For 2022, Lexus will offer us the second generation of its NX SUV, a product that saw the light of day in 2015. The initial NX drew a lot of attention for its design and although the style was controversial, sales didn’t suffer and the NX did well for Lexus, especially in the US.
The new 2022 model, which will be built at the Toyota plant in Cambridge, Ontario, will hit dealerships in February. It’s still a long way off, but since it’s a very important model, Lexus wanted us to get a closer look.
So here is, in essence, what awaits us with this second generation of the NX, but also what awaits the vehicle which inherits a new vocation within the Lexus group. At least, everything points in this direction, starting with the lineup.
Four 2022 Lexus NX trims
There are often different models within a given range, but you rarely see four powertrains like the 2022 Lexus NX will offer. Here’s an overview of each.
2022 Lexus NX 250
The 250 version of the 2022 Lexus NX will come with a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine that generates 203 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard.
2022 Lexus NX 350
The NX 350 will get a 2.4-liter turbo 4-cylinder that delivers 275 horsepower and 317 lb-ft of torque. Also handled by an eight-speed automatic, it will be available with the F Sport package which adds an adaptive suspension.
2022 Lexus NX 350h
Then comes the hybrid version of the model which changes name (300h in 2021) to reflect a gain in power. Concretely, the 2.5-liter 4-cylinder that serves it will offer, thanks to two electric motors, 239 horsepower. This represents an increase of 20% compared to the the 194 horsepower of the previous model.
According to Lexus Canada, this is THE version that will sell the most. With an average reported fuel consumption rating of 6.5 liters per 100 km (one less than at the moment), we can understand why.
2022 Lexus NX 450h
The big addition to the 2022 Lexus NX lineup is the plug-in hybrid version. Equipped with the Toyota RAV4 Prime powertrain (also a 2.5-liter engine), it will offer a range of around 58 kilometers. This is the figure for now, but we were told that everything was not yet formalized.
We’re only going to wish one thing; a reasonable waiting list, not the one you have to go through to earn an RAV Prime.
Oh, the F Sport package will also be available with this trim.
With four variants on the menu and a more than complete offer, this tells us a lot about the place the company reserves for its model within the family. It is clear that Lexus has great expectations for the NX. So far, the RX is the most popular model in the country. Here a few other details about the 2022 Lexus NX.
The touchpad is gone
For nearly 10 years, access to the multimedia system of Lexus products has been via a touchpad that allows us to move a cursor on the screen to select the desired functions.
It’s anything but user friendly and for many potential buyers, it’s enough to make them look elsewhere.
Fortunately, the company seems to get the message right, as it was with a smirk that we were told that the touchpad would be retired. A new, more user-friendly interface is coming.
Depending on the version, 9.8 and 14.0 inch centre screens can be found on top of the center console. Traditional controls for the air conditioning and audio system have been retained. You can connect wirelessly to the system to use its Apple CarPlay or Android Auto applications and cell phone charging can also be wireless.
We will avoid listing everything that the NX 2022 will offer in terms of security, but let’s mention that the model will offer new features. Thus, the LSS + 3.0 system will, for example, serve as automatic low beam headlights which will of course adjust their strength according to the oncoming traffic, but without reducing their intensity at certain angles of the road. In other words, the NX will provide better lighting without blinding oncoming vehicles.
Another interesting thing is that the NX 2022 will offer a unique entry and exit system. In fact, the doors will open with the push of a button, both from the inside and the outside. We tried it and it works. The device will work together with the Safe Exit Assist system. The latter warns the driver and passengers if a vehicle or cyclist is approaching, all to avoid a collision.
We haven’t gotten behind the wheel of the NX 2022 yet, but what we’re hearing on paper is interesting. Lexus says it put a lot of effort into a more driver-centric experience.
Certainly, the buyer will be able to find a model that meets their aspirations, whether they are driven by performance or by fuel economy.
As for the quality, our first contact with the model was telling. We really feel that the company wants to make the latter a must, both across the range and within its category.
The 2022 Lexus NX will have some strong competition to tackle, but at first glance it looks to have the goods to stand confidently in the segment.