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2014 Lexus ES 350 Preview

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Pros: The Lexus lineup is undergoing a rejuvenation, and that includes the Lexus ES. Styling has been revised so as to make the car look much sleeker and more organic than in years past. The interior has benefited from significant upgrades, too, not to mention extra rear-seat legroom. On the road, this Lexus remains super-smooth and reliable.

Cons: All is not roses and sunshine with the ES 350. The mouse-like Remote Touch controller is hardly what I'd call ''user-friendly'' -- why not a conventional touchscreen instead? Also, beware of pricey options.

2014 Lexus ES 350 Price: Speaking of which, a single trim level appears on the ES 350 menu, and it starts at $39,750. However, buyers can select one of four different packages including Premium ($2,000), Leather & Navigation ($4,600), Technology ($12,100), and Touring ($8,900).

Lexus ES 350
Photo: Lexus

2014 Lexus ES 350 Fuel Economy: Despite weighing 1,610 kilos, the Lexus ES 350 boasts middle-of-the-pack ratings of 9.9L/100km in the city and 6.4L/100km on the highway.

Improvements and Changes: Other than a few cosmetic updates, there's nothing new outside or inside the Lexus ES 350 for 2014.

2014 Lexus ES 350 Powertrain: The smooth 3.5L DOHC V6 engine under the hood of the ES 350 produces 268 horsepower through a 6-speed automatic transmission. Unlike the larger GS, all-wheel drive is not an option.

Cargo Capacity: The accommodating trunk of the 2014 Lexus ES 350 can swallow 430 litres worth of luggage for your long trips.

Safety: Standard features include stability and traction control, disc brakes with ABS, brake assist and electronic brake force distribution, as well as smart stop technology, which automatically cuts engine power and allows the brakes to take precedence over the accelerator when both pedals are pressed at the same time. Let's not forget the 10 airbags and available technologies like adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert.

Comparing the 2014 Lexus ES 350: Similar luxury sedans worth checking out include the Volvo S60, Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, Cadillac ATS, Infiniti Q50, Lincoln MKZ, and Mercedes-Benz C-Class.