Earlier this week, Lexus offered a peek into the company’s future (hint: it’s electric) with the reveal of the spectacular new LF-Z Electrified Concept SUV. To say the Japanese luxury brand has big plans in store with its next-generation of design and tech is an understatement. Here’s what you need to know about Lexus’s electric future, and its exciting new concept car:
1. It’s electric through and through
This all-electric SUV concept encapsulates what’s so exciting about Lexus’s big push into the EV space. Yes, it looks amazing, and yes, it’s loaded with cool tech, but what’s most impressive about the LF-Z Electrified Concept is that it’s built as an EV from the ground up. It can take full advantage of all the benefits of battery power and electric motors. That means more range and better handling, plus more spacious and luxurious cabins.
2. It’s the start of a new design language
Lexus designs, fronted by the brand’s trademark and in-your-face “spindle” grille, have always been bold, with plenty of sharp, cutting lines. The LF-Z Concept SUV, however, marks an evolution of Lexus’s visual language — and to great success. Creases give way to more sculpted surfaces and, overall, there are fewer lines which makes it look both cleaner and more avant-garde. Still, you’d never mistake this for anything other than a Lexus. (And we think more cars need a fin-like aero-blade on the roof.)
3. It’s a response to consumers
By 2025, you can expect to see 10 “new or improved” electrified vehicles from Lexus. They’ll be a mix of fully-electric, plug-in-hybrids, and mild hybrids. In other words, Lexus is doubling down on battery technology. (Remember: this company is no stranger to battery tech; it launched the first high-powered luxury hybrid back in 2005.) But Lexus says the reason it’s going electric isn’t just about slashing carbon emissions or meeting UN climate goals, it’s also a response to customers’ changing lifestyles and values. In other words, this is Lexus reacting to a major cultural shift.
4. It uses human-centred tech
The cabin of the LF-Z is what some might call “minimalist”. The dashboard is low and, when combined with the glass roof and wrap-around interior, makes the cabin look clean, open, and airy. Lexus calls this the “Tazuna” cockpit, which is Japanese for “rein,” as in “take the reins.” Why? Lexus says the design is focused on putting everything at the driver’s fingertips. For example, smart controls and augmented reality displays allow the driver to concentrate on performance, handling, and the unique “Lexus Driving Signature.”
5. It’s coming soon
Concept cars should always be taken with a grain of salt, but you can expect to see many of the LF-Z’s features in upcoming vehicles. Lexus says it has 20 — yes, 20 — new or revised models coming by 2025. (One is even a vehicle with some sort of digital chauffeur.) And as people who appreciate driving a good car on a good road, we’re especially glad to see the company remains committed to making new sports cars too. “While fulfilling our social mission of realizing a carbon-neutral society, we will continue to provide the fun and joy that cars bring,” said Koji Sato, president and chief branding officer of Lexus International. Sounds good to us.