Performance – Powering the 2018 Lexus ES 300h is a 2.5-litre petrol engine which is married to an electric motor. In total, the powertrain produces 215 HP which is more than enough for sedate as well as spirited driving. The ES also gets a pure EV mode but that can be used for a short range with the hybrid powertrain kicking in soon after. The changeover from electric to petrol mode is also very smooth. The engine and motor are super refined & quiet and NVH levels are also simply amazing with the cabin feeling very silent for most part.
The different driving modes alter the way all the power is dished out by the ES
The ES 300h offers easy driveability with power being delivered linearly all the way to the redline. There is a good amount of punch and 0-100 km/hr comes up in 8.9 seconds. The ES gets a 7-step eCVT transmission with paddle-shifters and even though the rubber band effect is felt, the engine doesn’t get too noisy and carries speed well. The transmission gets an S mode while you also get Eco, Normal and Sport modes which alter engine responsiveness. In Eco mode, the car feels laid back in power delivery and some lag is felt especially when you pin the throttle and in Sport mode it feels so much more responsive. The ES 300h is quite fuel efficient and for a car of this size, a figure of 14-15 km/l is very good. Top speed on the ES is just 180 km/hr.
Driving Dynamics – The ride quality on the ES is very plush and it doesn’t feel unsettled while gliding over craters on our roads. The sedans maintains its composure over bad roads leaving passengers very comfortable. The steering is light enough for city driving and weighs up as the speeds increase but it lacks feedback. There’s also a lot of body roll. The ES won’t disappoint you while cornering but it won’t excite you either. It is more of a comfortable cruiser and less of a corner craver. The brakes have decent stopping power but the pedal felt soft and not very sharp with its bite.