Review and Test Drive: 2020 Lexus NX 300

By Jonathan Spira on 9 June 2020
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Roughly one year ago, I noted that Lexus’s Department of Naming knew what it was doing when it named its then entry-level crossover the NX with the explanation that “NX” stands for “nimble crossover.”  As a result, when a Cadmium Orange 2020 NX 300 showed up at our door this past April, at the height of the coronavirus lockdown, I was excited.  After all, during a pandemic, who wanted boring?

Although introduced as the entry level Lexus back then (that slot has since been taken over by the UX), the NX is slotted below the RX, RX, GX, and LX.  However don’t read too much into that. 

Lexus introduced the NX in 2014 at the Beijing International Automobile Exhibition and sales in the United States began that November.  It’s built at the automaker’s Miyata plant in Miyawaka, Fukuoka.  While the NX shares a small number of components with the parts bin from the Toyota RAV4 – mostly those relating to structure and wheelbase – the car’s building blocks are otherwise unique to Lexus.


Inside, we found plush, well cushioned, seats with an interior design that matches the NX’ rather busy exterior.  Still, ergonomics are near excellent and only the finest materials are used, with buttery soft leather worthy of the marque. 

The driver’s seat is comfortable and supportive and I didn’t notice any strain on longer drives.  Because of the pandemic and social-distancing restrictions, I didn’t have any passengers, which was just as well.

The center stack remains the sole polarizing point in the interior, we noted last year: drivers here either love it or hate it.  It has every possible type of dial or switch and there are many – repeat, many – of them, too many to count.  The saving grace is the supersized 10.3” central display, which is quite effective for the Neptune infotainment system and wonderful for Apple CarPlay.  The touchpad that controls the display is above average for touchpad cockpit controllers.

Click here to continue to Page 2Driving the 2020 Lexus NX

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