Lexus ES 350 Years To Avoid | 14 Best & Worst Years 2023

Source: Rare HD Wallpapers

When one thinks of superb Japanese engineering and reliability, naturally, the mind goes to Toyota. The Japanese know what they’re doing when it comes to automobiles. The luxury brand Lexus, a branch of Toyota, raises the standards even further by producing very well-built vehicles with no design compromises.

The Lexus ES 350 is a high-end luxury midsize automobile that was introduced to American consumers in 2007. At first glance, it appears to be a cross between a luxury town car and a sportier sedan. Like every premium car, some years of the Lexus ES 350 are best avoided, while others stand out as better and more effective than others.

Lexus ES 350 years to avoid include 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2018, and 2019; they are considered the worst. The best years for Lexus ES 350 include 2013-2015, 2017, 2020-2023. This result was concluded from trustworthy sources such as NHTSA, Edmund, JD Power, and Kelley Blue Book.

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, we’ve got an article on the Best 11 Lexus Models that might be interesting to you.

Lexus ES 350 Years To Avoid

Take a look at the Lexus ES 350 model years to avoid. These are not horrible years overall, but they tend to have low customer satisfaction and bad component performance.

6. Worst Year: 2018 Lexus ES 350 (4.29 Rating)

Source: allcarz

According to carcomplaint, Although the 2007 Lexus ES 350 has the most complaints, the severity of the problems with the 2018 model year makes it the years to avoid in terms of complaints. One of the most typical issues is a sudden, unexpected burst of acceleration. This problem usually occurs at 12,000 miles; the average fixing cost is $33,000.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

5. Worst Year: 2019 Lexus ES 350 (4.06 Rating)

Source: Car and Drive

The 2019 Lexus ES 350 was the debut model of the 7th generation, and according to the manufacturer, it was built to be boldly styled and exceptionally polished. However, the 2019 Lexus ES 350 buyers report issues with the car’s electrical system, engine, and airbags. The fuel system of the car, specifically petrol, is the other most frequent issue. Some owners also face steering issues.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

4. Worst Year: 2012 Lexus ES 350 (4.04 Rating)

Source: The auto channel

2012 Lexus ES 350 is another model to avoid. Airbag issues are the most common, accounting for 76 percent of all complaints. A vehicle’s latches, locks, and linkages account for the second most frequent issue. The system that regulates the speed of vehicles is flawed as well.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

3. Worst Year: 2011 Lexus ES 350 (4.00 Rating)

Source: mashin3

One of the most serious issues with the 2011 Lexus ES 350 is the airbag inflators malfunctioning during deployment. Some buyers of the 2011 ES 350 have voiced concerns about the bad quality of the leather used for the seats and armrests and the bad exterior paint.

NHTSA has recorded one incident of a Lexus ES 350’s engine unexpectedly losing power and stalling. The dead microphone is also another cause of concern.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

2. Worst Year: 2008 Lexus ES 350 (3.53 Rating)

Source: IIHS

On, the 2008 Lexus ES 350 owners reported 364 issues with their cars. In addition to melting dashboards, the 2008 model year ES 350 also suffered from failing steering wheel material and an oil-leaking engine.

The 2008 model is the worst ES 350 Lexus produced because of reports of blown engine heads, which increased repair costs significantly. Unfortunately, it also came with malfunctioning electronics that accidentally allowed the sunroof and windows to open on their own.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. Worst Year: 2007 Lexus ES 350 (3.20 Rating)

Source: Moment Car

It should be made clear that the 2007 Lexus ES 350 is a poor premium car. As it has the most number of complaints, we recommend staying away from this specific model year. Given that it was also the debut model, this is hardly surprising.

The most common complaints were related to the recalled Takata airbags, which were notorious for exploding and spraying metal shrapnel all over the inside. The NHTSA received several reports from ES 350 owners whose vehicles suddenly accelerated for no apparent reason.

The dashboard melting on 2007 ES 350s is another common complaint. When the dashboard is melted, it turns glossy, reflecting the sun directly into the driver’s eyes.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Lexus ES 350 Years To Buy As Used

Now that we’ve seen some of the worst models of the Lexus ES 350 let’s look at some of the best.

8. Best Year: 2020 Lexus ES 350 (4.34 Rating)

Source: CNET

The Lexus ES is known for being a rock-solid vehicle, and the 2020 model year is no exception. The 2020 Lexus ES, like the others on this list, has received generally positive feedback from its owners. In addition to its excellent efficiency, the NHTSA issued only one recall.

The 2020 Lexus ES scored somewhat higher than average, making it preferable to other Lexus ES models. The 2020 ES has been rated 4.9 out of 5 stars by, and 98% of owners would recommend it.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

7. Best Year: 2014 Lexus ES 350 (4.39 Rating)

Source: Carsguide

The 2014 Lexus ES 350 is already nine years old but still manages to wow. The ES 350 has all the luxury and reliability you’d expect from a Lexus at a price tag of less than $20,000. The 2014 Lexus ES 350 is an excellent starting point if you’re in the market for a used luxury car. J.D. Power gave the 2014 Lexus ES 350 an incredible Quality & Reliability score of 90/100.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

6. Best Year: 2015 Lexus ES 350 (4.42 Rating)

Source: Car and Drive

The 2015 Lexus ES 350 is still the gold standard for quiet, comfortable driving. However, the gap between it and the competition has shrunk over time, so it is no longer the only option for a moderately priced luxury car. Overall, it is one of the best ES 350 to own as a used car.

The 2015 ES has a perfect reliability rating of five out of five from J.D. Power. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has awarded the 2015 Lexus ES 350 the maximum attainable score of five stars for its safety. The 2015 Lexus ES 350 is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 268 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

5. Best Year: 2013 Lexus ES 350 (4.45 Rating)

Source: Autoblog

The 6th generation began with the 2013 ES 350, which had significant modifications and a new look. Both auto critics and owners gave it high marks, and few problems have been reported.

An efficient 3.5-liter V6 engine (268 hp) is combined with a smooth 6-speed automated transmission. The EPA estimates a total of 24 MPG, 21 MPG in the city, and 31 MPG on the highway for owners of these vehicles.

Reviewers praised this vehicle for its quiet cabin and polished acceleration. Anti-lock brakes, several airbags in strategic locations, and stability control are all included as standard safety features.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

4. Best Year: 2017 Lexus ES 350 (4.47 Rating)

Source: otomaniac

If you’re looking for a reliable entry-level luxury sedan, the 2017 ES 350 is a great option to explore. In addition to many safety features that come as standard, the ride quality is excellent. It is famous for its sleek and modern exterior design, roomy interior, and extensive list of standard and available features.

This vehicle’s predicted reliability rating from J.D. Power is also 5 stars. According to data compiled by, the vehicle is highly recommended by drivers and has a reliability rating of 4.8 out of 5. It is also ranked as #1 in Compact Premium Cars.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

3. Best Year: 2021 Lexus ES 350 (4.57 Rating)

Source: Car and Drive

This model year has been lauded by owners for its reasonable price, excellent performance, low levels of road noise, and high-quality construction. The NHTSA database for the 2021 ES 350 shows almost no complaints, and owners have given high marks for both safety and reliability.

The 2021 Lexus ES 350 successfully ranked as #1 in Midsize Premium Car, which testifies to its position as one of the Top 3 Best Lexus ES 350 models. There are four available trims, namely “Base,” “Luxury,” “F Sport,” and “Ultra Luxury.”

This vehicle also achieves respectable fuel economy. The EPA estimates a combined 26 MPG, 22 MPG in the city and 32 MPG on the highway for this vehicle.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

2. Best Year: 2022 Lexus ES 350 (4.62 Rating)

Source: Lexus

The ES 350 has been redesigned for 2022 with improved technology, including simpler touchscreens and more daring wheel options. It has a luxurious cabin, smooth performance, and a reasonable price. Buyers can choose between four different trim levels (the “Base,” “F Sport,” “Luxury,” and “Ultra Luxury”).

The average price of a used automobile with low mileage is roughly $40,000. In addition, its engine can produce up to 302 HP and 267 lb-ft of torque at 4,700 RPM.

The outcomes of the crash tests were equally interesting. The NHTSA granted this vehicle a perfect score of five stars. Lexus Safety System+ 2.5, Lexus Enform Safety Connect, and Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert are all top-tier safety features. Because of all of these reasons, it’s no wonder it is again ranked as
#1 in Midsize Premium Cars.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. Best Year: 2023 Lexus ES 350 (4.62 Rating)

Source: Edmunds

The 2023 Lexus ES 350 is the best in the ES 350 lineup because it has never been recalled and has been named the #1 Best Luxury Hybrid Car by Kelley Blue Book and the #1 Midsize Premium Car by J.D. Power.

RepairPal gave the Lexus ES 350 an overall reliability rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Excellent. The 2023 Lexus ES 350 FWD is powered by a 3.5L V6 Gas engine that provides 302 horsepower and 267 lb/ft of torque. It has Front-wheel drive and an 8-speed automatic.

The 2023 Lexus ES 350 is available in five different trims, and its base price starts at $43,090.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Common Lexus ES 350 Problems

We’ve compiled a list of typical issues with Lexus ES 350 vehicles. It’s important to remember that these issues are more noticeable in some models.

Dashboard Meltdown

Some Lexus ES cars, notably those manufactured in 2008, are prone to having their dashboards melt. The dashboard plastic usually melts in the sun. This can lead to the production of volatile organic compounds, which are dangerous for anyone in the car.

Cylinder Head Explodes

Cylinder head failure is another common problem with Lexus ES vehicles. A blown head gasket, leaking coolant, or excessive heat could all make the gasket shift out of place.

Oil leakage

Most Lexus ES vehicles have an oil leak as a regular issue. As a result, the engine’s performance suffers, and the cost to fix it rises. In the worst case, an engine could completely stop working due to a lack of oil.

Unintentional Acceleration

Unwanted acceleration is a serious problem that plagues many ES models. An electronic glitch causes this by allowing the throttle to open and the vehicle to speed up even if the driver does not press the pedal.


1. Is Lexus ES 350 A Good Car?

The Lexus ES 350 has an excellent reliability rating from RepairPal, earning 4.5 out of 5 stars. Overall, there are many positives to be found in this vehicle, and it is a good car to purchase.

2. How Long Will Lexus ES 350 Last?

The ES 350 has a stated lifetime of up to 300,000 kilometers. However, repair frequencies and other factors suggest that the ES 350 should live for somewhere between 200,000 and 250,000 kilometers.

3. Is It Expensive To Maintain Lexus ES 350?

Over 10 years of ownership, the Lexus ES 350 will cost roughly $5,488 in repair and maintenance bills. This is $6,473 cheaper than the average for luxury sedans. During that time, an ES 350 also has a 15 percent risk of requiring a significant repair.


The Lexus ES sedan is one of the brand’s best-sellers and is a hybrid between a luxury and a sports car, at least in terms of its design in recent years. While it is highly liked among car enthusiasts, only a few of its years are not worth your investment, and you already see why.

After thorough research, we’ve come to the conclusion that due to advanced technology and companies’ experience, the latest models are better to purchase, while the initial models must be avoided. However, it is generally a good car. If you buy any of its models, you’ll not regret it.

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