2005 ES 330 New Car Test Drive
The Lexus ES 330 may be the smoothest, quietest car in its class. It's easy to drive and easy to drive smoothly, keeping your passengers comfortable and making you look like a pro. Its 3.3-liter V6 engine and five-speed automatic are smooth and responsive. Its supple suspension gives it a smooth ride on rough city streets, beat up freeways and poorly maintained back roads, and its anti-lock brakes are easy to modulate for smooth stops in everyday driving.
Living with this car is easy. It's loaded with features that make life more convenient, and refinement, quality fit and finish, and attention to detail are evident throughout. You see, feel, and even hear the quality. It can be heard in the solid sound the doors, trunk, and hood make when they're closed. The seats are comfortable, the leather upholstery is nice, and the interior trimmed in wood and aluminum trim has a rich appearance. Most features are straightforward and easy to operate and there's an excellent Mark Levinson stereo available as an option, along with satellite radio. The rear seats are roomy and comfortable and feature seatbelt pre-tensioners and force limiters, and there's a decent-size trunk.
Interior enhancements further the appeal for 2005, improving convenience and comfort while underway. Mild styling revisions freshen its appearance and distinguish it from last year's model.
The ES 330 comes in one well-equipped model ($31,975), loaded with luxury and safety features found in higher-priced Lexus sedans.
Handsome, high-quality, leather upholstery with wood trim comes standard. Also standard are automatic dual-zone climate control with interior air filter, power windows with auto up/down and jam protection, and a power moonroof. An AM/FM/CD/cassette system comes standard with 86 watts and seven speakers.
A 240-watt Mark Levinson audio system, a six-disc CD changer, and satellite radio are optional. Other options include Vehicle Stability Control with traction control ($650); Adaptive Variable Suspension ($620); DVD satellite navigation with six-disc CD changer ($2,220); power-adjustable pedals ($140); power rear sunshade ($210); high-intensity discharge headlamps with rain-sensing wipers ($640); heated and ventilated front seats ($640); wood steering wheel and shift knob ($330); 17-inch wheels and tires ($80).
Safety was a top priority when designing the ES 330. Standard safety equipment includes the full complement of airbags: dual front airbags, seat-mounted side-impact airbags, and front and rear side-curtain airbags. (Curtain airbags are very important for their ability to provide head protection.) It comes with three-point safety harnesses for all five seating positions; be sure to wear them as they are your first line of defense in a crash. The front seats are designed to reduce whiplash. The outboard rear seatbelts are fitted with force limiters and pre-tensioners. To help the driver avoid accidents in the first place, the ES 330 comes standard with anti-lock disc brakes (ABS) and electronic brake-force distribution (EBD); the optional VSC further enhances safety.
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