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2019 Lexus NX Hybrid Overview
The Lexus NX hit the scene in 2015, and, like most things Lexus, it included a hybrid variant: the NX 300h. The model received a refresh in 2018, so Lexus has chosen to withhold any major changes on the 2019.
The NX 300h’s exterior design still looks fresh and unique in its fifth model year on the market. From the pointed front end and full-height spindle grille to the creases and curves that make up the side panels and the boomerang-shaped taillights, the NX 300h looks nothing short of premium. The same goes for the interior. Though it’s not quite as fancy as those in some newer Lexus products, it’s cohesive with the exterior and fitting for the class, with equal measures of familiarity and high tech. Specifically, there’s not much to distinguish the NX 300h from its gas-only counterpart, aside from badging and blue-outlined “L” badges on the front and rear.
Lexus equips the NX 300h with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and a small motor through a continuously variable transmission (CVT) on the front wheels. There’s a second independent electric motor that drives the rear wheels when extra traction is needed, making the NX 300h all-wheel drive (AWD) by default. The powertrain is capable of 194 net horsepower, and delivers fuel economy ratings of 33 miles per gallon city, 30 highway, and 31 combined on regular fuel. Lexus includes hybrid-specific read-outs on both the instrument cluster and infotainment displays.
Lexus offers the NX 300h in one grade, which includes standard features like 17-inch tinted wheels, leatherette upholstery, 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot capability, a security alarm, power-folding mirrors, an 8-inch infotainment system, an 8-speaker audio system, power driver’s and passenger’s seats, and dual-zone automatic climate control. From there, drivers can add options like a bigger 10.3-inch infotainment display with navigation, heated and ventilated front seats, memory controls, 18-inch wheels, and genuine leather upholstery.
As far as safety goes, a reversing camera and the Lexus Safety System+ suite are both standard equipment. The latter includes forward-collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, automatic high beams, and adaptive cruise control. Blind-spot monitoring, rain-sensing wipers, and a surround-view camera system are all available.
The NX line is competent enough, but the NX 300h is one of the only compact hybrid crossovers on the market, and therefore a segment leader in regard to fuel economy. Buyers with an interest in thrifty luxury travel should definitely check it out.
Kyree is new to the automotive journalism scene, but has voiced snarky public opinions about cars for quite some time. When he's not drooling over the latest European luxury sled, he's designing web experiences or writing backend code.
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Lexus NX Hybrid Questions
Front Crash Safety Rating
I was surprised to learn that this car only had 4 stars for front collision for both driver and passenger. Should I be concerned?