2022 Lexus ES 300h is a sharp-looking, smooth-riding, roomy luxury hybrid Featured

Posted On Friday, 04 February 2022 21:59 Written by
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The 2022 Lexus ES 300h is a roomy, high-quality luxury hybrid. The 2022 Lexus ES 300h is a roomy, high-quality luxury hybrid. Photo courtesy of Lexus

WIth so many automakers making commitments to going fully electric in the years to come, one question is what will happen to hybrids once all the dust settles. WIll they still have a place in the automotive landscape?

I believe they will, though it will be a more limited role and only the best ones will survive and thrive. Not everyone will want to go electric in the short-term, so having quality hybrid options is a nice middle ground for this group.

On the luxury end of the world of sedans, one gem that is likely to continue shining is the Lexus ES 300h, a sedan that is a rare combination of roominess, strong fuel economy and an enjoyable ride. It has few true competitors as a midsize hybrid sedan, and is priced well in comparison to the few hybrids it does battle (Audi A6, Benz E-Class).

Changes for 2022 include the addition of the F Sport trim level to the hybrid ES, improved safety features, updates to the tech setup, and slight design changs.

I recently spent a week in the ES hybrid, an F Sport version to be exact, and I’m back with a full report.


Getting right to it, it’s no question that Lexus' exterior design, particularly the grille, is bold and in your face — much moreso than its luxury rivals. This is a divisive look among luxury consumers, and will turn away some potential buyers, but I really like the appeal of it and so do many others. You will definitely be noticed in this ride, and they’ll know it’s a Lexus.

There are some slight updates to the exterior for 2022, including changes to the head lamps, grille and wheels.

Other exterior features include Bi-LED headlamps with cornering; LED taillamps, power folding outside mirrors with integrated turn signals, and a power moonroof.

If you choose the F Sport version, you’ll get updated exterior styling — including a dark mesh grille, black-painted 19-inch wheels and a lip spoiler. 

The front brake calipers feature 12-inch ventilated discs, while the rear brake calipers have 11.1-inch solid discs.

Moving inside the ES 300h, the interior is more roomy than anything else you will get in this class of luxury hybrid. Seating is very comfortable for all five passengers, and materials used are high-end throughout the vehicle. You will want to spend time in this inviting ride.

Dials and controls on the vehicle are well-designed for the most part and easy to access and use.

You get dual-zone automatic climate control, quality NuLuxe (leather alternative) interior trim, heated steering wheel, 10-way power adjustable seats, rain-sensing wipers and a wireless phone charger.

In the F Sport trim, there are F Sport bolstered heated and ventilated front seats; Hadori aluminum trim, aluminum pedals and black headliner, plus performance-inspired instrumentation. 

One downside is that the rear seats don’t fold down to boost cargo space, so limited cargo space may be an issue.


The 2022 Lexus ES 300h F Sport is powered by a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder hybrid engine, which puts out 215 horsepower and is a Certified Super Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle, which means it produces 90 percent fewer emissions than the average gas-powered vehicle.

The F Sport trim level that I tested is new to the hybrid ES for 2022. The ES 300h is a front-wheel-drive vehicle and features an Electronic CVT transmission.

A four-wheel independent suspension is offered on the ES hybrid, and my test vehicle featured paddle shifters for manual shifting, F SPORT suspension tuning and front and rear performance dampers.

Zero to 60 time was just over 7 seconds, which isn’t fantastic, but better than some other hybrids. It’s definitely not sluggish, even if it’s not the fastest thing on the road. A Drive Mode selector lets you choose between Sport, Normal and Eco options.

While slightly less sporty overall than some of its more expensive rivals, the Lexus ES 300h holds its own very well on the freeway and even on regular roads in terms of drive quality and get-up-and-go.

You'll get moving without any trouble, and it's excellent in traffic. The ride is quiet and smooth, yet powerful enough for most people at the same time. Its handling and braking are also very strong. There should be no complaints unless you are looking for a pure driving enthusiast ride, and that’s going to be more pricey.


Previous versions of the Lexus infotainment system had been heavily criticized for relying solely on a mouse-like touchpad that was not very easy to use. It’s the one area of their lineup that I’ve most criticized in the past.

Thankfully they are starting to listen and switching things up. This time around, things are a bit better, with a touchscreen enabled to improve the overall experience.

Between the newly accessible touchscreen (in either 8-inch or 12.3-inch varieties) and effective voice commands, controlling music, navigation and phone calls is very easy in the Lexus ES. Still, a small touchpad still remains as a control option in the center console. I avoided it almost completely because it was too touchy and unreliable, and I would recommend that in the future this part of the setup is removed and replaced with a better controller option.

The touchscreen controls for audio controls and for climate are also very easy to access and adjust, and the excellent climate system heats up quickly in the Winter. Using Bluetooth to connect your phone to the vehicle is a breeze. Both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility come with the vehicle for phone mirroring.

For music lovers, a 10-speaker system is standard, and you can update to a Mark Levinson audio package with 17 speakers and boasting of 1,800 watts and Surround Sound. Three months of satellite radio is included free.

Navigation is an option and works extremely well, getting you where you need to go and adapting as needed due to changing road conditions and closures.

Moving on to safety, the ES, like Lexus’ overall lineup, remains one of the safest vehicles you can buy. 

You get a high-quality rearview camera and backup monitor, along with Adaptive Cruise Control. Of note: The adaptive cruise control can automatically increase speed before executing a lane change.

The impressive Lexus Safety System+ 2.5 is standard, and includes features such as: Pre-collision system with pedestrian and cyclist detection; Lane departure alert with steering assist; Lane tracing assist; Intelligent high beams; and Road sign assist.

Other safety features on the ES include:
— Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert
— Lane Departure Warning
— Intuitive Parking Assist with Auto-Braking
— Post-Collision safety system
— Location-specific TIre Pressure Monitoring System
— Emergency Braking Assist
— An optional 10.2-inch head-up display


The official fuel mileage numbers on the 2022 Lexus ES 300h are 43 city/44 highway’44 combined. With a 13.2 gallon tank, that will give you well over 500 miles a tank. These are numbers you won’t find on any other hybrid in this segment, and the vehicle is actually enjoyable to drive on top of the strong fuel mileage, so Lexus has pulled off quite a feat here.


The 2022 Lexus ES 300h F Sport starts at $45,450, while the base model is under $43K. On the higher end, the ES hybrid can reach up to $52,000 if you choose the Ultra Luxury trim level, with the Luxury trim coming in around $48K.

These are not small numbers, but considering the size of this vehicle, you’re going to spend more if you opt for most of equivalents from the other luxury brands in Europe and Asia. So this is actually a welcoming price range.

Warranty numbers are decent, with a 4-year/50,000 mile basic warranty, a 6-year/70,000 mile drivetrain warranty, an 8-year/100,000 mile hybrid component warranty, and 4 years of roadside assistance — better coverage than most luxury competitors.

You also need to take into account Lexus’ reputation as a long-lasting, reliable brand, making the already attractive price even more attractive. Not to mention the fierce loyalty of many Lexus buyers.


Toyota, and by extension Lexus, are arguably the industry experts on hybrids with 25 years of experience.

The 2022 Lexus ES 300h gives you plenty of room, great fuel efficiency without going full-electric, a bold and luxurious design inside and out, and a relatively affordable price for everything you get.

All in all, it’s a solid hybrid offering for luxury buyers to consider.


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Matt Myftiu can be found on Twitter @MattMyftiu


Additional Info

  • Vehicle: 2022 Lexus ES 300h F Sport
  • Price as tested: Starts at $45,450
  • Best feature: Roomy, high-class, strong fuel economy
  • Rating: 4 out of five stars 
  • Who will want this vehicle?: Luxury sedan buyers seeking a quality, high fuel mileage ride but not wanting to go fully electric 
Matt M. Myftiu

Matt Myftiu has been a journalist for two decades with a focus on technology, NASCAR and autos.

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