2022 Lexus NX, All you want to know about a great car
2022 Lexus NX Trim Guide: With So Many Options, Which Model Is Best?
Find out which trim and engine option is right for you.
With four trims and four engine options, the 2022 Lexus NX tries to offer something for every compact luxury SUV buyer. Having so many options can be overwhelming, but we’re here to help. Our advice? First pick an engine from the NX250, NX350, NX350h hybrid, and NX450h+ plug-in hybrid models and go from there. That sounds easy enough until you discover that the NX350h hybrid is actually priced $500 less than the NX350 turbo. Decisions, decisions.
2022 Lexus NX Models And Pricing
NX250: Lexus has never offered so much variety on the NX. The standard model is the NX250, for those who want a Lexus SUV but aren’t interested in the smaller UX’s unusual design. With only 203 hp from a RAV4 engine, the NX250 won’t offer exciting performance, but it may thrill its buyers with its base price of about $39,000. On standard, Premium, or high-end Luxury trims, add $1,600 for AWD (the NX250 is pictured here in white).
NX350 turbo: If you want an F Sport model, upgrade to the NX350 turbo, which starts at around $42,500. As you compare prices with the Acura RDX, Infiniti QX50, and others, keep in mind that every NX350, NX350h, and NX450h+ has a mechanical or electric-based AWD system; the only FWD version is the base NX250.
Lexus expects the 275-hp NX350 turbo to be the most popular model, and that’s reflected in the large number of configurations available. The non-F Sport NX350 is offered in standard, Premium, and Luxury versions, while the NX350 F Sport can be had in standard and Luxury forms. The least expensive NX350 F Sport carries a base price of about $47,500, making it thousands more than the last NX F Sport model but right in line with the AWD version of the Acura RDX A-Spec.
NX350h hybrid: The big surprise of the 2022 NX lineup is that pricing for the 239-hp NX350h hybrid falls $500 below the NX350 turbo. That means about $42,000 buys you a standard NX350h model with 4 hp more than the last-gen NX300 turbo and more efficiency than almost every other compact luxury SUV you can buy. What’s most special about the NX350h is that it stands alone; Volvo and Audi offer plug-in hybrids to rival the NX450h+, but no other moderately priced hybrids challenge the NX350h. It’s a real advantage. The NX350h lacks an F Sport model, but does offer standard, Premium, and Luxury trims.
NX450h+ plug-in hybrid: The very top of the 2022 NX lineup is the NX450h+ plug-in hybrid, the best model in the fleet. But it’s also the most expensive version, by far, with a starting price of more than $56,500. As you compare the NX450h+ to the Volvo XC60 Recharge and Audi Q5 plug-in, keep in mind that the NX plug-in starts at the higher-end Luxury trim. (There’s no standard or Premium trim.) The NX450h+ is the other NX model to offer an F Sport trim, and here it costs about $58,000.
NX250 Vs. NX350 Vs. NX350h Vs. NX450h+: Which Is Best?
If money grew on trees, the NX450h+ would be the model to get. We like how the NX450h+ drives and appreciate its segment-leading 37 miles of EV range, but that mid-$50,000 price point limits its audience. Also, for now, it’s only available in a handful of states: California, Oregon, Colorado, Maryland, New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New York, Vermont, and Maine.
Focusing on the core 2022 NX models, that leaves us with the NX250, NX350, and NX350h. If the NX250’s 203-hp engine is anywhere near as loud as the same engine in the RAV4 on which the Lexus is based, we’d skip that model for that reason alone. We haven’t driven the NX250, and it’s might be something to listen for it in a test drive. Between the NX350 and NX350h, we’d drive the quicker model that’s also cheaper—the NX350h hybrid. That’s right, in addition to being priced $500 below the NX350 turbo, the NX350h is also slightly quicker in MotorTrend testing on the track, and it’ll feel quicker on the street, too, thanks to the hybrid system’s low-speed assistance.
Even though the NX350h is our pick for when the plug-in hybrid is out of reach, the hybrid could use more refinement. In our experience, we felt too much through the pedals, and the end-of-travel brake feel could be improved, as well. Still, no one else in this vast segment offers an affordably priced hybrid, and there’s value in that. If the 41/37 mpg city/highway results don’t impress, perhaps a driving range well over 550 miles will. You won’t stop for fuel as often in an NX350h as you will in the non-hybrid competition.
OK, So Which 2022 Lexus NX Trim Should I Choose?
Great! So you’ve decided on a 2022 Lexus NX350h hybrid. We like the added bolstering on NX F Sport trims, but because the F Sport is only offered on the NX350 turbo and NX450h+ plug-in hybrid, you’ll have to make do with the standard seats. If you really want the 14.0-inch touchscreen, by the way, know that it’s an option on the Premium trim across all NX models.
NX350h in standard trim: The standard NX350h features an electric AWD system, a 9.8-inch touchscreen display (with a quick and modern infotainment system), wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a 10-speaker sound system, and Lexus Safety System+ 3.0. That’s a fancy way of saying that every 2022 NX comes with a ton of safety tech, including adaptive cruise control that can slow for curves, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning that can nudge you back in your lane, automatic high-beams, and features that can apply the brakes if you’re at risk of hitting an oncoming vehicle while turning left or a pedestrian while turning right.
The base NX350h also includes blind-spot monitoring and, like all NXs, the Digital Key feature with Safe Exit Assist (if you’re about to open the door into an oncoming car or bicyclist, the vehicle can warn you of this danger).
NX350h Premium: That standard $42,000 NX350h includes a decent amount of content, but there are some omissions. If we had the means, we would definitely make the $3,050 jump to the NX350h Premium trim to add a power liftgate with a hands-free open feature, a moonroof, a power tilting/telescoping steering column, basic single-color ambient lighting, and rear cross-traffic braking, a very useful safety feature for busy parking lots and neighborhoods with lots of pedestrians.
NX350h Luxury: For another $4,400, the NX350h Luxury trim throws in most but not all Lexus has to offer. Spending about $49,500 on an NX may sound like a lot if you’re cross-shopping loaded Toyota RAV4s and Venzas, but this is actually a value compared to the Audi Q5, Volvo XC60, and Infiniti QX50, though not against the Acura RDX.
For that near-$50,000 price, you add the 14.0-inch touchscreen (it’s an option below the Luxury trim), 20-inch wheels instead of other trims’ 18s, a 10.0-inch color head-up display, upgraded ambient lighting, leather seats, and dark wood trim. About that trim, the open-pore wood looks great but, like the other trim options, doesn’t provide enough contrast against the dark door panels.
How We’d Build Our Lexus NX350h
Our choice would be a carefully optioned 2022 NX350h Premium, the middle trim between standard and Luxury. The higher the NX350h’s price gets, the more we want to simply jump to the excellent NX450h+ plug-in hybrid, the model with the most X-factor in the NX lineup.
Keeping an eye on the MSRP, we’d start with the $45,000 NX350h Premium model and add the 14.0-inch touchscreen display for $1,105 and upgraded ambient lighting for $100. Twenty-inch wheels are available for $1,310, though we’d only push the button on that after looking in person at NXs with both 18- and 20-inch wheels. A 17-speaker Mark Levinson sound system is available (for $2,125 on Premium, $1,020 on Luxury), as is a panoramic glass roof for $500 on the Luxury trim. We’d skip that, as the thick structural bar between the two glass panels hampers the airy feel some glass roofs provide for those in the driver’s seat.
The one real disappointment on the NX350h Premium is that the $480 Remote Park feature isn’t available. This cool feature is exclusive to the Luxury trim of the hybrid and plug-in hybrid, and it’s worth consideration if it’s half as fun as Hyundai’s version of the tech. At best it can help people with tight parking spots, and at worst, it’s a cool party trick. As of this writing, we have yet to test the Lexus version of the tech, which requires using a smartphone instead of the key fob like Hyundai’s simple system.
Add up the bigger wheels, ambient lighting, and 14.0-inch screen, and our NX350h Premium costs about $46,500. You don’t get wood trim or real leather, but the NuLuxe seat material feels premium and soft. We’ll take ours in Nori Green Pearl with the light saddle brown Palomino interior.
2022 Lexus NX Models:
- 2022 NX250 (203 hp)
- 2022 NX350h hybrid (239 hp)
- 2022 NX350 turbo (275 hp)
- 2022 NX450h+ plug-in hybrid (302 hp)
2022 Lexus NX Trims:
- Standard (NX250, NX350h, NX350)
- Premium (NX250, NX350h, NX350)
- Luxury (NX250, NX350h, NX350, NX450h+)
- F Sport (NX350, NX450h+)
2022 Lexus NX First Look: Buffer Bod, New Plug-In Hybrid Option
The luxury SUV sprouts new powertrains, chunkier new styling, and an all-new infotainment system.
Ever catch up with that scrawny kid from high school, perhaps at a reunion a few years later, and they’ve transformed into a buffer, more outgoing person? Lining up the 2022 Lexus NX and its predecessor, which came out in 2015, is a bit like that. The newer NX is more powerful, more user-friendly, and more luxurious than the small luxury SUV it replaces.
The NX is once again based heavily on the contemporary Toyota RAV4 and is roughly the same size, but it presents as altogether more substantial. As before, the NX has a distinctive domed roof that peaks over the second-row seats and wears the signature Lexus spindle grille and squinty headlights.
The body appears wider, especially in the back, where new full-width taillights exaggerate the visual girth. The tailgate features widely spaced “L E X U S” lettering (instead of the usual Lexus “L” logo, which remains on the NX’s nose) in a font different from the one the company has used since 1990. Apparently, the older font will stick around, but the newer one simply filled the wide space on the tailgate better. OK.
New UX For The NX
The NX’s cabin is completely overhauled and now features a huge horizontal slab that holds either the standard 9.8-inch touchscreen or an optional 14.0-inch unit. The displays run an all-new infotainment system with simplified menus, Google-driven maps and search functions, and native Apple Music and Amazon Music apps that owners are able to sign into without their phones, since streaming is handled by an onboard data connection. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, and the displays—particularly the 14.0-inch unit—are stunning; the entire system worked quickly and seamlessly during a brief demo.
The user experience (UX) also benefits from physical climate-control knobs, as well as a real volume knob. The old NX suffered from the Japanese luxury brand’s annoying touchpad-controlled infotainment system, which demanded users swipe and poke at a laptop-style pad to move a cursor on the dashboard screen—not exactly easy to do while, you know, driving.
Practicality is also improved, with a more accommodating center console bin and a handy spot/charging pad area ahead of the shifter for stowing a smartphone. The central tunnel feels less bulky and tall than before, enhancing the sensation of greater spaciousness up front. Eagle-eyed Lexus NX fans will notice the previous-generation SUV’s weird little removable vanity mirror is gone. Why was it there in the first place? So you could pass it to a rear-seat passenger, or perhaps snort illicit drugs off it? Either way, the mirror is no more, having been sacrificed along with the touchpad controller on the altar of increased center console space.
And Now, Three Paragraphs On The NX’s Door Handles—Really
At the intersection of the NX’s exterior and interior lives a novel new electronic door release system. The exterior handles don’t move; you simply clasp your hand around one, press a switch on the inside of the handle, and the door releases in one fluid pull. To exit the NX, press a thin metal button on the door armrest near the pull handle, and the door releases—again, in the direction your hand is already moving. Smooth.
There are ways to get in or out if, say, the battery dies, and this is where Lexus is really clever. Unlike on other cars with electronic door latches (such as Chevrolet’s Corvette), the NX’s manual door releases are right on the exterior and interior door handles, rather than located away from the primary switches. From inside, just pull the end of the metal door release switch twice—the two pulls are a failsafe against accidental openings—and the door pops open. Ditto the exterior handles, which each integrate small, flush-mounted metal wands that can be pulled toward you to manually open the door.
Lexus even ties the electronic release to the onboard active safety features. For example, the doors on a given side of the vehicle won’t open if a car or bicyclist is approaching; the blind-spot monitor will flash on the door mirror of the side in harm’s way, and an aural warning sounds. Occupants can override the safety feature by pressing and holding on the door switch for a few seconds or by manually releasing the door.
All Ate Up With Powertrain Choice
Where the first-generation NX was offered only with a turbocharged four-cylinder gas engine or a hybrid with a four-cylinder gas engine supported by two electric motors (one per axle) and a starter/generator, the 2022 Lexus NX boasts two additional options. Oh, and all four powertrains are new. This generates a shift in the NX’s naming structure; the old NX300 and NX300h hybrid monikers are dead. The 2022 NX lineup consists of the NX250, NX350, NX350h hybrid, and NX450h+ plug-in hybrid.
The NX250 uses the same 2.5-liter I-4 as the Toyota RAV4, making 203 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque; front- and all-wheel drive are available. Next up the chain is the NX350, which gets a turbocharged 2.4-liter I-4 that isn’t shared with any Toyota product. This turbo engine pumps out 275 hp and 317 lb-ft of torque—marked improvements over last year’s turbo 2.0-liter, which put out 235 hp and 258 lb-ft. Every NX350 comes standard with all-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission.
With the two hybrid models, the NX hews closely to its RAV4 cousin. The NX350h is, essentially, a Toyota RAV4 Hybrid with a more powerful electric motor borrowed from the larger Lexus RX450h and its 2.5-liter gas engine tuned to run on premium fuel. Those two differences explain why the NX350h delivers a stout 239 hp; that’s 20 more hp than you get in the RAV4 Hybrid. Lexus claims the newfound oomph in the NX350h should shave 1.5 seconds off the old 194-hp NX300h’s poky 0-60-mph acceleration time, dropping it to 7.2 seconds. The NX350h also is expected to deliver 36 mpg on the highway, bettering the NX300h by 6 mpg.
In an NX first, the 2022 model offers a plug-in hybrid option. This model, dubbed NX450h+, is mechanically similar to the RAV4 Prime. It is therefore quite powerful—302 hp!—and expected to deliver the spiciest performance in the range (accelerating to 60 mph in an estimated 6.0 seconds).
Like the regular NX hybrid, the PHEV NX450h+ uses a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gas engine assisted by an electric motor (and a starter/generator) to power the front wheels and another motor to spin the rear axle. With its lithium-ion battery charged up, the NX450h+ is estimated to travel up to 36 miles on electricity alone; the NX’s wider tires and extra weight account for its lower electric-only driving range compared to the RAV4 Prime. A 3.3-kW onboard charger is included, but opting for the available 6.6-kW unit drops charging times from 4.5 hours to 2.5.
F Is For Sport, 3.0 Is For Safety
As before, NX buyers can opt for the F Sport treatment, albeit only on the NX350 and NX450h+. This trim sprinkles some sporty appearance bits over the NX, plus an adaptive suspension with sportier tuning, 20-inch gloss-black wheels, and exclusive Ultra White and Ultrasonic Blue 2.0 paint options.
Whereas previous NX models with the F Sport kit were separated from their less sporty brethren by way of a jutting lower front bumper, all 2022 NX models more or less share the same underbite. This is because Lexus raised the NX’s ground clearance, enabling the SUV to pass European Light Duty Truck classification.
Also consistent across the NX board? Safety tech. Lexus Safety System+ 3.0 is standard on every NX and includes blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, oncoming and left-turn vehicle detection, oncoming pedestrian detection and braking, evasive steering assist, lane departure warning, automatic high-beam control, road sign detection, and collision warning. The 2022 Lexus NX goes on sale this fall, and pricing and final dimension details are forthcoming.
2022 Lexus NX On Youtube
COMFY, FAST & HYBRID! 2022 Lexus NX 450h+ Review
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2022 Lexus NX: First Look (Up-Close Details)
Is the ALL NEW 2022 Lexus NX 350 a better luxury SUV to buy?
The redesigned NX lineup is here and Lexus is bringing some big changes. On the outside you will will find all new bodywork, front grill, optional wheels, and badging. On the inside you will greeted to a totally upgraded 14in infotainment system, digital gauges, and leather seating. Under the hood you will a variety of engine choices including a plug-in electric hybrid. ***Become a Raiti’s Rides Patreon Member TODAY! Is the ALL NEW 2022 Lexus NX 350 a better luxury SUV to buy?
2022 Lexus NX On Picture