The Lexus ES 350 is a sensible and luxurious choice for a sports sedan. With its advanced safety features, impressive fuel economy and great resale value, it’s no wonder the model remains one of the brand’s best-selling vehicles two decades after its launch. However, it does not escape having breakdowns either. Learn about the common failures of the Lexus ES 350 in this article prepared for you!
It has a depreciation rate of 36% after five years. The model’s estimated median cost of ownership is lower compared to other vehicles, standing at $5,500 over its first 10 years of service. The average cost of vehicles in the same segment is around $6,200.
The Lexus ES 350 is a luxury and sports car, which despite that does not escape breakdowns. We invite you to read the common failures of the ES 350.
How good is the Lexus ES 350?
The Lexus ES 350 is given a reliability rating of 4.0 out of 5.0, ranking it fourth out of 31 midsize luxury cars. Annual repair and maintenance costs for this model are typically around $470 , which is $270 less compared to other luxury midsize cars.
ES 350 owners typically have their vehicles serviced 0.6 times a year with a 6% chance of needing a major repair. By comparison, the probability of major repairs on similar cars in its segment is estimated at 12%.
Common failures of the Lexus ES 350
Despite being a reliable luxury saloon, the Lexus ES 350 is no stranger to problems caused by damaged or worn parts. Below are some of the common Lexus ES 350 failures over the years:
1- Oil leaks
Oil leaks have been reported as a common occurrence on many 2007-2016 ES 350s. Drivers have reported that a burst VVT-i oil line can trigger the low engine oil message and engine oil pressure warning lights. If not corrected, total engine failure may result due to lack of oil.
Some owners were able to fix the problem by replacing the damaged oil line. A replacement oil line can cost anywhere from $10 to $100, plus labor costs.
2- Unintentional acceleration
Unintentional acceleration has been one of the common faults with the 2015 Lexus ES 350. Drivers report that their vehicles sometimes jerk forward or backward despite applying the brakes. Unfortunately, some of the affected vehicles were subsequently involved in minor accidents due to this issue.
In most cases, an electronic defect was determined to be the primary cause of the unintended sudden acceleration. This causes the accelerator to expand and the vehicle to accelerate without activating the gas pedal. If you find it difficult to control your vehicle or return it to idle while it is running, have your vehicle inspected by a licensed mechanic immediately.
3- Problems with the infotainment system
Owners of some 2008-2010 and 2014 Lexus ES 350s have reported a turned off infotainment system, preventing them from using their vehicle’s Bluetooth, navigation and radio. Others have also complained about not being able to use the heating control on their ES 350 due to outdated software . These problems can be corrected by visiting your dealer and obtaining the appropriate software update.
4- Control panel that melts
The melting control panel has been a common complaint made by many 2006-2008 ES 350 owners. According to them, the control panel chipped or became sticky and gave off a chemical smell. Due to this issue, a class action lawsuit was filed against Toyota and Lexus in 2017.
According to official reports, the manufacturers of Toyota and Lexus have misled their customers with a warranty program that would charge owners for a known defect. The class action lawsuit also claimed that Toyota did not have enough parts to make the necessary repairs for all affected customers, causing many drivers to spend substantial amounts to replace their blown panels.
A similar lawsuit in 2017 followed the 2014 class action lawsuit against Toyota. Unfortunately, both class action lawsuits have been dismissed.
5- Faults in the evaporator core
Some units of the 2007 Lexus ES 350 have been prone to air conditioning issues. Owners of this model year have complained of an evaporator core leak, while others have noticed white flecks coming out of the air conditioning (A/C) unit due to the faulty part.
Several factors can cause evaporator core failure. Aside from poor manufacturing and normal wear and tear, temperature fluctuations can cause the aluminum core of the evaporator to expand and eventually crack.
A cracked evaporator core can cause the compressor to burn out , resulting in an even more expensive repair job. Replacing the evaporator core on your ES 350 can cost anywhere from $80 to $100, plus labor costs.
6- Broken cylinder head
Some 2007 Lexus ES 350 owners have complained that their check engine light and Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) light come on because of a blown cylinder head.
Loss of coolant, head gasket failure, or restricted coolant flow are common reasons why the cylinder head could fail. It could also warp under extreme temperatures and affect head gasket alignment. Once the cylinder head fails, your vehicle may exhibit symptoms such as engine misfiring, coolant leaks, and white smoke emissions.
Make sure you have your vehicle checked out by a licensed mechanic as soon as possible if you notice the same symptoms. The cost of replacing a damaged cylinder head is typically between $250 and $600, plus labor costs.
Knowing the common faults of the Lexus ES 350 will help you choose a car that suits your needs and check all its features. This will help you take a smarter approach to vehicle maintenance and maximize the life of your car.