Images courtesy of Lexus
The modern-era Lexus lineup features some of the most competitive vehicles on the road. From the GS F and RX to the LC 500 that made its debut just last year, there truly is something for everyone. Couple their cars with their global partnerships around events like Milan Design Week and you get a clear sense of the natural state of Lexus as it stands today. Design is at the core of their strategies now but so is the Japanese craftsmanship that got them here in the first place. While balancing both, Lexus has introduced the 2019 ES 350, ES 300h, and, for the first time, an ES 350 F Sport that commands even more of a presence than its brethren.
Given just how much is at stake with every car release and every model refresh, it’s a real surprise when brands like Lexus are willing to roll the dice and introduce something that’s such a departure from the previous six generations of the iconic sedan. Sure, it fits the current Lexus brand ethos in several ways but not done right and the shake up could easily make past ES customers depart. But how could they? It’s built atop a brand new platform which delivers better ride comfort (if that was even possible in a Lexus), quietness on the road, and more cabin space. On the exterior, the new Lexus ES makes its presence felt with a body that’s longer, lower, and wider. The lower stance is further extenuated by the smooth-flowing roofline.
The ES 350 F Sport takes the ES 350’s design cues and elevates them while providing a heightened driving experience. On the F Sport’s exterior, we see a revised exterior grille and 19-inch wheels coming standard. Performance dampers and active variable suspension are pair with Drive Mode Select which allows the driver to switch between Normal, Eco, and Sport modes at the turn of a dial. Step inside and you’re welcomed by sport seats and what Lexus calls Engine Sound Enhancement. I’m not a fan of artificial engine sound running through the speakers but I suppose that’s one way to awaken all five of our senses.
Speaking of speakers, the Lexus ES 350’s got an optional Mark Levinson 15-speaker audio system that you can feel as much as you can hear. But the tech features don’t stop there. Apple CarPlay integration’s onboard as is Amazon Alexa, allowing passengers to start their car, lock or unlock the doors, and even check the fuel levels of their ES, all before they even step outside their house. Pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, intelligent high-beam headlamps, and other safety features can be had as well.
The Lexus ES 350 and the ES 350 F Sport are here. A car that used to help you stay under the radar is now inching closer and closer to owning the limelight. Check it out in the gallery above and look for it to go on sale here in the United States come September.