What is the ES 350?
The 2022 Lexus ES 350 occupies a strange place in the market — most luxury sedans at the $40,000 price point are small, sporty four-doors, but the ES 350 is a spacious front-wheel-drive cruiser with few sporty pretensions. It offers a tremendous amount of features and space for the money, and it's a great value as long as you aren't expecting a rewarding driving experience.
For 2022, Lexus is outfitting the ES 350 with several welcome updates. The one we're most excited to experience firsthand is the new touchscreen. We've lambasted the ES 350 (and really, the entire Lexus lineup) for employing an infotainment system that can only be controlled via a remote controller. The ES 350 used a touchpad for interacting with the system, and the cluttered screen made it difficult to accurately choose any one of the myriad virtual buttons. The 2022 model still gives users the touchpad option, but the screen itself is moved closer to the driver and is now equipped with touchscreen functionality. We expect this to drastically improve the system's usability.
There are also light styling updates inside and out, including a new grille up front and a mild refresh to the center stack design. Lexus has made a few upgrades to the driver assistance systems as well. For instance, the adaptive cruise control function can now automatically increase speed before executing a lane change, and the lane-centering feature offers improved recognition of lanes and road edges. And if you want your ES 350 to feel a little more lively from behind the wheel, select the F Sport model's new Dynamic Handling package. It adds two new driving modes and adaptive dampers, which should help control body roll in corners.