Lexus ES 350 Reliability And Common Problems

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The Lexus ES series are mid-sized executive cars. First launched in 1989, the luxurious series have had a long stay in the automobile market. One of the cars in this luxurious series is the Lexus ES 350. If you want a luxurious sporty sedan, Lexus ES 350 is your go-to car. Lexus ES 350 is sleek and beautiful. Its bulky look is quite deceptive because this car is a beast on the road.

Another wonderful thing about this car is its resale value. According to, the LEXUS ES 350 only depreciates by 36% after five years. It also has a low maintenance cost.

Is The Lexus Es 350 A Reliable Car?

According to RepairPal, the Lexus ES 350 has a 4 out 5 rating in terms of reliability. Of 31 mid-sized luxurious cars, the car ranked fourth. The annual repair cost for this model is $470. Most mid-sized luxurious cars gobble up over $700 in maintenance cost.

According to a review, ES 350 owners typically bring in their vehicles for repairs 0.6 times a year with a 6% probability of it needing a major fix. In comparison, the probability of major repairs in similar cars in its segment is estimated at 12%.  

Some of the most reliable Lexus ES 350 models are 2012, 2017, 2018, and 2019 models.

Common Lexus Es 350 Problems

Oil Leaks

Oil leaks were reported as a common occurrence, especially for 2007-2016 ES 350 models. According to reports by drivers, the low engine oil message and engine oil warning lights were triggered because the VVT-I oil burst. Fixing the problem costs between $10 (5,000NGN) and $100( 50,000 NGN) plus labour costs.

Unintended Accelerations

This is a common issue in the 2015 ES 350 models. Drivers report that their vehicles would sometimes jolt forward or backwards despite activating the brakes. Some of the cars with this complaint were unfortunately involved in minor accidents. Here is a real live comment from a driver that experienced this problem first hand:

On Friday, January 18, 2019, at 6:50 a.m. I attempted to back up my 2015 Lexus ES 350 from my home’s driveway. I had my foot on the brake pedal and shifted the car into reverse. The car jolted back and rapidly accelerated with my foot still on the brake pedal. Rather than crash into two cars parked across the street from my driveway, I attempted to shift the car into Park to stop the car. While attempting to shift into Park, the car jolted and accelerated forward. I continued to keep my foot on the brake pedal; however, the car continued accelerating forward. To avoid smashing into my garage doors, I veered the car toward the left. The car crashed into a stucco column, and it continued on until it finally came to a halt when it hit a PVC gate and the cement pole covered in PVC that supported the PVC gate. The gate was completely demolished and rested atop the car.

While fortunately no one was killed, I had no intention of driving this vehicle. The vehicle was completely out of control. 

Infotainment System Issues

2008, 2009, 2010, and 2014 Lexus ES 350s have a major issue with basic luxury installation in them. Some drivers were unable to use their Bluetooth, GPS navigation, and radio. Other complaints have been around malfunctioning of heat control. These problems were attributed to outdated software. They can be fixed by a simple software upgrade.

Melting Dashboard

This is a common complaint filed by 2006-2008 ES 350 owners. According to reports, dashboards get sticky and release a chemical odour. These complaints led to different lawsuits that were dismissed. 

Here are a few complaints we found on the web:

The chemical smell from the melting dashboard makes me feel nauseous.

– Fang S., Princeton Junction, US

Poor quality material, they should be responsible. The dashboard is melting nothing more.

– Revell W., Desoto, US

Faulty Evaporator Core

Some Lexus ES 350 models are prone to air conditioner problems. Owners have complained about a leaking evaporator core. Other owners observed white specks coming out of the air condition. This is likely due to a faulty part and other factors such as

  • Poor manufacturing
  • Wear and tear
  • Cracking of evaporator’s aluminum core due to temperature fluctuations

Blown Cylinder Head

A blown cylinder head triggers the illuminated and vehicle stability control warnings. Some owners of the 2007 Lexus ES 350 complained of this problem. A blown cylinder head may be due to 

  • Coolant loss
  • Head gasket failures
  • Restricted coolant flow

Once the cylinder head fails, your vehicle may exhibit symptoms such as engine misfires, coolant leaks, and white smoke emissions