Lexus NX

The Lexus NX is available in two basic guises, NX200t and NX300h. The NX200t is powered by a 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, making 235 horsepower. Power is sent to the front wheels via a 6-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is an option across the entire NX lineup. The NX300h is powered by a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine that is assisted by an electric motor. Lexus has developed a "kick-down" feature for its hybrid system, which allows for more immediate power delivery on the highway.

The NX is a Lexus and comes accordingly with a nice list of standard equipment. This includes a smart key with easy access entry and a pushbutton start, dual-zone automatic climate control, one-touch power windows, cruise control, a leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, a 7-inch LCD display, a 4.2-inch TFT color display in the instrument cluster, a power liftgate, an 8-speaker premium sound system, Lexus' Enform safety connect system and a USB port for iPod connectivity.

Several option packages are available to help focus the NX toward either additional comfort or a sportier driving experience. The F-Sport package includes stiffer suspension, a racier interior with various "F" badges, a more aggressive front grille, perforated leather on the steering wheel and shift knob, a black headliner, a boost gauge, steering wheel mounted paddle shifters and 18-inch alloy wheels.

The Luxury package takes the NX in the opposite direction by adding a heated steering wheel, perforated leather seating surfaces, wood interior trim, front seat power cushion extenders, rain sensing wipers and a power rear door.

A premium package features heated and ventilated front seats, a power operated moonroof, LED daytime running lights and 18-inch wheels.

The Navigation package features a voice-activated navigation system, but also adds a touchpad to help control the system, as well as a host of other technology features. These include Lexus' Enform app suite, a 10-speaker premium sound system, SiriusXM satellite radio and an additional USB port.

Finally comfort package adds various memory functions to the seats, a Homelink built-in garage remote, a power tilt and telescoping steering column and an auto-dimming rearview mirror with a compass feature.

Editors' Review

It's always interesting to review a car in the last year before its major refresh. By this point, the engineers and designers and bean-counters have likely reached a consensus that the car has come as far as it can. It's as good as it'll ever be. That's the case with the Lexus NX, which entered production in 2014.

Now that everyone's a home baker, I'll present this analogy: The 2020 Lexus NX is like a fine loaf of bread that someone took a lot of time and effort to make with good ingredients, but they forgot to add salt. In other words, the NX does everything a compact luxury crossover should do: It carries people in comfort, offers lots of room for cargo and is adorned with nice materials. There just isn't much in the way of flavor.

F Sport in name only

The NX 300 F Sport tested here is the top-shelf non-hybrid NX. It packs a 2.0-liter turbocharged I4 engine with a not-exactly-class-leading 235 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, the latter of which is available from 1,650 rpm. Power goes to all four wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission, with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.

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The Good ~ Comfy ride ~ Impressive list of standard safety tech ~ Buttery-soft leather

The Bad ~ Lousy infotainment tech ~ Underpowered compared to competitors ~ Interior design is a bit weird

The Bottom Line The Lexus NX isn't the most exciting entry in the compact luxury crossover class, but it remains a solid choice for people who prioritize comfort above all.

Editors' Rating
  • Performance 7
  • Features 7.5
  • Design 7.5
  • Media 6.5

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