Lexus reveals sportier 2016 ES sedan at Shanghai International Motor Show

Article by Christian A., on April 23, 2015

Lexus chose the ongoing Shanghai International Motor Show for the world premiere of its new 2016 ES as well as its RX 200t luxury utility vehicle. The ES is Lexus’ top-selling sedan and has been regarded by many as the epitome of the near luxury sedan. The 2016 ES is sportier and its exterior styling can be described as elegant and progressive.

Its interior is even more luxurious and the car occupants can feel more secure with the new Lexus Safety System+. Lexus designed the refreshed ES for 2016 with a new bold form. This new ES stands out from the crowd with its heightened luxury and a prominent and striking front fascia that has Lexus’s trademark spindle grille and comes with accentuated brilliant satin chrome.

The ES is fitted with headlights in a new design. They feature LED projector technology while iconic “L”-shaped arrowhead Daytime Running Lights (DRL) are observed to reach outside the headlight element for a unique look that makes it easily recognizable as a Lexus.

In addition, Lexus moved the redesigned fog lamps areas to the outer lower corners of the front fascia, making the vehicle’s wide stance even more obvious. Even if the car stands still, it gives off a sense of motion from a re-sculpted front fascia that links to the hood.

Its sleek form continues with the smooth roofline that easily flows to the rear where an enhanced taillight look makes use of the “L”-shaped theme to give an instantly identifiable nighttime glow. At the rear, there is a re-stylized chrome license plate trimming that is a visual match with the clearness of the lamps to signify the car’s on-road stability.

Adding to the vehicle’s sporty attitude are the recently sculpted chrome-tipped rectangular exhaust ports. The ES is equipped with two 17-inch wheels with directional spoke patterns. For non-hybrids, Lexus offers a branching dark gray metallic, multi-plane machined 20-spoke wheel as optional.

Meanwhile, the hybrids can be recognized with their use of a 10-spoke design with machine finish over medium gray. The ES is available in four new exterior colors: Amber, Nightfall Mica, Caviar, and Eminent White Pearl.

In each of these, Lexus used innovative paint technology that enables the paint’s clear coat to heal itself from minimal damage. Lexus selected all of the 10 colors to demonstrate the dynamic surface of the ES. Lexus uses a famous, multi-stage paint process on the models that gives them a deep luster similar to that of a jewel.

Lexus built the new 2016 ES sedan to give the occupants the best in comfort with its well-appointed, contemporary cabin as well as to give a boost to driving confidence. Absolute quality with each touch – that’s what Lexus wants to cultivate with anyone who enters the cabin whether you’re admiring its modern sweeping dashboard reminiscent, its ergonomics, or its use of the best materials and surfaces.

The new 2016 ES takes luxury to the highest level with a range of new interior colors, which include beautiful multi-color themes that exude elegance. Customers may choose from four colors (Flaxen, Parchment, Stratus Gray and Black) for its seats. There are also three trim materials available, namely: semi-aniline leather, leather and Lexus NuLuxe.

Furthermore, Lexus designers prepared four interior trim styles to go with the color choice. These are: Illustrious Piano Black, Linear Dark Mocha Wood, Espresso Bird’s Eye Maple with Shimamoku ornamentation. For 2016, there’s now a matte finish offered for Bamboo. Shimamoku, which debuted in the GS and LS sedans, is created by skilled craftsmen as they process wood to create a high-end finish.

For some markets, a 2.0-liter direct-injection four-cylinder engine is new for the 2016 model. The D4 engine was built to comply with the fuel economy regulations in China. This engine will be available in Russia, China, and Taiwan.

The 2016 ES offered in the U.S. market will be available with the very smooth 3.5-liter V-6 engine and a gasoline-electric hybrid powerplant. The other markets will also be getting a 2.5-liter L4 version.

The lineup of powertrain options offered with the ES has been optimized for fuel economy and power, with the additional aspect of heightened sensitivity to the environment. [source: Lexus]

Press Release

2016 Lexus ES

Maintaining luxury leadership requires a relentless pursuit. Lexus, after giving the ES significant enhancements for 2015, maintains its momentum by endowing the 2016 Lexus ES with a makeover for the front, rear and wheels; and new safety, connectivity and multimedia technology.

The Lexus ES 350 serves as part of the brand's strategy in the entry-luxury segment, combining flagship-type comfort (including 40 inches of rear seat legroom) with front-wheel drive traction. The Lexus ES delivers strong and efficient performance from a standard 268-hp 3.5-liter V6 engine teamed to an ultra-smooth six-speed automatic transmission.

The current-generation Lexus ES was already wearing the Lexus spindle grille, the brand's signature design feature, and for 2016 it receives a more strongly styled, even bolder, one-piece version, framed by elegant satin chrome trim. New standard LED headlights give the ES a steely stare at night. A fully redesigned front fascia puts the fog lights at the corners to accentuate the wide stance.

The 2016 Lexus ES shows a more sophisticated look from the rear, too, with distinctive L-themed taillights and new chrome-tipped rectangular exhaust ports peeking through a restyled rear fascia, as on the flagship LS. The freshened design extends to new optional 17-inch alloy wheels and four new exterior colors.

Hybrid Powertrain

The beauty of the Lexus Hybrid Drive system comes through in its transparent operation. The system combines a 2.5-liter four-cylinder Atkinson cycle engine with an electric motor to generate 200 total system horsepower. It will run on electric motor or gas engine alone, or a combination of both, based on the driving situation. The Hybrid System Indicator shows use of energy and encourages efficient driving habits.

The electronic continuously variable transmission is a further contributor to the car's smooth demeanor. There's driving spirit here, too, and the driver can tailor that by choosing from among four modes: Normal, Sport, Eco and EV.

Normal mode could be called "everyday mode." Select it when you want an ideal blend of performance and efficiency for, well, everyday driving situations.

Switching into Sport mode puts an edge on performance response that you not only feel, but also see: selecting Sport mode changes the gauge cluster lighting to a fiery red and replaces the Hybrid System Indicator with a tachometer.

Eco mode favors fuel economy, and in EV mode, the ES 300h can be driven short distances at reduced speed on battery power alone.

The ES 300h also has excellent EPA fuel economy ratings of 40 mpg city / 39 mpg highway / 40 mpg combined, along with, of course, the ability to refuel at any gasoline station.

New Lexus Safety System+

Starting with 10 standard airbags, the 2016 Lexus ES offers exemplary safety through its robust structure and a wide array of driver-assist technologies. For 2016, the new available Lexus Safety System+ Package combines Pre-Collision System (PCS), Lane Departure Alert (LDA) with Steering Assist, Intelligent High Beam (IHB) and High-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.

High-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control works at speeds over 25 mph. It tracks the speed of the vehicle traveling ahead and can adjust the speed setting accordingly to help maintain a preset distance. Should a vehicle enter or exit the lane or highway, the system responds with smooth acceleration and deceleration control.

PCS can detect vehicles - and in certain conditions, pedestrians - by using a combination of millimeter-wave radar and a front-facing camera. The system can warn the driver of a possible collision and can initiate automatic braking with Brake Assist if necessary.

Using a camera to detect visible lane markings, Lane Departure Alert will convey audio-visual alerts and vibrate the steering wheel if the systems determine that the driver unintentionally deviated from the lane. Lane Departure Alert, with Steering Assist enabled, can help the vehicle stay in the center of its lane by smoothly increasing steering torque a small amount to assist in maintaining course.

Also available on the Lexus ES is Intelligent High Beam technology that senses headlights from oncoming traffic, and also the taillights of the vehicle traveling in front, and automatically adjusts high- and low-beam illumination.

And yes, there's even more driver-assist technology available. The optional Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) helps detect vehicles in side blind spots and alert the driver to rear cross traffic when backing out of a parking space.

Entry Luxury Defined - and Defied

Always in pursuit of optimal luxury, Lexus made numerous upgrades to the 2016 Lexus ES's already comfortable cabin. New interior colors and color coordination, soft-touch materials added to the console and silver-trimmed piano black door switch plates are among the details that give the interior a richer appearance. New trims for 2016 include: Linear Dark Mocha, Illustrious Piano Black (replaces Piano Black) and Bamboo with a matte finish (replaces gloss finish).

The new steering wheel has a sportier look and feel, and allows the driver to easily view the large multi-information display that links to multimedia functions. A new shift knob with a leather boot echoes the shifter design in the Lexus IS.

The 2016 Lexus ES 350 defies the "entry" part of entry luxury, thanks to standard 10-way adjustable power front seats; automatic climate control; NuLuxe perforated upholstery; a power tilt-and-slide moonroof; power-adjustable outside mirrors with turn signals and defoggers; remote-linked power window and moonroof opening and Lexus Personalized Settings to customize select electronic functions.

Premium, Luxury and Ultra Luxury Packages present a sensible tiered approach to adding optional amenities. For 2016, the latter two packages add wood trim on the center console and an improved "emboss" pattern on the seats. The optional Panoramic Roof is now available with all packages.

The Best Connections

Smartphones and tablets have made getting information and entertainment from the same source a given. The standard Display Audio system in the 2016 Lexus ES follows suit, reinforced by the brand's expanded Lexus Enform family of information and connectivity services for 2016.

Display Audio features a seven-inch screen and includes HD Radio™, Bluetooth® audio, automatic phone book transfer, a vehicle information display and complimentary traffic and weather data provided via HD Radio. You never need miss an old favorite on the radio with the cache feature - just pause it for up to 15-minutes, say, when you need to discuss the next destination with your rear passengers.

With Lexus Enform Remote (one-year trial subscription included), the customer can remotely view and control certain aspects of the vehicle using a mobile app for iOS and Android devices. Once registered, the app can operate remote door lock/unlock; remote stop/start for the engine and climate control; vehicle finder, guest driver monitor and more.

Lexus Enform Safety Connect is standard on all 2016 Lexus vehicles, with access to Lexus Enform response centers 24/7/365.

With Lexus Enform Service Connect, new for 2016, the Lexus ES can tell you what it needs, and when. Use the MyLexusandBeyond mobile app (for iOS devices) or website to set push-reminders and alerts for maintenance and service issues including, for example, required maintenance warning light will alert you and your dealer of a specific factory recommended maintenance for a specific maintenance interval.

With the navigation option, the ES 350 includes the Lexus Enform App Suite, a veritable in-car personal concierge. Use voice-enabled apps to search the Internet through Destination Search, make restaurant reservations through OpenTable®, get movie tickets via™, listen to Internet radio, (including Pandora®, iHeartRadio and Slacker), search business reviews on Yelp®, and check in on Facebook Places™.

Lexus Enform Destination Services comes with the optional navigation system.

Three's not a crowd on the eight-inch Display Audio screen that comes with the Navigation option: it can be divided into up to three sections to show different functions simultaneously. You can view navigation/map while also having a window for audio or another system. Speaking of the navigation system, the Lexus system acts as a real co-pilot, providing 3D map with bird's eye views, predictive traffic information, detour preview, ETA calculation and fuel station locations.

Putting numerous vehicle system controls at your fingertips, the available second-generation Remote Touch Interface (RTI) is the easiest way to access multimedia in the Lexus ES. The computer mouse-like controller on the center console can operate the climate control, audio system, phone, optional navigation system and more. Menus show in the Display Audio screen. For 2016, the RTI controller gets new, easier to use "enter" buttons on both sides.

iPhone® users have yet another control option - Siri® Eyes Free Mode. Make calls, select songs from iTunes®, get turn-by-turn navigation through Apple maps, and much more, all by asking Siri.

Premium Sound, a Lexus Tradition

Whether you've gone all digital with an iPod® or smartphone for music, or still tote around your CD collection, the standard eight-speaker Lexus Premium Sound System plays along. It gives you the choice of using an in-dash CD player, USB/iPod connectivity, Bluetooth® audio streaming, HD Radio™ with iTunes tagging, and an integrated SiriusXM® Satellite Radio receiver (with all-access 90-day trial subscription).

Once again, pinnacle audio performance in the Lexus ES comes from the available Mark Levinson® Premium Sound system. For 2016, it's now available with any option package. Powering 15 speakers with 835-watts, the system turns the car into a private listening room. Borrowing from high-end home audio, Clari-Fi technology can enhance the sound of compressed digital audio (satellite radio, mobile streaming, mp3, etc.).

What's New for 2016

Restyled with bolder, chrome-trimmed spindle grille, LED headlights, new front fascia, L-themed taillights, semi-integrated exhaust.
Numerous exterior detail upgrades, including new wheel designs and exterior colors (Autumn Shimmer, Nightfall Mica, Caviar and Eminent White Pearl).
Lexus Safety System+ combining Pre-Collision System, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, Intelligent High Beam and High-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.
New vehicle connectivity with Lexus Enform Remote; Lexus Enform Service Connect through mobile app or website for vehicle information and alerts.
New interior luxury features and finishes, including Linear Dark Mocha wood, Illustrious Piano Black wood (replaces Piano Black) and Bamboo with a matte finish (replaces gloss finish); Flaxen interior.
Mark Levinson Premium Sound and Panoramic Roof now each available with all option packages.

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