2013 Lexus ES Swaps Camry for Avalon Platform to Improve Global Appeal


Unveiled at the New York Auto Show last week, the 2013 Lexus ES has an all-new look, along with the company’s new trademark grille. Underneath that new look, however, is something that’s even more unique, the platform from the upcoming Toyota Avalon.

Previous Lexus ES models were based on Toyota’s Camry, and while the new 2013 model would seem right at home on the Camry underpinnings, Toyota and Lexus have given it the longer platform from the Avalon full-size sedan that was also revealed at New York.

Michael Kroll, manager at Lexus Communications told us “The ES platform will be shared with the recently announced Avalon. It is a significantly updated platform with a wheelbase of 111″, about two inches longer than the Camry platform.”

This extended wheelbase results in the ES being slightly longer than before and with more interior space than the outgoing model.

Michael also pointed out why the change was made. “Building the ES on a new platform was the natural evolution for the vehicle based on the wants and needs of customers in the US and in global markets where the vehicle is sold (including Russia, China, etc.)”

No wonder we first spotted the new ES in China back in February. With longer wheel base luxury cars becoming more popular in the important Chinese market, it’s clear Lexus made the platform change to help compete against the LWB German vehicles.

Toyota was notably short on powertrain details for the 2013 Avalon, commenting only that it would make use of a V6 engine. While it’s expected to share the same 3.5-liter unit as the ES350 model, the introduction of the new ES300h certainly leaves room for speculation that Toyota could also offer an Avalon Hybrid.

GALLERY: 2013 Lexus ES


GALLERY: 2013 Toyota Avalon