2019 Lexus NX Series vs. 2019 Porsche Macan

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The NX Series’ optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Macan doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The NX Series has standard Whiplash Injury Lessening Seats, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash Injury Lessening Seats system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Macan doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The NX Series offers an optional Intuitive Parking Assist with Automatic Braking that use rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Macan doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

To help make backing safer, the NX Series’ optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Macan doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the NX Series and the Macan have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its standard headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the NX Series the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 100 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Macan has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

Lexus’ powertrain warranty covers the NX Series 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Porsche covers the Macan. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Macan ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are over 26 percent more Lexus dealers than there are Porsche dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the NX Series’ warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Porsche vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus first in reliability, above the industry average. With 1 more problems per 100 vehicles, Porsche is ranked second.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Porsche vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Lexus first in reliability. Porsche is ranked 11th.

Transmission

The NX 300h has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Macan doesn’t offer a CVT.

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the NX Series’ turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the Macan’s (37.4 feet vs. 38.7 feet).

Chassis

The design of the Lexus NX Series amounts to more than styling. The NX Series has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .34 Cd. That is lower than the Macan (.36). A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the NX Series get better fuel mileage.

Passenger Space

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the NX Series’ rear seats recline. The Macan’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The NX Series has a larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Macan with its rear seat folded (54.6 vs. 52.9 cubic feet).

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just kicking your foot under the back bumper can open the NX Series’ liftgate, leaving your hands completely free. The Macan doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics

The NX Series has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Macan doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The NX Series’ instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Macan has neither an oil pressure gauge nor a temperature gauge.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the NX Series has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Macan only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the NX Series detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Macan doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

Model Availability

The NX Series is available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Macan doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends the Lexus NX Series, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Lexus NX Series outsold the Porsche Macan by almost three to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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