Used 2002 Lexus ES 300

2002 Lexus ES 300
List price range
2002 Lexus ES 300

Pros

  • Nice array of luxury and convenience features, strong and silent V6, advanced safety technology.

Cons

  • Many of the desired features are optional and expensive.

Used 2002 Lexus ES 300 for Sale

Lexus ES 300 2002 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
142,233 miles
Used 2002
Lexus ES 300
Base
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Dealer Notes
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Lexus ES 300 2002 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
105,865 miles
Used 2002
Lexus ES 300
Base
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Lexus ES 300 2002 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
145,000 miles
Used 2002
Lexus ES 300
Base
Bay Motors, Inc
55.4 mi away
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ABS Brakes,�_<Air Conditioning,�_<Alloy Wheels,�_<AM/FM Radio,�_<Automatic Headlights,�_<Cargo Area Tiedowns,�_<Cassette Player,�_<CD Player,�_<Child Safety Door Locks,�_<Cruise Control,�_<Daytime Running Lights,�_<Driver Airbag,�_<Driver Multi-Adjustable Power Seat,�_<Electrochromic Exterior Rearview Mirror,�_<Electrochromic Interior Rearview Mirror,�_<First Aid Kit,�_<Fog Lights,�_<Front Air Dam,�_<Front Power Lumbar Support,�_<Front Side Airbag,�_<Full Size Spare Tire,�_<Genuine Wood Trim,�_<Heated Exterior Mirror,�_<Interval Wipers,�_<Keyless Entry,�_<Leather Steering Wheel,�_<Manual Sunroof,�_<Passenger Airbag,�_<Passenger Multi-Adjustable Power Seat,�_<Power Adjustable Exterior Mirror,�_<Power Door Locks,�_<Power Sunroof,�_<Power Windows,�_<Rear Window Defogger,�_<Separate Driver/Front Passenger Climate Controls,�_<Side Head Curtain Airbag,�_<Steering Wheel Mounted Controls,�_<Subwoofer,�_<Tachometer,�_<Tilt Steering,�_<Tilt Steering Column,�_<Trip Computer,�_<Trunk Anti-Trap Device,�_<Vehicle Anti-Theft
Lexus ES 300 2002 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
270,135 miles
Used 2002
Lexus ES 300
Base
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Edmunds' Expert Review

Packed with features and safety equipment, the redesigned ES 300 sets a new standard for entry-level luxury sedans...as long as "luxury" is the most important part of this segment for you.

vehicle overview

These are salad days for the folks at Lexus, which has surpassed stalwarts Mercedes-Benz, Cadillac and Lincoln as the best-selling luxury brand in America. Within a one-year span, the company revived its entire car line with the excellent LS 430, the brand-new IS 300 and SC 430, and the shoehorning of the buttery 4.3-liter V8 into the GS. Now Lexus' bread-and-butter sedan, the ES, is the beneficiary of a redo.

Like its predecessor, the 2002 ES 300, now in its third iteration, shares its basic architecture with the redesigned 2002 Toyota Camry, though its appointments reflect the high levels of comfort, convenience and refinement that have become trademarks of Lexus luxury.

A longer wheelbase and increased height provide greater passenger room than the previous ES 300. It is also quieter thanks to new sound-absorbing materials. Many of the features are similar to those found on the LS 430, such as the new dual-zone automatic climate control with an air filtration system. Occupants of the cabin are also treated to the same California burled walnut that graces other Lexus models as a standard feature. Optional equipment is taken to a higher level with the availability of a DVD-based navigation system, a premium Mark Levinson audio system, a powered rear sunshade, high-intensity discharge headlights and a six-disc CD changer.

The ES 300 rides on a MacPherson strut front and multilink rear suspension. Around town, it floats plenty and absorbs road anomalies, providing a cushion-soft ride. Lexus also provides an optional Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS). The '01 car also had this feature, though the new car's system has been improved to offer better road and steering feel and quicker turn-in response.

Still powering the ES is a 3.0-liter V6 engine, which produces 210 horsepower and 220 pound-feet of torque. It is now certified as an ultra low emission vehicle (ULEV) and a new five-speed automatic transmission helps the car earn EPA fuel mileage ratings of 21 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway, versus 19/26 mpg for the 2001 model.

To slow the car down, Lexus offers standard antilock brakes with electronic brake force distribution (EBD). Vehicle Skid Control (VSC), which helps prevent dangerous spins and skids, is optional and includes traction control and brake assist. To measure up to the other vehicles in this class, Lexus has installed full side curtain airbags for both front and rear passengers to protect precious noggins from impacting the side windows during a serious collision. These augment the dual front airbags and front seat-mounted side airbags.

With the sporty IS 300 now available, Lexus feels secure enough to push the luxury envelope for the ES 300. Though many of the features are optional and will jack up the price if ordered, the redesigned ES is an intriguing choice for 2002.

2002 Highlights

Lexus has introduced a completely redesigned ES 300 for 2002. The new car is roomier and quieter than the previous car, and in many ways has become more closely aligned with the LS 430 flagship model. Safety and feature quotients have been increased, and the car is wrapped in a svelte new body.

Top consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2002 Lexus ES 300.

Dependable, High Quality Sleeper
lexusboy9,10/22/2013
So I purchased my ES300 about too years ago with 109K already on the clock. She was mint condition and had one owner..She was flawless even with the mileage and years on her. I purchased her and never looked back! To date she has ran flawlessly, always their when I need her. I had one time where she did not start and it was because of a bad battery, slapped a new one in and she fired right up! Lexus really built this car for the long haul, Sheila (My ES300) currently has 129K on her and each mile has been timeless on her. She continues to get better with time. I plan on driving her until she tells me, I can't go any further! LONG LIVE THE ES300 I love her!!!
2002 Luxury Lexus
SC Senior,07/13/2007
I love this car. It is comfortable and has a beautiful interior (burgundy and wood). The rear window shade keeps the car cooler in the SC summer heat. Great on long trips, heated seats great for back pain plus gets good mileage (30mpg). City driving mileage around 18-19 mpg.
Excellent Ride
Wes,12/05/2005
This is the smoothest car I've ever driven. The inside styling would make you think your in a $70k car. Bought this car certified from Lexus at 44,000 miles. Now has around 50,000 miles and all have been trouble free. I also have a '98 ES300 that's a great car too. It has 130k miles and still drives like a dream.
What a perfect cat
won,06/05/2005
This is my first Lexus ever. I test drove other competitive cars and found this car is the best. There was nothing to compare. Comfort, design (especially interior) and size. The best part was comfort and reliability. As you know Lexus can run 200,000 miles very easily. It drives like a heaven.
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Features & Specs

MPG
18 city / 27 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed automatic
Gas
210 hp @ 5800 rpm
See all Used 2002 Lexus ES 300 features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

More about the 2002 Lexus ES 300
More About This Model

Panic. Eyes wild with speculation. That sinking feeling when you know that you've tried your best, yet it wasn't good enough, it never really was. The bottom drops out of the market; your highest hopes and desires are dashed like mere driftwood onto razor-sharp crags of an unmerciful ocean. You look around you, and see others in the same predicament. Has everyone lost his job? Is the whole world in a recession? Who will shoot the bear with a tranquilizer dart and arouse the bull from its seemingly endless slumber?

Rest assured (ha ha), there are those out there with plenty of money from lucrative employment. And through the windy sea, we see an oasis of calm, a steady structure impervious to the fluctuations of the capricious economy in the form of a luxury car market that has burgeoned despite flagging Nasdaq ratings. There are luxury cars to be built and plenty of people to buy them.

These are salad days for the folks at Lexus, which has surpassed stalwarts Mercedes-Benz, Cadillac and Lincoln as the best-selling luxury brand in America. Within a one-year span, the company revived its entire car line with the excellent LS 430 (which now hogs one-third of the super luxury sedan market), the brand-new IS 300 and SC 430, and the shoehorning of the buttery 4.3-liter V8 into the GS. Now Lexus' bread-and-butter sedan, the ES, is the beneficiary of a redo.

The ES 250 was billed by Lexus as an Executive Sedan when it was first introduced in 1990. We're certain that all executives appreciated a thinly veiled Toyota Camry with a price premium (although it worked; Lexus sold enough of them to raise brand awareness). Admittedly, it was a stopgap plan, and Lexus completely redesigned the ES 300 in 1992, still basing it on the Camry platform, but with much more distinctive styling.

Like its predecessor, the 2002 ES 300, now in its third iteration, shares its basic architecture with the redesigned 2002 Toyota Camry, though its appointments reflect the high levels of comfort, convenience and refinement that have become trademarks of Lexus luxury. Along with the IS 300, Lexus is mounting a two-pronged attack on the entry-level luxury sedan battlefield. Whereas the IS evokes pure exhilaration of motion, the ES 300 is more about providing a sedate, composed ride.

"We don't have to develop a car that tries to be all things to all people," Lexus group Vice President Denny Clements stated, and we feel that there's a certain amount of honor in acknowledging a car's limitations. Many people simply don't give a fig about the performance potential of an automobile. A car is a conveyance, not a form of entertainment, and if they're lucky enough, their vehicle will also convey to onlookers the idea that they've achieved a certain level of success. For those consumers, the ES 300 will have tremendous appeal.

Touting the car as a "baby LS 430" (lacks the elocutionary élan of "baby Jag" or "baby Benz," doesn't it?), Lexus increased the ES 300's luxury quotient by emulating its big brother in terms of feature content. While its basic underpinnings haven't changed, the wheelbase has been stretched 2 inches and its profile heightened 2.4 inches, greatly increasing headroom; customer service had complaints from fez-sporting Shriners, apparently.

The big news is its new duds. We see that Lexus has taken the trend of the triangular headlamps endemic to the Celica and the Acura RSX, giving the front fascia a pulled-back look, as if a ponytail had been tightened. While it has raised some sardonic comments from our staff ("It looks like a Prius, an Avalon, a Paseo," take your pick of current and former Toyotas), at least there's virtue in arousing some form of emotion.

Still powering the ES is the 3.0-liter VVT-i V6 engine, which produces 210 horsepower and 220 pound-feet of torque. This is the same V6 that motivates the prosaic Camry, but with a few minor tweaks to make 18 more ponies. There's nothing wrong with the engine, with its smooth, quiet operation, but compared with some of its competitors with similar displacement and power rating (Lexus cites the Mercedes C320 as a rival), you feel that Lexus could have done more with the powerplant. At least it meets ULEV (Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle) specifications.

The V6 has been mated to a new transmission, upgraded from a four-speed to a closer-ratio five-gear unit. Upshifts are crisp enough, but downshifts are sludgy and come only after the car thinks about it for a while. Under most normal driving circumstances, it's perfectly acceptable, but trying to wring some spirit out of the ES 300 is more of an exercise in futility; it's as if some goblin had poured butterscotch sauce into the fluid reservoir. This could be attributed to our test car's status as a prototype vehicle; future production units could be in for more fine-tuning.

Piloting the ES 300 around the hills of San Mateo, Calif., we noted the smooth, overboosted nature of the steering rack; it was exceedingly easy to pull in and out of parking lots. As most front-wheel-drive, nose-heavy vehicles will, the ES was subject to understeer and a healthy dose of front-end plow. To address torque steer, Lexus made modifications to the steering rack, and we noted the absence of this intrusive characteristic common to most front-wheel-drive cars powered by 200-plus horses.

Like most Toyota products, the excellent brakes offered no-nonsense halting power with perfect pedal modulation. The discs are ventilated up front and solid in the rear, and to increase the safety quotient, an army of active safety systems (and their impressive acronyms) stand guard. Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD) monitors vehicle load and adjusts braking power accordingly. The optional Vehicle Skid Control (VSC) supplements the traction control (TRAC) to sense wheel slippage and apply brakes to the misbehaving wheel, returning the car to its intended course. In case you didn't stomp on the brake pedal hard enough to engage the ABS, Brake Assist will kick in to stop the vehicle expediently.

The ES 300 rides on a MacPherson strut front and multilink rear suspension tuned for comfortable cruising. Around town, it floats plenty and absorbs road anomalies, providing a cushion-soft ride. For those who prefer a tad more road feel, Lexus provides an optional Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS), adjustable through a switch next to the gearbox. This feature has been improved to control damping on both front MacPherson struts independently, rather than concurrently. The difference in ride quality was discernable enough to deem it a worthy component.

Again, consumers interested in the ES 300 don't care so much about its athleticism as its ability to coddle. Lexus has paid plenty of attention to this, and it shows. Our test car allowed the driver to be ensconced in a power-adjustable, heated seat covered in soft Regency leather, the same as in the LS 430. Its myriad of functions allowed for a high degree of comfort, with enough lateral and side support, power-adjustable lumbar support and articulating headrests, although the steering wheel lacks a telescoping feature. Occupants of the cabin are also treated to the same California burled walnut that graces other Lexus models as a standard feature. Optional are a wood-and-leather steering wheel and a one-touch open/close sunroof.

You may have noticed that we keep invoking the LS 430. Another optional component that has trickled its way down the Lexus bloodline is the truly marvelous Mark Levinson sound system. Aside from amazing sound quality, the system includes a six-disc in-dash CD changer. You can opt for a non-Levinson six-disc changer, as well.

The new ES 300 also benefits from Lexus' excellent navigation system, which, in this writer's humble opinion, spanks the systems of its competitors in terms of ease of use and quickness of computation. The DVD-based system shows byways and backways of the 48 contiguous states on one disc, and the voice of the Lexus lady who gives you instructions sounds so polite and friendly that you feel like asking her to be your child's godmother. Amongst others, the system stores the addresses and phone numbers of 2,403 Thai food joints and 2,378 brew pubs, but it doesn't tell you if the service staff is particularly attractive or not. If you opt for the nav system and a six-disc changer, the changer cartridge will be located in the center console, but will still have a single-disc feeder and a tape player behind the navigation screen, so you'll be able to access seven discs.

Further spiffifying the ES are the available self-leveling xenon headlamp package that includes rain-sensing wipers, and a power rear sunshade. Built-in luxury touches include a trip computer, a rearview mirror that features a compass, dual-zone climate control with an air filtration system, HomeLink and one-touch up and down windows. And to measure up to the other vehicles in this class, Lexus has installed full side curtain airbags for both front and rear passengers to protect precious noggins from impacting the side windows during a serious collision.

As of press time, Lexus had not released the price for these cars, but speculated a range in the low to mid $30,000. Many of the above-mentioned features are pricey options, however, and we can see the sticker price quickly mushrooming as you make your ES more like an LS.

Lexus seems to have hired a fortuneteller with the ability to predict exactly what the car buyer wants; goodness knows that it's selling enough of its automobiles. And by all indications, the company will have another home run on its hands with the 2002 ES 300.

Used 2002 Lexus ES 300 Overview

The Used 2002 Lexus ES 300 is offered in the following submodels: ES 300 Sedan. Available styles include 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5A).

What's a good price on a Used 2002 Lexus ES 300?

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Should I lease or buy a 2002 Lexus ES 300?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Lexus lease specials
Check out Lexus ES 300 lease specials