Japan’s largest selling brand of premium cars, Lexus, showcased its newest entry into the hybrid automobile market in India, in November 2017. Branded as the Lexus NX 300h, this angularly styled SUV is the smallest model made by Lexus in its class, allowing it to be attractively priced for the consumers as well. Displayed for the first time at the Shanghai motor show early this year, the NX 300h comes with a host of attractive features, both in terms of its interiors as well as exteriors.
The NX 300h Variants
The Lexus NX 300h will be made available in India in two variants: the Luxury NX 300h and the more advanced NX 300h F-Sport, with additional features on the exterior and paddle shifters to improve the driving experience. Under its hood, the Lexus NX 300h packs a powerful punch with its 2.5 litre 4-cylinder engine that has been coupled with an electronically controlled CVT motor, allowing the hybrid engine to run on petrol, electric power or a combination of both. Even with its impressive power credentials, the Automotive Research Association of India has gauged its mileage to be at around a relatively economical 18 km per litre.
On the exterior, the Lexus NX 300h has a snazzy trapezoidal grill affixed with the traditional Lexus logo, albeit with a blue background to signify its hybridism. The iconic triple projector beam headlamps of the Lexus have been restyled to add to the aesthetic appeal of the car. At the rear, there are sharp new tail lamps as well as a power rear door, a rear mounted spoiler and a rear diffuser to complete the look.
The interior of the new Lexus NX 300h is equipped with comfortably stylish NuLuxe seating, pleasant lighting and a moon-roof that considerably improves the car’s internal ambience. On the dashboard side are a futuristic looking heads-up display and a 10.3 inch multi-information system with complete access to audio, climate and navigation systems as well as the trademarked Lexus Enform Wi-Fi system. Some of the other features of the Lexus NX 300h include power adjustable seats at the front, dual-zone climate control and rain sensing wipers, among others.
Safety and Sales
Safety being a primary concern for Lexus, there are multiple safety features included in the car, such as SRS airbags (8 of them), Anti-locking Braking System with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, stability control, hill start assist and many more. Lexus plans to set up separate distribution and retail centres from Toyota in order to increase the efficiency of its sales network in India. The new Lexus NX 300h will be available at its Lexus Guest Experience Centres from the March of 2018, priced attractively at ₹ 53.18 lakh for the luxury model and ₹ 55.58 lakh for the top-end F-Sport model (ex-showroom prices). Competing with rival SUVs from Mercedes and Audi such as the GLA or the Q3 will be the true test for the new Lexus NX 300h, but as the VP of Operations (Lexus India), Arun Nair said, it is not just a car, but a lifestyle. Now that would be difficult to compete with, wouldn’t it?