Lexus has shown off the first teaser image previewing the look of the concept car it is showing at the Tokyo motor show next week.
The concept is said to “capture the company’s vision of progressive luxury” and Autocar understands the concept will preview the next-generation LS saloon. It will be revealed at the press day of the show, on 28 October. It's known that Lexus wants to mark 25 years of sales with a landmark launch at the show.
The new LS - a rival to the Audi A8, BMW 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class - is eagerly anticipated because it would act as a technology showpiece for the entire Lexus and Toyota ranges, highlighting developments that are drip-feed through to future cars.
Unconfirmed reports suggest that the new range-topping saloon from Toyota’s luxury brand will be powered by a V8 hybrid powertrain developing around 535bhp.
A V8-powered LS, without the hybrid system, is tipped to develop around 465bhp.
Lexus’s first car, the LS400, was launched in late 1989 after being revealed at that year’s Detroit motor show. It was reputed to have cost a billion dollars to develop and set new standards of refinement for luxury saloons.
The company’s European boss Alain Uyttenhoven has already said the car will become "more emotional", saying: "The LS will remain the pinnacle of the range and have the highest price point."
He also denied rumours that the luxury saloon was going to adopt a Porsche Panamera-style liftback: “You have to understand how our customers use these cars. In the US if they want to carry things they also have a pick-up and in China most of them are driven, while they sit in the back.”
Uyttenhoven refused to be drawn on the details of what is meant by “more emotional”, but it’s likely to include more distinct styling for the next LS.
“It’s not good for the brand to have ‘Russian doll’ styling,” he said. “We’re not chasing market share so we need to make cars that people notice, cars that polarise opinion so that people love them or don’t like them. We also need to trade on Japanese differentiation, design and attention to detail.”
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