A redesigned Lexus ES is coming for the 2019 model year and Lexus on Wednesday released the first official photo and confirmed the debut for this month’s 2018 Beijing auto show.
The release follows the recent posting of a leaked shot of the new ES on Arabic website . Shown below, the leaked shot reveals a little more of the car, though still only a portion of its front end.
So far the design of the new ES looks to be a slightly sharper, more athletic take on the current model’s themes.
The size and proportions should match the latest Toyota Camry, whose platform the new ES shares, in this case a stretched version of Toyota’s TNGA modular design. Lighter and lower than the platform in the current ES, the adoption of the TNGA platform should result in better handling for the new model.
In the powertrain department, look for an ES 350 with a 301-horsepower 3.5-liter V-6 and 8-speed automatic. An ES 300h hybrid should be offered as well, possibly with a rear axle electric motor-type setup similar to what Lexus is offering in the new UX subcompact crossover, as such a setup would mean all-wheel drive. An alternative could be the Camry’s hybrid setup which pairs a 2.5-liter inline-4 mated to an e-CVT at the front axle.
The new ES is due in showrooms in the second half of the year and production for the United States should continue at Toyota’s plant in Georgetown, Kentucky.
Despite falling demand for sedans, the ES remains an important nameplate for Lexus. After all, it’s the third most popular model after the after the RX and NX crossovers, with sales in the U.S. in 2017 totaling just over 50,000 units. In contrast, the similar-sized GS managed less than 8,000 units and thus might not be replaced once the current model’s run its course.