1996 Lexus ES 300: Local Phenomenon
July 26, 2012
Since the 1996 Lexus ES 300 came into our fleet, it seems that I can't drive two miles without seeing another quite like it. The one pictured here is not our car, but its twin, which Ron Montoya photographed in a parking lot across the street from us.
Is there a surfeit of old Lexi around Edmunds or is this an instance of the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon, "where one happens upon some obscure piece of information -- often an unfamiliar word or name -- and soon afterwards encounters the same subject again, often repeatedly," as the site Damn Interesting put it. Or in my case, when one drives a car of a certain age and soon afterwards sees it on the road, often repeatedly.
To help resolve the question, one of our super-cool analysts, Ivan Drury, pulled the current national and Los Angeles County registration data for the car from provider Polk.
Of the 30,399 1996 ES 300 models currently registered in the U.S., 1,414 are here in Los Angeles County -- 4.7 percent of the national crop. If you add up the currently registered first-generation ES 300s (1992-1996), there are nearly 7,000 in L.A. County, representing about 7 percent of the registered 1992-1996 ES 300 models nationwide.
Drury says that L.A. County is the No. 1 location for Lexus ES across all model years. Orange County, our neighbor to the south, is No. 2.
What old or obscure car do you seem to see everywhere?
Carroll Lachnit, Features Editor @146,516 miles