For years, the Lexus ES excelled at being comfortable and luxurious, pampering rather than sporty. But for this version of the car, Lexus modified that formula by trying to create a more engaging driving experience. The overall result is a less satisfying upscale sedan. The ES still provides a comfy, quiet interior and gets good fuel economy.
Alerts
There is 1 recall on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit,
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
NA
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
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2017
2018
2019
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS and side air bags standard. Head protection air bags standard from 2002. Rear side air bags available from 2007. ESC available, standard from 2007.
Road Test

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

The ES still provides a comfy, quiet interior and gets good fuel economy. But the cosseting, easygoing nature has been dialed back, with a less plush ride, cuts in interior refinement and more complicated controls. Further, despite Lexus' claims of injecting more sportiness into the ES, it's not agile or fun to drive.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
Front
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
sedan
Transmissions Available
  • 6-speed Automatic
  • CVT
Engines Available
  • 2.5-liter 4 hybrid (200 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 (268 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2013 Lexus ES owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Squeaks or rattles

"The passenger seat rattled and had to be tightened"

Anonymous, CO (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"There is an intermittent rattle that seems to originate in the driver's side visor/light. It is very annoying"

Anonymous, TX (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"An exhaust bracket came loose and was promptly repaired"

Anonymous, IL (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"noise at small speed from the right door bottom"

Anonymous, MA (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"Front windshield locating pins were making a loud tapping noise in cold weather. Dealer has had this problem before and repaired by shearing the pins off. Lost use of car for 2 days"

Anonymous, WI (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"Blower motor is very loud - Dealer says that is the way it is. lots of air noiosr when driving"

Michael C., TX (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"seat rattles when not occupied"

Anonymous, UT (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"This car has had rattles since purchased. They had to remove the windshield and fix a problem but the car had many rattles especially in winter"

Anonymous, WI (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"Window and doors don't sit tight. Road vibrations"

Anonymous, MA (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)
Wind noise

"Since purchasing the 2013 Lexus ES we have experienced a wind turbulence problem noticeable in the driver and front passenger seats when the car is driven at 65 mph &+, so on the freeways the noise level is not what we expected from a luxury car"

Anonymous, AZ (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"Previous car was same model ES year 2008. no wind noise, no road noise, ride was smooth both city and highway. Not so with 2013 model. This was third Lexus I've owned. Don't think I would but one again based on the 2013 model!"

D L., NJ (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

External music device interface (e.g., smart phone, MP3 player)

"System often does not recognize MP3 player. Music often speeded up"

Anonymous, CA (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)
In-dash navigation system (GPS)

"The GPS is not worth the cost. Uses technology way behind after market gammon and Tom Tom units. My total satisfaction with Lexus software is very low. Would not buy another Lexus because they don't fix software problems. Also can't get map updat"

J E., NC (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"Very unreliable on picking good route, even after setting up which is desired - e.g. Freeways Often has sent us in completely wrong direction e.g from Boise to San Francisco via Vancouver BC"

Anonymous, CA (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"The Lexus in-dash GPS requires a dealer to replace the hard drive just to apply an annual update. The cost for each annual update is nearly $500, which is absurdly high"

Ken F., WI (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)
Phone pairing (e.g., Bluetooth)

"Frequent difficulty using internet connection, ie, pandora"

Anonymous, TX (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

"It has caused problems with video screen in dash. Has miscued screen advice"

Linda M., CA (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"Unable to pair iPhone"

Anonymous, CA (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)
Radio

"AM radio has static on some stations"

Michael R., CA (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"Same problem. They don't want to fix their software problems and automatically provide a fix. have problems with intermittent display problems that are definitely software related"

J E., NC (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)
Steering wheel controls

"I don't understand the controls"

Linda M., CA (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"Not even close to ability of Siri! Try to say go home and it wants to phone someone on the contact list. Very cumbersome compared to Acura system"

Anonymous, CA (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"The trim on the driver's side is separating from the door"

Gloria M., FL (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)
Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"Paint prone to scratching much more easily than other cars"

Anonymous, MD (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"medium size bubble appeared in center of hood. Paint looks blistered and peeled there"

D B., TX (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)
Rust

"Rust in back of trunk horizontal chrome strip"

Anonymous, QC (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"Both fog light bulbs have failed in 18 months since the car was bought new"

Anonymous, ON (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

"Non operational on front passenger door"

Anonymous, CA (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Tire wear is uneven

"Tires make a noise. Dealer said it was because I was driving it on rough roads. About 85% is on interstate and the rest is on paved roads. I am not happy with this assesment and unhappy with the dealers service department"

Francis B., TN (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)
Wheel bearings

"Front wheel bearing had to be replaced, and is making noises again that may indicate the need for another replacement"

Stanley C., ON (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Automatic climate control

"The auto feature does not work properly. If set at certain temperature it will not work to that setting. Took in to dealer twice....one told it was ok....second time told to take off auto and turn fan up.......crazy!"

Anonymous, PA (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Fuel gauge/sender

"Car was rear-ended and sustained damage to that area and to the electronics housed in that part of the car. After repairs, fuel gauge did not work, causing vehicle to shut down while the car was being driven"

Joe O., FL (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Transmission rebuild or replacement

"transmission failed and was replaced with no charge some rough shifting continues but a minor issue"

John P., CA (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Engine computer

"engine warning light came on after 5000 miles of driving"

Anonymous, NY (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Other/unsure

"The drivers side door would not lock. The Lexus dealer replaced under warranty service"

Anonymous, SC (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Sunroof

"Whenever is going in for a carwash, water drips into the car"

Anonymous, CA (2013 Lexus ES 350 3.5-L V6)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Squeaking

"The breaks squeaked from the moment the car was driven off the lot and continues today intermittently. The dealer has never been able to explain the problem"

Anonymous, IL (2013 Lexus ES 300h 2.5-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

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