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by Tim Beissmann

The first image of the Lexus NX in production trim has been released ahead of its world premiere at the Beijing auto show later this month.

Set to reach Australia either late this year or early in 2015, the Lexus NX will sit beneath the larger RX in the Japanese luxury car maker’s line-up, targeting the likes of the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Range Rover Evoque.

The shadowy, tightly cropped teaser image confirms the production car will, as expected, feature a toned-down exterior design from the radically styled Lexus LF-NX concept on which it’s based, though still retain much of its sharpness and aggression.

A more refined version of Lexus’ now-signature ‘spindle’ grille and discrete L-shaped LED daytime running lights create a familiar look at the front, which also features larger LED headlights similar to those on the new RC coupe.

The NX’s muscular front and rear wheel arches mirror those of the concept, and combined with its deep sweeping contour lines contribute to a broad-shouldered stance.

The NX will introduce turbocharging technology to Lexus’ line-up. The range will include the NX200t – a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine tipped to produce about 220kW and 350Nm – and the NX300h petrol-electric hybrid.

The Lexus NX will debut in Beijing on April 20.




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