2020 Lexus ES300h Review: The Right Hybrid & Electric Car
The hybrid version of the new 2019 Lexus ES sedan is pretty much what you’d expect—even assuming your expectations are pretty high. Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2019 Lexus ES 300h and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2019 ES 300h featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.
As has always been the case, the latest ES takes the bones of Toyota’s pedestrian Camry and Avalon models and adds a few layers of Lexus style and refinement. The ES excels at serving as a cocoon of smoothness and tranquility. With its stiff structure, impact-absorbing suspension, and library-quiet cabin, few luxury rides are better suited to melting the kilometers away. It may lack the dynamic touch that an F Sport package could add, but that sort of thing is best left to the more sporting models, like the IS and GS sedans, anyway.
The 2019 Lexus ES 300h is a marked improvement over its predecessor, with a nicer interior and more passenger and cargo room. It doesn’t have many direct competitors — the 2019 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid is the only other like-minded luxury midsize in this price range — and we think buyers looking to step up from everyday hybrids will enjoy its enticing blend of luxury and value.
The Safety System
On the safety side, Lexus’ Safety System+ 2.0 comes standard. Some of the features it includes are intelligent high beams, lane departure alert with steering assist, adaptive cruise control, 10 airbags, and a pre-collision system that also has low-light pedestrian detection, oncoming vehicle detection and daytime bicyclist detection. Optional safety features include blind-spot monitoring, park assist sonar with pedestrian detection and panoramic view monitor for added ease of parking and pedestrian mitigation.
Inside the cabin, the ES 300 featured a new electroluminescent Lexus Optitron instrument panel, walnut trim, and leather seats. Other luxury standard features included heated outside mirrors and an automatic climate control system. A power moonroof, Nakamichi premium sound system with an in-glove-box mounted CD changer, and heated seats were options.
Pricing for the ES300h hybrid starts at $42,335, $480 less than the outgoing car. Our ES test car was the top-level Ultra Luxury trim, which is a $3650 step up from the base ES300h Premium and adds features such as leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, ambient interior lighting, power sunshades, and more. Adding onto the price was navigation with a 12.3-inch screen and Mark Levinson audio for $3000, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert for $1900, a $500 head-up display, and a $480 heated wood-trimmed steering wheel.