2019 ES 350 New Car Test Drive
The 2019 Lexus ES is a luxury sedan that pushes the limits of style and size. It's blessed with an outgoing grille, and with enough interior space to satisfy anyone who needs a large car.
The 2019 ES has grown by a couple of inches versus the year before; it now measures 196 inches long on a 113-inch wheelbase. That's 3 inches longer than the related Toyota Camry with a 1-inch longer wheelbase. Interior room is exceptional; though the roofline is low, the front and back seats are spacious and comfortable for five adults.
This year, the ES skips the base 4-cylinder engine that comes in smaller Lexus sedans, and starts out with a V-6. For 2019 that 3.5-liter engine has been pumped up to 302 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque, which is 34 hp and 19 lb-ft more than last year. It's also significantly quicker than last year, and now reaches 60 mph in 6.6 seconds. It uses an 8-speed automatic transmission.
Lexus hasn't skipped the 4-cylinder altogether, however. The ES300h hybrid uses a 2.5-liter inline-4 mated to an electric motor powered by nickel-metal hydride batteries under the rear seat. It uses an electronic continuously variable transmission. The powerplant produces 215 combined horsepower, while the powertrain, combined with the CVT, delivers an impressive combined 44 miles per gallon.
There is also an ES350 F Sport model, with no more power or speed than the ES 350, but with better handling and sportier looks.
The ES 350 is EPA rated at 22 mpg city, 33 highway, 26 combined, while the F Sport gets 1 less mpg. The ES 300h hybrid's stellar numbers are 43/45/44 mpg.
Safety-wise, the ES brings back outstanding results from testing by the IIHS, with a Top Safety Pick+ award, when equipped with optional adaptive headlights. They're rated 'Good,'? while the standard LED headlights are merely 'Acceptable.'? The NHTSA hasn't crash-tested the 2019 ES yet.
Standard safety equipment in every ES includes full-speed automatic emergency braking, active lane control, automatic high beams, adaptive cruise control, and lane-departure warnings. Many luxury cars don't even have all this as standard equipment. .
The$40,525 Lexus ES350 comes with synthetic leather upholstery, LED headlights, a power moonroof, 8.0-inch touchscreen, 10-way power front seats, keyless ignition, dual-zone automatic climate control, three USB ports, 10-speaker AM/FM/XM/HD/CD audio with Bluetooth streaming and Apple CarPlay compatibility, Amazon Alexa, and 17-inch wheels with all-season tires,
The $42,335 300h hybrid comes equipped nearly identically.
Options on both include a 12.3-inch touchscreen with navigation, premium Mark Levinson sound system, heated and cooled front seats, real leather upholstery, wood trim, a hands-free trunk lid, adaptive suspension, a panoramic roof, adaptive LED headlights, a head-up display, wireless smartphone charging, blind-spot monitors, parking sensors, and 18-inch wheels.
For $45,060 the F Sport adds adaptive dampers, a Sport+ driving mode, sport seats, active noise control that pipes the exhaust note into the cabin, aluminum interior trim, F Sport gauges, dark exterior trim, a rear spoiler, and 19-inch wheels with all-season tires..