Lexus ES Facelift Girls 1

Open for booking late last month, the Lexus ES facelift was officially launched by Lexus Malaysia this morning in KL. Three variants are available here – the ES 250 Premium, ES 250 Luxury and ES 300h.

The ES 250 variants are powered by a 2.5 litre four-cylinder engine with 181 hp and 235 Nm of torque. The Dual VVT-i 2AR-FE unit is paired to a six-speed automatic gearbox and power goes to the front wheels. 0-100 km/h is done in 9.8 seconds on the way to a 207 km/h top speed.

The ES 300h is a hybrid variant. Its powertrain consists of a 2.5 litre Atkinson cycle four-cylinder engine (158 hp, 213 Nm) and a 105 kW electric motor powered by nickel-metal hydride (Ni-MH) batteries. Total system output is 202 hp and power is channeled to the front wheels via a CVT gearbox. The Drive Mode Selector provides Eco, Normal, Sport and EV modes. 0-100 km/h 8.5 seconds.

Lexus ES 250 Luxury 3

Looks so much more sharper now, doesn’t it? The facelift gives the ES the sharp, bold face carried by the younger members of the Lexus range. The latest spindle grille is bigger, has thicker chrome borders and no break in the middle for the number plate; while the redesigned headlights sport ‘tick’ LED DRLs. The fog lamps are also a lot more stylised now.

At the back, the ES facelift features new tail lamps – from flowing three bars, now we have double L-shaped LED bars. The chrome bar connecting the lights is thicker and bolder now. The exhaust tips, one on each side, are now “diamond-shaped”; this is for ES 250, the hybrid has hidden pipes and a boot lid spoiler. New 17-inch wheel designs (215/55 tyres) wrap things up.

Inside, the refreshed big sedan features a new three-spoke steering wheel, new gear lever with leather boot, 4.2-inch colour multi-info display, embossed seat upholstery and a new “Enter” button to complement the latest Remote Touch Interface.

Aesthetic bits aside, the ES gets retuned shock absorbers to match the increased body rigidity for maintained ride comfort and handling stability. Rigidity is up via the application of structural reinforcements learnt in chassis tuning for the IS. An additional layer of insulation has been added behind the dashboard to further isolate engine noise.

We now come to equipment. The ES 250 Premium and ES 250 Luxury are differentiated by the following – low and high LED headlamps (Premium: low LED, high halogen), a powered boot, ambient lights, navigation, a higher spec “Electro Multi-Vision” central screen with Remote Touch Controller, manual door sunshades (powered rear sunshade standard for all), Lexus Premium Audio, semi-aniline leather, driver cushion length adjuster, passenger shoulder switch and memory seats for the front passenger (Premium: driver only).

Safety wise, the ES comes with 10 airbags, ABS/EBD, VSC, Hill Start Assist and a tyre pressure warning system as standard, but the Luxury adds on the Blind Spot Monitor and Rear Cross Traffic Alert. The ES 250 Premium is priced at RM259,200 while the Luxury comes in at RM278,600, on-the-road with GST, before insurance.

Lexus ES 250 Luxury 84

The ES 300h is priced at RM355,100. Besides the hybrid powertrain, the range topper adds on a Mark Levinson sound system with 15 speakers, nearly double the speaker count of the ES 250. The hybrid battery comes with an eight-year unlimited mileage warranty, in addition to a three-year/100,000 km factory warranty for the car. Lexus Security and Solar film is included for all.

Six self-healing paint colours are available – Red Mica Crystal Shine, Sonic Quartz, Graphite Black GF, Platinum Silver Metallic, Sonic Titanium and Amber CS. The interior colours are Black, Ivory and Topaz Brown depending on exterior colour (Birdseye Maple Wood trim standard for all); the latter brown is only for the ES 250 Luxury and 300h.

Since the order book was open in late July, Lexus Malaysia has collected over 100 orders for the ES facelift, with the ES 250 Luxury the most popular variant. The company plans to sell 750 units of the ES this year, helping an overall 2015 sales target of 2,200 units.

Lexus ES 250 Luxury

Lexus ES 250 Premium

Lexus ES 300h at GIIAS 2015