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2019 Lexus ES Review

The 2019 Lexus ES offers a polished ride and a spacious cabin that’s loaded with standard tech and safety features. It also has an outstanding predicted reliability rating, as well a strong safety score and ownership costs that are relatively low for the class. With these highlights in mind, it’s easy to see why the Lexus ES earns a spot in the top third of our luxury midsize car rankings.

Pros & Cons

  • Outstanding predicted reliability rating
  • Many standard driver assistance features
  • Quiet and roomy cabin
  • Lots of trunk space
  • Transmission can be slow to downshift
  • Complicated infotainment system

8.1

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 7.8
Performance: 7.6
Interior: 6.7
Total Cost of Ownership: 7.9
Safety: 9.4
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Is the 2019 Lexus ES a Good Used Car?

Yes, the 2019 Lexus ES 350 is an excellent used luxury midsize car. Its buttery ride, plush seating, and airy, nearly soundproof cabin create a supremely tranquil driving experience. Its trunk space is great for the class too. The ES comes standard with a full suite of advanced driver assistance features, and a stellar predicted reliability rating furthers its appeal. One of the ES 350’s few downsides is its complicated infotainment system.

Drivers who want an engaging driving experience might want to look toward the ES’ more performance-oriented competitors. If you want a sedan with powerful engine options, athletic handling, and an intuitive infotainment system, the BMW 5 Series or Audi A6 might be a better pick.

Compare the ES, 5 Series, and A6 »

Why You Can Trust Us

Our Lexus ES review includes more than just one person's opinion. We’ve collected professional evaluations from 22 sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety features, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

The U.S. News Best Cars team has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our staff has more than a combined 75 years of automotive industry experience. To ensure our impartiality, we never accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Much is the 2019 Lexus ES?

Based on listings for the 2019 Lexus ES, the average list price is $38,480. Prices range from $35,631 to $39,643 and vary depending on the vehicle’s condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2019 Lexus ES Cost to Own?

The 2019 ES’s five-year costs for gas, insurance, taxes, fees, repairs, and maintenance are projected to be about $29,900 or $5,980 per year. That estimate is lower than what you’ll find with most 2019 luxury midsize cars.

2018 vs. 2019 Lexus ES: What's the Difference?

Lexus redesigned the ES 350 from the ground up for the 2019 model year. It offers more power, an improved suspension, and a few new trim levels compared with the 2018 model. There are new standard features as well, including Amazon Alexa integration and the Lexus Safety System 2.0+ bundle of active safety features. These driver aids include oncoming vehicle detection, road sign assist, lane tracing assist, daytime bicyclist detection, lane departure alert with steering assist, automatic high-beam headlights, and road edge detection. Also new for 2019 is available Apple CarPlay.

Compare the 2018 and 2019 ES »

Here are the key changes for the Lexus ES over the last few years:

  • 2016: refreshed exterior and interior styling
  • 2017: revised infotainment system; collision warning, lane departure warning, and adaptive cruise control added to standard features list
  • 2018: complimentary Lexus Enform Safety Connect and Enform Service Connect
  • 2019: fully redesigned

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2016 ES, 2017 ES, and 2018 ES reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Best New Car Deals and Best New Car Lease Deals pages to learn about savings and discounts you can find on new vehicles.

How Reliable Is the 2019 Lexus ES?

The 2019 Lexus ES has an excellent predicted reliability rating of 4.5 out of five.

Read more about ES reliability »

2019 Lexus ES Recalls

There have been 2 safety recalls issued from NHTSA.

FUEL SYSTEM, GASOLINE:DELIVERY:FUEL PUMP Recall Date: 01/12/2020
  • Summary: Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) recalled certain 2018-2019 4Runner, Highlander, Camry, Land Cruiser, Sequoia, Sienna, Tacoma and Tundra, and Lexus RC 300, RC 350, GS 350, GX 460, IS 300, LC 500, LS 500, LX 570, RX 350L, and 2019 Toyota Avalon and Corolla, and certain Lexus NX 300, and ES 350 vehicles on January 13, 2020. On March 4, 2020, Toyota expanded the recall to include certain 2014-2015 Toyota 4Runner and Land Cruiser, 2018 Avalon, Corolla, 2014 FJ Cruiser, 2017 Sienna and Lexus 2018 ES 350, 2018-2019 GS 300, 2013-2014 GS350, 2014-2015 GX 460, IS 350 and LX 570, 2014 IS F, 2018-2019 IS 350, LC 500H and LS 500H, 2013-2015 LS 460, 2015 NX 200T and RC350, 2017 RC 200T and RX 350. Toyota also removed the 2018-2019 Toyota 4Runner and Land Cruiser and 2018-2019 Lexus GX 460 and LX 570 and 2019 NX300 from inclusion in this recall. On March 19, 2020, Toyota expanded the recall to include 2015 Lexus GS350 vehicles. The low-pressure fuel pump inside the fuel tank may ...
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 1830752
  • Consequence: If the fuel pump fails, the engine can stall while driving, increasing the risk of a crash.
  • Remedy: Toyota notified owners of the safety risk with an interim notification between February 17, 2020 and May 4, 2020. Toyota will send a second notice to owners to have the fuel pump replaced once the remedy is available. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371 or Lexus customer service at 1-800-255-3987. Toyota's numbers for this recall are 20TB02 and 20TA02 for Toyota vehicles and 20LB01 and 20LA01 for Lexus vehicles.
  • Manufacturer Recall Number: 20TB02/20TA02/20LB01
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 20V012000
ELECTRONIC STABILITY CONTROL Recall Date: 07/23/2019
  • Summary: Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain 2019 Lexus LS500, LC500, ES300h, UX250h, LS500h, Toyota Prius, RAV4 HV, 2019-2020 Toyota Prius Prime, and 2020 Corolla HV vehicles. The brake booster pump may fail causing a deactivation of the Vehicle Stability Control system and a loss of braking assist. As such, these vehicles fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 126, "Electronic Stability Control Systems."
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 6925
  • Consequence: Deactivation of the vehicle stability control system or a loss of braking assist increases the risk of a crash.
  • Remedy: Toyota will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and, if necessary, replace the brake booster pump, free of charge. The recall began September 20, 2019. Toyota owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371 and Lexus owners may contact Lexus customer service at 1-800-255-3987. Toyota's numbers for this recall are K1L/K0L. Lexus' numbers for this recall are K2F/KLF.
  • Dates of Manufacture: MAY 20, 2019 to MAY 20, 2019
  • Manufacturer Recall Number: K1L/K0L, K2F/KLF
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 19V544000

See more information on Lexus ES safety recalls »

Which Used Lexus ES Trim Is Right for Me?

The 2019 Lexus ES 350 is available in base, Luxury, Ultra Luxury, and F Sport trims. A V6 engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission are standard across the lineup. There’s also the Lexus ES Hybrid, which we review separately.

The base model comes with just about all the tech features Lexus offers for the ES, as well as a comprehensive suite of driver assistance features. An available Premium package adds heated and ventilated front seats, memory settings for the driver's seat, and rain-sensing windshield wipers to the base model. Higher trims include upgraded seating and cabin materials, as well as some exterior upgrades and additional convenience features.

  • Lexus ES 350: The base Lexus ES comes standard with synthetic leather seats, a rearview camera, an 8-inch infotainment display, three USB ports, Bluetooth, HD Radio, satellite radio, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a 10-speaker stereo, and Amazon Alexa smartphone integration. The 2019 ES also comes with the Lexus Safety System 2.0+, which includes a pre-collision system, oncoming vehicle detection, low-light pedestrian detection, daytime bicyclist detection, adaptive cruise control, road sign assist, lane departure alert with steering assist and road edge detection, lane tracing assist, automatic high-beam headlights, and parking support alert.
  • Lexus ES 350 Luxury: The Lexus ES Luxury gains genuine leather upholstery and wood trim, ambient lighting, and acoustic side glass.
  • Lexus ES 350 Ultra Luxury: The Lexus ES Ultra Luxury features semi-aniline leather seats, a power rear sunshade, manual rear-door sunshades, an upgraded suspension system, and a hands-free power trunk lid.
  • Lexus ES 350 F Sport: The top-of-the-line Lexus ES F Sport comes with upgrades like aluminum interior accents, active noise control, a sport-tuned suspension, and a rear spoiler. It also features F Sport-specific design elements on the seats, gauges, pedals, and grille.

See 2019 Lexus ES trims and specs »

What Does Lexus' Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Lexus offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 70,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Lexus extends its original new-car warranty to six years or unlimited mileage. From the day you purchase or lease your Lexus CPO vehicle, you receive complimentary maintenance covering the next four factory-recommended services for two years or 20,000 miles. Every CPO Lexus must pass a 161-point inspection. Additional benefits like loaner cars, towing, and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Lexus warranty page carefully.

According to our analysis, Lexus has the best CPO program in the industry.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the ES?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2019 ES an overall safety rating of five out of five stars, with four stars in the frontal crash and rollover evaluations and five stars in the side crash test.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the 2019 ES a Top Safety Pick+ and gave it the highest rating of Good in all six crash tests. The ES 350’s standard headlights received the second-highest rating of Acceptable for how well they illuminate the road ahead, while the available adaptive headlights received the top rating of Good.

The IIHS grades collision avoidance systems on a different scale. The standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system earned the highest rating of Superior, while the standard vehicle-to-pedestrian system received the second-highest rating of Advanced.

Standard advanced safety features:

  • Rearview camera
  • Pre-collision braking
  • Oncoming vehicle detection
  • Low-light pedestrian detection
  • Daytime bicyclist detection
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Road sign assist
  • Lane departure alert with steering assist and road edge detection
  • Lane tracing assist
  • Automatic high-beam headlights
  • Parking support alert

Available advanced safety features:

  • Rain-sensing windshield wipers
  • Blind spot monitoring
  • Head-up display
  • Parking sensors
  • Surround-view parking camera system

See ES safety scores »

2019 Lexus ES Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2019 Lexus ES or 2019 Lexus ES Hybrid?

Aside from its powertrain, the 2019 Lexus ES Hybrid is not much different from the ES 350. Both sedans have an outstanding predicted reliability rating, a smooth ride, and an exceptionally comfortable and quiet cabin. They also share the same complicated infotainment system. Buy the hybrid ES 300h if you like the ES 350 but want to cut back on your fuel consumption. The ES Hybrid will probably cost you more up front but may save you down the line. The EPA estimates that the hybrid's annual fuel costs are $500 lower than the nonhybrid ES. The hybrid variant also comes standard with Apple CarPlay, which is an optional feature in the ES 350.

Which Is Better: 2019 Lexus ES or 2019 Mercedes-Benz E-Class?

If you want to ride in comfort and style, it doesn’t get much better than the 2019 Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Supremely supple seats, first-class materials, and elegant styling give the E-Class one of the most luxurious cabins in the luxury midsize car segment. The E-Class also has four potent engine options, while the ES only offers one. That said, the Lexus is the better value. Its typically priced several thousand dollars less than the Mercedes, and it comes with more safety features and a similar number of tech features. The ES also has one of the highest predicted reliability ratings in the class, while the E-Class has one of the lowest. The Mercedes-Benz offers a little more luxury and many high-performance options, but the Lexus will meet the needs of most shoppers and at a lower price.

Compare the ES, ES Hybrid, and E-Class »

2019 ES Performance

How Does the 2019 Lexus ES Drive?

While it isn’t the most performance-oriented car in the class, the 2019 Lexus ES 350 has composed handling and a silky smooth ride. Models with the F Sport package feature an adaptive variable suspension that increases the sedan’s agility without sacrificing ride comfort.

This Lexus' V6 engine delivers plenty of power for most driving situations, and critics note that the ES 350 feels stronger and more refined than models from the previous generation. However, its transmission can be slow to downshift.

  • Base engine: 302-horsepower 3.5-liter V6
  • Drivetrain: front-wheel drive
  • Transmission: eight-speed automatic
Does the 2019 Lexus ES Get Good Gas Mileage?

The 2019 Lexus ES 350 gets an EPA-estimated 22 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on highway, which is a little above average for the class. Models with the F Sport package lose 2 mpg on the highway.

Read more about ES performance »

2019 ES Interior

How Many People Does the 2019 ES Seat?

The 2019 ES 350 is a five-seat sedan that has plenty of space in both rows, including good legroom in the rear seats. The cabin is comfortable and quiet, with excellent build quality and high-end materials. Higher trim levels feature premium seating upgrades and elegant interior trim accents.

Standard seating features:

  • Synthetic leather upholstery
  • 10-way power-adjustable front seats

Available seating features:

  • Genuine leather upholstery
  • Semi-aniline leather upholstery
  • Heated and ventilated front seats
  • Driver’s seat memory settings
  • A power rear sunshade
  • Manual rear-door sunshades
How Many Child Car Seats Fit in the 2019 Lexus ES?

The 2019 ES has two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors for the rear outboard seats and an upper tether for the rear middle seat. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave this LATCH system the highest rating of Good for ease of use.

2019 Lexus ES Features

The ES 350’s infotainment system is almost universally criticized for its unintuitive controls. A touchpad on the center console is used to adjust most infotainment settings, and it can be difficult to operate while driving. Voice controls and available features like Apple CarPlay somewhat mitigate the struggle, but the system’s Amazon Alexa integration can be slow to respond to voice commands.

  • Standard infotainment features: an 8-inch infotainment display, three USB ports, Bluetooth, a CD player, HD Radio, satellite radio, a Wi-Fi hot spot, 10 speakers, and smartphone integration with Siri Eyes Free, Amazon Alexa, and Google Voice Control
  • Available infotainment features: Apple CarPlay, a Mark Levinson audio system, a navigation system, a 12.3-inch display, and wireless device charging
  • Additional standard features: dual-zone automatic climate control and a moonroof
  • Other available features: a panoramic sunroof

See 2019 Lexus ES specs »

Read more about ES interior »

2019 Lexus ES Dimensions

Lexus ES Cargo Space

The ES’ 16.7-cubic-foot trunk is one of the biggest in the luxury midsize car class. A hands-free power trunk lid is available.

2019 Lexus ES Length and Weight
  • Length: 16 feet, 4 inches
  • Curb weight: 3,649 pounds
  • Gross vehicle weight rating: 4,740 pounds

Where Was the 2019 Lexus ES Built?

Lexus built the 2019 ES in Kentucky.

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