The redesigned Lexus ES 350, including the lineup’s first-ever F Sport trim, is now rolling down the assembly line ahead of its September arrival at Car Pro Certified Dealerships.
The all-new sedan, built on a more rigid chassis, is being built in Kentucky. It’s longer, lower and wider than its predecessor. This is the same chassis I had in the 2019 Toyota Avalon I reviewed recently.
“We’ve implemented the all-new Lexus Global Architecture platform,” said Susan Elkington, president, Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. “The 2019 ES starts with a newly developed, more rigid chassis and delivers class-leading handling and power you can feel and hear.”
The new ES also ups the ante on comfort and luxury. “We strive to capture the Lexus mindset with every vehicle we build. We craft in quality, innovation, and delight for all the senses, for every customer,” Ms. Elkington added.
Lexus team members spent more than 150,000 hours training to build the ES model. That includes sensory training that teaches assemblers, for instance, to feel for an abnormality as minute as a thread of hair.
“After extensive sensory training, our team members rely on sight, sound and touch to know that the craftsmanship of the car is of the highest standard,” said Mike Bridge, Lexus assistant general manager. “A machine can’t make those judgments, and that’s why we take so much time to train before a new model goes into production.”
Bridge said an example of this sensory training can be seen in body welds, where team members are taught to feel gap differences measured in fractions as little as 0.3 millimeters. “This is equal to the thickness of three sheets of paper and can be felt even with gloves on,” he said.
Lexus began production of the ES in Kentucky in 2015 after investing more than $360 million in a new production facility on the Toyota Kentucky campus.
New for 2019
The seventh-generation ES is equipped with a new 8-speed automatic transmission to more efficiently transfers power to the wheels, plus:
- Standard Lexus Safety System+ 2.0.
- First Lexus to offer Apple CarPlay phone functionality.
- Amazon Alexa-enabled with car-to-home and home-to-car commands.
- First-ever F Sport trim adds Adaptive Variable Suspension.
The 2019 Lexus ES 350 will be in dealer showrooms in September. The Lexus ES 350 starts from $39,500 and the F SPORT from $44,035.
Our Terry Box recently reviewed the 2019 Lexus ES hybrid. Check it out below.
Photo Credit: LexusTags: Lexus