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new Lexus NX

Lexus NX 450h+, 2021, nose
Lexus NX 450h+, 2021, grille
Lexus NX 450h+, 2021, tailgate
Lexus NX 350h, 2021, side
Lexus NX 350h, 2021, rear
Lexus NX 450h+, 2021, boot
Lexus NX 450h+, 2021, rear seats
Lexus NX 450h+, 2021, interior
Lexus NX 450h+ and NX 350h, 2021, pair

AN all-new version of the Lexus NX SUV has been revealed and the newcomer will be in the UK before the year is out.

It will be available with two powertrain options including a plug-in hybrid - a first for Lexus - which will have a zero emission range of up to 40 miles.

The other engine is a pure hybrid which will be available in both front and four-wheel-drive set ups and is said to be 22 per cent more powerful than before with 239bhp on tap.

The NX 450h+ PHEV is fitted with a 2.5-litre hybrid engine mated to electric motors which combined give four-wheel-drive and develop 302bhp.

Performance is said to be around six seconds 0 to 62mph with emissions of 40g/km and fuel economy of 94 to the gallon.

The NX 350h has an acceleration time of 7.7 seconds and is expected to be around 10 per cent more fuel efficient.

Prices are still to be confirmed but can be expected to show a slight increase over the current line up which costs from around £36,000. The NX450h+ is likely to carry a significant premium.

The car replaces the current NX which was launched in 2014 and has become Lexus' top seller in the UK notching up to 27,000 sales.

The newcomer is 20mm longer with the wheelbase increased by 30mm, the width by 20mm and the height by five millimetres - dimensions which offer more space for rear seat passengers.

At the front, the Lexus spindle grille is set more upright and the car has wider front and rear tracks.

At the rear new features include Lexus blade lighting that spans the width of the tailgate and the first use of the "LEXUS" name in place of the "L" emblem.

The new NX is the first model to feature Lexus's Tazuna cockpit design. Taking its name from a Japanese word describing a rider's use of the reins to control a horse, it is focused on giving the driver direct vehicle control, following the principle of "hands on the wheel, eyes on the road."

The cockpit space curves round from the driver's door to the centre console, with information sources - a multimedia screen, multi-information display, combimeter and the option of a head-up display - grouped so they can be read with minimal eye and head movement.

Similarly controls such as the starter button, gear shift lever, air conditioning controls and drive mode selector are set on the same plane to ease reach and operation.

It is the first Lexus model to be fitted with the e-latch electronic door release system which replaces the internal door handle with a push-button switch.

A Safe Exist Assist system links the e-latch to the car's blind spot monitor, giving a warning if there is a risk of opening a door into the path of a vehicle or cyclist. Lexus believes this can help prevent 95 per cent of the accidents caused by door opening.

The car also has a completely new Lexus multimedia platform that introduces smart services, including a cloud-based navigation system which can provide real-time journey information and traffic updates. There is also anew "Hey Lexus" assistant, which responds to natural voice commands.

The standard system Lexus Link Connect, uses a 9.8-inch display with an anti-glare touchscreen and additional buttons for intuitive access to the most frequently used functions.

On high grade models, the Lexus Link Pro system features a 14-inch display - one of the largest in it class - which has a high-definition screen and clear graphics in all lighting conditions.

The new NX is Lexus's first model to feature the third generation of the Lexus Safety System+, equipping it with a comprehensive package of active safety and driver assistance features.

The improvements include further expansion of the Pre-Collision System's capabilities so that motorcycles and some solid objects in the car's path, such as trees, walls and utility poles, can be detected.

It also gains a new function that identifies collision risks with oncoming traffic or crossing pedestrians when making a turn at a junction.

With these developments, Lexus says the Pre-Collision System can recognise and help to avoid 36 per cent more accident scenarios than previously.

Changes have also been made to the adaptive cruise control so that it recognises traffic cutting in in front more quickly and, in conjunction with upgrades to the Lane Trace Assist, follows a more natural line through bends.

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