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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

New platform and turbo-power for all-new Lexus NX

NX 300 makes way for the new NX 350 South Africa could well receive.

Teased for the first time last week, Lexus officially took the wraps off of the all-new NX overnight as part of a product roll-out totalling 25 updated or brand-new models by 2025.

Despite appearing largely similar to its predecessor, the NX has been designed from the ground-up and as reported previously, moves from the New MC platform to the TNGA-K used by the RAV4, Venza and Harrier.

Dimensionally, the NX measures 4 660 mm overall length, 20 mm longer than before, with the wheelbase being 30 mm longer at 2 690 mm, the width 20 mm wider at 1 865 mm and the height dropped by five millimetres for a total of 1 840 mm.  No details regarding boot space was revealed.

Sporting Lexus’s latest Spindle Grille at the front derived from the refreshed IS and LS, the rear facia takes inspiration from the smaller UX with the NX being the first model to drop the corporate Lexus “L” logo for a block letter readout on the tailgate.

All-new Lexus NX

NX 450h+ F Sport in Ultrasonic Blue 2.0

As hinted by the teaser, the taillights now run the width of the bootlid thanks to a connecting central strip, while the colour palette has been expanded to include three new hues; Redline; Grecian White and Cloudburst Grey.

As before, the NX will be offered in F Sport guise with this model differentiating itself by the inclusion of gloss black 20-inch alloy wheels, colour coded fender overhangs, black roof rails, F Sport door sills and bumpers and three model bespoke colours; Obsidian, Ultra White and Ultrasonic Blue 2.0.

More prominent than the exterior is the NX’s interior which has been redesigned in order to be more driver focused according to Lexus. As such, the instrument cluster is now a seven-inch digital affair with the infotainment system being new and measuring 9.8-inches with the option of upgrading to the 14-inch display that premiered on the Harrier and Venza.

Complete with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as over-the-air updates, both displays feature Lexus’ latest interface with the latter also sporting touch sensitive as well as physical buttons and knobs for the climate control.

RELATED: All-new Lexus NX teased ahead of 11 June reveal

Also available from the options list is a ten-inch Heads-Up Display, a 64 colour ambient lighting system with 14 themes, a panoramic sunroof, standard front but optional heated rear seats, a choice of four colours; black, Palomino, black/Rich Cream and Rioja Red NuLuxe and two sound systems; the standard ten-speaker or the 14-speaker Mark Levinson.

Reserved for the F Sport are sport seats with F headrests, Dark Graphite alloy detailing, alloy pedals, a new F steering wheel, F branded side sills and perforated trim in two colours; black or Circuit Red NuLuxe. Standard though is the mentioned 14-inch display as well as the ambient lighting.

On the safety front, Lexus’ Safety System+ 3.0 debuts, bringing updated versions of already available tech, as well as Oncoming Vehicle Detection with Pre-Collision Warning, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Risk Avoidance Emergency Steer Assist, Right and Left Turn Oncoming Pedestrian Detection plus Braking, Left Turn Oncoming Vehicle Detection, Safe Exit Assist and Braking and Curve Speed Management.

Along with the new platform, which has contributed to a 91 kg drop in weight over the old NX, Lexus has completely revised the powertrain line-up with the previous 2.0-litre turbocharged 300 model falling away in favour of a new unit and nomenclature.

All-new Lexus NX

NX 450h+ Sport front view

Despite the range kicking-off with the NX 250 that uses a conventional 2.5-litre petrol outputting 151kW/250Nm, the all-new NX 350 takes centre stage as the 300’s replacement by being powered by a brand-new 2.4-litre turbo-petrol producing 206kW/430Nm.

Hooked to newly developed eight-speed automatic gearbox that comes as standard on the 250 as well, the 350 will get from 0-60 mph (96 km/h) in a claimed 6.8 seconds with drive going to the front or all wheels, an option the 250 also comes with.

On the hybrid side, the NX 300h makes way for the NX 350h still motivated by a 2.5-litre engine, albeit now with a pair of more powerful electric motors helping to produce a combined 178 kW.

According to Lexus, the benchmark sprint time to 96 km/h has been cut by 1.5 seconds to 7.2 seconds with the presence of the second electric motor meaning an automatic all-wheel-drive layout.

All-new Lexus NX

Interior a huge step up from the old NX.

Sitting at the top of the range is the new NX 450h+ that combines the same 2.5-litre engine with a plug-in lithium-ion battery pack of unknown output.

Although not wanting to reveal the exact power output despite reports alleging it to be the same 225 kW as the RAV4 Prime, Lexus did confirm an all-electric range of 58 km and standard fitting of a 3.3 kW on-board charger that results in a waiting time of four-and-half-hours. With the optional 6.6 kW charger though, the wait falls to two-and-a-hours.

Going on sale in key markets during the third quarter, Lexus South Africa has however confirmed availability from early 2022 with specification and price to be revealed later.

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