Big boys like big toys. And if you have just hit the Lottery (or getting ready to cash in your IRA) just hold on a little longer the Lexus LF-LC could soon be in a showroom near you. If the LF-LC is anything like the Lexus LFA then this premium sport coupe is going to set the road on fire.
On January 9, 2012 Lexus unveiled a new design concept for a hybrid 2+2 sport coupe at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan. The LF-LC Concept showcased the future design direction for Lexus with an emphasis on a driver-focused vehicle. Mark Templin, Lexus Group Vice President and General Manager said, “The concept we’re showing here in Detroit continues the Lexus design revolution started with the CT and GS. The concept hybrid 2+2 liberates the idea of a sport coupe and pushes the boundaries of performance, style and technology.”
The company’s Calty design studio in Newport Beach, California was challenged by the Lexus Center in Japan to come up with a design for a future hybrid sport coupe concept. The studio sought to advance the redefinition of Lexus with emotive, avant-garde beauty and advanced technology, yet remain within reach for premium buyers. “Our entire studio worked to develop this beautiful interpretation of Lexus originality,” said Kevin Hunter, president of Calty. “The LF-LC concept embodies our vision of what a premium sport coupe could be.”
The LF-LC displays the new Lexus design language in its bold interpretation of the signature Lexus spindle grille and rear architecture. The mesh pattern of the spindle grille takes 3D sculpture form, and functional air intakes in the bottom corners of the grille show the fusion of distinctive style and engineering functionality. Sumptuous curves blend smoothly into dynamic angles, creating an inviting display of lines, shadows and corners.
The concept car’s glass roof features a lightweight, cantilevered pillar with a glass-to-glass juncture inspired by modern architecture. A rising, kick-up window graphic and polished aluminum trim are unexpected elements. Overall, the greenhouse design enhances driver visibility while adding to the sleek lines of the car.
Daytime running lights are shaped like an “L” while the vertical fog lamps used a fading dot matrix pattern to suggest a sense of movement. The tail lamps, inspired by the look of a jet afterburner at take-off, use inner lighting to create a remarkable sense of depth. The rear is also fitted with fog lamps, repeating the fading dot matrix pattern of the front fog lamps.
The interior of the LF-LC concept vehicle contrasts the cool ambience of advanced technology with soft textures and organic shapes to create a driver-focused synergy of form and function. The cockpit expresses a feeling of both openness and security. Deeply scooped side panels and a high, curved console envelop the driver; the effect is to focus the driver zone on the controls and on the road.
Based on Lexus’ commitment to creating an intuitive driving experience, the LF-LC incorporates a remote touch-screen device that allows the driver to comfortably operate controls without shifting position or altering line-of-sight. Similar touch-screen surfaces on each door operate the windows, mirrors, seat adjustments and personal entertainment settings. Twin 12.3-inch LCD screens provide information and navigation display.
Surfaces throughout the cabin are presented in a combination of smooth leather and suede, with brushed metal trim and wood accents. The lightweight, race-inspired front seats are formed of multiple layers and repeat the interlacing curves that define the cabin interior. The racing style steering wheel is also a lightweight design and contains integrated controls and start button. Beautiful stitch details emphasize organic movement throughout the interior.
“This thought-provoking design exercise is a stunning expression of creativity,” said Templin. “Combined with a next-generation hybrid powertrain, this concept promises a rewarding driving experience that is also kinder to the environment.”