Redesigned Lexus ES 350 better than ever
One of the saddest days for my wife as a car owner came when her Lexus sedan got totaled in an accident. She vowed that day to replace the Lexus ES with another one.
With a daughter fully immersed in her college career, financially the time hasn't been right for us to purchase that Lexus replacement. But after watching me test drive the 2013 Lexus ES 350 last week, the goal hasn't changed - my wife wants another one.
And frankly, who can blame her? She isn't alone in her opinions. The ES model is Lexus' top-selling car for a reason.
The front-wheel drive ES makes a great first impression on looks alone and provides a similar feeling once behind the wheel.
For knowledgeable ES folks, an exterior change arrives with the redesign, the first one since 2007. The ES takes on a little different look with sharper features. The styling borrows from Lexus' signature hourglass-shaped grille, which Toyota's luxury division public relations department describes as a "spindle."
The 2013 ES has also added an inch in length and the wheelbase has been increased by nearly 2 inches. The other new facet with the ES 350 is its being paired with the new ES 300h, a gas-electric hybrid.
2013 Lexus ES 350
- Performance: 3.5-liter, V-6, 268 horsepower
- Mileage estimate: 21-31 mpg
- Price: $36,100
- Warranty: 4 years/50,000 miles; drivetrain 6 years/70,000 miles; corrosion 6 years/unlimited; roadside assistance 4 years/unlimited mileage; maintenance 1 year/10,000 miles
Note that both the ES 350 and the 300h come in one trim model only. You either like them as is or you don't.
There has been no change in the ES 350 engine makeup; it's still a 3.5-liter, V6 that produces 268 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque. It's plenty quick, going 0-60 mph in 6.5 seconds, which matches most of its competitors.
Although it has three alternatives, I had it in Eco mode and the ES 350 provided such good performance that I literally forgot to try the other two drive mode options - Sport and Normal.
The hybrid ES 300h is a 2.4-liter, 4-cylinder that pairs with an electric motor for a combined 200 horsepower. The 300h is connected to a CVT transmission that some testers felt responded like an automatic.
Previously a luxury version of the Toyota Camry, the ES 350 now utilizes the Toyota Avalon's longer platform.
The ES 350 interior has also been altered. A more simplified cockpit has been replaced by one with more sophistication, and not surprisingly a more difficult learning curve with the controls. It features the Remote Touch electronic interface, which I think is too much of a distraction while driving.
But not everything has changed with the ES interior. It still features leather and soft materials that make for a very appealing combination.
Driving the ES has never been considered sporty, and that hasn't changed despite the redesign. But the new Avalon suspension and some steering changes have improved the way the ES handles overall. The braking remains good and even at high speeds the ES provides a quiet ride.
The redesign was a welcome change for the ES 350, which needed a little more modernization. The improvements keep the ES right where it has always resided as a great selection in the entry-level luxury midsize sedan field.
Pet Care | Real Estate | Restaurants | Tech | View All | * Add/Upgrade Business
Placer County News HeadlinesKaiser Permanente Roseville Honors Fallen for Memorial DayKaiser Permanente Roseville Medical Center held a special ceremony yesterday honoring the memories of all who have died on behalf of our country
Raley's and iFoster Launch Foster Youth Hiring Program iFoster has partnered with Raley's Family of Fine Stores to develop a new hiring program for foster youth.
Auburn Non-Profit Above All Adventures Utilizes IndiegogoIn Placer County, 13 is the average age for first time alcohol and illegal prescription use, and binge drinking increases threefold between 9th and 11th graders
5 Skills Adolescents Need for a Successful and Satisfying Life"During the physical, emotional and intellectual explosions of the adolescent years, it's critical that teenagers develop a belief in their own ability to succeed
Kidney Cancer Secrets Revealed?An international team of scientists, led by UC Davis nephrologist Robert Weiss, have used a sophisticated combination of proteomics and metabolomics to show how
Autism Speaks Walk at River Cats StadiumWalk Now for Autism Speaks takes place at River Cats Stadium on May 31, 2015. ( via ATOU Cares.org)
Lacrosse Recruiting Showcase in Roseville May 29-31Rocklin, CA - Swashbuckler Lacrosse is thrilled to announce their first ever Laxapalooza Recruiting Showcase that will take place at Maidu Park in Roseville
Ryan Davis to join Sierra College as VP of Human ResourcesRocklin, CA- - At their May Board Meeting the Sierra College Board of Trustees approved the hiring of Ryan Davis
Women Warriors Through History in RocklinA new photo art exhibit graces the hallway on the second floor of the Sierra College Rocklin Campus
Despite Drought, Middle Fork Project Covers CostsDrought Watch: The Middle Fork Project, a system of dams, reservoirs and electrical generation facilities in eastern Placer County, continues to hum along
Pharmacies Robbed as Police Seek SuspectThe Placer County Sheriff's Office is asking for the public's help in identifying a man suspected of robbing pharmacies
J Beverly Hills Stylist at True Image Salon in Roseville May 22-23Famed J Beverly Hills colour creator and celebrity stylist Max Eli will be visiting True Image Salon and Spa on May 22-23
NEWS: In Case You Missed It