As it sits on a bigger platform, the sixth-generation ES's wheelbase has been lengthened by 46 mm, while the vehicle's overall length grew by 42 mm. This results in shorter front and rear overhangs and, more importantly, a more spacious interior that will fit you in absolute comfort no matter how big you or your ego might be. Rear headroom has been increased by 20 mm, knee room by a further 71 mm, and legroom by an astounding 104 mm. They’ve even managed to squeeze additional foot room below the front seats to keep your feet nice and toasty. Surprisingly, overall height and width remains unchanged.
Lexus' goal to create a distinct brand identity has now apparently turned into an obsession. Just like the rest of its siblings, the new ES wears the brand's signature spindle grill that makes it look very much like the RX, and almost undistinguishable from the bigger GS. Add to that the L-shaped LED daytime running lights that's uniquely Lexus. But while the front and back ends are screaming in style, the new ES features a lower and simpler side profile to balance it all out.
According to Lexus, the all-new ES' modern interior has been designed to provide a sense of “openness and security.” But I personally think it's really much closer to “opulence and technological prowess.”
Beyond the NuLuxe seating surfaces and Espresso Bird's-eye Maple trim color, the ES comes with all the devices you'll ever want that can easily put your new iPad to shame. There's no need for those designer headphones, because there's an eight-speaker Lexus Premium Sound System with Automatic Sound Levelizer (ASL). Plus, the in-dash CD player, USB/iPod connectivity, Bluetooth audio, phone transfer, and vehicle information display will keep you always connected. And you can enjoy all these while resting in absolute comfort on the newly-developed eight-way adjustable power seat that should perfectly fit your royal bottom. But the best piece of all is a beautifully-crafted self-illuminating LED analog clock that rests on the center console at serves as a reminder of the luxury you hold in your hands.
Though the all-new ES is no longer based on the Toyota Camry, it still shares the same 3.5L Dual VVT-i V6 engine. Hauling this much Lexus should be no problem for its 272 horsepower and 346 Nm of torque that's transmitted through a six-speed gate-type sequential-shift automatic. And with the help of an Electronically Controlled Transmission (ECT), expect fuel economy figures to reach 8.9 km/L in the city and as high as 13.2 km/L on the highway.
Offering more attention than a handmaid to a princess, Lexus features a class-leading 10 airbags as standard equipment and Whiplash Injury Lessening (WIL) front seats. Lexus' engineers have also revised the front and rear suspension to enhance ride comfort, while airflow under the chassis has been improved to aid stability, fuel economy, and drag.
Priced at P3,338,000, the all-new 2012 Lexus ES 350 is now available at Lexus Manila's showroom at the Bonifacio Global City (BGC) in Taguig.