2002 Lexus ES 300

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$31,505

starting MSRP

2002 Lexus ES 300

Key specs

Base trim shown

Overview

1 trim

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

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Our 2002 Lexus ES 300 trim comparison will help you decide.

2002 Lexus ES 300 review: Our expert's take

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Lexus’ antidote to the serene driving experience of the front- wheel-drive, Camry-derived ES 300, is the rear-wheel-drive IS 300. For 2002, Lexus has introduced a special model, the Sportscross.

The Sportscross isn’t as large as a wagon, nor is it as small as a hatchback. Rather it falls somewhere between the two in size. While the car shares the sedan’s 105.1 inch wheelbase, it’s a half- inch longer. Overall size is about that of a Toyota Corolla. But the Sportscross possesses a sleeker shape and funkier demeanor. It’s more distinctive than the sedan.

The Sportscross also shares its powerful, refined 215-horsepower 3-liter V-6 hooked to a five-speed automatic transmission. It features electronically-operated manual shift controls similar to those on the larger Lexus GS sedans. Using steering-wheel mounted buttons, a driver can shift manually without doing any clutch work. The six-speed manual available on the IS300 sedan is not offered on the Sportscross.

It’s the combination of small size and powerful

drivetrain coupled with an expertly tuned suspension that makes the Sportscross such a blast to drive. The ride is quite firm, and the P225/45R17 tires that do so much for grip also communicate more information than is customary in a Lexus. Wet weather can cause the performance-oriented tires to lose their footing, but Vehicle Stability Control does a good job of keeping things safe.

The interior also is a carryover from the IS 300 sedan. The extremely supportive seats are covered in a velour-like fabric. The dash has a sporty feel, with a chronograph-style instrument cluster that is a triumph of form over function.

The rear cargo area can be expanded, thanks to split rear fold- down seats. A retractable cargo cover and a false floor add space for hiding valuables.

The car starts at $32,305. For those of you who equate size with prestige, this won’t seem like a bargain. But for those of you who like to drive, you might think otherwise.

If you want this engaging little Lexus, grab one fast. Lexus plans to import a mere 5,000 annually.

The rest of you will have to settle for a more sedate entry- level Lexus.

Lexus ES 300

Engine: 3-liter V-6

Transmission: 5-speed automatic

Tires: P215/60VR16

Wheelbase: 107.1 inches

Length: 191.1 inches

Width: 71.3 inches

Weight: 3,439 pounds

Cargo volume: 14.5 cubic ft.

Base price: $31,505

As tested: $39,935

EPA rating: 21 city, 29 highway

Test mileage: 23 mpg

Fuel type: Premium

Built in: Tsutsumi, Japan

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.9
  • Interior design 4.7
  • Performance 4.6
  • Value for the money 4.7
  • Exterior styling 4.7
  • Reliability 4.8

Most recent consumer reviews

5.0

Best car

from 2002 until 2020 - no problems at all ! Only regular maintenance, like oil change, brakes and tires. First muffler replacement on 190000 miles !

5.0

A very smooth and reliable ride.

It drives smooth. I did some research before buying this Lexus and other people also agreed that this Lexus was a great deal and a reliable car to own.

4.9

Most Reliable car I've ever owned

Great Ride and dependable. Will only buy lexus from now on. Riding in the lap of affordable luxury. Love everything about it. Seems to last forever

See all 49 consumer reviews

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See all 2002 Lexus ES 300 articles