In conjunction with their announcement of the new D80 digital SLR Nikon has also revealed two new lenses, the first of which is the DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED which is destined to become the D80's kit lens. This new lens features ED glass, Internal Focusing and a Silent Wave Motor, it provides an equivalent field of view of 27 - 202.5 mm on a DX format digital SLR and has a maximum aperture of F3.5 at wide angle and F5.6 at telephoto. Unbundled it will be priced at £299 in the UK and should be available in September.

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Press Release (Nikon UK):

Nikon announces AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED lens for Nikon DX format digital SLRs

Nikon is pleased to announce the introduction of the AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED, a compact, lightweight 7.5x zoom lens. Boasting a range of state-of-the-art optical technologies, this new lens offers outstanding performance at a remarkably affordable price.

The AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED features Nikon ED glass, aspherical lens elements and SWM (Silent Wave Motor) for enhanced performance. With a focal length range of 18-135mm, the lens is suitable for a wide variety of shooting situations; from sports, action and portraits to wide-angle landscapes. The picture angle is equivalent to a 27-202.5mm lens in the 35mm format.

Advanced Nikon engineering, particularly the compact SWM, has realised the possibility of a compact lightweight lens with excellent handling characteristics. The optical design features one ED glass element and two hybrid aspherical lens elements to assure high-resolution, high-contrast images while minimizing chromatic aberration, astigmatism and other forms of distortion. The compact SWM built into the lens offers the smooth and quiet autofocus performance that users have come to expect from Nikon lenses.

The wide range, high-quality performance and affordable price of this lens will expand the photographic horizons of Nikon Digital SLR owners.

Note: This lens is designed exclusively for use with Nikon DX format digital SLR cameras and is not compatible with 35mm [135] or IX240 format film cameras.

Specifications, design, product name, standard accessories, and release schedule may differ by country or area.

RRP: £299.99
Sales release: September 2006.

AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED Major Features

  • Offers a broad 18-135mm focal range (7.5x zoom) for use in a wide variety of situations (equivalent to a 27-202.5mm lens in the 35mm format).
  • ED glass and hybrid aspherical lens elements  minimize chromatic aberration, astigmatism and other forms of distortion, while ensuring high resolution and contrast
  • Incorporates a compact SWM (Silent Wave Motor) for quiet focusing
  • Delivers high-level optical performance, specially designed for use with Nikon DX format digital SLRs.
  • Employs a seven-blade rounded diaphragm opening that achieves a natural out-of-focus blur.
  • Two focus modes, auto[A] and manual [M], with manual override in auto mode.
  • Enables focusing from as close as 45cm (17.7 in.) from the subject through the entire focal range
  • Internal Focusing (IF) design enables compact size and eliminates front element rotation, enabling the use of circular polarizing filters
  • Flower-shaped Lens Hood HB-32 (provided) greatly reduces image degradation from stray light

AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED specifications

Focal length 18 - 135 mm
Equiv. FOV 27 - 202.5 mm equiv. FOV on a DX format digital SLR
Maximum aperture F3.5 (W) - F5.6 (T)
Minimum aperture F22 (W) - F38 (T)
Lens construction

• 15 elements in 13 groups
• 2 ED glass elements
• 2 aspherical elements

Picture angle

76° - 12°

Minimum focus range 45 cm (1.5 ft) throughout the zoom range
Attachment size 67 mm
Dimensions

73.5 x 86.5mm (2.9 x 3.4 in)

Weight 385 g (13.6 oz)
Included accessories 67mm Snap-on front lens cap (LC-67), Rear lens cap (LF-1), Bayonet hood (HB-32), Flexible lens pouch (CL-0915)