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ES350 vs ES300H suspension

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Old 08-11-14, 08:46 AM   #31
gnm313
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Went to the dealer this morning. I test drove both a standard ES with 17" and UL with 18" rims. The difference was noticeable, but not enough to sway me one way or another YET.

I test drove the standard ES first and it was quiet. Hitting bumps and potholes made a sound, but it seemed smooth and nice. When I got in the UL, I felt like I was in my 2007 UL. The best way to describe it is that you can hear tires rolling down the road as you drive. It also felt firmer. For the sports enthusiast, this is probably what you want. For the person who wants a quiet lexus experience, it might make a difference. Noticeable if you look for it.

I also questioned the guy on the difference on the 300h. He said the only suspension difference is a bar which runs across the back to add additional support for the batteries. I suspect the sound/ride difference on the 300h would be similar with 17" vs 18" as it is just less rubber on the pavement.

Big decision on the UL vs just the Luxury. Having a UL makes it hard to back down on the few extra features that you get. Panoramic/Passenger Memory/Seat Extender are all features I use and I don't think are available any other way. I believe the Mark Levinson is separately orderable but hard to find. With the minor 2015 new features, I think I am going to go with a 2014 if I can get the right deal. Will let everyone know how it turns out when I go back Friday.
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Old 08-11-14, 05:13 PM   #32
lesz
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Originally Posted by gnm313 View Post

I also questioned the guy on the difference on the 300h. He said the only suspension difference is a bar which runs across the back to add additional support for the batteries. I suspect the sound/ride difference on the 300h would be similar with 17" vs 18" as it is just less rubber on the pavement.
While there appears, from the part numbers posted in this thread, that there are two different sets of suspension parts used with the ES depending on whether it is an ES 350 with 18 inch wheels, an ES 350 with 17 inch wheels, or and ES 300h, I see nothing in any documentation from Lexus that would indicate that one of those sets of suspension parts creates a firmer suspension/ride quality than the other. While I know that the ES with 18 inch wheels has a firmer ride quality than does the ES with 17 inch wheels, I suspect that the difference in ride quality is the result of the differences in wheel and tire size and not the result of one having a firmer suspension than the other.

From my own experience in driving an ES 350 with 17 inch wheels, an ES 350 with 18 inch wheels, and an ES 300h, while the ES350 with 18 inch wheels had a noticeably firmer ride than did the ES 350 with 17 inch wheels, if there was any difference in ride firmness between the ES 350 with 17 inch wheels and the ES 300h, it was so small that I wouldn't have been able to tell the difference.
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Old 08-23-14, 01:32 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by gnm313 View Post
I also questioned the guy on the difference on the 300h. He said the only suspension difference is a bar which runs across the back to add additional support for the batteries. I suspect the sound/ride difference on the 300h would be similar with 17" vs 18" as it is just less rubber on the pavement.
gnm313, I'm guessing your sales guy has no idea too. When i bought my 300h, none of the sales people on the floor were aware of the different suspensions.


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Originally Posted by lesz View Post
While there appears, from the part numbers posted in this thread, that there are two different sets of suspension parts used with the ES depending on whether it is an ES 350 with 18 inch wheels, an ES 350 with 17 inch wheels, or and ES 300h, I see nothing in any documentation from Lexus that would indicate that one of those sets of suspension parts creates a firmer suspension/ride quality than the other. While I know that the ES with 18 inch wheels has a firmer ride quality than does the ES with 17 inch wheels, I suspect that the difference in ride quality is the result of the differences in wheel and tire size and not the result of one having a firmer suspension than the other.

Here we go with the speculations again...

Hmmm... Let's see...
1) You got a guy who owned both vehicles telling you the suspensions are different and took the 300h back to the dealer.
2) You got the general manager at the lexus dealership who verified the different suspensions and took the car back.
3) Prior to taking the matter to the general manager, i had a call with Lexus Corporate on speaker phone to verify the different suspensions with the sales guy who was clueless.
4) You got another guy complaining about the stiff ride on the 300h.
5) Then, there is the Lexus parts catalog that shows the different parts. Not some random catalog that Joe Schmo wrote but a Genuie Lexus Parts Catalog. And NO, it does not "APPEAR" to be different. They ARE different. Its two different parts with two different part numbers.

What more valid documentation do you need other than the Lexus Parts Catalog?

6) Then there are online reviews that supports this:

Official Sticky on this forum for ES350 and ES300h reviews thread (5th paragraph, OP):

"Lexus expects the hybrid to lure younger buyers, so its suspension is tuned for sharper, crisper handling. "

http://www.clublexus.com/forums/es35...ws-thread.html

"DRIVING EXPERIENCE" (All the way down the page)
"The ride quality in the ES 350 is pure Lexus. Smooth, predictable, even-keeled and luxurious. See that pothole – but don’t feel it much. But the suspension is noticeably tighter in the ES 300h, probably owing to the placement of the heavy battery array. Bumps are felt more, but handling seems better in corners."

http://www.vroomgirls.com/review/2013-lexus-es/


Whatever man, you can believe whatever you want.
There is no cure for stupidity anyway...

Last edited by rustytank; 08-23-14 at 02:00 PM..
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Old 08-23-14, 07:16 PM   #34
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Based on my short time with the 300H and comparing it with an Acura TSX, I'd say it rides firmly (although not as hard and crashy as the TSX) and doesn't feel like a typical floaty luxo barge at all. On a weekend hill road blast I felt the steering had little feedback, even in Sport mode, but there's little roll and there's plenty of grip through fast corners. The extra weight over the rear axle makes the back feel like stepping out more. I'm on stock Dunlop SP Sport 271 tires on 17" rims.

Maybe Lexus is crazy enough to position the hybrid as the hot rod of the ES bunch compared to the 250 and 350. The immediate torque from the electric motors makes for interesting in-gear acceleration
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Old 08-23-14, 07:16 PM
 
 
 
 
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