Toyota has previewed its second electric SUV with the FT-3e concept, a car that paves the way for a radical electric 4x4 set to introduce a new era for the brand where it will “go beyond providing physical transportation tools".
According to Toyota, its eye-catching design has been created with the help of AI and is said to be "as simple as possible", with clean, aero-optimised lines and a prominent belt line in the same vein as the Land Rover Defender. It will also feature a bumper-width rear light bar, squared-off panelling and a new design of alloy wheel in the same colour as the bodywork.
Outside, digital displays run from the foot of the wheel arch upwards toward the door mirror. These provide the driver with information when they walk up to the car, such as the battery charge state, cabin temperature and air quality. It also gets its own light pattern along the door sills, which is expected to be unique to Toyota's electric SUVs.
The car sits on the same modular platform as the FT-Se, the Lexus LF-ZL and the Lexus LF-ZC, which allows for a “low centre of gravity” without sacrificing range, performance or – and crucial for an SUV – interior space.
The FT-3e is 4860mm long, 1955mm wide and 1595mm tall, with a large wheelbase of 3000mm.
A big feature for cars that sit on this modular electric architecture is the flexibility it offers (size, shape and powertrain layout) because of the way it is constructed. The vehicles are split into three parts (front, centre and rear) using a new gigacasting production process that allows for more freedom of form.
Notably, during production, the vehicles will move autonomously along each stage of the "self-driving assembly line" using their own battery and motor.