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Old 07-17-14, 06:54 AM   #226
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Interesting numbers for 300h. "Normal" mode is faster than sportmode ( TRC on ) and it gets about the same numbers as many IS300h tests (8.3 sec according to Lexus). That doesn't add up , NX is heavier and has less power. As far as I know all IS 300h test were made at lower altitudes than Whistler.

Anyway, my choice would be 300h without hesitation. It feels more up-to-date in terms of technology and fuel efficiency.
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Old 07-17-14, 11:11 AM   #227
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Thanks for sharing 0-60. I wonder at what altitude the testing took place because I am not too impressed. I thought at minimum mid 7's.
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Old 07-17-14, 03:06 PM   #228
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Interesting numbers for 300h. "Normal" mode is faster than sportmode ( TRC on ) and it gets about the same numbers as many IS300h tests (8.3 sec according to Lexus). That doesn't add up , NX is heavier and has less power. As far as I know all IS 300h test were made at lower altitudes than Whistler.

Anyway, my choice would be 300h without hesitation. It feels more up-to-date in terms of technology and fuel efficiency.
reading over Autoexpress, actually it seems that Hybrid powertrain makes this car feel old and dated.... apparently they associate hybrids with old technology that is out of date :-)

Also, Top Gear says the ride is poor and too harsh, in contrast to everyone else.
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Old 07-17-14, 03:19 PM   #229
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Interesting numbers for 300h. "Normal" mode is faster than sportmode ( TRC on )
i wouldnt be surprised if there was more battery power available first time they did the test or something... it could account for small differences.

Also, hybrid cant really be easily power braked, so 0-60 really sucks in general as you cant rev it to 4500 RPM and drop the brakes/clutch.
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Old 07-17-14, 04:13 PM   #230
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[QUOTE=spwolf;8629875
Also, hybrid cant really be easily power braked, so 0-60 really sucks in general as you cant rev it to 4500 RPM and drop the brakes/clutch.[/QUOTE]

If you owned a hybrid why would you want to do this anyway?
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Old 07-17-14, 04:56 PM   #231
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If you owned a hybrid why would you want to do this anyway?
we are talking about 0-60 stats in automotive media/reviews... unfortunately they are standard by which performance is judged.
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Old 07-18-14, 05:24 AM   #232
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Lexus recently unveiled the production version of its all-new NX compact crossover in majestic Whistler, British Colombia, a couple hours northeast of Vancouver. While the automaker essentially created the crossover segment with its wildly popular RX, this is its first offering in the compact arena, which is literally bursting at the seams with talented options like the Acura RDX, Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLK....

It's the nose, isn't it? You're still looking at the nose. And I don't blame you.

How could you not? The NX's fascia has the most Predator-like design of any modern Lexus. In profile and from a distance, the NX reminded me of one of those phallic-shaped three-wheelers driven by Goldmember in an Austin Powers movie. But that image faded as I started my walk around the mini ute, and the awkward looks grew on me after a couple of days in the saddle.

One could mistake the NX for a mini version of RX, the superstar in the Lexus stable. But comparing the two vehicles side-by-side dispels any real comparisons. Unlike the RX, which is based on the Camry, the NX gets its bones from the Toyota RAV4. While that raised some concern, Lexus promises that 90 percent of the platform has been upgraded, strengthened or modified, so much so that the two vehicles wouldn’t feel related at all. And they were right.

Set to ship late this fall, the NX will be offered with two engine options. The 200t will use an all-new 2.0-liter turbocharged direct injection four-cylinder, a first for Lexus. Using a twin-scroll turbocharger, the new engine produces 235 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque — landing between the boosted 2.0-liter found in the Audi Q5 (220 hp) and the BMW X3 (240 hp). Lexus claims the AWD NX should achieve 21 mpg city and 28 mpg on the highway.

For the Toyota hybrid crowd power, the NX 300h employs Lexus’ Hybrid Drive system with a 154 hp, 2.5-liter Atkinson-cycle engine paired to a 141 hp electric motor. It’s basically the same setup found in the ES 300h, but makes a little less power. In addition, the 300h is also outfitted with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), instead of the 200t’s six-speed automatic transmission. The 300h should realize 33 mpg city and 30 on the highway.


If you can get past the bulbous nose — and that's a sizable "if" to overcome — the NX is a rather attractive machine, incorporating Lexus’s spindle grille, which is surrounded by pair of LED headlamps, fog lamps, and daytime running lamps. Inside, the NX is stylish and comfortable. The front seats are designed with a low hip point for an improved driver position as well as increased headroom. Both the regular and sport seats are comfortable and support you in all the right areas. However, the sport seats are not designed for “big boned” lads like myself, and come off a bit claustrophobic.

The rear seats are spectacular; Lexus spent extra time ensuring adult passengers will fit comfortably. Like most compact utes, it looks like a full-size person will have to be shoe-horned into the back (officially rated at just 36.1 inches of legroom). The NX feels far more spacious in the back than those numbers would suggest, and is one of the roomier compact crossovers I’ve sat in. In fact, we coaxed one of our 6-foot, 3-inch hosts to sit in the NX’s rear seat and he had plenty of head and leg room to move about, even with the front seat set far back. (Well, more room than an economy seat in any airplane.)

That spaciousness takes a toll on storage, where the trunk only offers 17.7 cubic feet — or roughly half of the RAV4, and less than any other competitor. You’ll have to pack prudently for a weekend getaway, especially if you have kids.

Technlogy-wise, the NX is a little above average. All of the latest driver assists are on tap like a pre-collision system, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert and lane departure warning; inside, there's a new touchpad controller in the center console that operates all the navigation and radio functions.

Despite Lexus’ efforts to position this crossover as a sportier vehicle, it just isn’t. That isn’t to say the car was a pleasure to drive; The steering is responsive and lively, it held the road admirably during fast sweeping turns, and absorbed all road imperfections quite well. The ute did heel a little more than I would’ve liked, but that won’t be a problem, unless you drive the vehicle like a sports car.

Lexus claims the NX will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in seven seconds flat with the optional all-wheel drive (AWD) system. Front-wheel drive (FWD) is a tad slower. On the road, both engines provided adequate get-up-and-go, but the nearly 4,000-lb. vehicle could use more power.

Determining value is quite hard here as Lexus wasn’t forthcoming about price. However, it did say the NX will be positioned competitively with its peers and lower than the $42,000 RX. We’re guessing the NX will carry a price tag between $37,000 and $40,000. At that price, luxury buyers should be happy. Yes, the NX could use more power, but offers top-notch styling, superb comfort and an above average ride. And a surprising amount of interior room.

That is, if you don't mind people looking like they've just seen a Predator.
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Old 07-18-14, 04:53 PM   #233
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Default NYTimes.com Review

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/19/au...l?src=twr&_r=0

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Old 07-20-14, 04:58 PM   #234
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Default AlexonAutos.com Article Review

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While Land Rover arguably invented the concept of a luxury SUV with their first Range Rover, the 1998 Lexus RX is the vehicle that’s had the single biggest impact on the luxury industry. Initially derided by the press as a lifted Camry with delusions of grandeur, calling the RX a run away sales success would be an understatement. Lexus’ original crossover now accounts for over a third of the brand’s total volume in America and holds the crown as the best selling luxury vehicle on our shores. Trouble is, the RX has grown over time and is now a half-step too big for European tastes. In the hopes of dominating a third of Lexus brand sales in Europe, Lexus engineers went back to the drawing board and created s little brother for the RX: the 2015 Lexus NX.


Exterior

The right-sized Lexus crossover is, as you’d expect, almost exactly the same size as the Audi Q5, Volvo XC60, BMW X3 and Acura RDX. That puts the NX slightly ahead of the Mercedes GLK, four inches ahead of the 2015 Lincoln MKC and a full foot longer than the Range Rover Evoque. With 6.9 inches of ground clearance the NX should be just as dirt-road capable as the average luxury soft-roader and interestingly Lexus bothers to publish approach and departure angles. In case you’re now wondering, approach is 28.7 degrees in 200t and 300h trim and 16.8 deg in the F-Sport because of the flatter front end. Departure remains 24 degrees on all models.

Before you ask, the NX isn’t a shrunken RX and it isn’t a luxury RAV-4 either. Lexus claims that 90% of the parts are unique to the NX and those that are shared are primarily related to the optional hybrid system. While there are obviously some design similarities with other Toyota and Lexus products, I was hard pressed to find much parts sharing. And I looked.


Thanks to the clean sheet design, the NX is the first Lexus that looks comfortable in the new corporate uniform.While other Lexus models (namely the LS) wear the “spindle” grille surprisingly well, other aspects of the new design language haven’t translated well to the luxury brand’s utility vehicles. The “Nike swoosh” LED daytime running lamp modules that look oddly out-of-place on the IS sedan actually work on the NX and I found myself wondering why. I think the answer can be found in the headlamp module which is much sleeker than in other Lexus models thanks to standard LED low beams. Overall the combination allows for a more balanced front end.

From tip to tail there’s no doubt that the NX’s design won’t be for everyone, but I find that refreshing for a brand long known for design-restraint. I wouldn’t exactly call it the looks ground breaking or polarizing, but this is as close as Lexus has even been. Although Lexus is making an NX F-Sport Hybrid, Lexus has chosen to not offer the aggressive grille and fuel-sipping engine combo in America.



Interior

Meanwhile the interior is less of a departure from Lexus’ past. Taking a page from the IS sedan, the dash is bisected by a center console and multimedia stack with buttons pointed towards the sky. While I think the design is intriguing it suffers from the same problem as the skyward buttons in the MKC, you can’t read them in strong light. Like most of the other entires in this segment the dash is a combination of soft injection molded plastics and stitched pleather but Lexus isn’t going outside their comfort zone to offer a 100% leather dash like you find in some XC60 models.

Following BMW’s lead Lexus has ditched real cow in base models, although you can option up genuine hide in the turbo and hybrid trim (it is oddly absent in the F-Sport). Lexus’ imitation leather, called NuLuxe, is nearly indistinguishable from the real deal and the engineers claim it wears better and doesn’t “pucker” like leather can. Helping keep prices low Lexus also makes real wood an option and unlike most of the lineup you don’t get a choice of veneers.


The front seats proved comfortable during a day’s non-stop driving although the F-Sport seats have an edge in my opinion thanks to the aggressive bolstering. F-Sport models also benefit from contrasting stitching, a red interior option and sport gauge displays in the LCD nestled between the tachometer and speedometer. The rear seats are just as comfortable as the rest of the luxury set but Lexus takes thing to an interesting level offering a power recline feature. (Manual recline is standard.) Opting for the power recline function brings the ability to power fold them via buttons on the seats, in the cargo area and to the left of the steering wheel.

Despite being nearly half a foot shorter than the RX, the small crossover offers nearly identical leg and headroom figures both front and rear, a fact Lexus was very proud of. A quick look at the spec sheet confirms the numbers but also answers the question “why buy an RX?” The RX is several inches wider offering more hip and shoulder room front and rear and offers more than twice the cargo volume behind the second row seats at 40 cubic feet to the NX’s 17.7. Digging farther into the numbers shows that the class leading legroom numbers come at a cost: a cargo area that’s around 33% smaller than the XC60, Q5 or X3. Lexus decided to use a less convenient hard tonneau cover rather than the roller variety, although they did design a slot for it to fit under the floor. Under that load floor you’ll find another novelty: a compact spare tire. With spare tires facing extinction in most European vehicles, Lexus has remained dedicated to the donut. You’ll even find one in the hybrid model.


Infotainment & Gadgets

All US-bound models come standard with a 7-inch display perched high on the dash, unfortunately the distance from the driver and the large plastic bezel conspire to make the screen look smaller than it is. The problem is further compounded by the screen being actually smaller than the competition as well. As with the IS sedan, the standard “display audio” system is the only way you can escape the infamous Lexus Remote Touch system. Thankfully the base system is well featured with HD Radio, SiriusXM, CD player, iPod/Bluetooth integration and weather/traffic displays delivered via HD Radio.

I find myself very conflicted about Lexus’ Enform navigation and infotainment system. When coupled with a touchscreen LCD as in the Lexus GX 460, I find the system easy to use and intuitive. Admittedly the software lacks some of the polish BMW’s iDrive offers, but it’s still one of my favorites. Sadly in most Lexus vehicles the touchscreen has been swapped for a joystick-like device which transforms the system from easy to use to frustration itself. For 2015 Lexus is trying something new: a track pad. The laptop like unit works essentially the same as the former joystick and offers haptic feedback in addition to some limited pinch and scroll gestures. HD Radio support and traffic information via HD radio are standard so you don’t need an XM subscription to get a color-coded traffic map. If you can get beyond the input method, the system proved reliable and moderately intuitive. Overall however I still rank this system below BMW’s iDrive, Audi’s MMI, Infinit’s new two-screen setup, Volvo’s Sensus, and even Mercedes’ aging COMAND system. On the flip side, Lexus is one of the few companies to offer complete voice command of your USB/iDevice ala MyLincolnTouch and the company continues to expand the number of smartphone integrated app features. New for 2015 is an OnStar like app that gives you all the standard “did I lock my car” telematics features in addition to alerting you if the car is speeding, exceeding a Geo-boundary or violating curfew.

While Lexus has offered radar adaptive cruise control for some time, they made a big push for the tech at this event equipping all of the testers with the option. The new system now offers full-speed-range control and brake hold so the system will take you to a stop and hold the vehicle until you tell the car to proceed. Also on offer is a lane keeping system that uses the electric power steering unit to steer the car back in the lane and an optional wireless charging tray in the center console. Like the optional system in the Avalon, the charging tray is Qi compatible only. Hopefully this will become more widely accepted since it’s more of a novelty at the moment. For 2015 the available heads-up-display has been improved and is now larger with a full color display that provides, vehicle speed, navigation instructions and safety system status displays.

2015 Lexus NX 200t Engine

Drivetrain

Under the hood beats the first turbo engine Lexus has sold in America: an all-new 2.0L direct-injection turbocharged four-cylinder engine. While the engineers spent most of their time telling members of the press how fantastic their turbo design is, I was more intrigued that this seems to be the first non-hybrid drivetrain that can switch between an Otto and an Atkinson cycle. (Mazda tells me they do not consider the SkyAcitv design an Atkinson cycle.) The technology behind this is a new variable valve timing system that can adjust the intake and exhaust cam timing independently allowing for a late intake valve closure when efficiency rather than torque is required. Also on the trivia list is an air-to-water intercooler instead of a more typical air-to-air unit. The result is 235 horsepower from 4,800-5,600 RPM and 258 lb-ft from 1,650-4,000 RPM.

Rather than borrowing the 8-speed automatic used in the RX350 F-Sport (and the XC60), Lexus chose to refresh an existing 6-speed auto and tweak it for the turbo engine’s low-end torque. The engineer I spoke with claimed that the rationale behind the missing gears was that “an 8-speed automatic isn’t as much fun with paddle shifters.” Make of that what you will.

No modern Lexus would be compete without a hybrid option so the engineers borrowed the 2.5L four-cylinder based system from the Camry/Avalon/ES300h and dropped it under the hood. The gasoline engine is good for 154 horsepower solo and when coupled with two motor/generator units system power rings in at 194 HP with an undisclosed amount of torque. (My guess is 200 lb-ft.) As with the RX400h, you can add an optional electric rear axle for hybrid ski trips without chaining up. The engineers said the electric rear axle isn’t the same as what is used in the RX450 but the power output is similar at 67 HP max meaning that approximately 35% of system power can be sent to the rear. If that concerns you, fear not, turbo models use a traditional mechanical AWD system with a multi-plate center coupling capable of a 50/50 split.

2015 Lexus NX 300h 044

As with other Lexus models, the NX F-Sport is more of an appearance and handling package than anything else. Although Lexus does lower the final drive ratio a hair resulting in the first gear effective ratio dropping from 13:1 to 14:1, no additional power is on tap from the turbo. I didn’t have time to 0-60 test the models properly but initial testing indicates the lower ratio is good for a [very] slightly reduced sprint to highway speeds. As with other turbo vehicles, expect after-market engine computer upgrades to wring more power out of the mill.

Thanks to the Atkinson cycle implementation, fuel economy is projected to be 22/28/24 (City/Highway/Combined) for the front wheel drive 200t. Adding AWD will drop the city figure by just one MPG while the combined number stays 24 MPG. Hybrid shoppers will get the best fuel economy in the segment at 35/31/33 for FWD models and 33/30/32 with the electric AWD system. Overall the engine bay is stuffed with exactly what you expect from Lexus: the Japanese company is deified by steady progress, not leaps forward.


Drive

Middle of the road is frequently a phrase used to describe Lexus in general. The success of the luxury brand is heavily rooted in offering a product that appeals to the majority of the segment while delivering class leading reliability and a healthy dose of value. This means that although I found the lack of an 8-speed automatic vexing, I have to agree the majority of shoppers will probably not mind the 6-speed transmission. What they may mind however is the turbo lag. All turbo engines have some lag off the line, but the BMW X3 and the FWD versions of the XC60 compensate for this with a very low first gear (16:1 in the X3 28i and 17:1 in the FWD XC60 vs 12.8:1 in the 200t). The 200t’s 13:1 first gear on the other hand is much taller so it takes longer for the engine to get the turbo up to speed. I didn’t have a chance to 0-60 test the 200t for myself but the quoted 7 second time sounds correct and should put the Lexus ahead of the Q5 but behind the Mercedes, BMW and most versions of the Volvo. Opting for the hybrid model will increase your scoot to highway speeds by 1-2 seconds but drastically reduces operating costs by yielding 9 MPG better economy and allowing you to run on regular unleaded.

When the road starts to curve the NX inspires confidence in a way the RX never has. The suspension is moderately firm, the steering is quick (2.68 turns lock to lock) and accurate, and body roll is well controlled. While the NX is likely Lexus’s most firmly spring mainstream vehicle, the F-Sport takes things up a demi-step by stiffening the suspension, adding a dampened strut tower brace and opening the door to 235-width summer tires. Also along for the F-Sport ride is Lexus Active Sound Control which is a canned engine noise system similar to what you find in the BMW M5. Unlike the M5 however Lexus puts a **** in the dash so you can adjust the amount of digital-WRX and (thankfully) turn the entire system off. While at no point was I ever under the impression I was piloting an X3, the 20ot constantly reminded me of the Q5 and XC60, two very solid entries in this segment.


Lexus tells me that pricing will be released closer to the on-sale date in America which will be some time in December and since primary markets for the NX are likely to be China and Europe, we’ll have to wait a while to taste the NX in its final form. As much fun as the 200t proved, the 300h is what sets the Lexus apart from the competition. Sure, Audi’s Q5 hybrid is 50 horsepower more powerful, but the Audi system is also considerably more complex and expensive at $51,000 starting. While Lexus would barely hint on pricing, I expect the NX to start around $35,000 for the 200t model and the NX 300h should undercut the Q5 Hybrid by at least $12,000. At that price I think the hybrid will make the most compelling argument against the Q5, X3 and GLK. (Note that Lexus and I are not on the same wavelength as they think the hybrid will account for less than 10% of sales.) Not only is the Lexus likely to be significantly cheaper than the gasoline/electric Q5, it gets 6-7 MPG better fuel economy on the combined cycle and runs on regular unleaded (unlike the German.) The NX hybrid also manages to sacrifice less in the name of fuel economy than I had expected delivering little difference in handling between turbo and hybrid models. The GLK250 diesel is nearly as efficient as the NX 300h but it runs on more expensive fuel and is unlikely to match the Lexus when it comes to cost of ownership. It’s too early to tell how the NX will be received, but anyone looking for a reliable and efficient crossover with a dose of fun would do well to put the NX on their list, especially if that list includes the XC60, Q5, RDX and MKC. The NX isn’t the most dynamic crossover in the segment, but neither is it a slouch. There are enough gadgets on offer to satisfy your inner nerd and the 300h’s fuel economy will make sure your accountant is happy.

Lexus provided the vehicle, insurance and gasoline for this review at a swanky launch event in Canada.
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Old 07-23-14, 09:34 AM   #235
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The all-new Lexus NX gets concept car looks and rivals the Range Rover Evoque. A new school run favourite?

This is the new Lexus NX. "Oh dear, another posh 4x4 wannabe," I hear you cry - but hold fire, because this car has one or two talking points that mean it's more than just another compact premium SUV.

For starters, just look at the NX. It's edgy and controversial -- and crucially more handsome than the concept car which spawned it. Question is, once the styling has drawn you in, has the NX got substance beneath its crazy skin?

If the outside of the NX is unfamiliar and scary, inside it's all reassuringly Lexus. It's beautifully made, quite funky and angular, and the stereo is great. The annoying mouse control on the centre console has given way to a touchpad to control the main screen. It's not as accurate as BMW or Audi's click-wheels, but it's a big improvement.

The NX certainly looks the fashionista's wagon inside and out, but the drive isn't going to give a BMW X3 nightmares. This NX 200t, packing Lexus's first ever turbocharged engine, is a more agile, puncher steer than the disappointing hybrid version, but it never really feels the full 235bhp, and you only get six gears in the standard automatic gearbox. Add in a stiff urban ride and you realise the NX occupies the middle ground between the doughy Volvo XC60 and more chuckable BMW X3.

It's a curious car, this NX -- great to look at outside and really fresh-feeling inside. Dare we say it, it's the first Lexus ever that someone below pensioner age might be seen dead driving. Expect to see it coming soon to a school run near you.
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Old 07-23-14, 06:08 PM   #236
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http://www.autos.ca/first-drives/fir...exus-nx/?all=1

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On the one hand we have Kato Takeaki. The Lexus chief engineer is an out-and-out racer. He races in several Japanese amateur series, and when he’s not on the track, he terrorizes the roads at the wheel of his 1995 MR2 with an aftermarket limited-slip diff. He has a passion for 2.0L turbo engines – after all, there’s one in his trusty red MR2 – but there isn’t such an engine currently in the Lexus family. Takeaki sees a gap.

On the other hand, we have the fastest-growing segment in North America, if not the world; one defined by stiff competition in the mainstream sub-segment and a clear class leader in the luxury sub-segment. Their cousins stand tall at the pointy end of the field with the seminal RAV4, while Lexus’s own RX long ago outgrew the “compact crossover” class. Lexus sees a gap.

Enter the NX; Lexus’s all-new luxury compact crossover and the first Lexus ever to sport a turbo.

Available with a 2.0L turbo engine, or as a Hybrid with a 2.5L inline-four, Lexus says it shares platform aspects of the CT200h and of the RAV4.

There are two main trims: 200t and 300h. The 300h is available in just one, fully loaded Executive Package while the 200t gets Standard, Premium, Luxury and Executive trims.

Additionally, there are two F Sport trims available on the 200t, which align with the Luxury Package and Executive Package base trims. They come with a suite of extra look-fast bits and suspension tuning but no hp increase.

Our drive gave us a taste of the F Sport and the hybrid. It also allowed us to sample Lexus’s replacement for its much-maligned, mouse-based HMI – but more on that later.

Pricing figures weren’t available, but when questioned Director of Lexus Canada Cyril Dimitris said he expects the NX to be priced “competitively”, but also confirmed the NX would be priced above the $39,940 Lincoln MKC.

First Drive: 2015 Lexus NX 200t and 300h luxury cars

The new 2.0L Atkinson Cycle, direct-injection four-cylinder is force fed by a twin-scroll turbo with an air-to-liquid intercooler and produces 235 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque across all trims.

That is on par with the base engines of the Lincoln MKC (240/270), BMW X3 (241/258), Audi Q5 (220/258) and pulls up just shy of the Acura RDX’s 3.5L V6 with 273 hp and 251 lb-ft.

Each of those vehicles (bar the RDX) has an upgraded engine available with more power and torque. Lexus’s engine upgrade is the hybrid, which has a net output of 194 hp – peak torque is not available.

The 2.0L engine is mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox, with AWD standard in Canada. The six-speed was selected to avoid having too many “new” components to configure – chief among them the engine, but also a complete revision of the way the traction control and stability control systems operate. It has been reconfigured to provide better response and be less intrusive during most driving conditions. The AWD system is front-wheel-drive based and will give between 50 and 100 percent of the power to the front, and between 0 and 50 to the rear. The Hybrid is slightly different and will only send a maximum of 40 percent power to the rear – transmission duties in the hybrid are assigned to a CVT.

At 1,755 kg the NX is lighter than all of those competitors except the RDX despite being similar in size at 4,630 mm in length and 1,845 wide. Because it is among the shortest in the class (1,645 mm high) you lose a little cargo volume, with Lexus claiming a preliminary 500 L with the seats in place and 1,545 L with them folded.

By comparison the Q5, which Lexus says it set as the benchmark for the class (we concur), packs 540 and 1,560 L respectively. It also packs more towing capacity – a lot more – 2,000 kg to the NX’s 907 kg.

For those with an Ikea fetish though, the NX boasts the longest luggage-load length in the class. Handy if you have a passion for Expedit bookcases.

On the subject of passion, the NX has polarizing styling. It is far better looking in the metal than in photos, where the pointiness at the front seems accentuated. The Lexus “L” is everywhere, starting with the large and aggressive grille. That motif is carried over at the rear where the taillights and bumper lines subtly form the same shape. In profile, the side skirts kick up just before the rear wheel, joining up with the line where the rear bumper meets the taillights to create a fluid and “dynamic” line. “Dynamic” is the word of the year it seems – especially in Lexus’s styling notes. Cyril Dimitris cites the “cool exterior and fascinating interior” as a tool to “make the customer fall in love at first sight”.

The NX really comes alive in F Sport trim, where larger wheels and an aggressive air dam at the front help boost aesthetic aggression levels.

Lexus says NX buyers want something sleek, stylish futuristic and aggressive – as well as something sexy and sporty. But that they also want a car that is sophisticated, well-appointed, versatile and nimble. The styling cues with sharp creases and exaggerated lines are Lexus’s attempt to communicate those ideals in sheet metal. The “NX Appeal”, Lexus says, is 47 percent emotional and 53 percent rational - a mix that should appeal to intelligent, confident people who are also responsible and family-first.

Lexus expects 80 percent of this car’s audience to be married with young kids. All that helps explain not only the dramatic styling, but many of the interior design features of the NX – some of which are downright brilliant.

For example – a wireless charging pad for your phone. I was so excited for this feature, it’s the main reason I took this assignment on. So you can imagine my disappointment when I realised my phablet was too big for the little sculpted pad! Apple iPhone users might also be disappointed to learn they need a special $30 case for their phone before the wireless pad will work – but that case is a hard cover that can be used as a phone protector outside the car as well. Buyers who use regular-size Android phones or who don’t mind using the case for the iPhone will love this feature though.

Another neat touch? Cupholders that grip your cup/bottle so you can open it with just one hand. We tried it with bottle of water and it worked perfectly. It’s convenient and also a lot safer than trying to open a bottle of water with your elbows perched on the steering wheel. The cargo area will accept four golf bags with all seats in place.

People who enjoy clever tricks will also appreciate the hidden key barrel in the driver’s side door handle and the door handle illumination. People like me who appreciate being able to do what we want, when we want will appreciate that you can open any of the five doors with the proximity key stowed in your pocket – many marques will only allow the front two doors to be opened with the proximity key.

A sunglasses holder is nestled under the wrist-rest on the centre console and the back of the lid has a mirror on it – I guess that’s so you can do your make up/trim your nose hair at traffic lights, but I would never do that.

The interior is littered with premium trim pieces, including Lexus-branded allen bolt fasteners on the console, genuine stitched leather, and porous wood. The F Sport models get stunning red leather and stitching to further improve the look and feel of the cabin. The Lexus logo is imposed into the edge trim of the centre stack and console.

Accompanying the 4.2-inch TFT and 7-inch display screen is a full-colour, fully customizable head-up display – offering excellent access to a suite of audio, trip, navigation, speed and even cruise control information.

The NuLuxe seats are wide and supportive with deep bolsters that deftly tread the line between support and ease of access. The steering wheel is thick and comfortable to hold and the controls are all easy to reach. Controls for the dual-zone automatic climate control system are close to hand and sensible – the only two gripes being a lack of cooled seats and the labelling of the “sync” button as “dual”. Small gripe I know but it did trip me up for a while. It’s also ambiguous. Does “dual” mean you’re in split mode? Or does it mean you’re in sync mode? I still don’t know.

Lexus has abandoned the mouse-type controller for its HMI in favour of a puck-style controller in the Standard and Premium Trims, and a haptic, pinch-and-squeeze remote touch pad for the Luxury and Executive trims. I’ll cover both devices more in an in-depth feature but I found them to be a vast improvement over the old system. The system still lacks the finesse of Audi, BMW, or of the industry-leading UConnect systems, but it is easy to use, intuitive and has great ergonomics. The standard eight-speaker stereo system sounds incredible – Lexus has done a lot of engineering to make sure they get the cabin filled with the sound you want – and none of the sounds you don’t want.

The cabin is largely devoid of wind and engine noise – but F Sport models are available with engine amplification through the speakers for those who want to hear the horses screaming. You can even control the volume of the engine sounds playing through the audio system via a separate **** on the dashboard.

On the road the NX is pure Lexus. Silent, comfortable, composed. We first sampled the 300h and I was pleasantly surprised by the weight of the steering – the electric assistance is not as intrusive as many in this class and allowed for much tighter control. It also made the NX less busy on the straight highway stretches. The heft in the steering was doubly surprising when we got into the F Sport later on – that felt lighter by comparison. These were pre-production models so I would bet money that the hybrid gets more assistance before it hits the showroom. Shame really.

No matter the drivetrain, the NX gets MacPherson strut front suspension and double-wishbone rear. In the hybrid the sub-frame cradle is inverted to allow space for the batteries.

In either case, the NX handles superbly; surprisingly so. It is agile and nimble, with only the slightest tinge of body roll. Understeer is almost non-existent, in fact the NX is completely neutral and almost perfectly balanced – at least it feels that way. Changing direction is effortless and the car is composed over most normal bumps.

And that’s not even the F Sport model! F Sport models get upgraded adaptive variable suspension. The system has been upgraded from other Lexus models and now responds in just 20 milliseconds (down from 80) over 30 separate levels of stiffness – up from eight. If I’m honest, I couldn’t feel the difference. What I could feel, was complete surefootedness. We made several passes over a mid-corner pothole just to see if it would upset the NX 200t F Sport – no matter the speed, the NX cleared the obstacle with total aplomb.

Reefing on the wheel on corner entry to try and generate some understeer invoked a little tire squeal, but no push. This just proves the thoroughness of engineering with which they approached this car – we suspect few owners will ever expect such extreme handling and be well satisfied with its superb demeanour for everyday driving.

Both the hybrid and 2.0T editions pull adequately to speed from a stop, but the 2.0T is certainly the engine to have if oomph is your preference.

The Lexus feels as fun to drive as a Q5 – it is nimble, the engine is responsive and the gearbox demonstrates that you don’t have to be complicated to work well. F Sport models get flappy paddles – which bring up rapid gear changes and obediently completes requested shifts – even when dropping to second gets you within 700 rpm of redline. Non-F Sport models get only the gear selector manual mode which is set up the wrong way. Forward for up and back for down. The paddles add a lot in terms of driving enjoyment and winding road capability – being able to select your gear before the corner is always preferable to waiting for a shift mid-corner. Then again, it’s not like you can steer the NX on throttle with only 50 percent of power to the rears.

Lexus has not yet released fuel economy figures for the NX, but we saw 8.2 L/100 km from the 300h and 10.8 from the 200t F Sport at the end of our drive.

All hybrids come in the fully equipped Executive Package trim – but not F Sport trim, so we got to taste all the goodies in the 300h. The F Sport was merely the Series 1 F Sport trim, and so missed some options. But even the base model NX comes well equipped.

The first tier is the Standard trim. It gets three-mode drive mode select, 17-inch alloy wheels, L-shaped LED daytime running lamps, LED fog lamps, one-piece door handle with integrated lighting, dual exhaust with chrome tips, back-up camera with guidance lines, Smart Key System with push-button start, eight-way power-adjustable front seats, heated front seats, NuLuxe seats, seven-inch multimedia display with puck-type controller, and eight-speaker audio.

Premium Package adds 18-inch five-spoke wheels, premium LED headlamps, driver’s seat memory, power-adjustable tilt and telescopic steering wheel with comfort access, cooled front seats, heated steering wheel, power liftgate, moonroof, roof rails and a rear-seat AC outlet.

To get navigation you need the Luxury Package, which includes the remote touchpad HMI controller, leather seats, wood trim, blind-spot monitor, rain-sensing wipers, rear cross-traffic alert, 10-speaker audio, and parking assist.

The fully loaded Executive Package also gets pre-collision system, dynamic radar cruise-control, the wireless phone charger, power-folding rear seats with controls at the seat, tailgate and next to the steering wheel for use by the driver, lane-departure alert, head-up display, automatic high beams and unique five-spoke alloys.

The first F Sport tier gets standard equipment plus steering wheel–mounted paddle-shifters, aluminum pedals, F Sport seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, F Sport interior trim, suspension and steering tuning, performance dampers, F Sport front mesh grille and bumper, 18-inch F Sport alloys as well as intuitive park assist, blind-spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, LED headlamps, 10-speaker audio, navigation with remote touchpad HMI controller, rain-sensing wipers, black headliner, black side mirrors, and a G-force meter.

F Sport Series 2 adds the pre-collision system, dynamic radar cruise control, wireless phone charger, lane departure alert, head-up display and adaptive variable suspension.

The NX is available in eight colours, Eminent White, Atomic Silver, Grey Pearl, Obsidian (F Sport only), Starlight Black Mica, Matador Red Mica, Fire Agate Pearl and Ultrasonic Blue Mica (F Sport only). The interior is flaxen (tan) or black, and in F Sport models red or black.

The 2015 Lexus NX will be built in Japan.

Competitors:
Acura RDX
Audi Q5
BMW X3
Infiniti QX50
Lincoln MKC
Mercedes-Benz GLK
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Old 07-25-14, 12:28 PM   #237
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Default Motoring TV

See link for Video: http://motoringtv.com/video/motoring...2015-lexus-nx/


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Old 07-25-14, 12:33 PM   #238
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Default The Driver's Seat Review

Video review:

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Old 07-25-14, 12:40 PM   #239
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corradoMR2 View Post
Great find. Thanks CorradoMR2.

In the video, "it says Lexus Canada hopes to sell 5000 NX this year and 90% of them would be turbo".

Just wonder how many of them would be F-Sport models. IMO, the way the packages were designed may skew the figures because F-Sport models lack some essential item such as power tailgate.
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Old 07-25-14, 02:27 PM   #240
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyL View Post
Great find. Thanks CorradoMR2.

In the video, "it says Lexus Canada hopes to sell 5000 NX this year and 90% of them would be turbo".

Just wonder how many of them would be F-Sport models. IMO, the way the packages were designed may skew the figures because F-Sport models lack some essential item such as power tailgate.
Yeah. The automotive press in both the US and Canada keep mentioning that the total NX sales will be 90% 200t and 10% 300h. Getting more granular, based on the projected allotment numbers posted here, 35% of the 200t models will be F-Sports.

I am one of those 35% BUT yes, it's a (almost embarrassing) bummer if no power liftgate is available on the F-Sport. I'm still waiting on Lexus Canada's confirmation on this omission since I may still change my mind on the F-Sport not only for this but when you factor in the Memory Package, rear 12V outlet, and sunroof missing...
Hopefully it's an omission in the literature and not the vehicle...
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