For Lexus South Africa, 2020 has been a year of running updates and derivative additions; the ES executive sedan is the latest range to benefit from a safety equipment upgrade.
In April, the Japanese premium marque's local subsidiary rolled out minor improvements to the NX, RC, LS and outgoing IS. A couple of months thereafter, a new entry-level hybrid derivative joined the UX premium crossover range, the LC 500 coupe was updated with new colours, improved infotainment and updates to its dynamic handling systems and, in November, the LX, RX and NX crossovers/SUV also received running updates.
However, the very first update of the year for Lexus pertained to the ES range, which gained a lower-spec 300h EX hybrid derivative, which slotted in between the petrol-engined 250 EX and the top-of-the-range 300h SE hybrid. ICYMI: Read a review of the ES 300h SE.
Low-speed collision avoidance
Now, to close off an extraordinary year, Lexus has rung the changes with its executive sedan again. The principal update is that the Japanese premium marque has introduced Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS) and Rear Cross Traffic Alert + Brake (RCTA-B) throughout the range. The ICS function integrates the functionality of the alert-by-camera function (RCTA) and automatic brake-by-sonar function (RCTA-B), the brand says.
This technology utilises front- and rear-mounted sensors to detect objects ahead and behind the ES (including those approaching from the rear) at up to 15 kph. It can warn the driver of imminent parking or pedestrian collisions and apply braking (when reversing) if a driver fails to provide adequate pedal input in response to the detection and onboard warning.
To recap, the flagship ES 300h SE also features all-speed Radar Active Cruise Control (RACC), a Pre-Collision Safety system (PCS) with pedestrian detection, Lane Tracing Assist (LTA), a panoramic-view monitor and reverse-view camera, 10 airbags, LED low-beam headlamps with automatic high beam (AHB) activation, as well a tyre-pressure warning system.
Meanwhile, a Blind-Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, which was previously exclusive to the SE grade, is now standard on the more affordable ES 250 EX and ES 300h EX derivatives.
Minor interior trim updates
In addition to the technological updates, the ES’ interior now features satin-plated finish on the electric window switches and, in pursuit of better ergonomics, the frequently-used “OK” and “Cancel” buttons on the multifunction steering have been raised slightly (by 0.8 mm).
Furthermore, a cut-out is provided for small-item storage in the centre console, the Aux/USB port lid now opens vertically and can stay open so that the driver/front passenger can easily connect to or disconnect from the ports, plus the audio switch adopts a metal-look finish.
Lexus ES prices in South Africa (Dec 2020)
All derivatives in the ES range come standard with a 7-year/105 000 km warranty and maintenance plan. Services are scheduled at every 15 000 km, or alternatively, once a year.
|ES 250 EX||R663 000|
|ES 300h EX||R799 600|
|ES 200h SE||R931 400|