Lexus unveils LS+ Concept at the Tokyo Motor Show


By the year 2020, Lexus envisions its drivers and passengers to enjoy safe and smooth mobility while still advocating the “fun” element in driving.

Luxury car brand Lexus unveiled its LS+ Concept car at the 45th Tokyo Motor Show.

Lexus International president Yoshihiro Sawa introduced the automated driving-capable concept car last Oct. 25 during the press day of the motor show, and talked about the brand’s future direction focusing on four key points of “brave design,” “exhilarating performance,” “Takumi craftsmanship,” and “imaginative technology,” while continuing to deliver safe, smooth and an amazing ownership experience.

Sawa also emphasized using advanced technology to usher in a world of casualty-free traffic based on its Integrated Safety Management Concept.

By the year 2020, the company envisions that Lexus drivers and passengers can enjoy safe and smooth mobility while still advocating the “fun” element in driving.

Sawa said that in pursuing a world in which all people can enjoy safe, smooth and untethered mobility through automated driving technologies, Lexus intends to make automated driving from entrance ramp to exit ramp on motor-vehicle-only roadways possible by using its “Highway Teammate” automated driving technologies, which will also be implemented in 2020.

Through appropriate recognition, judgment and operation by onboard systems in response to actual traffic conditions, these technologies can enable automated merging, lane changes and diverging, as well as keep a vehicle in its lane and maintain vehicle-to-vehicle distance.

The year 2020 puts Tokyo at the world’s center stage, being the host city for the 2020 Olympics. With Toyota as one of the event’s major sponsors, it will definitely put its best foot forward with its automotive technology using artificial intelligence (AI) in automated driving on regular roads. This also puts luxury brand Lexus on the forefront of advocating AI in near-automated driving.

The LS+ Concept will demonstrate that it can communicate with a data center to update its systems’ software, allowing new functions to be added for future upgrades.

With AI, it learns from massive amounts of flowing data, including information on roads and surrounding areas, ensuring a high level of automated driving.

It allows the system to continue to learn and grow in intelligence while its users can become more emotionally engaged and enjoy a whole new experience in close-to-automated driving.

While Lexus advocates the use of technology to advance near-automated driving, it remains focused on ensuring that the LS’s character of dignified styling remains intact, and driving and riding experience is enhanced not only by surrounding it with luxurious accouterments and comfort features but also by providing an advanced level of sophistication and technological innovation that represents the future image of the LS flagship sedan.

The concept vehicle allowed visitors to see the future look of the LS flagship based on Lexus’ L-finesse design philosophy.

In addition to a boldly evolved spindle grille, the LS+ features a large grille shutter that ensures both improved cooling and enhanced aerodynamics.

Other prominent features of the concept vehicle were the partly laser-lit headlamps and rear combination lamps, as well as through electronic side mirrors.

According to Sawa, “Lexus aims to provide a lifestyle that allows the time and spaces created by its cars and the brand to become an incomparable experience. For this, Lexus will always take on new challenges to anticipate the future, with a commitment to provide new amazing experiences. The new tagline ‘Experience Amazing’ that we announced early this year is suffused with this conviction.”

In just two decades, Lexus has built its reputation on redefining luxury with built-proof reliability. According to Interbrand, Lexus is ranked among the top ten largest Japanese global brands in terms of market value.

In 1989, Lexus came up with its first generation flagship LS sedan; less than three decades later, Lexus’ epoch-making car has redefined the concept of luxury vehicles.

It was during the same year that Lexus came out with its first TV ad for the first generation Lexus LS400 in the US market. The ad was entitled “Balance” created by Saatchi & Saatchi, which intended to promote the engineering attributes of the flagship Lexus sedan.

The ad showed that the LS400, even with a set of champagne glasses stacked like a pyramid, is so smooth that it could quickly shift through all its gears reaching a top speed of 145 mph (233 kph) without spilling a drop. The champagne is a symbol of celebration that, according to the ad, “After years of intense work, Lexus is ready to celebrate … because even at the equivalent of 145 miles per hour, the Lexus LS 400 is designed to stir the soul … and not much else.”

Aside from the LS+ Concept vehicle, Lexus also unveiled limited editions of the “RC F” and “GS F”, commemorating the 10th anniversary of Lexus “F” sports models.

The Lexus “F” sports models began with the IS-F model in 2007 and has since then raised the sportiness image of Lexus. The special specification, limited edition “F” models are equipped with performance shock absorbers and lightweight titanium mufflers, and CFRP (carbon fiber-reinforced plastic) exterior body kits.

The limited-edition RC F and the limited-edition GS F will be available at Lexus dealers across Japan by spring of 2018.

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