After Toyota announced its first CarPlay-compatible model, Corolla Hatchback, launched last month The Japanese car maker on Tuesday plans to introduce the infotainment system from Apple with the Lexus ES 2019 in his luxury department.
In a press release, the seventh generation ES revealed the usual range of under-the-hood and aesthetic upgrades, but it's the cockpit where Lexus packs some of the most notable advances.
Combined with CarPlay and Siri Eyes Free voice controls, ES models with navigation get a massive 12.3 "dashboard display and built-in Wi-Fi from Verizon. Owners can also interact with Amazon Alexa and output car-to-car and home-to-car voice commands. Models without navigation rely on a standard 8-inch display.
The setup is similar to Toyota's 2019 Corolla hatchback, which offers standard CarPlay and Alexa integration, but omits Google's Android car.
Lexus decided to build the latest ES on Toyota's Global Architecture K platform, underpinning other new sedans like the Avalon 2019. The new ES is a bit lower, wider and longer than its predecessor, giving the car a more aggressive attitude while offering a bit more leg room.
To enhance its image as a high-performance sedan, Lexus offers an F Sport trim for ES 350 models. Apart from an adaptive variable suspension, spoiler and Sport + Drive mode, which selects the most aggressive engine, transmission and suspension settings, the package offers only aesthetic improvements.
Toyota first unveiled plans to integrate CarPlay into selected 2019 models in January, saying that this year's Avalon and certain Lexus models were getting compatibility with the arrival of Entune 3.0. Last month, the company revealed that CarPlay will also be standard in its UX crossover, due to be released in December.
Toyota, one of the last major CarPlay holdouts, said three years ago that it has no plans to support Apple's infotainment system, but instead focuses on developing its internal technology. Mazda followed a similar path, but announced last month CarPlay support in the Mazda6 from 2018 as well as a retrofit kit for older vehicles with Mazda Connect.
The Lexus ES 2019 will be available in September. Prices still to be announced.