Lexus has launched the midlife update of one of its most popular models, the NX mid-size SUV, which now starts from $54,800 plus on-road costs. The updated Lexus NX competes in a crowded segment against the hugely successful Audi Q5, as well as the BMW X3, Volvo XC60 and Mercedes-Benz GLC.
Originally revealed at the 2017 Shanghai Motor Show in April, the facelifted Lexus NX brings new suspension tuning, added equipment for all models, slightly sharper styling, a front-wheel drive F Sport model and the changing of the former NX200t’s name to NX300.
Lexus chief executive Peter McGregor said the comprehensive NX updates reflect the focus by Lexus on design, craftsmanship, quality and technology.
“Improvements to the NX styling and dynamics will enhance its appeal by projecting a sportier character from what is already one of the sharpest luxury SUVs on the road,” Mr McGregor said.
“New and expanded features will be appreciated by consumers for enhancing ease of use, convenience and comfort while delivering an even more luxurious feel,” he said.
Pricing for the updated Lexus NX range now starts from $54,800 plus on-road costs – $1,250 up on the 2017 model, an increase Lexus says is justified by the addition extra standard equipment across the range. The NX range remains largely unchanged from 2017, with NX200t becoming NX300 and new front-wheel drive F Sport variants for buyers that don’t need all-wheel drive but want the sportier F Sport styling. Both the NX300 and NX300h are available in each model spec – Luxury, F Sport and Sports Luxury.
NX300 variants use the same 2.0-litre turbocharged four as NX200t, with unchanged 175kW and 350Nm peak power and torque figures. The hybrid NX300h drivetrain also remains unchanged, with a 2.5-litre four cylinder engine combined with one (2WD) or two (AWD) electric motors for a combined total of 147kW/210Nm. Lexus claims 7.7L-7.9L/100km (2WD – AWD) for the NX300 and 5.6L-5.7L/100km (2AWD – AWD) on a combined fuel economy cycle.
The NX300 Luxury – the entry level Lexus NX in Australia – starts at $54,800 in front-wheel drive form, or $59,300 for the all-wheel drive variant. Hybrid models start at $57,300 for front-drive, or $61,800 for all-wheel drive. NX Luxury models gain Lexus’ Safety System+, which now incorporates pre-collision and lane departure warnings, blind-spot monitoring, rear traffic alert and radar cruise control. NX Luxury models also gain automatic high beam, and auto-dimming exterior mirrors as well.
Standard equipment on the NX range also includes a new 10-inch infotainment system with inbuilt satellite navigation and digital radio, a reversing camera, a 10-speaker sound system, dual-zone climate control, tyre pressure monitoring and 60:40 split rear seats.
F Sport models are priced from $60,800 for the NX300 front-wheel drive variant (AWD is $65,300 – +$910) and from $63,300 for the NX300h ($67,800 for AWD – +$480). F Sport models add a 360-degree parking camera, wireless phone charging for compatible devices, paddle shifters, multi-LED headlights, performance dampers, sportier interior and exterior styling, as well as 10-way powered front seats with both heating and cooling and a driver’s memory function.
The top of the range NX is the Sports Luxury, which is AWD only. Priced from $73,800 for the NX300 or $76,300 for the NX300h, the NX300 sees a $819 price increase, though the NX300h sees a $200 price reduction. Sport Luxury models gain a sunroof (moonroof in Lexus terminology), heated rear seats, new woodgrain trim, a 14-speaker Mark Levinson sound system, a heads-up display and keyless entry and start over the F Sport.
Lexus offers optional equipment for the NX range, including $1,000 premium paint, a $2,500 moonroof package for Luxury and F Sport models, as well as a $6,000 enhancement package for F Sport and Luxury models, which includes a moonroof, 14-speaker Mark Levinson sound system, heads-up display and keyless entry and start from the Luxury Sport grade.
2018 Lexus NX pricing (plus on-road costs):
NX300 Luxury: $54,800
NX300h Luxury: $57,300
NX300 Luxury AWD: $59,300
NX300h Luxury AWD: $61,800
NX300 F-Sport: $60,800
NX300h F-Sport: $63,300
NX300 F-Sport AWD: $65,300
NX300h F-Sport AWD: $67,800
NX300 Sport Luxury: $73,800
NX300h Sport Luxury: $76,300
The 2018 Lexus NX range is in Lexus showrooms now, with the Japanese luxury brand no doubt looking to increase its sales as a result of this mid-life update.
Stay tuned to Chasing Cars for news and reviews regarding the Lexus range.