Due for a Revamp, Lexus NX Hints at V6 Power

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
due for a revamp lexus nx hints at v6 power

With a new Lexus NX compact crossover expected to arrive next year, trademark applications on both sides of the Atlantic point to increased powertrain diversity — and more available power for U.S. customers.

Overseas, at least, the little Lexus (but not the littlest Lexus) CUV stands to go even greener.

European trademark applications posted to the macheclub.com forum show that, in that market at least, Lexus has a use in mind for the NX 450h+ moniker. While “h” denotes a hybrid model in most OEM parlance, the “+” seems to indicate a boosted level of electrification. A plug-in hybrid, one has to assume, not unlike the Toyota RAV4 Prime PHEV unveiled for the 2021 model year.

The upcoming NX is expected to borrow that model’s platform.

While Europe has gee-whiz tech in store, that same trademark cannot be found in the automaker’s U.S. applications list. Instead, a brace of new trademarks (filed in early April and first noticed by Motor Trend) point to four- and six-cylinder power. The North American NX currently exists in NX 300 and NX 300h form, with the gas-only model donning a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder and the hybrid pairing a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter with an electric motor.

The new additions are NX 250 and NX 350, which suggests a Camry-esque powertrain lineup, free of turbos. Toyota’s midsize sedan returns healthy fuel economy with its 2.5-liter four-banger/eight-speed auto combo (the NX still carries a six-speed in its current guise), with the thriftiest non-hybrid Camry topping the least-thirsty gas-only NX by 9 mpg in combined driving.

It’s assumed that NX 350 hints at the inclusion of Toyota’s sturdy 3.5-liter V6, though one must be wary of displacement-based naming conventions these days. Many automakers are throwing such things to the wind. Numbers mean nothing and reality is what you make it.

Introduced in late 2014 as a 2015 model, the NX has proven a reliable seller for Lexus. While yours truly wasn’t overwhelmed by the 2.0-liter turbo’s gas mileage or responsiveness, the transmission didn’t hunt and the model’s suspension was top-notch. It’s a valuable model for the brand, and one that Lexus will be sure not to screw up.

[Image: Steph Willems/TTAC]

Join the conversation
5 of 23 comments
  • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Apr 15, 2020

    I would rather buy Tellurude.

    • See 1 previous
    • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Apr 16, 2020

      @slavuta I don't need babes. Regarding nothing - there is not really such a thing as nothing - in pure nothingness quantum fluctuations have a measurable effect.

  • Moparmann Moparmann on Apr 16, 2020

    My question is this: What will be the next evolution of the "Predator" grille?? It couldn't possibly get any larger or uglier...could it?!?

    • Lorenzo Lorenzo on Apr 16, 2020

      Since there isn't much else they can do to make a vehicle "distinctive", everything is on the table. So, yes - it CAN get larger and uglier. The predator grille still has room to widen and engulf the headlights and front fenders, and don't be surprised if it creeps up and over the hood.

  • 3SpeedAutomatic And this too shall pass.....Ford went thru this when the model T was introduced. It took the moving assembly line to make real money. As time progressed, it got refined, eventually moving to the Model A. Same kind of hiccups with fuel injection, 4 speed automatic, Firestone tires, dashboards with no radio knobs, etc, etc, etc. Same thing with EVs. Yep, a fire or two in the parking lot, espresso time at the charging stations, other issues yet to be encountered, just give it time. 🚗🚗🚗
  • Art Vandelay 2025 Camaro and Challenger
  • Mike Beranek Any car whose engine makes less than 300 ft-lbs of torque.
  • Malcolm Mini temporarily halted manual transmission production but brought it back as it was a surprisingly good seller. The downside is that they should have made awd standard with the manual instead of nixing it. Ford said recently that 4dr were 7% manual take rate and I think the two door was 15%.
  • Master Baiter It’s hard to make predictions, especially about the future. It will be interesting to see if demand for Ford’s EVs will match the production capacity they are putting on line.