2015 Lexus NX 200t

What's new for 2015? The 2015 Lexus NX 200t is an all-new model.

Our sun's corona. Beyonce's career. The molten interior of a freshly microwaved Hot Pocket. Beyond that, we can't really think of many things hotter than the wildly popular and rapidly growing compact luxury crossover SUV segment. Car shoppers clearly find these models' size, ride height, fuel economy and premium cabins to be a just-right recipe. Lexus already has a shopper favorite in the midsize RX 350 and it isn't too far north of the segment's average size and price range, but the company felt there was room for another, more directly aimed contender. Its name is the 2015 Lexus NX 200t.

On the outside, the NX has a distinctive look that takes inspiration from the company's recently redesigned IS sport sedan. Clever interior packaging has led to an impressive amount of rear seat legroom that betters what's available from most competitors. As expected in this day and age, the NX is packed full of available high-tech safety and infotainment features. The latter are likely to be controlled with Lexus' optional Remote Touch interface, revised for 2015 to use a new laptop-like touchpad to control various vehicle functions.

Exterior Highlights
Five-passenger, compact luxury crossover SUV, available in a single trim level

The 2015 Lexus NX 200t is a five-passenger, compact luxury crossover SUV. It is available in a single trim level.

Standard equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic LED headlights, LED foglights and running lights, rear privacy glass, keyless ignition and entry, driver-selectable vehicle dynamics settings, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, "NuLuxe" premium vinyl upholstery, a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, eight-way power front seats (with two-way power driver lumbar adjustment), a 60/40-split folding and reclining rear seat, a cargo cover and an auto-dimming mirror. Standard technology features include a 7-inch display screen, a rearview camera, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, Siri-based voice controls and readouts for iPhones, the Display Audio electronics interface and an eight-speaker sound system with a CD player, HD radio, satellite radio, an auxiliary audio jack and a USB/iPod interface.

The NX 200t F Sport is essentially a package that adds unique 18-inch wheels and styling elements along with summer tires, a sport-tuned suspension, transmission paddle shifters, performance gauges, special interior trim and a sportier engine note (synthesized through the car's sound system).

Other packages are also available, though availability can vary by region, so you'll want to check with your local dealer. The Comfort package adds a power-adjustable steering wheel and driver memory functions. The Premium package includes the Comfort items along with 18-inch wheels, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, heated and ventilated front seats (no ventilation on F Sport) and a sunroof. The Luxury package includes the Comfort and Premium items along with a power liftgate, automatic wipers, a tow package, leather upholstery, a heated steering wheel and wood trim. A power-folding rear seat can be added to the Luxury package.

The Navigation package obviously includes a navigation system, but also adds the Remote Touch electronics interface, two additional speakers, voice controls, various Lexus Enform smartphone-integrated apps and a special smartphone app that allows you to remotely control and monitor various vehicle functions.

Stand-alone options include 18-inch wheels, front and rear parking sensors, various advanced collision-prevention systems, the sunroof, the power liftgate, upgraded LED headlamps, heated and ventilated seats, a heated steering wheel and a wireless charging tray for Qi-compatible smartphones.

Modern vibe in interior, top-notch construction, padded center console, modern analog clock on dash, generous space for rear passengers

The NX's cabin isn't quite as radical as the exterior is, but it nevertheless exudes a cool, modern vibe that won't be mistaken for anything else in the segment. Construction is absolutely top-notch, with materials that look and feel rich. Soft leather lines the seats and passenger-side dash, as well as the padded areas that thoughtfully cushion the center console to keep your legs from whacking against a hard surface. Details like contrast stitching, wood trim and a modern analog clock are tastefully applied.

The high-mounted climate controls are easy to reach and see, while other secondary controls are intuitive. Rear passengers in the NX should find a generous amount of space, at least compared with most other compact luxury crossovers.

Every 2015 Lexus NX 200t comes standard with antilock brakes, traction and stability control, front side airbags, full-length side-curtain airbags, a driver knee airbag and a front passenger cushion airbag that prevents occupants from submarining under the seatbelt and off the seat. A rearview camera is also standard, along with Lexus Enform Safety Connect telematics that include automatic crash notification, stolen vehicle location and an emergency assist button. Optional features include a blind-spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert, as well as a lane-departure warning system and a frontal pre-collision system (included with adaptive cruise control) that warns of a possible collision and can automatically apply the brakes in the event of driver inaction.

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