The 2017 Lexus NX was an impressively premium compact crossover that felt unrelated to its humble Toyota underpinnings when we last reviewed it. Now alleged images of the latest update to the edgy crossover have leaked online revealing a dramatically updated interior.
Lexus engineers claimed back in 2015 that the NX had reengineered at least 90-percent of the vehicle’s parts independently from the Toyota Rav4 it is based on, using multiple different manufacturing processes. Every time we’ve driven the NX, those claims have proven to result in a comfortable, premium ride and user experience in spite of some tricky and confusing interior controls and infotainment systems.
Images reveal an exterior that is a modest update to the current vehicle’s angular and edgy signature bodywork. The NX gets an expected LED and DRL signature update in the lights as well. The real revelation in these leaked images, which were originally posted on the ClubLexus forums and reported via Autocar, is that the Lexus NX interior has undergone a much-needed overhaul and digital upgrade.
The leaked images of the NX interior reveal a new screen infotainment interface slightly angled toward the driver. Considering the lack of physical buttons anywhere within reach of driver or passenger, it appears the screen will take over almost all of the system, media and vehicle setting adjustments save for that suspicious little blurry knob by the driver’s knee. There also still appears to be a physical volume knob and physical temperature climate controls.
The old wretched Lexus touchpad is apparently gone, as are most of the outgoing model’s hard, pale black plastic button and trimmings that bewilders the otherwise premium character of the current NX. There now appears to be a wireless charging pad for phones and other devices.
A second digital screen sits ahead of the driver in place of physical vehicle information dials. One leaked image shows a centralized numerical speed readout hovering above what appears to be a cruise control vehicle distance graphic. The dashboard appears to have a cutout for a heads-up display projector, and I’m also moderately pleased to find some paddle shifters sticking their ears out from behind the steering wheel. It may be a sporty novelty, but it’s nice that Lexus is still committing to it for those of us (me) who enjoy them.
Lexus has sold an average of around 55,770 NX models per year over the last six years, and almost exactly that many in 2020. Hence it’s obvious why the changes outside aren’t radical, but the stuff owners will touch has improved dramatically. It’s not clear when Lexus intends to officially unveil the new NX crossover, but it’s now likely soon. The current car starts at $37,610 but there’s no indication of the new model’s price. In the meantime, there are plenty of images of it from the now-deleted forum post for you to check out in full over on Autocar.