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Shanghai show: Toyota reveals MPV, sedan concepts

Happy family: Toyota has applied a family tag to the FT-HT Yuejia concept, a six seat people-mover aimed at China, where a one-child policy applies to large parts of the population.

Sleek Toyota FT-HT Yuejia people-mover concept, prototype hybrid sedan at Shanghai

22 Apr 2013

TOYOTA unveiled two Chinese market-oriented concepts at the Shanghai motor show over the weekend, headlined by the FT-HT Yuejia people-mover and Yundong Shuangquing II sedan.

The “Yuejia” element of the FT-HT’s name is derived from a Mandarin Chinese term for “happy family”, and the six-seater was designed to appeal to young Chinese consumers.

Starting with a gaping chrome-laden grille inspired by the ‘spindle grille’ adopted by Toyota’s luxury arm Lexus, the FT-HT has more of a sleek, sporty hatchback look than that of a traditional people-mover.

Smooth, gently curving surfaces are occasionally pinched and folded, to prevent the car from looking bulbous, with mesh-like textures applied along the lower flanks.

The look is completed by narrow, stylised headlights, five-spoke alloy wheels with machined T-shape spokes and scissor doors that open up to reveal a pillarless structure for easy cabin access.

Toyota is not the only Japanese car-maker to showcase a funky youth-oriented people-mover concept at Shanghai as rival Honda unveiled the Concept M (see separate story).

With a name derived from Toyota’s corporate slogan in China, meaning “movement upon clouds” and “dual support” to signify its two power sources, the Yundong Shuangquing II (YS2) sedan concept uses a prototype hybrid drivetrain.

 center imageFrom top: Yundong Shuangquing II and Yaris.

The electrified system was devised at Toyota’s research and development centre in Changshu, China.

The YS2 concept receives elements of Toyota’s now familiar front-end treatment  a grille split four ways with the Toyota badge separating it vertically, and horizontal strakes either side.

But on the YS2 the strakes lead into the headlights, which again expand on Toyota’s angular theme by extending the indicators around the sides of the car in a fanned design reminiscent of laughter lines around a human eye.

Snub rear styling gives the YS2 distinctive proportions similar to a four-door version of the Kia Cerato Koup.

Bringing the number of Toyota world premieres to a record three was the production version of the unique, Chinese-market Yaris hatchback and its Vios sedan derivative.

The Yaris exhibits styling unlike any sold in Australia, past or present, and does not appear to follow Toyota’s current design language as applied to global models such as the Camry, Corolla or RAV4.

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