Lexus Australia has confirmed that it will introduce both a hybrid (NX 300h*) and turbo (NX 200t*) variant of its all-new compact SUV, the NX, into one of Australia’s fastest growing vehicle segments.
The NX 300h, due for launch in the fourth quarter of 2014, will be offered with an efficient yet powerful 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol electric hybrid drivetrain.
NX 200t, due for launch early in 2015, will debut an all-new, Lexus developed, 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo drivetrain with Lexus’ first stop-start system.
Both vehicle lines will be available in a choice of either two or all-wheel drive, the latter featuring an innovative E-Four AWD system on the hybrid model.
Lexus Australia Chief Executive Sean Hanley said that confirmation of the new model for Australia will give customers in the luxury market greater choice and access to levels of service unmatched in the segment.
“With the arrival of NX, customers will have access to two innovative and advanced powertrains, both ideally matched to the needs of the compact SUV owner,” Mr Hanley said.
“With its high levels of specification, innovative features, standout looks and access to Lexus’ unrivalled customer service program – ENCORE – the NX is sure to delight customers.
“NX arrives at a time when Lexus is on the ascendancy – growth driven by an expanding product range and strong hybrid sales,” he said.
Chief engineer of the NX Takeaki Kato said that the NX was developed as a premium SUV with high performance and abundant functions, packaged with attractive exterior and interior design, creating a sense of desire for customers.
“Luxury is epitomised by small but important details and much like high quality sports watches, bikes and fashion, the NX represents the ultimate in premium urban sports gear,” Mr Kato said.
From concept to reality, the NX has been substantially influenced by the LF-NX concept vehicles that were debuted at the 2013 Frankfurt and Tokyo motor shows.
The NX combines athletic styling with function to deliver a vehicle that is practical yet aesthetically appealing, nimble yet muscular.
When viewed from above, the front and rear flares protrude from a diamond-shaped body that emanates from the spindle grille.
The bold flared wheel arches house 17- or 18-inch wheels that add to the overall crouching, muscular stance of the NX.
Innovative LED headlamps and daytime running lamps firmly express Lexus’ bold design language.
The side profile is accentuated by a roofline peak, set towards the back of the vehicle, to provide ample head room for rear seat occupants, while creating a tight silhouette.
The rear is punctuated by Lexus’ signature ‘L’ shape combination lamps, each with seamless LED lighting, while the bodywork echoes the spindle grille design at the front.
Small details such as metallic flake in wheel arch surrounds, courtesy lamps, pronounced chrome exhaust tips, an innovative outer mirror and a world-first door handle mechanism (with a hidden key barrel and integrated lighting) add to NX’s luxury appearance.
The interior of the NX brings a sense of excitement to the cabin atmosphere and has been designed to capture the thought of “Premium Urban Sports Gear”.
The core idea was to combine the structural beauty of a high-performance machine with materials and textures that provide luxury and functionality.
The centre silver frame is strongly embedded into the instrument panel to symbolise the strength of the crossover SUV.
Strongly padded knee areas on both sides of the centre console firmly support the driver and passenger. Advanced HMI (Human Machine Interface) technology provides intuitive interaction and creates an advanced impression.
The NX continues Lexus’ display and operation zone concept – with all functionary items placed on a lower plane and information devices housed along the upper dash.
Interior space played a significant role in the cabin design, and seating was a major focus.
The NX possesses the lowest hip point in the segment, adding to the connection of the driver to the vehicle and increasing overall head room. The NX has the longest luggage load length and offers wide front to rear couple distance.
A quilted pattern in the seats and varied cushion thicknesses are used to express the crossover intention of the vehicle.
The tough, metallic feel of the dynamic centre silver frame and the materials that wrap around it provide contrasting textures in tautness and softness.
The combination creates a unique atmosphere expressed as “Lexus Urban Sports Gear”.
The NX 300h will feature a 2.5-litre Atkinson cycle hybrid petrol electric engine, developing a combined 145kW, offering the choice of front- or all-wheel drive.
Lexus NX introduces the all-new 2.0-litre turbo petrol engine to the Lexus powertrain line-up.
As the most powerful engine in the NX line-up, the all-new 2.0-litre turbo will deliver 175kW of power and 350Nm of torque, and has been engineered to achieve a balance between fuel economy, acceleration and power.
The direct injection engine is matched to a specially developed six-speed automatic transmission tuned for the NX.
The NX adopts highly sophisticated HV control especially developed for the NX, with proven Lexus 2.5-litre Atkinson cycle engine, generator, motor and battery.
Special features of the hybrid model include sprung-weight damping control to increase ride comfort and handling stability, by reducing pitching on uneven road surfaces.
The new Lexus 2.0-litre turbo engine was tested for more than one-million kilometres, for driving in various road conditions including harsh environments.
The new turbo engine has a world-first combination of water-cooled cylinder head, integrated exhaust manifold and twin-scroll turbocharger.
A new six-speed automatic transmission is adopted to match with the new turbo engine.
The new six-speed automatic transmission features new torque-demand control logic, which calculates required engine torque and maximises it, delivering quick response to acceleration and exhilarating acceleration feel combined with fuel efficiency.
Chassis and suspension*
The NX has been designed to deliver agile handling, stability, turning posture and ride comfort, including yaw-rate response to steering input and stability on uneven road surfaces.
The foundation for the vehicle’s sophisticated suspension is a highly rigid body with extensive under-body reinforcement.
The new body has a comprehensive suite of reinforcements including additional bulkheads, spot welding, suspension braces and the use of Lexus body adhesive, laser-screw welding and high-rigidity glass adhesive.
Selected NX models have newly developed dampers and Lexus’ new-generation linear-solenoid type Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS).
Linked to the drive mode select system, it is able to change the level of damping force, enhance ride comfort and ensuring peace of mind due to reduced roll.
NX Line will include a comprehensive active package. With selected models receiving a full-range Panoramic View Monitor, All-speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Departure Alert (LDA), Blind Spot Monitor, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert and Head-Up Display.
The Lexus-first Panoramic View Monitor is the highest resolution camera to be offered on a Lexus vehicle.
Selected NX SUVs will also introduce All-speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, capable of following the preceding vehicle and bring the NX to a complete stop.
Overall Length: 4,630 mm
Overall Width: 1,845 mm
Overall Height: 1,645 mm (with shark fin antenna),
Wheel Base: 2,660 mm
Tread Front/Rear (with 225 tyre): 1,580 mm/1,580mm
Tread Front/Rear (with 235 tyre): 1,570 mm/1,570mm
Total System Output: 145 kW
Max Output: 175 kW @ 4,800-5,600 rpm
Max Torque: 350 Nm @ 1,650-4,000 rpm