2022 Lexus NX

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2022 Lexus NX Test Drive Review: A New Compact Luxury Benchmark

The Lexus NX is back for a second generation and aims to build on the first-generation crossover's strengths while ironing out the areas that needed some attention. The compact luxury crossover has grown in size, has more athletic drivetrain options, and can now be equipped with a plug-in hybrid powertrain from the Toyota RAV4 Prime. But the biggest improvement is inside, where the infuriating Lexus infotainment setup has been replaced with the forward-looking new Lexus Interface system, finally giving the NX an edge over luxury rivals like the Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class, Audi Q5, and BMW X3.

The base model still has a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine without a turbocharger that makes 203 horsepower, while the 350 comes with a new 2.4-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine making 275 hp. The hybrid models make more power, with the 350h delivering 239 hp while the NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid maxes the range out by sending 302 hp to all four wheels.

Lexus's NX came out of the gate strong in 2020 as an aggressively stylish compact crossover, so we were keen to see how Lexus handled improving its luxury compact crossover formula when we tested the NX 350 and 450h+ recently. In short, Lexus has brought the compact up to industry-leading standards.

Read in this review:

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2022 Lexus NX Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 2021 Lexus NX?

The 2022 Lexus NX is an all-new model and ushers in the second generation of the brand's compact luxury crossover. Although it doesn't look dramatically different from last year's model, it's a much-improved vehicle in the areas that count. One of the major updates is the introduction of the new Lexus Interface infotainment system with an available 14-inch touchscreen. This is also the first Lexus to get the Lexus Safety System 3.0+ safety suite, comprising standard features like dynamic radar cruise control and oncoming pedestrian detection. The new NX 350 has a 275-horsepower 2.4-liter turbocharged engine, and there's also a new NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid with an estimated 36-mile all-electric range.

Pros and Cons

  • Distinctive design
  • Typically luxurious interior
  • Simplified infotainment interface
  • Nippy new PHEV model
  • Comprehensive safety suite
  • Base engine is rather sluggish
  • Trunk is still on the small side

What's the Price of the 2022 Lexus NX?

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2022 Lexus NX Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
NX 250
2.5L Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
NX 250 Premium
2.5L Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
NX 350h
2.5L Inline-4 Hybrid
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
All-Wheel Drive
NX 350
2.4L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
NX 250 Luxury
2.5L Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
See All 2022 Lexus NX Trims and Specs

2022 NX Exterior

2022 Lexus NX Front View CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Rear View CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Front Angle View CarBuzz
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  • Length 183.5 in
  • Wheelbase 105.9 in
  • Height 65.8 in
  • Max Width 73.4 in
  • Front Width 63.2 in
  • Rear Width 64.0 in
  • Curb Weight 3,660.0 lbs

Exterior Colors

  • Atomic Silver
  • Caviar
  • Redline
  • Nori Green Pearl
  • Grecian Water
  • Eminent White Pearl
  • Cloudburst Gray
  • Cadmium Orange
  • Ultra White
  • Obsidian
  • Ultrasonic Blue Mica 2.0

2022 NX Performance

2022 Lexus NX Frontal Aspect CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Gauge Cluster CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Wheel CarBuzz

Engine and Transmission

  • Engines
    2.4L Turbo Inline-4 Gas, 2.5L Inline-4 Gas, 2.5L Inline-4 Hybrid, 2.5L Inline-4 Plug-in Hybrid
  • Transmissions
    8-Speed Automatic, Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
  • Drivetrains
    AWD, FWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

We got the chance to spend some serious wheel time with both the NX 350 and the new NX 450h+ plug-in hybrid, and the first thing to notice is how much heavier 450h+ feels on the road (4,475 lbs at the curb). It makes for a slightly different ride, but we left feeling neither like it was better or worse than the other. Like the previous generation, the suspension feels heavily damped while still soaking up lumps and bumps well. The result is a ride that feels padded when cruising, but firm and confident when hustling around tight roads and city streets.

Out on longer, windy roads, the body starts to roll when the NX is pushed, despite the new model's lower center of gravity. It's certainly not a sports car, but the NX is keen to turn in and happy to get its hustle on. On those longer roads, the NX is a happy cruiser and, with its more enthusiastic power levels, has no problem finding a reserve for overtaking, particularly the 450h+ with its 302 hp. As a balance between sportiness and luxury, the NX still errs on the side of comfort. Even in sport mode, the NX doesn't change its character too much. Understeer awaits those with too heavy of a foot on the throttle.

2022 NX Interior

2022 Lexus NX Dashboard CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Infotainment System CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Front Chairs CarBuzz
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Seating and Interior Space

  • Seating capacity
  • Front Leg Room 41.0 in
  • Front Head Room 38.3 in
  • Rear Leg Room 36.1 in
  • Rear Head Room 38.5 in

2022 NX Trunk and Cargo Space

2022 Lexus NX Cup Holder CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Rear Passenger Seats CarBuzz
2022 Lexus NX Trunk Space CarBuzz

2022 NX Safety and Reliability


  • Basic:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    6 Years \ 70,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    6 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    4 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Maintenance:
    1 Years \ 10,000 Miles

US NHTSA Crash Test Result

NHTSA safety ratings are not available at this time.

Verdict: Is the 2022 Lexus NX A Good SUV?

The new generation of Lexus NX is a marked improvement over the previous, with much of that owed to the new infotainment system and fuel economy. Lexus has clearly been listening, and we now feel we can confidently recommend people check out the Lexus NX if they're looking for a small, luxurious crossover. Ride quality is excellent, the styling is up to date, the interior is well designed and comfortable - and the technology has leaped forward. There's a lot to love with the new NX, and the new hybrid systems used are basically Toyota drivetrains. The young infotainment system has the ability to update over the air, so we wouldn't bother to hedge and wait a year before buying.

What 2022 Lexus NX Model Should I Buy?

Check out other Lexus NX Styles

2022 Lexus NX Comparisons

Lexus RX CarBuzz
Acura RDX CarBuzz
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Lexus NX203 hp26/33 mpg$38,605
Lexus RX 275 hp22/29 mpg$47,400
Acura RDX 272 hp22/28 mpg$41,550

2022 Lexus NX vs Lexus RX

The Lexus RX is the NX's bigger brother, offering more luxury and space but at a higher MSRP. Whereas the NX's base engine is still a bit of an underperformer, the base RX has a much stronger V6. However, the new NX 450h+ hybrid is significantly quicker than even the RX 450h, so that's the model to go for if you want a Lexus SUV with some real grunt. Both SUVs have luxurious interiors, but the RX offers third-row seating if you really need it. Neither SUV has a particularly large trunk. The new NX comes with Lexus's latest safety suite, which is a step up from the RX's equivalent. The NX also has the new-generation infotainment system with a larger touchscreen. By comparison, the RX is saddled with the frustrating older infotainment suite. Unless you need the extra seating capacity, we'd rather have the fresher NX.

See Lexus RX Review

2022 Lexus NX vs Acura RDX

Acura's RDX is slightly larger than the Lexus NX but both aim to offer a similarly luxurious SUV experience for a more affordable price than their German competitors. Unlike the Lexus, the Acura only has one engine choice but it's a strong 2.0-liter turbo-four with 272 hp. Together with the ten-speed automatic transmission and some sporty dynamics, the RDX is quite fun to drive. Then again, the Lexus has more configurations so will potentially appeal to more people. We also prefer the NX's latest cabin, and it's infotainment system is now more user-friendly than the touchpad controller in the RDX. The Acura is brilliantly equipped, though, with some standard features that are optional on the Lexus. It's a close call but we'd side with the new NX.

See Acura RDX Review

2022 Lexus NX Popular Comparisons

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