Lexus ES Series is Expanding

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The enhanced 2021 ES lineup will arrive soon. Photo: Lexus

The enhanced 2021 ES lineup will arrive begin arriving at dealerships in early fall 2020.

2021 ES 250 AWD

The 2021 Lexus ES 250 AWD is the first all-wheel drive model for the ES series. From snow to rainy days or even the off-chance gravel road, all four tires of the ES AWD will have more points of contact with the ground with the ability to help maintain traction on the back tires around turns.

Sending torque to all four wheels, the 2.5-litre L4 engine powers through conditions when traction is low to allow better acceleration with less tire slip. The improved traction of the 2021 ES AWD gives the vehicle the ability to accelerate from rest better with 203 horsepower and an estimated fuel rating of 8.4 L/100km.

Dynamic Torque Control AWD can provide effective traction for inclement and slippery weather while minimizing AWD’s typical drag on fuel economy. The system can direct up to 50 percent of engine torque to the rear wheels, in response to acceleration from a start or slippage at the front wheels.

2021 ES 350 Black Line Special Edition

For 2021, a limited production of the Black Line Special Edition ES 350s will be available. The Black Line Special Edition will be based on the F SPORT grade and will be offered in a choice of two exterior colours that include Ultrasonic Blue Mica 2.0 and Ultra White, and the F SPORT-only two-tone interior that features white and black colouring with gray stitching. The Black Line ES 350s  will also includes features such as Black outer mirrors, darkened F SPORT wheels and lug nuts, and a new black rear lip spoiler.


In addition to the 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine powering the ES 250 AWD model, there are three different powertrain options when including the returning ES 350 and ES 300h.

All ES 350s are powered by a 3.5-litre V6 (2GR-FKS). The V6 features a D-4S fuel injection system. It uses high-pressure injectors to deliver fuel directly into the combustion chamber along with a low-pressure system that delivers fuel to the intake ports.

Together with the addition of Variable Valve Timing-intelligence Wide (VVTi-W) for the intake valves, the engine is capable of operating on either the traditional Otto cycle during sporty driving or the more efficient Atkinson cycle when power demand is low.

The 3.5-litre V6 is rated to produce 302 horsepower at 6,600 rpm and 267 lb-ft of torque at 4,700 rpm. Manufacturer fuel efficiency estimates come in at 10.7 L/100 km city, 7.2 L/100 km highway and 9.1 L/100 km in combined driving. To complement the power of the updated V6, an 8-speed Direct Shift automatic transmission is used on all ES 350s.

The ES 300h’s 2.5-litre, four-cylinder gas engine (A25A-FXS) running on the Atkinson cycle is coupled with a smaller, more power dense electric motor and a hybrid transaxle. The results are a combined 215 total system horsepower and a manufacturer estimated 5.3 L/100 km combined fuel consumption.

The nickel-metal hybrid battery improves the front-to-rear weight distribution for better handling.

The ES 300h features a hybrid control system designed to deliver a more linear acceleration feel by aligning engine speed more closely with vehicle speed to reduce the rubber band feel commonly associated with hybrid systems.

Exterior design

The 2021 ES rides on the Global Architecture–K (GA-K) platform.

The ES sedan is longer (+66 mm), lower (-5 mm) and wider (+46 mm.) than the prior generation with wheels that have been pushed closer to the corners due to a two-inch longer wheelbase and wider tracks front (+11 mm) and rear (+38 mm).

Eight exterior colour options are available, including Eminent White Pearl, Nebula Gray Pearl, Atomic Silver, Caviar, Matador Red Mica, Moonbeam Beige Metallic, while ES F SPORT offers Ultra Sonic Blue Mica 2.0 and Ultra White.

Interior design

Base ES models are available with NuLuxe-trim options that include Black and Flaxen paired with Black or Espresso wood trim accents. Luxury grades are available with leather-trimmed interior colour options Chateau, Black and Flaxen, with interior accents that include Black and Flaxen paired with Black, Dark Mocha wood or Espresso wood trim accents. F SPORT models offer NuLuxe®-trim interior colour options that include White, Black and Circuit Red, all of which can be paired with Hadori Aluminum trim accents.

All versions of the ES offer a Drive Mode Select system that lets the driver choose the car’s settings to varying road conditions. Models without AVS offer Eco, Normal and Sport modes while AVS-equipped cars replace Sport mode with Sport S while adding Sport S+ and Custom.


 All grades of the 2021 ES feature Lexus Safety System+ 2.0 as standard equipment. The Pre-Collision System (PCS) included with LSS+ 2.0 employs both a millimeter wave radar and a monocular camera sensor system designed to detect vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians in both daylight and low-light situations.

The Enform Safety Connect trial is offered for the first 3 years of ownership with access to Lexus Enform Response Centers for emergency support 24/7/365. With the Enform Service Connect — provided for the first 10 years of ownership — the ES can send vehicle health reports straight to the Lexus App.

Customers can also remotely view and control certain aspects of the ES using the Lexus App for iOS and Android devices. Functions include remote door lock/unlock; remote engine start/stop; last parked location, Guest driver settings and more.

The Lane Departure Alert (LDA) system alerts the driver when it senses that the vehicle is deviating from its lane with audible and visual alerts, as well as steering wheel vibration. It’s also capable of providing a certain amount of steering assist to help keep the car from deviating from its marked lane.


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