Everything we know about the 2022 Lexus NX plug-in hybrid (Lexus NX 450h+)

An official video of the next-gen Lexus NX 2022 has popped up online, fully revealing its exterior and interior. This video has given away the variant line-up as well: 2022 Lexus NX 200 gasoline, 2022 Lexus NX 350h hybrid, and 2022 Lexus NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid.

Video Source: youtube.com/Matto R

Let’s take a look at everything we know about the new Lexus SUV.

2022 Lexus NX exterior

With an exterior design close to the first-gen Lexus NX, the 2022 Lexus NX might seem like a facelift from a distance. At the front, new headlamps are sharper and inspired by those of the 2021 Lexus LS. Unfortunately, but not unexpectedly, the polarizing spindle grille is on for one more generation, and comes with new vertical inserts.

On the sides, the edgier character lines on the shoulders and doors complement the sharper headlamps. At the rear, the reshaped tail lamps are connected via a new full-width light strip, and these new lights give a bolder styling to the SUV.

2022 Lexus NX interior

The 2022 Lexus NX interior packs more drastic improvements over the old model. The new steering seems easier to hold. A touchscreen infotainment system has replaced the old model’s clunky infotainment system with the finicky touchpad controller, as many customers felt. The floor console flaunts a short new electronic gear selector, and that, along with the exclusion of the touchpad controller, reduces its footprint. Also new is a fully digital instrument cluster, which should feature multiple layouts for the driver to choose from.

The current Lexus NX’s infotainment system isn’t the most intuitive, and an easy-to-use or at least a less fiddly system could be a major upgrade on the incoming car. Large central screens are a common interior feature in luxury models, especially EVs. The display of the all-new infotainment system of the next-gen model is larger, clearer and supports touch operation, and that should be a welcome change for many.

There’s visible usage of soft-touch and other premium materials like synthetic/genuine leather on the dashboard, floor console, steering wheel, gear selector, and doors. The door handles are smaller in size and feature a chic design to look more fashionable. The passenger-side dashboard could have been slimmer, as this bulky appearance doesn’t go with the current trend of minimalist interior themes. The head-up display in the new model will likely be more advanced, offering bigger and clearer projection, along with more details. The size of the brake hold button on the floor console has been increased significantly, which may seem small but would be a welcome improvement in everyday usage.

Specifications

According to a report from bestcarweb.jp, the next-gen Lexus NX will measure about 4,630 mm in length, 1,870 mm in width, and 1,630 mm in height. Here is how it would stack up against the outgoing model:

Aspect\SpecificationFirst-gen Lexus NX 2021 SpecificationSecond-gen Lexus NX 2022 Specification (Reported)
Length4,640 mm (182.7 in.)4,630 mm (182.3 in.)
Width1,845 mm (72.6 in.)1,870 mm (73.6 in.)
Height1,645 mm (64.8 in.)1,630 mm (64.2 in.)

Introduced in 2014, the Lexus NX is now in the seventh year on the market and is the oldest vehicle in its class. While European luxury automakers are transitioning from PHEVs to BEVs, Lexus has been slow with its pure electric and PHEV product plans. That will change with the 2022 Lexus NX, as it will be the first Lexus PHEV. For reference, the current model is available in petrol and hybrid variants.

A new platform and powertrain are rumored for the 2022 Lexus NX. The next-gen model will sit on the TNGA-K platform, which currently underpins the Toyota RAV4, Venza and Highlander SUVs.

Toyota TNGA platform
The 2022 Lexus NX will ride on the biggest version of TNGA platform (pictured) – TNGA-K with a longer wheelbase than the first-gen model (104.7 inches). Image Source: Toyota

Lexus needs to start offering a plug-in hybrid powertrain in the NX before other cars. Compared to the RX, GX (not available in Europe) and LX SUVs, the NX is smaller and the most suited for Europe where the brand lags well behind competitors. Year after year, ever since its first full year of sales in 2016, the NX has been the best-selling Lexus in Europe. An NX plug-in hybrid, then, should be a high priority to drive growth in the Old Continent.

2022 Lexus NX Plug-in Hybrid

Multiple trademark applications from April last year suggested that the next-gen plug-in hybrid variant could be called ‘NX 450h+’. The leaked video confirms that a Lexus NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid SUV is indeed coming this year. The 2022 Lexus NX 450h+ should feature the Toyota RAV4 Prime’s plug-in hybrid powertrain that combines the A25A-FXS 2.5-liter Dynamic Force Engine with the 5NM motor (front) and the 4NM motor (rear).

The Toyota RAV4 Prime has an 18.1 kWh Lithium-ion battery pack that gives it an EV mode range of 42 miles. A 3.3 kW onboard charger is standard and it fully charges the battery pack as quickly as in 4.5 hours. A 6.6 kW onboard charger is optionally available, and it takes 2.5 hours to fully charge the battery pack.

The leak mentions the availability of a 2022 Lexus NX 350h hybrid, which should have a full-hybrid powertrain that allows EV-mode driving for a short distance. Moreover, it shows a 2022 Lexus NX 200, which indicates a conventional gasoline engine’s availability at the base of the lineup.

2022 Lexus NX rear leaked
At least three variants are planned: 2022 Lexus NX 200 gasoline, 2022 Lexus NX 350h hybrid, and 2022 Lexus NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid.

Release Date

Earlier this month, a Lexus dealer source told creative311.com that the 2022 Lexus NX could premiere in May. The outline material (with preliminary information) should be distributed in a short while. September 2021 is likely the month when it hits the Japanese market, the report suggested. Note that Lexus has not given guidance on the launch date of the new NX.

The next-gen Lexus NX could arrive in U.S. showrooms as early as the end of this year to take on the Mercedes GLC, Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Cadillac XT4. Expect prices to start at just under $40,000.

2022 Lexus NX FAQs

What is the next-gen Lexus NX release date?

The Lexus NX world premiere is expected in May while the release is expected in the second half of the year.

Which models are considered the 2022 Lexus NX rivals?

Audi Q5, BMW X3, Cadillac XT4 & Mercedes GLC are Lexus NX rivals.

What will be the 2022 Lexus NX price?

The base 2022 NX variant’s price should be a shade under $40,000.

Featured Image Source: Lexus