2015 Lexus NX Compact Crossover Coming With Turbo, Hybrid Power

April 11, 2014
Small cars and crossovers are getting to be a big business among luxury automakers, and Lexus is finally ready to get in on the action with its new 2015 Lexus NX. Lexus will reveal its new compact crossover on April 20th at the Beijing Auto Show, and the 2015 NX will be tasked with taking on rivals like the Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class and BMW X1.

As a global offering, the NX has a total of three different powertrains, but U.S. buyers will only be able to choose from the turbocharged NX 200t or the hybrid NX 300h; a naturally aspirated NX 200 will be sold in other markets. This is the first-ever Lexus model to use a turbocharged engine, and while the output is still unknown, the four-cylinder engine has 2.0 liters of displacement. The NX 200t will come standard with front-wheel drive, but it will offer all-wheel drive as an option.

Even less information is known about the NX 300h, but based on the model’s nomenclature and the image of under the hood, it looks like it uses the same hybrid powertrain as the ES 300h. The NX 300h marks the brand’s sixth hybrid model.

Previewed by the bold looks of last year’s LF-NX Concept vehicles, the 2015 NX brings an edgy new styling theme to Lexus’ utility vehicle lineup. The focal point of the NX is definitely its face with an oversized version of Lexus’ spindle grille, narrow headlights and separate Nike-swoosh LED running lights. The shape of these signature lighting elements are mirrored at the rear of the NX courtesy of the standard LED taillights.

2015 Lexus NX 200t F Sport

2015 Lexus NX 200t F Sport

Judging by these initial images, the key changes between the turbo and hybrid NX models are the front and rear fascias with different grilles and fog lights up front and exposed exhaust outlets on the turbo out back. While it’s a matter of personal opinion as to whether the NX is good looking or not, it definitely brings some much-needed flash to Lexus’s vehicle design. To make a better case, the NX 200t will also be available in F Sport trim, adding an even sportier look to the small crossover. 

Inside, the F Sport is even easier to distinguish from the hybrid with a darker them and different seats. All models get plenty of leather throughout the cabin (including on the instrument panel) and a metallic center stack design that mimics the shape of Lexus’ controversial grille. Overall, the NX has a sporty interior very similar to the IS sedan, but it still has all of the luxury and technology we’ve come to expect from the luxury automaker. Lexus introduces its latest Remote Touch Interface in the NX, which still utilizes a mouse-like controller but adds even more functionality with a new touch pad.

There's no word as to when the 2015 Lexus NX will go on sale or how much it will cost, but we expect to see it in showrooms by the end of the year priced in the low-$30,000 range.


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