First Impressions of the Lexus LF-NX Turbo Concept

Lexus LF-NX Hero Image

After staring at photos for months, I finally had a chance to see the Lexus LF-NX concept at the Tokyo Motor Show.

Before seeing the LF-NX in person, I had no idea how Lexus was going to transform it into a production model — the concept appeared architectural, more structure than automobile, like a solid block of steel.

Imagine my surprise when the visual heaviness of the design just near disappeared in real life — the sharpness is still there, but it doesn’t dominate in the same way.

Despite this softening of the edges, the LF-NX front end is still too bold — however, get the proper angle and the design all makes sense:

Lexus LF-NX Front

The side profile is the most balanced — the silhouette is distinct, like a cross between the IS & RX, and the body creases give the doors a muscular feel:

Lexus LF-NX Side Profile

If there’s one element of the LF-NX that doesn’t work for me, it’s the rear design — there’s too many complex folds and edges, especially the large vertical slash under the taillights:

Lexus LF-NX Rear Taillights

A Lexus executive told me something insightful about the LF-NX, in that the design is ill-suited to being on a platform — looking up at the concept gives it a very boxy look. To continue that thought, I believe all of the angles & shadows make it appear harsh and unforgiving in photos.

In person, you can squint and see a production model — there’s the promise of a crossover that manages to capture something unique, something more dynamic and aggressive than its competitors.

It’s another unusual twist in a series of moves by Lexus, who have taken great pride in disrupting expectations. Who would have ever expected anything like this from Lexus even two years ago?


  1. Not right for everybody, but just right......FOR BLACK DYNAMITE! BD
    • I'm in as well! One thing that puzzles me is no mention of an F-Sport version. One can speculate from the full-mesh spindle grill of the LF-NX it is the "F-Sport" from a design standpoint and I hope this model is available at launch. However, it is concerning that the prod RC was unveiled as a non-F-Sport yet the LF-CC was designed as one. Are we to expect the same with the NX?
  2. The LF-NX is not that edgy in person. However, I cannot say with confidence that it is beautiful. The proportion and the front-end could be tweaked. The concept that was just perfect is the LF-Xh. That one is a better option to directly translate into a production one and I hope they should do for the next RX.
  3. It is amazing the build quality, detail, and completeness on the concept vehicles Lexus builds.
  4. RAL

    krew, I always appreciate your feedback and your considered/straightforward opinion. Thanks for the great care you take in all you do.
  5. bob

    Krew, what's your objective opinion on pedestrian safety - It's OK saying it's sharp, but that can also mean dangerous (to pedestrians). And another question, what is inside those front slits under the headlights ? Are they open for airflow, or closed thus damming the air making it less aerodynamic?
  6. I am not worried at all. As you can tell by various Lexus Future Concept model. Greatest example of all is the latest RC coupe.(Based LF-CC) The concept is also full of sharp edges and ultra exaggerated flares. I have high confident that it will be elegant as usual with a bit of sporty flare that closely resemble to IS sporty and RX utility perfect combination
  7. From what I'm hearing, the front intakes next to the grille will be gone, and replaced probably with LEDs, the rear end will be toned down the most, and made into something producible, and the area around the rear wheel arches will be toned down some, but the grille will have a bumper integrated behind it and greenhouse are pretty much the stuff. Works for me! BD
  8. Hideous & mean looking. Appears to be geared towards men only.