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Lexus explores sports-EV, outdoor lifestyles

Four Lexus custom-car concepts trial performance and outdoor themes for luxury brand

26 Jan 2023

JAPANESE luxury brand Lexus has taken the wraps of a series of concept models that aim to showcase the brand's innovation and “expanded lifestyle possibilities” via customisation.


The four concepts centre on improving on-road driving performance and creating more outdoor adventure for Lexus customers, each offering a model-specific driveline combination.


One of the most illuminating concepts as to the way Lexus will approach its future direction is the RZ Sports Concept that the car-maker says explores “the potential for exhilarating performance and race-car-inspired design for battery electric vehicles”.


Perhaps signalling the future of the brand’s sporting F range, the model aims to demonstrate that an all-electric Lexus can be sporty and dynamically engaging, Lexus says.


With dual 150kW motors – one on each axle – the RZ Sports Concept uses Lexus’ Direct4 all-wheel drive system to distribute torque fore and aft as required.


The model is distinguished by extensive aerodynamic accoutrements, including a pair of carbon-fibre wing spoilers mounted on the tailgate, a model-specific front splitter, bonnet aero ducts, sill covers and rear diffuser.


Extended wheel arches hunker over black 21-inch alloy wheels in a unique nine-spoke design, the model riding on 35mm lowered suspension and larger-diameter tyres than the standard production RZ.


Differing itself further from the production model, the Sports Concept features four individual racing bucket seats.


The concept is finished in a one-off Hakugin colour scheme that combines a clear white base with contrasting bright blue accents on the front splitter, grille, and roofline.


Lexus’ remaining concept models bring together the words Overland and Trail, the Overtrail theme applied to several SUVs, beginning with the RX Outdoor Concept.


This plug-in hybrid model is designed to help owners get off the beaten track and features exclusive custom equipment including roof-mounted aluminium racking and roof-top tent, BF Goodrich KO2 all-terrain tyres, an aluminium bash plate, and LED spotlights.


Contrasting dark brown wheel arches and black garnishing on the seven-spoke alloy wheels, grille, lower bumper, window mouldings, door handles and sills complete the outdoorsy look.


The third concept is the GX Outdoor Concept, based on the GX 460 sold in North America and the Middle East (essentially Lexus’ version of the LandCruiser Prado).


Based on an already-capable off-roader, the Outdoor Concept gains custom suspension and control arms, Toyo Open Country rubber on 18-inch wheels, a Warn winch and Yamika roof-top tent.


Additionally, the model is treated to an exclusive front bumper, skid plate, sill covers and roof rack, while the cargo area is kitted out with “the necessary custom equipment cleverly packaged to bring a touch of luxury to each outdoor adventure,” says Lexus.


Last but by no means least, the the ROV (Recreational Off-highway Vehicle) Concept 2 hydrogen buggy is a follow-up to the ROV that  appeared at last year’s Tokyo Motor Show.


Finished in Regolith paint and powered by a 1.0-litre three-pot hydrogen combustion engine, it offers selectable two- and four-wheel drive modes, features Lexus’ signature lighting front and rear, a roof-mounted light bar, black lower bumper and rocker panel, aluminium skid plate, custom suspension, and airless tyres.


The cockpit of the unique model features luxury touches Lexus says are synonymous with the brand, including a genuine leather-wrapped steering wheel and passenger-side assist grip, machined aluminium gear knob, suspended seats and four-point harnesses.

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