First Impressions: 2015 Lexus NX 200t
It doesn’t hit showrooms until December but we got our hands on the all-new Lexus NX200t at a recent media event. In many ways, it was surprising but in many others its features were completely expected. Would it work for families? We found out.
New Lexus models all seem to have one major issue- they all look fast standing still. Even the NX, a crossover, has lines reminiscent of speed and a sharp angular facia that, after seeing the new Nissan Murano and Jeep Cherokee, appears to be on-trend with the future of vehicle design.
Having received early mixed reviews, the Lexus spindle grill looks fierce on the NX200t’s front end albeit large.
The headlamps are divided with the NX200t’s stringed checkmark of LED lights upping the cool quotient as they wrap around the side of the vehicle.
On the backside, the taillights jut out from the paneling while the overall look is not unlike the RX.
Driving the NX200t is just as expected. With a great turning radius, responsive braking and gas pedals, and a quiet ride, the crossover checks all the typical Lexus boxes. Steering definitely fits the size of the vehicle and makes driving feel sporty and fun- more like a sedan than a typical SUV.
Plush, well thought out, and functional are the words best describing the NX200t’s interior and coming from Lexus, that’s expected. The plush yet sporty seating is comfortable without feeling like it’s hugging your every curve.
What was unexpected was how much space there was for back seat passengers and rear storage space. For our 45 minute drive we had a 6’4″ grown man comfortably seated in the second row. He described himself as having “plenty of room.”
In the rear, a felt covering on the storage area made for no rear window shine- a nice touch that also added a safety element to future shopping runs. While storage was not abundant, it was very similar to what you’d find in most compact SUVs like the Nissan Rogue we recently reviewed.
What some have described as a crowded looking center stack was not as crowded in person as it appears in pictures.
What we were most impressed with was the real-time traffic data navigation system which accurately marked road construction as we navigated the always-under-construction streets of Atlanta. The navigation system also quickly shifted as we drove and zoomed in and out in a timely manner even with a great deal of graphic detail on the screen.
One word- quiet. The NX200t almost cocoons you from the rest of traffic as you drive. In busy city driving or on more rural roads we found ourselves engaged in conversation without having to think about engine and road noise, or sounds coming from other vehicles.
Everything else about the vehicle was as you would expect it from Lexus- smooth, responsive, and surefooted. A family of four could comfortably ride in the NX200t, and store enough belongings for a significant road trip, from birth through adulthood.