specified, the wireless phone charger has 50% faster operation, while there is now wireless connection for smartphone integration using Apple CarPlay. Wired connection using Android Auto is also provided.
A wider range of services and functions can be accessed remotely using the Lexus Link app, for example locking or unlocking the car and activating the air conditioning system to pre-warm or cool the cabin prior to a journey – a function that’s standard across the new NX range.
Owners of the NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid electric can use the app to monitor charging progress, scheduling and settings.
The new NX is Lexus’ first model to feature the third generation of Lexus Safety System +, equipping it as standard with a comprehensive package of active safety and driver assistance features and setting a new benchmark for accident risk detection and prevention measures.
The new e-latch electronic entry and exit system is linked to the car’s Blind Spot Monitor to warn of any traffic or cyclists approaching from the rear. If it detects a risk, it will trigger a warning light and buzzer, and cancel the door unlatching. Lexus believes this system can help prevent 95% of the accidents caused by door opening.