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Auto Show:  2018 Geneva Auto Show

2019 Lexus UX: Geneva Auto Show

author photo by Malcolm Flynn March 2018

What Is It?

Lexus has finally revealed its entry into the compact crossover segment, with the Lexus UX set to go head-to-head with the likes of the Audi Q3, BMW X1/X2 and Mercedes-Benz GLA.

Making its first public appearance at the Geneva Auto Show today, the UX features a front end with the latest iteration of Lexus' spindle-grille corporate face, as well as a coupe-like roofline that gives it a similar profile to the new X2. The rear end's full-width lighting is a new evolution for the Lexus brand.

We've only seen one interior image for now, but the dashboard shot shows a continuation of the shapes and textures used with the LC 500 sports coupe, including the rotary switches atop the instrument binnacle.

Lexus has also confirmed key dimensions for the new model, putting it at 135 mm longer, 6 mm shorter, 16 mm wider and on a 30 mm shorter wheelbase than the new BMW X2.

Despite its coupe roofline, Lexus says the UX offers a relaxing space for passengers and generous cargo space.

Like the LC 500 and new LS sedan, plus the Toyota Prius, C-HR and Camry, the UX rides on a version of the Toyota/Lexus group's TNGA (Toyota New Global Architecture) platform, which has helped the new small SUV manage a claimed lowest center of gravity in its class, plus improved rigidity and a hatchback-like driving experience.

Two new drivetrains have also been confirmed, which will be spread across UX 200 and UX 250h variants.

The UX 250h introduces a 2.0-liter evolution of the group's fourth-generation self-charging hybrid system, representing a step beyond what's found in the current Prius. It promises a combined output of 131 kW and what is described as exceptional fuel efficiency.

The UX 200 will use a new direct-injected and naturally aspirated 2.0-liter gasoline engine, which has had close attention paid to its thermal efficiency. It will be paired with a new direct-shift CVT automatic transmission.

The new UX will also pack the latest Lexus Safety System+, with a pre-collision system capable of recognising pedestrians at night and cyclists during the day. Road sign recognition and lane-keep assist will also be featured.

How Much?

Lexus is yet to say anything about pricing for the UX, but we don't expect it will stray too far from that of its rivals.

When Can You Get It?

Likely before the end of 2018.

Add It to Your Shopping List Because...

Lexus is hitting its design straps at the moment, and the UX brings great promise, seeing as it's got an all-new platform and drivetrains. Everything that rides on the TNGA platform to date has impressed, so there's no reason the UX should be any different.

Other Cars to Consider

BMW X2 -- Beemer's new baby SUV coupe manages to look much better than the X4 and X6.

Audi Q3 -- Audi's smallest SUV in the U.S. may be getting long in the tooth, but it still brings plenty of style.

Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class -- Barely fitting the crossover title, the Merc is the one to go to for car-like driving.

Read more about the Lexus UX

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2019 Lexus UX: Geneva Auto Show - Autotrader