What Is the 2015 Lexus ES 350?
The 2015 Lexus ES 350 is a front-wheel-drive, mid-size luxury sedan that seats five and competes with the Lincoln MKZ, Volvo S60 and Hyundai Genesis. It is offered in two trim levels: Base and Crafted Line. There is also a hybrid model, the 2015 Lexus ES 300h, covered separately on Cars.com.
What's New on the 2015 Lexus ES 350?
For 2015, the ES 350 adds a backup camera as standard equipment and gives drivers the option of using the subscription-based Lexus Enform Remote smartphone app. The Lexus Enform App Suite adds the Slacker app and uses iHeartRadio 4.0.
The Crafted Line trim is limited to 1,500 models and is finished in white with black exterior trim. Two-tone upholstery highlights the inside, and Lexus also included a two-piece Tumi duffel bag set with new ES 350 Crafted Line models.
How Does the 2015 Lexus ES 350 Compare to Other Mid-Size Luxury Sedans?
The ES 350 shares a platform with the Toyota Avalon, and it shows in the model's interior dimensions. The ES offers 40 inches of backseat legroom, which is more than the Lexus LS 460 (35.8) and GS 350 (36.8). The quality of the interior materials also shines in the ES 350, easily outclassing those of the Hyundai Genesis.
While its suspension offers a buttery smooth ride and the ES 350 is shockingly easy to drive, road noise is an issue: At highway speeds especially, driving on harsh roads will cause tire noise to flood the interior. While this isn't a deal-breaker, it's also not an issue with the Hyundai Genesis or Lexus' own LS.
It's also worth noting that the engine tends to overpower the traction control system on dry roads, a problem that would be mitigated with the addition of all-wheel drive, which is offered in competing models from Acura, Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Infiniti, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo – and even the Lexus IS and GS.
What Features in the 2015 Lexus ES 350 Are Most Important?
Every ES 350 comes equipped with a 268-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. All models are front-wheel drive.
Notable standard features include imitation leather upholstery, automatic air conditioning, power front seats, a CD audio system with MP3 and USB jacks, 17-inch alloy wheels, LED daytime running lights, LED taillights, fog lights, dual exhaust tips and a power moonroof. Significant available features include wood trim, a wood steering wheel, a heated steering wheel, a navigation system, a power rear sunshade and a power trunk lid.
As required in all new cars of this model year, every 2015 ES 350 comes equipped with an electronic stability system, front airbags and antilock brakes. It also comes standard with eight additional airbags, a backup camera and the Safety Connect emergency communication system (subscription required). Optional safety features include lane departure warning, Pre-Collision System and a blind spot warning system with cross-traffic alert.
Should I Buy the 2015 Lexus ES 350?
The 2015 Lexus ES 350 isn't going to impress anyone with its performance – this car is not built to run quick laps – but its smooth, bump-absorbing suspension makes up for it. It also stands out from the crowd, both in terms of its bold exterior styling and the premium materials used throughout the interior. It's certainly not perfect, but it's an exceedingly comfortable and feature-rich luxury car that's less expensive than most of its competitors.
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