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The Lexus ES is an upscale relative of the Toyota Camry. It has sound handling but falls short of being engaging or fun. Uncharacteristic for Lexus, the ride is on the stiff side, and the optional 18-inch wheels make it worse. The powerful 3.5-liter V6 and six-speed automatic got a good 25 mpg overall. But we find the hybrid more appealing, thanks to its combination of size and fuel economy, returning a class-leading 36 mpg overall and 44 on the highway in our tests. Inside, the quiet cabin looks good at first, but some cheap touches are apparent. The mouselike infotainment interface is distracting and convoluted. Reliability has been excellent. For 2017, automatic emergency braking and lane-departure warning are standard.

Road Test

For years, the Lexus ES excelled at being comfortable and luxurious, pampering rather than sporty. But Lexus modified that formula by trying to create a more engaging driving experience. And the overall result is a less satisfying upscale sedan. The...

Highs

  • Impressive fuel economy with both the V6 and hybrid drivetrains
  • Quiet interior, especially with the V6

Lows

  • Ride comfort, interior finish, and quietness fall short of luxury car standards
  • Not engaging to drive

Best Version to Get

We recommend going with the ES 300h hybrid with the Premium and Luxury packages, plus the optional blind-spot monitor. The hybrid drivetrain is smooth and very fuel efficient. While many luxury car buyers opt for navigation, that option includes the annoying Remote Touch controller. ...

Specifications

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
Front
Warranty
  • Basic: 4 year/50,000 miles
  • Powertrain: 6 year/70,000 miles
  • Rust through: 6 year/unlimited
  • Roadside aid: 4 year/unlimited
Body Styles
sedan
Transmissions Available
  • CVT
  • 6-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 2.5-liter 4 hybrid (200 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 (268 hp)

Ratings

Safety
Performance
Comfort / Convenience
View Full Test Results