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Lexus ES 350 road test

by Stephen Walker

15th February, 2015

Home > Road Tests > Lexus


Related story:
Lexus ES returns to Australia
23rd April, 2014


With an ever expanding line-up, the ES is an excellent fit into the Lexus range as it is priced and sized between the IS and GS - a very important segment for premium brands.

Test car particulars

Our drive car was the Lexus ES 350 in the top-of-the-line Sports Luxury trim level.

The silver paint job is an optional colour.

Variants and prices*

The five-seater Lexus ES comes along in two trim levels - Luxury and Sports Luxury.

Two powertrains are available with each trim level - 300h (a hybrid) and the 350 (V6 petrol).

The ES recently received an update. Prices* for the updated model are:

ES 300h Luxury $63,400*
ES 300h Sports Luxury $72,400*

ES 350 Luxury $64,900*
ES 350 Sports Luxury $73,900*

The recent Free Trade Agreement with Japan will benefit local buyers because a slight reduction in Lexus prices will be one outcome of the agreement.

Premium paint is optional on each variant at $1,154*.

On the road in the Lexus ES 350

Straight away something is apparent when you depart from the kerb in a Lexus ES 350. It's the silence, NVH are all well sorted in the ES. The car is immediately impressive!

The roomy interior makes for comfortable motoring and the silence makes it extremely pleasurable. Put your favourite conversationalist or music onboard and head-off into the enjoyment of luxury motoring - Lexus style.

On this occasion, I headed out of Melbourne down the Mornington Peninsula to Sorrento for quite a pleasant drive. During a week in the car, I managed to cover 459 kms around Melbourne and both sides of Port Phillip Bay. More than sufficient to reach the conclusion that the car is one mighty fine example of luxury motoring.

The ES 350 Sports Luxury comes very well equipped. Hence, I was thoroughly impressed by the spaciousness and driving qualities that Lexus has put together in this top-of-the-line ES model.

Standard equipment on the ES 350 Sports Luxury

Bluetooth connectivity (for suitable devices), satellite navigation, digital radio (limited reception area) together with the AM/FM radio and single disc CD player with 15 speakers (yes, 15 speakers), leather accented interior, electrically adjustable seats in the front and a 'moonroof' are all included in the long list of standard equipment.

Specifications

The Lexus ES 350 test car came with a 3.5-litre V6 petrol-fuelled engine that drives the front wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. Maximum power is 204kW at 6,200rpm and maximum torque is 346Nm at 4,700rpm.

Electric power assisted rack and pinion steering is standard.

Disc brakes are standard, front and rear.

Seventeen-inch alloy wheels are standard, with a matched wheel for a spare rather than an emergency wheel.

Suspension is independent with MacPherson struts, opposingly wound coil springs and ball-joint mounted anti-roll bar at the front whilst the rear is independent with MacPherson dual link struts. In my opinion, an excellent ride is provided.

Fuel

The factory indicate the fuel consumption rating for the ES 350 V6 petrol is 9.5 litres per 100 kilometres on the combined cycle.

My average consumption figure was 10.0 litres per 100 kms according to the onboard trip computer. I was happy such a figure because, although some out of town runs were included, most of the driving was in a suburban environment.

The fuel tank capacity is 65 litres. Premium unleaded petrol is required (95RON minimum).

Safety

Standard: Multiple airbags, Blind Spot Monitor, Vehicle Stability Control and much more.

Dimensions

Length: 4,900 mm
Width: 1,820 mm
Height: 1,450 mm
Wheelbase: 2,820 mm
Luggage capacity: 490 litres
Kerb weight: 1,665 kg (approx).

After Sales

The Lexus ES has a 48 months or 100,000kms warranty (conditions apply).

Roadside assistance is there for the warranty period too, together with the use of a car during routine servicing.

Conclusion

The conservative, yet attractive styling may be sufficient to sell the Lexus ES on its own. However, additional merits of the ES 350 include a roomy and very comfortable interior with a quiet ambience that is bound to please.

Lexus do a great job on the technical side of motoring and it shows with the very pleasant on-road manners of the ES.

You may have observed that the prestige car market is crowded. The Lexus ES 350 is eminently qualified to take a significant share of its segment within that crowded market because it is a thoroughly satisfying luxury car.



NOTE: * Manufacturer's List Price (MLP) excludes dealer delivery fees and the numerous statutory charges (commonly known as on-road costs). Additionally, please note that all prices, fees and charges are subject to change without notice, as are the specifications.


E&OE



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