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2009 Lexus ES 350 Review

Four-Door Pampering

A three-quarter front view of a 2009 Lexus ES 350

In short: An elegant, value-oriented and comfortable luxury sedan.

ot everyone, when looking at new cars, makes a fuss over acceleration specs, torque ratings or handling characteristics. For some people, an automobile’s strongest appeal isn’t its adrenaline-inducing racetrack performance, but simply its overall reliability, convenience and degree of comfort. Lexus caters to this no-nonsense sensibility with their 2009 ES 350, an entry-level luxury sedan designed to provide a stylish, safe and sumptuous daily commute. Sharing the same underpinnings as the Toyota Camry, this sleek mid-size sedan distinguishes itself with a refined interior and an assortment of accessories.

On the road, the ES 350 is soft and soothing, absorbing most road imperfections with ease, although at the expense of some responsiveness. Inside the eerily quiet and tasteful cabin are quality materials and features; our tester was equipped with ten-way power-adjustable front seats (with an optional perforated leather trim and heating/ventilation); a panoramic glass roof; a power rear sunshade; and a fourteen-speaker premium six-disc CD/DVD audio system. Depending on the package, other available features on this front-wheel-drive automobile include intuitive parking assist; a voice-activated navigation system; Bluetooth capability; dynamic radar cruise control; and a backup camera. While the options can jack up the price quickly, they are largely helpful and user-friendly.

Read a review of the 2007 Lexus ES 350

Warranty/Service: 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty; 6-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty; 6-year/unlimited-mile corrosion perforation warranty.

Base Price: $34,320 / As tested: $43,775

Technical Specifications

Vehicle type: front-engine, front-wheel drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan

Engine: 3.5-liter, 24-valve DOHC V6 with dual VVT-i
Horsepower: 272 hp @ 6,200 rpm
Torque: 254 lb-ft @ 4,700 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed electronically controlled automatic

Curb weight:
3,580 lbs
Wheelbase: 109.3 in
Length/Width/Height: 191.1/71.7/57.1 in
Turning circle: 36.7 ft

all-wheel power-assisted disc with ABS, electronic brakeforce distribution, and brake assist
Suspension: all-wheel independent MacPherson strut-type with gas-pressurized shock absorbers; stabilizer bars in front and rear

Traction: vehicle stability control with traction control

0-60 mph: 6.8 seconds
Top Speed: 137 mph (electronically limited)

EPA City:
19 mpg
EPA Highway: 27 mpg

dual front airbags; dual front knee airbags; front seat-mounted side-impact airbags; side curtain airbags in front and rear; energy-managing crumple zones; side door beams; daytime running lights; tire pressure monitoring system


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Photography: AlphaMedia

PSV073109 (Updated 08/11/09 SV)