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Silky Shark: The 2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT front 3/4 view

The Lexus ES is one of those below-the-radar cars. The brand's entry-level sedan in a time when sedans are somewhat out of favor (at least on the sales chart), it doesn't get a lot of ink, or pixels, or even thought.

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT rear 3/4 view

Until you actually drive one. Close examination, the kind that doesn't get done in traffic, shows that Lexus has put some effort into subtle clues to aggression---the grille that echoes the fabulous LC 500 coupe, the spoiler built into the trunk lid on F SPORT models---and the "L" formed by the emergency flasher/turn signals.

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT

2022 Lexus ES 350 F SPORT engine

Lexus has been spreading its F SPORT variant across its lineup, and now you can get the hybrid Lexus ES 300h in F SPORT trim. That may seem counter-intuitive, since when you say yes to the ES 300h, you give up 77 horsepower compared to the pure-gasoline 3.5-ilter V6 (215 vs 302). And that'll send your 0-60 times below seven seconds. None of the F SPORT models have ever boosted power. They're handling and appearance packages, and that's what the F SPORT delivers here---suspension and tire upgrades, 19-inch alloy wheels, 10-way F SPORT bolstered heated and ventilated front seats, rain sensing wipers, and unique trim pieces.

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT rear seat

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT front seats

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT front seat detail

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT instrument panel

Base price for the 2022 Lexus ES 300h is $45,450. The standard equipment list is so long, I'm just going to send you to Lexus itself for the rundown.

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT steering wheel and gauge cluster

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT center stack

As well-equipped as the ES 300h is, there are extra-cost options, and our test vehicle had several---including, and this is a surprise given how comprehensive active safety features usually are in Lexus vehicles---$565 for a blind spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert and intuitive parking assist with auto braking. This car also had a head up-display, triple-beam LED headlamps, a power rear sunshade, smart access card key, navigation, a power trunklid, premium paint, a heated steering wheel, door edge guards and a trunk mat, all of which brought the total, with $1,075 delivery, processing and handling fee to $52,695.

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT front view

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT side view

2022 Lexus ES 300h F SPORT rear view

Every time I drive the Lexus ES, I'm reminded of how much I like it. And, if I were buying, I'd go for the hybrid (an EPA fuel economy average of 43 city/44 highway is nothing to sneeze at). The added handling benefits of the F SPORT package just make the whole package sweeter.


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