We’ve by no means thought of the Lexus NX a frontrunner in its section. Whereas a premium compact SUV promising Lexus reliability and finishes looks like a wonderfully affordable proposition on paper, the NX didn’t strike us as the right execution of that philosophy. Effectively, it was redesigned from the bottom up (What, you couldn’t inform?) for 2022 and now packs a brand new inside, vastly improved (however nonetheless imperfect) tech and a four-pronged powertrain offensive comprising two gasoline-only choices alongside two hybrids.
Whereas NX fashions powered completely by gasoline are completely acceptable transportation gadgets, we would not essentially advocate them over any of their rivals. Nonetheless, each hybrids provide powertrains that aren’t but commonplace amongst small luxurious SUVs. The NX 350h hybrid returns a whopping 39 mpg mixed, which is exponentially higher than its gas-only rivals, even when its acceleration is missing. Nonetheless, we significantly like the brand new NX 450h+, which largely shares its plug-in hybrid powertrain with the also-excellent Toyota RAV4 Prime. PHEVs on this area are few and much between, and with 302 horsepower and 37 miles of all-electric vary, the 450h+ checks bins most producers can’t even promote; solely Volvo provides a compelling different.
Inside & Know-how | Passenger & Cargo House | Efficiency & Gas Financial system
What it is prefer to drive | Pricing & Options | Crash Scores & Security Options
What’s new for 2022?
Whereas the NX could not look new, it is the truth is a clean-sheet redo primarily based new, elementary structure that helps expanded electrification. This innovation has spawned a brand new plug-in hybrid mannequin dubbed 450h+. The PHEV provides 304 horsepower and 37 miles of all-electric vary and now sits atop the NX heap, with the usual hybrid slotting beneath it sporting a “350h” badge. There’s additionally a brand new base mannequin that includes the identical gas-only naturally aspirated four-cylinder because the Toyota RAV4. You’ll be able to learn extra about all of the adjustments in Autoblog’s NX first drive evaluate.
Whereas it might be troublesome to inform the second-generation NX aside from its predecessor from a fast look on the exterior, the identical can’t be facet of the cabin. The 2022 NX sports activities a redesigned inside bereft of the foolish previous touchpad infotainment interface Lexus dedicated to when this very mannequin was launched manner again in 2014. A brand new touchscreen (sure, contactdisplay) unit sits atop a middle stack that now not juts into the entrance passenger area. As a substitute, it sits over a concave middle console that homes a brand new, Prius-inspired gear selector. The fundamental format shares nearly nothing with the mainstream Toyota RAV4 and the supplies used are applicable for a Lexus. That mentioned, we may do with out the foolish digital door handles.
Whereas the redesigned cabin helps the otherwise-identical-looking NX from coming off as fully stale, the largest upgrades are technological, not aesthetic. The brand new infotainment is powered by a regular 9.Eight-inch display with devoted bodily local weather management toggles or an non-compulsory 14-inch unit that includes a devoted mix of touch-sensitive and bodily consolation controls blended into the display’s decrease bezel. Regardless of which you select, you get a bodily quantity knob. This represents an unlimited enchancment over that discovered within the earlier NX (and principally each different Lexus) however lacks split-screen performance and another primary gadgets, like a devoted residence display.
The infotainment display is fitted to a panel that blends into the instrument show, which itself contains a 7-inch display. Sixty-four-color ambient lighting is offered, together with wi-fi charging and a 10-inch head-up show (it is managed by unmarked buttons on the steering wheel, which is bizarre and will be troublesome to make use of). There’s additionally wi-fi Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, built-in music streaming companies resembling Apple Music, a digital cellphone key, person profiles for automotive settings, digital rearview mirror, plus an AI assistant that responds to pure speech instructions.
The Lexus NX matches into the compact luxurious SUV section. Populated by the likes of the BMW X3, Audi Q5, Acura RDX and new Genesis GV70, this class appears to develop bigger yearly — each by way of the dimensions of its constituents and the sheer amount out there. The NX itself gained an extra 5 cubic toes of cargo quantity with its redesign however that did nearly nothing to enhance its stature in a discipline the place it stays one of many smallest entries, corresponding to the likes of the Alfa Romeo Stelvio. In actual fact, though the NX’s exterior dimensions considerably exceed these of subcompacts just like the BMW X1, Audi Q3 and Mercedes GLA, its inside dimensions are fairly comparable. On this manner, it isn’t not like non-luxury midcompact SUVs just like the Mazda CX-30.
The NX now comes with 4 out there engines and is obtainable in each front- and all-wheel-drive configurations.
The brand new NX 250 (above, prime left nook) has a 2.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder. Paired with an eight-speed automated, it produces 203 horsepower and 184 pound-feet – simply as that engine does in its platform relative, the Toyota RAV4. With front-wheel drive, that is rated at 26 mpg metropolis, 33 mpg freeway and 28 mpg mixed. Choosing all-wheel drive solely prices 1 mpg (each metropolis and freeway), for last figures of 25/32/28.
The NX 350 (above, backside left nook) and its new 2.Four-liter turbocharged inline-four are good for 275 hp and 317 lb-ft of torque. That output exceeds the BMX X3 xDrive30i, Mercedes GLC 300 and Acura RDX, particularly by way of torque. Oddly, although, its estimated Zero-60 time of 6.6 seconds can be a couple of half-second slower than the X3 and GLC regardless of its energy benefit. It’s rated at 22 mpg metropolis, 29 mpg freeway and 25 mpg mixed with its commonplace all-wheel drive.
The brand new hybrid powertrain within the rechristened NX 350h (above, prime proper) produces 239 complete system horsepower. This method incorporates an electronically managed repeatedly variable transmission and due to its commonplace rear motor, contains all-wheel drive. Gas financial system checks in at 41 mpg metropolis, 37 mpg freeway and 39 mpg mixed.
Finally, essentially the most interesting powertrain choice is discovered within the new NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid (above, backside proper). Its electrical motor supplies the graceful, easy punch anticipated of a PHEV because of its 304 complete system horsepower. Lexus says the NX 450h+ can do 37 miles on electrical energy alone. As soon as that’s depleted and it begins behaving like an everyday hybrid, you’re 36 mpg mixed. Sure, that’s down from the usual hybrid, however bear in mind, you’re getting one other 63 horsepower and a a lot larger (learn: heavier) battery.
A tow package deal out there beginning later within the 2022 mannequin 12 months permits the NX to trailer as much as 2,000 kilos.
The NX’s powertrain overhaul reworked it from certainly one of least-potent compact crossovers to one of many strongest on paper, nevertheless it’s nonetheless probably not a performance-focused mannequin. The 450h+ plug-in hybrid and 350 turbo are each highly effective however heavy, and the softly suspended NX (even in F Sport guise) errs on the facet of consolation. The seats are enough, however we’d prefer to see extra adjustment for the bottom place and maybe some extra thigh help.
Other than these quibbles, the NX is a usually nice drive. The experience is snug, although we’d warning you to skip the F Sport and its larger wheels if that’s your precedence, even when that package deal’s included adaptive suspension helps easy out the rougher edges a tad. The NX’s quick wheelbase relative to the competitors ought to make it simpler to maneuver in tight areas, however its FWD-based powertrain principally negates that benefit; its turning radius is nearly equivalent to the GLC 300’s.
What different Lexus NX critiques can I learn?
2022 Lexus NX First Drive Evaluate | Consider us, it truly is all new
This quietly competent crossover is at its greatest in NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid type
2022 Lexus NX touchscreen infotainment evaluate
New touchscreen indicators the top of Distant Contact and the way forward for Lexus tech
The NX will be had in six totally different variants, beginning with the NX 250 at $39,Zero25. This FWD mannequin is pretty barebones, providing artificial seating surfaces, eight-way energy adjustable entrance seats, a 10-speaker audio system and wi-fi Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. LED headlights and DRLs are additionally commonplace, as are auto-dimming facet mirrors.
Larger-end fashions can be found with such luxurious options as a superb 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio system, built-in navigation (with the 12-inch infotainment system), a heated steering wheel and an influence liftgate, amongst many others.
Every trim above the bottom comes commonplace with AWD and more and more strong powertrains and inside packages. Each the turbocharged NX 350 AWD and the NX 450h+ will be optioned with an F Sport dealing with package deal. Right here’s a full trim breakdown with vacation spot prices included:
- NX 250: $39,Zero25
- NX 250 AWD: $40,625
- NX 350 AWD: $42,625
- NX 350 F Sport Dealing with AWD: $47,725
- NX 350h AWD: $42,125
- NX 450h+ AWD: $56,725
- NX 450h+ F Sport Dealing with AWD: $57,975
The 2022 Lexus NX has not but been crash examined by a 3rd get together however the earlier mannequin was awarded an IIHS Prime Security Choose+ for 2021 and an general 5-star score from NHTSA. We anticipate the brand new mannequin to carry out equally.
Commonplace security tools on the 2022 NX contains adaptive cruise management with cease/begin performance; ahead and rear collision detection, avoidance and automated emergency braking; lane preserving help and lane departure warning with steering intervention; automated excessive beams and blind-spot warning. The automotive can even forestall you from opening the doorways if it detects incoming automobiles and cyclists from the rear.
Accessible security options embrace a surround-view digital camera system, an enhanced blind-spot warning system, entrance cross-traffic alerts, corner-adaptive headlights and a digital rearview mirror.