New coupé concept heralds a new generation of downsized Lexus hybrids
17 September 2012

Lexus is previewing the next-generation Lexus IS line-up with a handsome new coupe concept at the Paris motor show. The BMW 3-series coupe-sized LF-CC concept is also a showcase for a downsized hybrid drivetrain that will be rolled out across the Lexus line-up.

The rear-drive LF-CC concept is destined for production in the near future as part of the new IS range, insiders have revealed. Paul van der Burgh, Lexus Europe director, has said: "The LF-CC previews future Lexus vehicles in the D-segment. Its new smaller hybrid drivetrain will have sub-100g/km co2 emissions and will be added very soon to the wider Lexus line-up." He added that: "You won't have to wait very long to see vehicles inspired by this car, either."

The new IS will be closely linked to the just-launched GS, the two having been developed in tandem and sharing common underpinnings. The new IS line-up is due next year and will initially launch with a saloon. Coupe and convertible models are to follow in the mid-term.

The concept’s hybrid drivetrain is destined for production in the IS – the first time a hybrid has appeared in the small saloon – and the GS. It features an Atkinson cycle, direct-injection 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine and a compact, high-output electric motor and high-performance battery.

Lexus is targeting CO2 emissions of less than 100g/km, which would make the IS the lowest emitting car in its class. No power or performance figures have been released by Lexus, but it is targeting 2bhp per gram of CO2 suggestions a power figure in excess of 200bhp.

The LF-CC’s sleek two-door design follows on from the acclaimed LF-LC concept earlier this year. The LF-CC is smaller than the LF-LC, which was a class larger in size.

The LF-CC is the latest Lexus to feature its bold ‘L-finesse’ design language, including the striking spindle grille that covers much of the car’s nose. Another distinctive styling feature are fins that emerge from in front of the rear wheels, which follow lines that fall from the pronounced spoiler.

Lexus has yet to reveal the LF-CCs interior, but claims it hints at “the kind of luxury Lexus envisions for future cabin layouts”.

Our Verdict

The Lexus IS is a sleek junior exec that makes for an interesting alternative but lacks a decent diesel option

Join the debate

Comments
6

17 September 2012

"including the striking spindle grille that covers much of the car’s nose."

 Which I think, in this case, looks ridiculous. 

 

I'm a disillusioned former Citroëniste.

17 September 2012

Stuart Milne wrote:

Lexus is previewing the next-generation Lexus IS line-up with a handsome new coupe concept. The BMW 3-series coupe-sized LF-CC concept is also a showcase for a downsized hybrid drivetrain that will be rolled out across the Lexus line-up.

It's certainly striking, but I don't know if I'd call it handsome.  It doesn't have the surface refinement of the Audi A5 or the BMW 3-series coupe, and looks like they have gone down the weird shutline route that BMW has finally left behind.

17 September 2012

love hate relationship with the shape of that grill although the details on are nice. nice looking car but a bit too bling. idea on rear lights are very nice but the shape, again, i dont like it. it drops wide too much. 1M Coupe line below the headlights is expressed better here although not entirely originial is it....id have this

17 September 2012

Well,LEXUS, built it as is...........

Peter Cavellini.

17 September 2012

Flies, moths, mosquitoes, wasps, crickets, beetles and bees… that grille's going to hoover them up at 80 mph

Myk

17 September 2012

I say "gruesome".

There's a really good-looking car underneath all that embellishment, deperately fighting for its life.

I do like the idea of the "fins" though, although I'm not sure that this is the right application.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week