New 2023 Lexus ES 350 Luxury Midsize Sedan Review

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2023 Lexus ES 350 is the heart wants a new luxury car, head says okay buy a 2023 Lexus es sedan. If ES had to be described in two words, it could be a responsible indulgence.

Compared to its competitors, ES has a competitive price. And it holds its value well. That’s why we’ve made the ES the winner of the KBB Best Buy award for its class for five years in a row.

The ES is not only responsible from a fiscal point of view, especially when we talk about the ES 300h hybrid, which is classified as a super ultra-low emission vehicle. Even the non-hybrid variants qualify as low-emission vehicles.

But there’s still the luxury of good cabin materials and excellent build quality, a cushioned ride, plus plenty of room for adults in both rows.

  • Our Best Buy Luxury Cars 2023
  • Known for comfort, reliability
  • Improved infotainment
  • Apple CarPlay/Android Auto wireless
  • Interior tweaks

2023 Lexus ES 350 Review

The most dramatic change to this year’s Lexus ES is the updated infotainment system. The universally disliked Remote Touch interface has been ditched. Wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone integration comes standard, along with Drive Connect featuring cloud-based navigation, Destination Assist, and Intelligent Assist (activated by saying “Hey, Lexus”).

2023 Lexus ES 350

The center console has been redesigned to accommodate the new wireless charger, cup holders, and eyeglass holders. New Macadamia material replaces the old Rich Cream, and Ash Bamboo joins the list of wood trim options.

The F Sport Handling package now comes with Sport+ and Custom driving modes, plus adaptive suspension, rear parking sensors, and a heated steering wheel. The F Sport Design bundle qualifies for a panoramic roof.

The ES 350 offers plenty of power, excellent handling, and a trademark Lexus focus on comfort and quiet. Some of the sedans of Germany’s rivals could be sportier, but the ES remains one of the best out there.

Alongside the flagship LS sedan, the midsize ES helped launch the Lexus brand more than 30 years ago. The car has changed substantially since then, but seven generations later it remains closely associated with the Toyota Camry and Avalon. Just like the original, the 2023 Lexus ES prioritizes driving comfort and luxury over sportiness.

In that role, the ES 350 excels. Suspension by sedan standards absorbs bumps in the road and the seats offer effective support for long journeys. The cabin is quiet and loaded with features even in its basic form.

As for performance, the ES 350 isn’t going to burn your pants, but again it’s not trying. Power delivery from the V6 is smooth, and gear changes are quick and barely noticeable. This is the kind of car that you can jump into after a tiring day and forget about the worries and pressures of the outside world.

For 2023, Lexus has finally done away with the controversial touchpad interface. Last year’s introduction of touchscreens already kept controllers around, but now the transition is complete. With the removal of the touchpad comes a redesigned center console and integration of standard wireless Apple CarPlay and smartphone Android Auto. Lexus also introduced two new F Sport trims this year.

The F Sport Design effectively replaces the previous F Sport model and the F Sport Handling is basically the old F Sport Dynamic Handling package with a few extra goodies.

The Lexus ES 350 competes with the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Audi A4, Volvo S60, and Acura TLX. As we’ve already established, the ES can’t really get along with them dynamically (that task falls to the sportier rear-wheel drive-based Lexus IS). But what it lacks in performance it makes up for in comfort and luxury features. See our Expert Rating for all the details.

  • The interior is comfortable and mostly upscale
  • Excellent ride quality
  • Nice balance of handling from the F Sport version
  • An updated infotainment system that dispenses with the previous touchpad
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities
  • New F Sport design and F Sport Handling trim
  • Part of the seventh ES generation introduced for 2019

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New Lexus ES

The mid-size luxury sedan Lexus ES excels in comfort and offers buyers a significantly lower starting price than real competitors such as the Audi A6 and Mercedes-Benz E-class. That’s because it has a Toyota Camry underneath, with sleeker styling and luxurious interior furnishings. In our tests, we’ve found its performance and driving characteristics to be underwhelming and called it a “rolling Xanax pill”—a sort of compliment to the way it isolates the driver and their passengers from outside bumps, bumps, and loud noises world.

The ES cabin is one of the more comfortable in the segment, the powertrain is smooth and quiet, and the ride is very smooth. This is not a car for people who like to drive. But it could be a car for people who like to save fuel: the 300h hybrid model delivered 45 mpg in our 75 mph highway fuel economy test.

For the 2023 model year, Lexus introduced a new F Sport Handling package for the ES350 and ES300h models along with several new interior fittings. The F Sport Handling package is similar to the Dynamic Handling package available last year – which was then exclusive to the ES350 F Sport model. This includes an adaptive suspension with Sport+ and a special riding mode alongside a heated F Sport branded steering wheel. Buyers can now also pair a panoramic roof with the F Sport Design package.

On the inside, the ES sees new Ash Bamboo trim, new Macadamia upholstery color (light tan), and an updated center console design, adorned with sunglasses holders, revised cup holder locations, and a new sport for wireless charging pads. The Lexus Interface infotainment system has also been added to the ES, featuring wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Drive Connect Capability with Cloud Navigation, Hey Lexus smart assistance software, and a subscription-based Destination Assist service.

We’re happy to report that the addition of this new multimedia system resulted in the removal of the Remote Touch Interface—the finicky touch pad located on the center console.

2023 Lexus ES 350 Specs

  • Model: 2023 Lexus ES
  • MSRP: From $41,440
  • MPG: 22 cities / 32 highways
  • Dimensions: 196″ L x 73″ W x 57″ H
  • Cargo volumes: 13.9 ft³
  • 0-60 mph: 5.8 seconds
  • Compression ratio: 11.8
  • Bore: 3.7″

2023 Lexus ES 350 Interior

Getting in and out of the ES is no problem thanks to the low seat cushion and wide door opening. There is also a large gap between the front passenger and the door panels which creates a feeling of space. There’s plenty of room in the back seat, especially between the back and knees, even for a 6-foot passenger.

Drivers of most heights and body types should find a comfortable driving position given the power-adjustable ES seats and mostly clear views around the car. The volume knob is great and feels like it’s from an old-school stereo receiver.

Our test car came with a spectacular-looking 12.3-inch infotainment screen. Widescreen navigation maps look great thanks to great contrast and color indicators. The display has touchscreen capabilities, and you can also control many navigation, telephone, audio, and even climate control functions via voice commands.

Wireless connectivity for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration are included. The ES also comes standard with some standard driver safety features, such as adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assist, which help minimize lane drift.

The ES 350’s 13.9 cubic feet of the trunk has an appropriate amount of space for luggage and golf clubs. However, the rear seats cannot be folded, so you won’t be able to load things much longer. Interior storage space for small items is sufficient. The door pockets are slim but the cup holders work well for storing different sizes of water or drink bottles.

For a relatively affordable amount, the ES delivers a compelling luxury experience. Top-shelf interior materials and design make the ES cockpit an interesting place to be. The upholstery feels supple and sturdy, and the cabin exhibits Lexus’ signature attention to detail: tight panel gaps, muted button action, and detailed stitching.

The price of the Lexus is reasonable for the high-quality materials, space, and comfort. Some of the competitors start out with a bit less but it’s not as subtle. It’s on par with competitors in warranty coverage, but for the most part, can’t match the Lexus dealer experience.

Comfort, and Cargo

With a stylish asymmetrical dashboard and high-quality materials, the ES cabin creates a luxurious environment for passengers. Both rows offer legroom ample legroom for long legs, and the seats provide comfortable support. In particular, the cabin is very peaceful, even when the ES is being driven at highway speeds. Both the gas-only and hybrid models provide 17.0 cubic feet of space in the trunk, and this gives the ES more cargo space than rivals such as the Volvo S90 (14.0 cubic feet) and the Acura TLX (14.0 cubic feet).

Unfortunately, the ES is not available with folding rear seats. This makes it difficult for this Lexus to accommodate large cargo.

Quiet and spacious, the ES 2023 emphasizes comfort and quality materials. And for a touch of the exotic, the aluminum accents that come with the F Sport treatment are inspired by traditional Japanese swords.

The 39.2 inches of rear legroom is excellent for its class, and the backs of the rear seats are angled to optimize headroom. A powered rear hood is standard on the Luxury model.

If there’s a complaint, it’s the rear seat that was fixed. They don’t split and fold to provide extra cargo-carrying versatility. Luggage space, however, is ample at 16.7 cubic feet. It’s the same for the ES 300h hybrid too.

Infotainment and Connectivity

Luxury car buyers are looking for vehicles that offer the latest and greatest technological features, and the Lexus ES sedan doesn’t disappoint. It comes standard with a touchscreen infotainment system with a standard 8.0-inch center display, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities built in to provide hassle-free device integration; a larger 12.3-inch touchscreen is optional.

All models are equipped with a 10-speaker sound system equipped with a SiriusXM satellite radio. The list of standard technology perks also includes Amazon Alexa compatibility, Bluetooth cell phone and music streaming Wi-Fi hotspots, and Scout GPS Link navigation.

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2023 Lexus ES 350 Exterior

LED headlamps come standard on the ES 2023, with a premium triple-beam version available as an option across the line. The ES 350 also offers a panoramic moon roof option.

Special alloy wheels designed to reduce road noise are standard on Ultra Luxury and optional on Luxury.

The ES 300h hybrid has a drag coefficient of 0.26 (on 17-inch wheels), which is quite impressive for a mid-size luxury sedan. The previous generation Prius glided through the air with a drag coefficient of 0.25.

Drive the 2023 Lexus ES

Acceleration is powerful and smooth, and the V6 is strong throughout its rev range. The steering wheel is well-weighted and contributes to the ES 350’s quietness when you’re driving around corners. There’s not a lot of maximum grip from the tires, but overall the ES grips better than you’d expect from a luxury-oriented sedan.

Around town, smooth acceleration and imperceptible gear changes make the ES a pleasure to drive. Even in city traffic, the ES feels like it’s just coasting thanks to its relaxed powertrain.

Indeed, there’s an F Sport package for the ES 350 and ES 300h models — adding things like sports front seats, extra aerodynamic parts, and adaptive suspension options. But the ES 2023 luxury sedan is likely to excel in a different direction, one that emphasizes comfort and quietness.

The ES is for drivers who don’t want to know how rough the road surface is and prefer an easy ride over a tough ride. That’s the whole point of a luxury car, right?

It can be argued that the luxury experience is better when there is sufficient strength to exercise. So unless the all-wheel drive is essential, the front-drive ES 350 (for the same price) is incredibly muscular, with 302 horsepower delivered by its refined 3.5-liter V6.

The ES 250 AWD is hampered slightly by having just 203 horsepower, plus the extra weight of a standard all-wheel-drive system.

The lower emission alternative is the 2023 ES 300h. Again, 215 horsepower isn’t particularly impressive, and there’s no official combined torque figure. However, the electric motor always provides a kick when accelerating away from a standstill. So the ES 300h doesn’t seem to be short on power.

The regenerative braking energy system in the hybrid occasionally results in an odd pedal feel, but that’s not the issue here.

We’ve spent hundreds of hours driving and researching our current collection of midsize luxury sedans, including this Lexus ES.

2023 Lexus ES 350 Favorite Feature

Despite all their attractive qualities, luxury cars, in general, have an unenviable reputation for losing value. The Lexus ES avoided that rut by being relatively affordable from the start and holding on to its value over the years better than any competitor.

Apple CarPlay/Android Auto integration
Smartphone Wireless effortlessly takes your device out of your pocket or bag and connects the cables. It’s little things like these that make a difference every day. And that’s standard across the range.

Hybrid makes a lot of sense. The ES 300h is a spacious and luxurious luxury car, yet it can achieve 44 mpg on the highway. There is also a certainty that Lexus and its parent company Toyota have fully mastered the hybrid art.

Adaptive cruise control
This radar-based system is standard, works at all speeds, and is enhanced with a course-tracking feature that adds minor steering corrections.

Premium plan
In most cases, it’s best to skip the base vehicle and look at the next one. But the 2023 ES comes with a lot of standard equipment, and the optional Premium package ($2,430) is a cost-effective way to get extra features (like heated/power-adjustable steering wheel, driver’s seat memory settings, heated/ventilated front seats, wireless charging, and rear parking sensors) without stretching to the Luxury trim.

Surround sound system
Mark Levinson The Mark Levinson audio system is a trademark of Lexus ownership. Those available in the Luxury and Ultra Luxury models produce 1,800 watts through 17 speakers.

Lexus ES 350 Models

Lexus offers the 2023 ES 350 in five trim levels. It starts with the well-equipped standard ES 350, followed by the midlevel Luxury trim. The range-topping Ultra Luxury trim is equipped with almost every available feature. There’s also the F Sport Design trim, which is made for those who appreciate a sportier look and feel.

To enhance that sporty vibe, there’s the F Sport Handling trim with an adaptive suspension and other handy features. All ES 350 trims are front-wheel-drive and come equipped with the same powertrain: a 3.5-liter V6 (302 horsepower, 267 lb-ft of torque) paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Highlights for each trim level are as follows:

ES 350 The standard version of the ES 350 includes:

  • 17-inch wheels
  • Sunroof
  • Keyless entry and start
  • Simulated leather upholstery
  • Power-adjustable front seats
  • Dual-zone climate control
  • 8-inch infotainment touchscreen
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration
  • 10-speaker Pioneer audio system
  • Lexus Enform connected services

Every ES 350 also comes with these advanced driver aids:

  • Forward collision mitigation (warns you of an impending collision and applies the brakes in certain scenarios)
  • Lane departure mitigation (warns you of a lane departure when a turn signal isn’t used and can automatically steer to maintain lane position)
  • Adaptive cruise control (maintains a driver-set distance between the ES 350 and the car in front)
  • Lane-keeping system (makes minor steering corrections to help keep the vehicle centered in its lane)
  • Blind-spot warning with rear cross-traffic warning (alerts you if a vehicle is in your blind spot during a lane change or while in reverse)

Optional for the base ES 350 is the Premium package, which adds:

  • Automatic wipers
  • Driver’s seat memory settings
  • Heated and ventilated front seats
  • Power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Wood interior trim
  • Wireless smartphone charger
  • Front and rear parking sensors with automatic braking
  • Power-folding outside mirrors
  • ES 350 Luxury

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Our recommended version of the sedan adds:

  • Features from the Premium package
  • 18-inch wheels
  • Performance-tuned suspension dampers
  • Leather seats
  • Wood- and leather-trimmed steering wheel
  • Power-adjustable driver’s seat with additional adjustments
  • Ambient interior lighting
  • Power rear window sunshade
  • ES 350 F Sport Design

The F Sport Design builds on standard equipment with:

  • F Sport exterior and interior design enhancements
  • Contents of the Premium package
  • 19-inch wheels
  • Sport suspension
  • Sports steering wheel
  • Rear spoiler
  • Sport-bolstered front seats
  • ES 350 F Sport Handling

The previous F Sport Dynamic Handling package is now the F Sport Handling trim and includes:

  • Adaptive suspension
  • Additional sport and custom drive modes
  • Interior noise cancellation
  • Aluminum interior trim
  • Unique instrument cluster with sliding bezel
  • Leather F Sport shift knob
  • ES 350 Ultra Luxury

Includes features from the Luxury trim and adds:

  • 12.3-inch center touchscreen display
  • 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio system
  • Navigation system
  • Surround-view monitor (gives you a top-down view of the ES 350 and its surroundings for tight parking situations)
  • Head-up display (displays important information in your sight line on the windshield)
  • Manual rear-side window sunshades
  • Hands-free trunk operation
  • Pedestrian detection for the rear automatic braking system

2023 Lexus ES 350 Engine and Performance

The Lexus ES gives buyers three powertrain options. The ES250 is powered by a 203 hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder and comes standard with all-wheel drive. All ES350 trims come with a 3.5-liter V-6 that produces 302 horsepower and is governed by an eight-speed automatic transmission that sends power to the front wheels. With all trims of the ES350h, motivation comes from the hybrid powertrain which produces a net output of 215 horsepower; a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) and front-wheel drive are standard.

On our test track, the fuel-only ES350 sprinted from a standstill to 60 mph in 6.1 seconds. The all-wheel drive ES250 and ES350h hybrid both made a slower run of 8.1 and 8.3 seconds, respectively. This Lexus sedan exemplifies the quiet handling and friendly ride quality that many luxury car buyers love. For those seeking sharper handling, the F Sport trim adds larger wheels and a more performance-oriented, but unimpressive, suspension setup. Even with these improvements, the ES is less athletic than competing models such as the BMW 5 series.

2023 Lexus ES 350 Transmission

With a combined 26 mpg EPA rating, the ES 350 is one of the more efficient midsize luxury sedans on the market. Of course, you can also opt for the ES 300h hybrid for even better fuel economy. We observed a respectable 27.3 mpg on our evaluation route.

A mixed bag in the most affordable Lexus ES sedan, the 2023 ES 250 AWD. On one hand, all-wheel drive is standard. On the other hand, the 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine only produces 203 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. There is no option for more power. The other drivetrains also don’t offer all-wheel drive – they’re all front-wheel drive.

An even more appropriate amount of muscle for a luxury sedan is present in the ES 350, boosted by 302 horsepower and 267 lb-ft from the 3.5-liter V6.

Both the 250 and 350 models use an 8-speed automatic transmission. The ES 300h hybrid drivetrain includes a continuously variable automatic transmission.

Lexus didn’t provide torque figures for the hybrid, but the ES 300h’s combination of the 2.5-liter 4-cylinder petrol engine and two electric motors makes a total of 215 horsepower.

Regular petrol is acceptable with any variant.

ES 250 AWD

  • 2.5 liter 4 cylinder engine
  • 203 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
  • Torque 184 lb-ft @ 4000-5000 rpm
  • EPA city/highway fuel economy: 25/34 mpg

ES 350

  • 3.5-liter V6
  • 302 horsepower @ 6,600 rpm
  • Torque 267 lb-ft @ 4700 rpm
  • EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/32 mpg (ES 350), 22/31 mpg (F Sport)

ES 300h

  • 2.5 liter 4 cylinder engine
  • Two electric motors
  • Total system horsepower: 215
  • Fuel-efficient city/highway EPA: 43/44 mpg

2023 Lexus ES 350 MPG

According to the EPA, the mileage for the Lexus ES350 tops out at 22/32 mpg city/highway. As you’d expect, the ES350h hybrid is even more frugal, achieving a 43/44 mpg range. The EPA fuel economy estimates for the new ES250 are 25 mpg city and 34 mpg highway.

During our time with the ES350, we observed a range of 39 mpg during highway driving at 75 mph for 200 miles. With the ES350h we observed a fuel economy of 45 mpg on the same test route and with the ES250 we observed 33 mpg. For more information on ES fuel savings, visit the EPA website.

2023 Lexus ES 350 Price

The 2023 Lexus ES starts at $41,340. For that price, you can choose a smaller engine with all-wheel drive (ES 250 AWD) or a more powerful engine with front-wheel drive (ES 350). Hybrid power is available from $42,540 (ES 300h). By all the bells and whistles, ES is headed toward the low $50,000 range.

In the context of a midsize luxury sedan, the 2023 Lexus ES is very competitively priced. The Genesis G80 is priced at around $50K, with the Audi A6, BMW 5 Series, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, and Volvo S90 all starting in the mid to high 50s.

2023 Lexus ES: From $41,340

  • Apple CarPlay/Android Auto wireless
  • 8-inch infotainment touchscreen
  • Wi-Fi
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Simulated leather seating surface (perforated)
  • Power-adjustable 10-way front seats
  • Powered moonroof
  • 17-inch rims
  • Blind-spot monitoring

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2023 Lexus ES Luxury: From $46,510

  • Semi-aniline leather upholstery with perforated/diamond stitching
  • Wood/leather heated steering wheel
  • 14-way power-adjustable driver’s seat
  • Powered back shade
  • 18-inch rims
  • Rear parking sensors

2023 Lexus ES Ultra Luxury: From $50,130

  • 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen display
  • heads-up
  • Manual rear-side window shades
  • Noise-canceling 18-inch alloy wheels
  • 360-degree camera system
  • Rear pedestrian detection

People also ask about Lexus ES 350 2023

Q: Will the 2023 Lexus ES 350 be redesigned?
A: For 2023, the brand’s best-selling sedan is back with a new multimedia system, a redesigned center console, and an updated F Sport model. These changes come with bigger price tags for each of the three powertrain variants: the 350 six-cylinder, the 250 four-cylinder, and the 300h four-cylinder hybrid.

Q: Will there be a 2023 Lexus ES?
A: The 2023 Lexus ES starts at $41,340. For that price, you can choose a smaller engine with all-wheel drive (ES 250 AWD) or a more powerful engine with front-wheel drive (ES 350). Hybrid power is available from $42,540 (ES 300h).

Q: Is the Lexus ES being discontinued?
A: In Europe, Japan, and other markets where it was not available until the seventh generation model, the GS sports sedan occupied the mid-size category in the Lexus lineup until it was canceled in August 2020.

Q: Does Lexus ES 350 require premium gas?
A: Since your 2022 Lexus ES 350 is a luxury vehicle and recommends premium or regular fuels with octane 87 or 91, premium fuels can help bring out the characteristics of your vehicle. The choice is completely up to you.