The Lexus LF-NX Turbo arrived at the Tokyo motor show as a renewal of the premium medium SUV concept that lobbed at September's Frankfurt motor show, with only mild bodywork changes hiding the brand's first-ever turbocharged engine.
A 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit incorporating both port- and direct-injection and variable valve timing, the new engine – confirmed by CarAdvice earlier this month to lob first in NX and likely wearing 200t badging on the production version – also scores a twin-scroll turbocharger with active wastegate valve and an exhaust manifold integrated into the cylinder head.
Although Lexus refuses to name outputs and emissions for the new engine, it has stated that “through optimisation of the exhaust gas temperature, the cylinder head-integrated exhaust manifold combines a high level of performance with fuel efficiency, clean exhaust emission reliability, while the twin scroll turbocharger operates effectively across the widest possible rev range”.
Lexus also has confirmed that “the new LF-NX Turbo’s 2.0-litre engine paves the way for the introduction of turbocharged powerplants in future Lexus models” with the IS and GS sedan and RC coupe expected prime candidates.
It also hints at different displacements for the new engine family in the future, with Lexus managing directior Ise Kiyotaka telling CarAdvice at an event leading up to the Tokyo motor show that “the engine displacement may be large or relatively small depending on the application”.
Expected outputs for the 2.0-litre are around 220kW power and 350Nm torque, in line with Kiyotaka-san further indicating that large petrol V6 outputs can be expected from the new 2.0-litre turbo.
Lexus has also used the latest LF-NX concept to reveal dimensions for its Audi Q5 and BMW X3 rival. At 4640mm long with a 2700mm wheelbase, the LF-NX measures 39mm longer than Q5, but 44mm shorter than X3.
Aggressive contours continue with the latest Lexus LF-NX concept, but compared with the concept shown at September’s Frankfurt motor show, the Tokyo show car gets a darker grey paint finish and a smoked chrome finish around the front ‘spindle’ grille replaces the previous bright chromework.
A new 20-inch alloy wheel design also appears.
Lexus Australia acknowledges the premium SUV market continues to grow, and openly wants the production version, called NX, as soon as possible.
Lexus executives point to the 12-month timeframe between the Lexus LF-CC concept and the reveal of the RC coupe production version as an indication of when the LF-NX concept will evolve into the Lexus NX production vehicle. That means a likely Paris motor show reveal in September 2014 for the Lexus medium SUV before going on sale in 2015.