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Average User Score
4.5 ⁄ 5 stars
Based on 4 reviews
1998 Lexus ES 300 Overview
Overall User Score
Based on 4 reviews
In 1998 Lexus continued to add safety and comfort features to the new ES sedans. Now in its third generation, the ES 300 was fitted side-impact airbags and reduced force front airbags. An engine immobilizer and new antitheft system were also included, and a premium Nakamichi sound system was optional. The prior year had been a pivotal time for the ES series, as a redesign had successfully dissolved more ties between the Lexus and the Camry. While the ES still utilized the Camry platform, the gap had been widened significantly with respect to appearance.
The ES 300 featured a revamped engine which had raised horsepower to 200. The 3.0 liter V-6 would be replaced again in 1999 with additional potency and new technology. For now, the ES sped from 0 to 60 in 8.2 seconds and was described as quite responsive through the higher gears as well. Powerful brakes returned the ES from 60 mph to a stop in 138 feet. The light weight and fairly modest engine contributed to economical fuel consumption, at 19/26 mpg.
Over time, the ES 300 had been dubbed the entry-level Lexus as more expensive models like the GS 300 and LX 450 SUV had appeared. However, significant strides had been made to pull the ES closer to the reputation of its Lexus kin. The redesigned exterior gave the ES 300 a sharper and more dynamic look, and interior refinements established more similarities between the ES and the LS. However, drivers still found the list of standard features a little short for a luxury car. In 1998, a CD player was still considered an option.
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