Lexus has finally given its ES mid-size sedan a full reveal, ahead of a fourth-quarter arrival in Australia this year.
Although the car will be offered with a V6 engine in global markets, the brand has made the decision to go hybrid-only when the car lobs Down Under.
As previously suggested, the car will be built on a Lexus Global Architecture-K (GA-K) platform, itself derived from TNGA. It’s 65mm longer than before and 45mm wider, with a 10mm wider front and 37mm wider rear track. The wheelbase has been stretched by 50mm, too, and the body sits 5mm lower than before.
No official weight figure has been quoted, but the new platform uses a higher percentage of high-tensile steel than before to help shed unwanted kilograms. There’s also new multi-link suspension, electric power steering, and a stiffer base structure contributing to what should, hopefully, be a sharper drive than before.
Coupled with the more aggressive face, punchy grille and sloping roofline, the new dimensions make for a car that’s (whisper it) very handsome, to our eyes at least. A choice of 17- or 18-inch wheels will be offered.
Under the bonnet, Australian buyers will be able to choose any model as long as it’s the ES300h. Thanks to the combination of a 2.5-litre Atkinson Cycle-petrol engine and an electric motor, it makes 153kW of power and promises 6.0L/100km on the combined cycle.
A fresh control system is part of the Hybrid Drive setup, designed to deliver power more naturally than before. The battery pack is smaller than before, too, allowing it to be mounted under the rear seats for more boot space.
When it comes to standard equipment, the ES300h will come with Lexus Safety Sense+ 2.0. Along with the current functions offered, including autonomous emergency braking and lane-keeping assist, the system will include daytime cyclist detection and enhanced radar at night, for more accurate pedestrian detection after dark.
Two-stage adaptive LED headlights will be offered, complete with the ability to adapt their pattern around oncoming traffic. The interior itself follows a similar theme to that of the LS and LC, albeit without some of the over-the-top glamour. Lexus’ digital driver display features, along with the brand’s mouse-based infotainment system.
Although the car pictured has beige leather and wood, expect some more modern (and Australia-friendly) trim choices to be offered as well.
Luxury and Sports Luxury trim grades will be offered Down Under, with pricing and specs to come later in the year. The new ES will touch down in the fourth quarter of 2018.
Oh, one last thing: there’s a 225kW petrol V6 F-Sport model (below), but you won’t see it in Australia.
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