Ahead of its Australian arrival in November, Lexus has revealed the second-generation NX, with the new mid-size SUV offering two hybrid options, including a plug-in (PHEV) for the first time.
As expected, the latest NX uses the same TNGA-K platform as the Toyota RAV4, which is why it shares three of its four global powertrain options with the best-seller, although they do help it stand out from the competing BMW X3, Audi Q5, Volvo XC60 and Mercedes-Benz GLC.
Confirmed for Australia, the NX350h ‘self-charging’ hybrid is the equivalent of the RAV4 Hybrid, with it too available in front-wheel-drive (FWD) and all-wheel-drive (AWD) configurations, likely with 160kW and 163kW power outputs respectively.
While not yet locked in for a local launch, the AWD-only NX450h+ plug-in hybrid is the equal to the not-for-Australia RAV4 Prime, with it expected to produce the same 225kW.
For reference, both hybrid powertrains pair a 2.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol with one (FWD) or two (fully variable AWD) electric motors, while an electronic continuously variable transmission (e-CVT) is used either way.
The NX450h+ has an 18.1kWh lithium-ion battery that provides an estimated 75km of WLTP electric-only range. It doesn’t support DC fast-charging and instead relies on AC charging to replenish its capacity.
Claimed fuel consumption for the NX350h and NX450h+ is yet to be released, with the same true of the NX’s other two main powertrain options.
Speaking of which, the entry-level NX250 set for local sales is powered by the RAV4’s 2.5-litre naturally four-cylinder petrol engine, with it mated to an eight-speed torque-converter automatic transmission and FWD or AWD. It’s likely to develop 152kW/243Nm.
Then there’s the NX350, which debuts Lexus’ new 2.4-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder engine, although its power and torque outputs are also a mystery for now.
While the NX350 features an eight-speed torque-converter automatic transmission like the NX250, it sets itself apart by only coming with an electronically controlled full-time AWD system.
As reported when the new NX was leaked inside and out in February, the model’s exterior hasn’t radically changed, although it’s now more closely aligned with the UX small SUV, particularly at the rear, where the tail-lights are linked by a now-familiar light bar.
And of course, a sportier F Sport grade is once again available for the NX, with it ushering more aggressive bumpers, a mesh ‘spindle’ grille insert and unique 20-inch alloy wheels as well as adaptive dampers, which complement the range-wide variable-ratio steering.
It’s also worth noting ‘LEXUS’ lettering now appears on the NX’s tailgate, with it taking the place of the traditional logo badge as part of the brand’s new design language.
For reference, the new NX has a 2690mm wheelbase (+30mm) and measures 4660mm long (+20mm), 1865mm wide (+20mm) and 1640mm tall (+5mm).
That said, the NX’s interior has been seriously redesigned, with a 14.0-inch central touchscreen now positioned low on the dashboard and angled towards the driver.
Powered by an overhauled multimedia system with always-on natural voice control, the set-up does away with most physical climate controls, with only temperature dials remaining, while a volume knob also carries over.
Critically, the centre console’s polarising touchpad controller has been deleted, although the steering wheel now has two touchpads, with one able to control the central touchscreen, while the other is solely responsible for the digital instrument cluster.
A head-up display is also available alongside a 17-speaker Mark Levinson surround-sound system, a wireless smartphone charger and ambient lighting, while a digital key allows the driver/s to access the vehicle without a traditional key fob and even share it with a non-owner.
Finally, new advanced driver-assist systems for the NX include front cross-traffic alert, remote park assist and Safe Exit Assist, while its autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and lane-keep/steering assist systems now have intersection assist and emergency functionality respectively.
This content was originally published here.