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What is this? This is the new shape of Lexus’s executive saloon in Europe. Having tried to woo us with the surprisingly good but largely ignored rear-drive GS saloon, which is now being phased out, the company is switching tack and bringing in the new front-driven ES instead. The model has been a staple in the Lexus range – as a smaller alternative to the LS – in the US and Asia since 1989, but this seventh gen car is now moving to a global model and so will appear in the UK line-up soon. Front drive, eh? Yes, front-driven executive cars aren’t the sort of thing to get your pulse racing. But then that’s exactly the point. As per the refreshingly minimalist and hushed Volvo S90, the new ES has been designed to soothe and smooth rather than steer from the rear. It recognises that 99.9 per cent of its time on the road will be either in traffic or on motorways. And that for the 0.1 per cent of time it’s not, the occupants and driver would probably rather take a nap rather than try and spy an apex. And what about the engines?