Go

2008 Lexus ES

Overview
Share this page
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2008 Lexus ES Review

By

Completely redesigned for 2007, the fifth-generation ES 350 grew in size and status, gaining more elegant styling, a larger, more powerful engine and better overall packaging. Although this front-drive four-door still shares basic platform engineering with Toyota's best-selling Camry, the midsize ES 350, on top of its premium Lexus pedigree, offers numerous additional refinements to complement its superior ride comfort and cabin isolation. While these comprehensive upgrades have helped maintain the ES 350's position as the volume leader of the Lexus sedans, the largely unchanged 2008 version continues to face tough challenges from a formidable field of international competitors, including the Acura TL, Audi A6, Cadillac CTS, Infiniti G35, Lincoln MKZ and Saab 9-5.

You'll Like This Car If...

The ES 350 does an admirable job of defining the term "affordable luxury" as it applies to a premium midsize sedan. Offering a sophisticated driving environment, innovative design features, impressive build quality and well-proven Lexus dependability, its appeal remains strong to buyers seeking their own slice of the automotive good life.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Some buyers may find that even with its more evocative sheetmetal, the ES 350's appearance still remains a bit too conservative for their tastes. Those who demand a rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive configuration should consider alternatives like the Audi A6, BMW 528i, Cadillac CTS, Infiniti G35 or the new Mercedes-Benz C350.

What's New for 2008

Carrying over virtually intact from 2007, the ES 350 gets subtly revised exterior mirror housings and adds rear-seat reading lamps.

Driving the ES
Driving Impressions

Smooth, quiet and impressively quick, the ES 350 excels in effortless cruising, across town or cross country, boasting sufficient power and responsiveness to master virtually any kind of traffic challenge....

... Despite a comfort-tuned chassis, the ES 350 can still negotiate twisty roads with a fair bit of enthusiasm---accompanied by some expected body roll as you push more intensely into corners. The stability control system helps prevent surprises for those who exceed the grip limits of the ES 350's tires, and the four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes are quite capable, offering both Brake Assist (BA) and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) to optimize their stopping potential under nearly any type of road conditions.

SmartAccess Keyless Remote Entry/Starting
A standard that grows more appealing with each use, the SmartAccess system lets you lock and unlock the ES 350's doors or start and stop the engine with a simple push of a button -- while the key fob remains tucked away in your pocket or purse.

Optional Heated and Ventilated Front Seats
Available in conjunction with the Premium Plus Package, these leather-wrapped 10-way power seats add all-season appeal by providing three levels of warming when it's cold outside or three stages of cooling air flow to help beat the summer heat.

2008 Lexus ES Details
Interior

Subtle but meaningful details add even more appeal to the cabin of the latest-generation ES Series. In front are supportive 10-way power seats, and the 60/40 split-folding rear bench seat has the head and leg room to accommodate two average adults or three kids and makes the 14.7 cubic feet of trunk capacity even more usable. Real walnut or maple accents add richness to an already well-appointed interior, whether paired with standard cloth or optional leather. There's fundamental user-friendliness in the basic control and switchgear layouts, although the white-on-black electroluminescent main gauges are better in bright-sun legibility than the center stack displays for the radio, air conditioning or available navigation system.

Exterior
2008 Lexus ES photo

The ES 350's bodywork embraces the division's L-Finesse styling cues to impart the kind of bolder, more contemporary flair that many found lacking in its predecessor. Rising front quarters team with a flowing roofline, short deck and pronounced shoulder ridges to give this Lexus four-door a mild wedge shape that splits the visual difference between the edgier IS and the more conservative LS sedans. Despite its sleek profile, the ES 350's ample greenhouse still provides the driver with relatively good sightlines in all directions. Accenting the look are projector-beam headlights, wraparound rear lamps and a choice of 215/55 all-season or performance "summer" tires on 17-inch alloy wheels.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Although offered in just one trim level, the ES 350's aspirational character is well reinforced by a full range of creature comforts. Heading the list are power assists for the windows, locks and mirrors, 10-way power seats, tilt and telescoping steering column and power moonroof. Other highlights include SmartAccess keyless entry with push-button starting, cruise control, a driver information system and premium eight-speaker audio package with an in-dash six-disc CD-changer, MP3/iPod capability and speed-compensating Automatic Sound Leveler circuitry. Key vehicle dynamic assists include stability and traction controls plus enhanced four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes. The ES 350 also is fitted with front, front-side, side-curtain and driver and passenger knee airbags.

Optional Equipment

Personalizing the ES 350 can be done with both "stackable" packages and individual extras. The Premium Package includes leather upholstery and various supplemental memory functions, while the Premium Plus Package adds even more comfort touches, including heated and ventilated front seats and a voice-command GPS navigation system. One step up, the Ultra Luxury Package brings the Panorama glass roof, corner-following bi-xenon headlamps, rear-seat side airbags and numerous other creature comforts. Stand-alone options include the navigation system -- with or without a 14-speaker Mark Levinson premium Surround Sound audio setup -- Pre-Collision system with distance-sensing Dynamic Radar Cruise Control and XM Satellite Radio.

Under the Hood

Motivation for the ES 350 comes from an all-aluminum 3.5-liter V6 that turns out 272 horsepower and 254 pound-feet of torque. Fitted with continuously variable valve timing that helps optimize its low and mid-range response, and backed by a computer-controlled six-speed automatic transmission, this free-revving engine hustles the ES 350 from zero to 60 miles per hour in about seven seconds. It also generates EPA fuel economy numbers of 19 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway, figures that are slightly better than most of its current competitors. As a further enticement, the well-proven reliability of this potent powertrain is reinforced by a supplemental six-year/70,000-mile warranty.

3.5-liter V6
272 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
254 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/27

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2008 Lexus ES Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.1
Out of 10

Based on 233 Ratings for the 2007 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.1/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    9.4/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    9.3/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

Excellent Auto

By on Monday, July 25, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 160,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great build quality."

Cons: "Sun roof noise."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Third Lexus. Will buy another. Amazing engine, generous power and great fuel economy. Needs more sound isolation. Stereo adequate & pairs easily with phones. 160,000 miles now with NO problems. Seats very comfortable and lasting quality. Shows no signs of wear. Would happily sell to a family member. Can see why ES350 is a top seller."

I don't know why everyone does not own this car

By on Wednesday, July 6, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 75,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Quiet, comfortable, fast, handles well, stereo!"

Cons: "It won't last forever...."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Since 1993, I have owned only Toyota and Lexus. In 2011, I decided to buy another car and thought I might try something other than a Lexus. I drove BMW, Mercedes, Infiniti, etc. but not one of them matched the overall comforts, luxuries, performance, mileage, reliabilty etc of the Lexus ES 350. This car has plenty of pick up and when you ask it to go, it goes! The ride is quiet and refined. I tend to drive my car like a performance car and there is nothing wrong with this car's handling if you know what you are doing. I love driving it in the mountains in manual shift mode. The sound system is all you could ask for. The car has every luxury and convenience I could want. The lights that swivel as you drive around curves at night are a lifesaver. The car also gets pretty good mileage on the highway. I average between 28-33 mpg, depending on my speed and driving. I personally think this is one of the very best cars on the road today. My friends that drive Mercedes and BMW are always complaining about something breaking down. Well, since 1993, I can't recall a single major repair, or even many minor ones, on my Toyota and Lexus vehicles. I know it would be boring if everyone drove one...but it would make total sense!!"

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Own 2 Lexus

By on Tuesday, June 28, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 130,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "comfort, mileage, safety,all the amenities"

Cons: "Visibility is fair"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Great car with only minor negative is visibility. A huge plus is safety. I was broadsided by pickup at 50 mph. Both me and my wife walked away with minor injuries. I am looking for the same car,newer Past 80k, no repairs"

This was and is the best driving car.

By on Saturday, June 18, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 69,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Extremely quiet ride."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is a non-smoking car that has never been back to the dealer for anything. After almost 70,000 miles still gets about 30 MPG. Smooth and quiet ride."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

First Lexus ...very very impressed

By on Wednesday, June 8, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 51,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Comfortable, quiet, very reesponsive"

Cons: "Sound system is good but could be better"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I've owned 8 Toyotas...economy models, SUVs, Luxury( Avalon) and a Truck( Tundra). Reliability is what I seek and Toyota always delivers. Lexus is no different offering luxury on top of reliability . Also great performance in fuel economy ( 27+ in city 30+ on highway) and acceleration far beyond my needs . On top of all this, residual value is excellent making resale easy with great return on investment. I am seeking a second car and Lexus will be my first choice"

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Best car for comfort, safety and reliability.

By on Monday, May 9, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 66,900

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "size, style, comfort, good pick-up, ample trunk"

Cons: "newer models offer more with safety features"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I have thoroughly enjoyed this car. It is a pleasure to take on the open road, handles nicely, not a sport sedan. The passengers always have ample room and the trunk is spacious. The styling is timeless, always looks good. Like the silver color, shows little dirt."

4 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Share this page
Advertisement
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

Advertisement