Lexus Australia has confirmed it will offer both the ES300h and ES350 variants when it brings the mid-sized luxury model back to Australia in the fourth quarter of 2013.
Lexus announced its plan to reintroduce the ES in February, endingthe front-wheel-drive sedan’s eight-year absence from our market.
The two confirmed models are the 3.5-litre V6-powered ES350 and the 2.5-litre four-cylinder ES300h hybrid.The ES350 gets 200kW of power and 336Nm of torque, while the ES250h produces around 150kW of power.
Lexus Australia’s chief executive, Sean Hanley, saidthe local division had been fighting for the return of the ES for years on the back on consistent customer demand for the mid-sized model.
The ES will sit between the rear-wheel-drive IS and GS models – technically in an unchallenged segment by the German trio or Japanese rival Infiniti.
Hanley dismissed concerns that the new ES range might be seen as nothing more than a luxury version of the Toyota Aurion.
“It’s a different car with different styling. A more dynamic looking car with a different platform. It’s not based on an Aurion platform,” Hanley said.
The conservative styling of the ES is expected to appeal to some of the brand’s traditional buyers who are confronted by the more aggressive styling of the new IS and GS.