In 2005, Lexus became the first luxury carmaker to deliver a hybrid to market. The RX 400h was an all-wheel drive 3.3-liter V6 with a pair of electric motors, one for each set of wheels. Lexus had the luxury hybrid market to itself for several years, so if you wanted a luxury ride with a side of green, it was the only game in town. At the cusp of the 2019 model year, however, there are now plenty of options to choose from—including some promising EVs from the likes of Jaguar and Audi. But Lexus—the second-most-popular luxury badge in the US—is still in the game, with five models at different price points.
Starting at $ 38,535, the NX 300h sits at the low end of the luxury-SUV price spectrum. Marketed by Lexus as a compact SUV, the NX 300h measures 182.3″ (4,632cm), which is just a couple of inches shorter than an Audi Q5, Alfa Romeo Stelvio, or BMW X3. The NX 300h got a makeover at the beginning of 2018, adding a larger infotainment display, enhanced safety features, modest design tweaks, and a larger touchpad on the center console. While the NX 300 (formerly the NX200t) has a 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine, the NX 300h has a larger 2.5-liter inline four coupled with a pair of electric motors that charge via the internal combustion engine and regenerative braking. Combined, the hybrid power plant is capable of 194hp (144.7kW) and 152lb-ft (206.1Nm) of torque. It’s no speed demon, getting you from zero to 60mph in 9.1 seconds.