I bought my ES Feb 24 on the 26th it developed a shake/rumbling when in Drive or Reverse. The noise and shake are absolutely not what Lexus should be. The dealer tried and said nothing found on the first visit. The second try they had the Lexus rep/engineer from Atlanta look and he replaced one of the engine mounts. It was improved but still not right. Now at 4k miles the vibration and sound is getting worse. The service Mgr rode with me and called The Lexus rep in Atl who said it was normal. BEWARE test drive any ES and watch for the shake and noise. Do not buy the Lexus. I hate my Lexus and will be out of it as soon as I'm not upside down. Update- @Lexus never provided help or a solution. I traded the Lexus and am much happier.
Not a car, badly integrated collection of features
written on 11-08-2014
4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 6A)
My wife moved from Infiniti G20 to Lexus ES 350. The new car is definitely an upgrade in most dimensions, and adds a lot of features. But G20 felt like a well designed car that does everything exactly as you want it to do, the ES 350 feels like a poorly integrated list of features - kind of the way (bad) software was done and advertised in nineties. We have feature A and checkbox B and support C - except trying to use A, B or C drives you mad. * E.g.: when the rest of the car moved from daylight saving time, the navigation is still on summer time. So it would show correct current time, but the estimated time of arrival is 1 hour off. * The navigation is horrible and voice command is exercise of despair. It is not even able to find its own nearest dealership. * The radio has satellite and everything, but feels intentionally designed to make listening to plain old FM stations as inconvenient as possible, forcing you to buy sattelite subscription. * The driver seat has memory, but if I get into car when the seat is still in my wife's settings and start car, ES 350 does the following: moves seat forward and makes the back more vertical, simultaneously trying to hit my head to the roof and press my chest against steering wheel. Only after doing this, it moves back-and-down simultaneously - away from the roof and steering wheel. But why did it have to almost kill me first? * The car constantly beeps whenever it finds something it does not like. Like leaving sunroof slightly raised (not open) on a sunny day. Or opening doors in wrong order. Or anything. If you have a sleeping baby in the car - it is impossible to leave the car without waking up the baby. * There is radar cruise control that keeps the distance to the car in front. Works perfect on the long stretch of straight highway. But when you are in the mountains and the road turns - (1) everybody slows down, (2) the radar loses the car in front due to road curve, and thinks it has clear road ahead, (3) car starts accelerating! Right when you are doing the sharp turn! Could they use the signal from the steering wheel to understand it is not a great time to accelerate? They could, but they probably just slapped a feature (radar) designed by third party, and did not integrate it with the other stuff. * This radar is also supposed to stop the car in case of potential frontal collision, but the government data shows it is not efficient at all there. Seems like a problem with many cars, but some (e.g. Honda) do much better. There is also active recall for radar causing breaking in some very rare scenario. There are tons of features in this car, but when you actually start using them, you find out they are garbage, done without real thought about the usability and comfort. On the other hand, the car drives OK. It is a reasonable compromise between comfort and drivability, great traction control. I think if they spent just a bit money on usability engineering and making sure their features actually work well, rather than spend all the money on stuffing as many features as possible - it could be a great car.
I owned Cadillacs for most of the last forty years. Six months ago we leased a 2014 Lexus ES 350 and find it every bit as luxurious as the Cadillac and exceedingly superior in other areas such as fuel economy, useable trunk space, interior legroom in back seat, and overall value. The dealer, Lexus of the Palm Beaches , added to the enjoyment by not wasting my time and offering a fair deal in the first place with no hidden costs. This continued when I purchased an extended warrantee for a different make of car from the finance dept. of Lexus and once again received a great value with no wasted time.
When I took this model for a test drive, all of the roads around the dealership were smooth asphalt and of course, the car road fine - big mistake. I negotiated a great deal on a close out, brand new 2014. I quickly became very disappointed with the comfort and ride of this car. You would think a Lexus would be the pinnacle of comfort but not this car. They did a model change in 2013 and made the car "sporty". Now you feel every bump & crack and hear a lot of tire noise on the highway. I feel fatigued after driving it. If you want a taught, sporty car where you "feel" the road then this might be the car for you. I switched to 2015 Impala 1LZ and am in heaven! What comfort!
Traded my 2014 Camry SE for the 2014 ES 350 Base & couldn't be happier. Overall excellent purchase including price (value for $ spent) & dealer experience. Have been eyeing this model for some time & was very familiar with the platform via my Camry, which I also was very happy with (SE model only; didn't like other trim levels.) The seat comfort & adjustability is excellent while lumbar support is better than the Camry's. At 6 ft, 1 in, have no problems with ingress & egress. I have the base model car with dark grey / light grey colors. I love it. The NuLuxe (read: vinyl) material is perfect for me as I go to gym daily & play tennis 3-4 days per week & meticulously care for my vehicles; one less maintenance item to contend with servicing the leather several times each year as I do for my wife's Murano. Have HID headlights but no Nav or B/U camera. No worries for me as I have never had those in any car. Use my TomTom & iPhone for Nav. Paid $21k for 1-owner, no accident vehicle from Mercedes dealer in Pampano Beach, FL with 10k miles of warranty remaining. Like the push-button diagnostics that includes air pressure volume per tire to help maintain proper wear & safety. Can hardly purchase any super-nice vehicle at that price that even nears the luxury, comfort, reliability & performance of this car. As stated above, excellent experience with vehicle & dealer. Have only pressed the gas pedal hard twice & WOW this thing really accelerates but is smooth & quiet at the same time. Purchased a Lexus SUV for my daughter last year & that is how I caught the Lexus bug. At 52, cannot imagine owning anything else.