The next-generation Lexus ES will debut at the Beijing auto show this month, which is fitting. China knows luxury and appears to be preserving high-end sedans while Americans continue to turn their backs on them in droves.
Domestic sales of the ES have reflected that. But Lexus is launching a sleeker, sexier, and more curvaceous version that will eventually arrive in dealerships across North America. We expect a bump in deliveries, not only because it looks better but because the GS won’t be around for much longerÂ â€” and middle-aged oral surgeons will need something to bestow onto their children as a first car.Â
So far, Toyota is only comfortable with giving us a teaser image and video. But it’s enough to have us feeling good about the overall design, including the gargantuan grille. At a glance it looks very much like the LS, just less rounded and flowing.
From a hardware perspective, there’s no reason to think the seventh-generation ES won’t follow in the sixth’s footsteps and remain closely related to the Toyota Avalon.Â We’re willing to bet it’ll offer an identical hybrid setup using anÂ 2.5-liter inline four and probably a tuned-up version of the Avalon’s 3.5-liter V6 mated to an 8-speed automatic. But we’re optimistic Lexus will offer something above and beyond the standard fare to service the interests of GS F buyers.
However, you shouldn’t expect the new ES adopting characteristics from the GS. Considering the platform it will be using, a rear-drive variant with a 5.0-liter V8 is out of the question. Base models will still be front-wheel drive but we suppose the automaker could eventually implement all-wheel driveÂ â€” most likely on the hybrid.