With no outboard option, the stylish Japanese appeals for a low entry-level price while at the same time offering less performance and better condition.
As a full hybrid, the NX 350h thus remains independent of external charging processes and supplies the battery independently through brake energy recovery and combustion engine power. What is the important difference to the big brother, the NX 450h includes, explains this operational report.
We drove the NX 350h in “Luxury” trim and in the attractive Nori Green body color.
Appearance of Lexus NX 350h – a classic Lexus SUV
You’ll look in vain for differences in the big brother, the NX 450h – as long as you leave the model name on the tailgate.
In simple language, this means that the second generation has been presented in a classic stealth appearance since 2021 and shows a certain military charm. This is due to the countless edges and curves in the bodywork, but also to the Diabolo front grille and flat LED headlights, which cross is visible to reduced eyes.
The green nori makes the Lexus more attractive and gives it a military look thanks to the muted shade of green, although forestry companies and hunters should also consider this shade. In any case, this color stands out brilliantly from today’s modern tones.
The interior looks very elegant thanks to the brown alpaca leather, which is further enhanced by the dark wood trim and other quality materials. We could only wish for a better feel for the other plastics. The processing is top notch, you won’t see any lag here.
Some things like the electronic door opener are interesting and are quickly dismissed as gimmicks at first glance. However, these prevent accidents caused by opening the door and traffic behind, because the system recognizes such risks and prevents the door from opening in corresponding situations. The digital interior mirror is more in the gimmick category, but it can be converted to a regular interior mirror with a switch.
The sense of space in the Lexus NX is somewhat limited due to wall-like blocking of occupants, although there is plenty of space. However, the seats prove to be comfortable and also suitable for long distance journeys. In the back, there are restrictions on headroom and legroom due to the design – but everything is still the same.
Although the hybrid battery of the Lexus NX 350h is much smaller than that of the 450h, the trunk does not offer more space than the larger one. It is at least 545 liters, which increases to 1,436 liters when the load compartment is maximized.
Engine and driving characteristics – comfort meets hybrid
The work of the car is shared by a 2.5-liter in-line four-cylinder with an electric motor. The all-wheel drive E-FOUR model tested here has a second electric motor on the rear axle; if you choose the 350h as FWD, it retains the electric motor for the front axle. The all-wheel drive system also means an additional payment of less than 2,500 euros.
All-wheel drive also uses a total system output of 244 hp; only the additional torque of the electric motor on the rear axle causes a small performance gain in the latter, which we will come to later. Power is transmitted by a continuously variable automatic CVT. The interaction between the two drives is buttery smooth and fully compatible. Again and again, the crossover runs on electricity for a short distance, which is often only visible on the corresponding displays in the cockpit.
The Lexus NX 350h reacts quickly to every gas command. Even if the propulsion is not as powerful as in the NX 450h, one does not have the feeling of suffering from the deficiency. The petrol engine whines when you step on the gas pedal and then provides enough thrust with electric assistance.
The sprint from standstill to 100 km/h takes 7.7 seconds – one second less than the front-wheel drive NX 350h and 1.4 seconds more than the 309 hp 450h. In this profession you can see the difference more clearly. At the same time, the maximum speed for all NX models is 200 km / h.
In summary, one can confirm that the Lexus NX 350h has a clear focus on comfort. This ranges from driving characteristics and chassis tuning with comfortable suspension behavior to smooth and reasonably direct steering.
At a fast pace, the Japanese remains comfortably reserved despite the good setup in terms of body movements. ESP controls the heavy load changes early and gently, so that the nearly 1.9-ton Lexus can be controlled well.
On wet roads, no loss of traction can be observed, even with the accelerator pedal. Here the Lexus as AWD certainly has a clear advantage over the FWD version. Thanks to the pronounced insulation, driving noise remains pleasantly in the background, even at highway speeds.
In terms of consumption, the Lexus NX 350h could not keep up with the excellent results of its older brother, which consumed very little despite the obvious increase in performance. The NX 350h averaged 7.2 liters per 100 kilometers – that’s 0.8 liters more.
On top of severity cycle the difference was just obvious: here we came up with an average of 4.6 liters, which is already worthy of recognition. But 3.7 liters of NX 450h despite an empty hybrid battery it could not be recharged. In celebration of the lead legs, the crossover tested here even used a better liter and consumed 13 liters at full throttle.
But that is not the profession of both types and the bottom line is that both, including full hybrids, are modern, economical and efficient. A full hybrid has the advantage that it never needs external charging and is therefore always self-sufficient like a conventional combustion engine.
Equipment, comfort, technology
The Luxury trim level was already on the larger one Lexus NX 450h on board and here you can also enjoy a real service weapon thanks to this. But the Lexus already has essentials as standard, such as 2-zone automatic air conditioning, electric seat adjustment, a reversing camera and infotainment with permanent internet connection with a 9.8-inch screen and many assistance systems.
The Luxury package also includes a Mark Levinson sound system, a 360-degree camera, a 14-inch center screen and hard drive navigation, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay – all connected quickly and working flawlessly – sensor controls on the steering wheel . , a large head-up display, very fast and efficient front and rear seat heating and much more.
The paneled glass roof allows the interior to look friendly and full of light and, by the way, is reserved only for the Lexus NX 350h in the high equipment variant for an additional 1,600 euros – this is not offered for the PHEV model.
Lexus NX 350h variants and prices
Luxury & Co.’s most expensive packages. are no longer available. The equipment was divided into different ranges and the packages were replaced by thinner ones. The NX 350h is currently only offered as a FWD version. The E-FOUR all-wheel drive variant cannot be configured, so all of the following pricing information applies to the FWD variant.
- Entering – The default model is disabled 50,800 euros available – that’s around 13,000 euros less than the big brother for the entry-level model. Standard here are 18-inch wheels, power door openers, 2-zone automatic air conditioning and more.
- Business version – One level up you go down 56,700 euros privacy glazing, ambient lighting, steering wheel heating, electric tailgate with signal control and other equipment features.
- performance line – You reach the maximum level from 58,600 euros and can also look forward to smooth entry, 360-degree camera, Lexus Smart Connect Pro, hard disk navigation and much more.
In addition, you can complete models with a technology package for 1,200 euros, which includes cross traffic warning, lane change assistant, HUD and sensor surfaces on the steering wheel. With the interior package, you can decorate the interior with leather, fully air-conditioned seats, multi-colored lights and more for 2,400 euros.
Conclusion – hybrid comfort and luxury
In the test, the Lexus NX 350h proved to be a very good companion whose premium claim is very high and many services ensure luxury mobility with this crossover.
As a full hybrid, it remains independent of charging stations and is still very economical. In terms of performance, it is well packed and in terms of space you have to accept some compromises for a good look and exterior of the body – especially at the back.
But you are rewarded royally with the design and handling of this – as we could see time and time again during our test – a real attraction on German roads. On the other hand, high prices and a narrow network of services in this country remain poor.
But that won’t stop individuals averse to the necessary changes from splurging on a Lexus like that. In any case, they have the ability to distinguish themselves from the norm. As safe as it is to enjoy comfort and luxury on wheels.
Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Advantages and disadvantages
- good and safe driving habits
- excessive look
- detailed equipment
- many good support systems
- Very well tuned hybrid system
- high price
- large gasoline engines when full power is needed
- little space behind
Description: Lexus NX 350h Luxury Line E-FOUR
- Color: metallic green nori
- Vehicle Class: Midsize / SUV
- Length x width x height (m): 4.66 x 1.87 (2.15 with external glass) x 1.66
- Wheelbase (mm): 2,690
- Drive: Inline four-cylinder petrol engine with OPF plus one electric motor per axle
- Hybrid type: full hybrid
- System output: 179 kW (244 hp)
- Maximum torque (Nm) combustion engine/electric front/rear electric motor: 239/270/121
- Transfers: 2,487
- Transmission: Continuously variable CVT
- Drive type: E-FOUR all-wheel drive (rear axle is electric only)
- Average consumption (WLTP): 6.0 l/100 km
- Average consumption (NewCarz): 7.2 l/100 km
- CO2 emissions (factory specs): 135 g/km
- Production class: Euro 6d-ISC-FCM
- Maximum speed: 200 km / h
- Acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h (sec): 7.7
- Turning circle (m): 12.4
- Ground clearance (mm): 185
- Front/back angle of approach: 16°/25°
- Trunk volume (l): 545 to 1,436
- Curb weight (kg): 1,865
- Load (kg): 515
- Towing capacity without brakes/12% brake (kg): 750/1,500
- Bar load (kg): 60
- Roof weight (kg): 80
- Tank capacity (l): 55
- Fuel type: Petrol E5/E10 at least 95 octane
- New test car price: 67,500 euros (base price: 50,800 euros)