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Why is the suspension so stiff?

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Old 10-20-17, 03:57 PM   #1
sjtilney
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Angry Why is the suspension so stiff?

Hello,
I just bought a 2017 NX 200t, and I'm loving it. My biggest complain though is how bumpy the ride is. I didn't notice the bumpiness on my test drive, I guess the route the sales person took it on was smooth. Given that this is a luxury car, I would expect the ride to be a little more smooth, and soft. My friend just got a new Mazda CX-5, and the ride is so much smoother, and quieter on a car which is 10k cheaper. Is there a reason Lexus opted for the stiffer suspension on this model? Does it add any benefits?
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Old 10-20-17, 05:31 PM   #2
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Just sell it and get the Mazda...
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Old 10-20-17, 06:06 PM   #3
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Make sure your tire pressure is not too high. Ideal pressure is 32/33psi.
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Old 10-20-17, 06:31 PM   #4
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I highly doubt it's the tire pressure. Most new Lexus ride harsher than old school Lexus. If you want a soft riding Lexus you need to get a premium model like an LS,GS, LX, even an ES. Not their mini compact SUV designed for the young crowd.

Stiff suspension, huge wheels, low profile tires, short wheel base. All a recipe for a horrible ride.
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Old 10-20-17, 06:38 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by 97-SC300 View Post
Just sell it and get the Mazda...
I'll consider that for my next car purchase, in the meantime I was hoping for a more mature discussion.


I'm just curious, did Lexus choose to sacrifice ride comfort for something else? If so, what is that something else? Stability? Safety? Handling?
Has anyone been able to reduce the bumpiness by changing wheel size, tire pressure... etc etc?
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Old 10-20-17, 06:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjtilney View Post
I'll consider that for my next car purchase, in the meantime I was hoping for a more mature discussion.


I'm just curious, did Lexus choose to sacrifice ride comfort for something else? If so, what is that something else? Stability? Safety? Handling?
Has anyone been able to reduce the bumpiness by changing wheel size, tire pressure... etc etc?
First, NX is relatively small SUV tuned to have sporty ride. Do not expect from NX typical Lexus ES ride. Even my wife' RX350 rides smoother, but behaves like top heavy bookcase. NX drives a lot more like a car (not quite that, but...).

If you liked car ride during the test drive, then check your tire pressure first. I found that my NX tire pressure monitor does not display actual pressure - it shows 2-3 psi lower. When I picked my NX first time, the tires pressure was set at 35 psi. In reality it was 37-38 psi and that made car ride very hard. Knowing that I now checking pressure with the gage. I keep tire pressure at 33-34psi (checked by gage). The ride quality is good and steering response is not affected.
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Old 10-20-17, 08:33 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjtilney View Post
I'll consider that for my next car purchase, in the meantime I was hoping for a more mature discussion.


I'm just curious, did Lexus choose to sacrifice ride comfort for something else? If so, what is that something else? Stability? Safety? Handling?
Has anyone been able to reduce the bumpiness by changing wheel size, tire pressure... etc etc?
What was immature about my post? If you like the Mazda, get the Mazda.

I explained to you in one sentence why your NX rides like crap. Changing the tire pressure is going to have VERY minimal effect because of how low the profile of those tires are. Setting the tire pressure too low will trigger the TPMS light, will raise the likelihood of bending or cracking your expensive OEM wheels, have a negative effect on acceleration and fuel consumption, cornering will be more sloppy, and increase tire wear.

I thought it was common sense to test drive a car over bumps. What kind of conclusion did you expect to arrive at by driving over a buttery smooth road? Every car rides great over a smooth surface.

Good luck to you.
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Old 10-20-17, 09:04 PM   #8
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We came from an RX 350 and agree the ride is a bit bouncy. We realize the wheelbase is shorter than the RX. Anyway, we did realize this before we purchased so there were no surprises or buyer's remorse. We switch off between our ES and the NX and that really accentuates the difference in ride and noise levels. However, we really liked the size and overall just thought the vehicle fit us much better.

The bottom line is that I agree that the ride isn't as refined as most other Lexus vehicles, but we thought it was good enough for our needs. The car that came in second during our test drives was the Acura RDX and the ride actually felt pretty similar but the Acura was slightly noisier in the cabin (3 db as measured very crudely with an iPhone app).
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Old 10-21-17, 10:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 97-SC300 View Post
What was immature about my post? If you like the Mazda, get the Mazda.
Changing the tire pressure is going to have VERY minimal effect because of how low the profile of those tires are. Setting the tire pressure too low will trigger the TPMS light, will raise the likelihood of bending or cracking your expensive OEM wheels, have a negative effect on acceleration and fuel consumption, cornering will be more sloppy, and increase tire wear.
Good luck to you.
1. NX tires are NOT low profile. NX has tires either 225/65/R17 or 225/60R18. My RX has 235/55/18 and the ride is smoother/softer vs NX ride. This is due mostly to how RX suspension is tuned. BTW, low profile tires are when the ratio is 30 to 45.
2. Ride harshness greatly depends on tire pressure, besides suspension tuning.
3. You can set your TPMS to any tire pressure, low or high, makes no differences, as long as you reset it for specific pressure.
4. Too low tire pressure will affect vehicle ride making it much softer, but less stable and wobbly.
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Old 10-21-17, 03:02 PM   #10
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I read somewhere that the Chief Engineer for the NX wanted the NX to feel and drive like the IS. IS is already stiff enough. I'll have to dig up the article.

The Mazda's are pretty good. I was also considering a CX-5 when I was cross shopping for my wife at the time.

Quote:
Lexus Blog: The NX exhibits a greater focus on design and driving dynamics than perhaps some of the other models in the range. But how is the model underpinned by the Lexus qualities of supreme quality and peerless reliability?

TK: Good question. I think that the quality of our cars has and will always remain the same. I tested IS before I started work on NX to ensure that cars qualities are present in NX. We benchmarked NX against its rivals – Q5, X3 – and we discovered that they cater for more aggressive handling tastes; in my opinion Lexus stands for good refinement and quality, but since we unveiled the GS in 2012, we have become much more focused on driving dynamics and the joy of driving.
http://blog.lexus.co.uk/new-lexus-nx...ng-highlights/

Last edited by MX73; 10-21-17 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 10-21-17, 04:30 PM   #11
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I've been concerned that he NX ride is too soft, after driving an IS 250 for eight years. I'd still like a little less roll, but don't want to feel the bumps, so I've opted no to get the F-Sport roll bars.

I suggest taking a test drive in the CX5. This was one of my picks, based upon great reviews in Motor Trend and Car $ Driver. My test drive never left the lot. We hit some bumps there, and the were jarred terribly. There was no comparison with NX, IMO.
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Old 10-22-17, 01:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjtilney View Post
Hello,
I just bought a 2017 NX 200t, and I'm loving it. My biggest complain though is how bumpy the ride is. I didn't notice the bumpiness on my test drive, I guess the route the sales person took it on was smooth. Given that this is a luxury car, I would expect the ride to be a little more smooth, and soft. My friend just got a new Mazda CX-5, and the ride is so much smoother, and quieter on a car which is 10k cheaper. Is there a reason Lexus opted for the stiffer suspension on this model? Does it add any benefits?
1. Is there a reason Lexus opted for the stiffer suspension on this model? Does it add any benefits? - This statement seems as if you are implying they went out of there way to only put stiff suspension. Lexus offered the NX in a few variations with different suspensions, the Base, to the Fsport and the optional AVS (in some regions models etc) I'm sure to accommodate different driving preferences. If you own the base, i believe you already have the softest of the NX's.
2. My friend just got a new Mazda CX-5, and the ride is so much smoother, and quieter on a car which is 10k cheaper - if the CX-5 if its smoother and quieter (to you) and 10K cheaper does it make it better than the NX? If the lower costs is what justify your reason to ding the NX for not being able to have an equal quieter or smoother car , you are entitled to that opinion. I too can point out cars cheaper than the CX-5 that are smoother and quieter and play the same unfair apples to oranges comparison. A more fair comparison would be a Rav4 vs the CX5 or the RDX to the NX. The costs of a car in terms of $$$ has no relation of how less stiff a car rides or how luxurious it is. Your logic would dictate that a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT an "Ultra Premium Luxury SUV" (<~ their words) with a base price of $68K should be more smoother and softer than the NX because it costs around +$20K more. Why oh why is it so harsh and noisy??? but its ULTLA PREMIUM LUXURY.... wait maybe cuz it has more power (way bigger engine), weighs more (by 1000lbs)........oh wait...same can be said about your comparison of NX to the CX-5. (im not knocking a JGC SRT, ill take one anyday over my NX....if they costs the same) but maybe that can shed some light on the disparity in costs.
3. Given that this is a luxury car, I would expect the ride to be a little more smooth, and soft. - Again, first off you test drove the car, sorry if the felt stiffness in your NX is not to your liking after owning your NX and spending more time with it. Personally I have the car and overall I think its smooth and quiet depending on the road/conditions for a car in this class, but its FAR from being STIFF for a car, or even a car in this class.


What's really the answer you are seeking? The technical reason? (Curb weight, spring rates, handling , weight distribution, etc) Was it a business decision? (Costs etc, Target audience, etc) maybe none maybe all, tons of possibilities, I don't know. What I do know is regardless of why Lexus made the NX the way they did, their logic or anyone else's logic is irrelevant. As another member has said, if its too stiff for you, I would suggest finding something that suits you, its just a car. Your criteria for a luxury car maybe differs from others. The only opinion that matters when it comes to your money, is you.

Now, if you wanted some solutions to soften your ride that's something worth talking about.
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Old 10-22-17, 03:20 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MX73 View Post
I read somewhere that the Chief Engineer for the NX wanted the NX to feel and drive like the IS. IS is already stiff enough. I'll have to dig up the article.

The Mazda's are pretty good. I was also considering a CX-5 when I was cross shopping for my wife at the time.
,


http://blog.lexus.co.uk/new-lexus-nx...ng-highlights/
This is actually true. My salesman told me they want the nx to drive and feel like the IS but in a compact SUV. I was sold
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Old 10-22-17, 03:24 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjtilney View Post
Hello,
I just bought a 2017 NX 200t, and I'm loving it. My biggest complain though is how bumpy the ride is. I didn't notice the bumpiness on my test drive, I guess the route the sales person took it on was smooth. Given that this is a luxury car, I would expect the ride to be a little more smooth, and soft. My friend just got a new Mazda CX-5, and the ride is so much smoother, and quieter on a car which is 10k cheaper. Is there a reason Lexus opted for the stiffer suspension on this model? Does it add any benefits?
u shoulda bought the Rx if u wanted smooth. I had the rx 350 and found it way too soft and smooth. Nx was made to be sporty and drive like the IS. Hope that solves your problem. I actually find the nx to be jus right, I'm running 21 inch wheels right now and it feels great in my opinion.
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Old 10-22-17, 05:07 AM   #15
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This is actually true. My salesman told me they want the nx to drive and feel like the IS but in a compact SUV. I was sold
Behind the wheel of the NX I do feel the same comfort in handling I had on my old IS350, I can tell you for a fact, the NX F-sport is smoother and softer riding than a stock IS350. Nothing wrong with an IS350, its a great car, even after adding F-sport Springs and sway bars, the IS was by no means stiff or had a bumpy ride. It actually rode smoother than a few stock German and Japanese cars I've owned with the suspension mods. Which is perplexing when the OP started off about the CX-5 and its ride. It's most likely to be tuned to be soft, but driven harder will it out handle the NX? i doubt it can, its sure can't out power it. The stiffer suspension is what attributes to that, I just think the OP has a lower tolerance for what he/she considers as a stiff aka "bumpy ride". The NX does fit a nice compromise of ride quality and handling, failure or lack of understanding what the NX is capable of is on the owner not the car.
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