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Lexus UX 2023: 12.3-inch touchscreen and more safety equipment for Audi Q3, Mercedes-Benz GLA rival


Lexus has rolled out a comprehensive update for the three-year-old UX that aim to improve the small SUV’s features list in almost every area

Lexus has updated its UX small SUV with a suite of improved interior technology, enhanced safety features and sharpened driving dynamics in a bid to take on a field of fiercely capable premium rivals. 

With the ancient CT hatch now dropped from the range, the UX is the most affordable model in the Lexus line-up in Australia, though pricing for the updated small SUV won’t be announced until it arrives in the second half of 2022.

Lexus UX 2023 rear 3/4
Lexus has given the UX a comprehensive list of upgrades

While final specifications are yet to be revealed, Lexus has confirmed it will offer the small SUV in the petrol-powered UX200 guise as well as the hybrid-powered UX250h. 

The updates are also expected to also carry across to the fully-electric UX300e, though nothing has been confirmed as of yet.

Competing in the increasingly fierce premium small SUV segment, the updated UX will return to do battle against the likes of the Audi Q3, BMW X1/X2, Mercedes-Benz GLA and Volvo XC40 in Australia.

Tech upgrades inside and out

Keeping with the times, Lexus has swapped in a new 12.3-inch touchscreen – up from an already decent 10.3-inch unit. The multimedia system can be controlled via a ‘Hey Lexus’ voice-control system that can be prompted verbally or via a button on the steering wheel.

Digital radio has also joined satellite navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and a 10-speaker stereo on the list of standard features for the entry-level UX200 Luxury.

Lexus UX 2023 interior
A larger 12.3-inch touchscreen dominates the cabin

Lexus Connected Services is also now standard – providing the ability to use your phone as a key to unlock the UX or track it if stolen. This service is free for the first three years.

More safety as standard

Lexus says it has improved a range of driver-assistance technology by fitting a suite of new camera and radar sensors to more accurately scan the environment around the car.

As a result, the autonomous emergency braking system (AEB) has a larger detection field to pick up cyclists during the day and pedestrians in low-light conditions. The lane-keep assist and adaptive cruise control functions have also been improved.

Lexus UX 2023 screen
A 360-degree camera is also now standard fit

A 360-degree camera is now included as standard, joining existing safety features such as speed-sign recognition and a seatbelt reminder function.

Improved driving dynamics

Lexus engineers have aimed to improve the way the UX drives by adding a further 20 spot welds during the construction process to increase rigidity, with the aim to give the driver more feedback and increase overall grip. 

Seeking to bring the UX more into line with the ‘Lexus Driving Signature’, which aims to make driving more predictable, the steering and suspension set-up have also been re-tuned.

Lexus UX 2023 front 3/4 driving
Increased chassis rigidity and suspension tuning is said to have sharpened the driving dynamics

The more athletic UX F-Sport variants capitalise on these changes by adopting adaptive damping and performance dampers on the rear axle to offer a better balance between sharper handling and a smooth ride. 

Designers have also updated the design of the UX F-Sport grades with body-coloured wheelarches for a more athletic appearance.

Current prices for the UX range from $44,445 (before on-road costs) for the entry-level UX200 while a top-spec UX250h commands $69,700. Slight increases are expected across the board when the updated small SUV arrives in Australia during the second half of 2022.