Costs & verdict
Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is
Running costs are arguably the ES’s strongest suit, especially if you’re a company car driver. The WLTP CO2 emissions figure is just 119g/km for the base model, rising to 128g/km for the F Sport, whose big wheels take their toll on efficiency. The icing on the cake is that – being petrol powered – it doesn’t fall foul of the 4% Benefit-in-Kind surcharge that clobbers many diesel drivers. An awful lot of plug-in hybrids, such as the BMW 530e dip below the 50g/km mark, driving down BIK tax costs further, but are more expensive to buy outright.
Fuel economy is good, too. Depending on trim and options, the official combined figure is between 50.4 and 53.2mpg, and our varied test route saw well over 40mpg easily achieved. Whichever trim you go for, equipment levels are high; even entry-level ES models get dual-zone climate control, electric seat adjustment and a sunroof, plus keyless entry and start. F-Sport adds bigger wheels and a host of styling tweaks while Takumi models are dripping with luxury features, but are very expensive.
Option packs are available, but we’d argue that the entry-level ES has more than enough equipment and offers an impressive suite of safety gear. This includes automatic emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, lane-keeping assistance and adaptive cruise control. Blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert are on the options list. The ES was awarded the full five stars in its Euro NCAP safety tests, with impressive individual category scores.
As a brand, Lexus topped our 2020 reliability survey, but we don’t have any specific data for the ES. Its warranty lasts for a distinctly average three years or 60,000 miles, but can be extended for a fee.
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