Crossover concepts were not in short supply at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, particularly from Japanese manufacturers, and angular design seems to be the trend this year. Lexus’ LF-SA concept was undoubtedly the smallest and the product of Lexus ED2 design studio based in Nice, France.
This is the first complete Lexus to have been designed at ED2. The concept was designed to help celebrate 25 years since Lexus launched its first car, the LS400. It is a design study exploring new styling directions for Lexus, commented a Lexus spokesman.
The LF-SA stands for Lexus Future Small Adventurer and the exterior, finished in Stellar silver, is said to be a reference to space exploration. Lexus described the concept as an ultra compact, sub-B-segment urban 2+2, measuring 3450 mm (135.8 in) long, 1700 mm (66.9 in) wide, and 1430 mm (56.3 in) tall. This makes it 5 mm (0.2 in) shorter, 85 mm (3.3 in) wider, and 30 mm (1.2 in) lower than the Toyota Aygo A-segment city car.
It is recognizable as a Lexus from the front by the adoption of the latest shape Lexus ripple finish grille, although in the case of the LF-SA the ripples are radial, extending from the central Lexus badge on the grille. The coupe body and three door format gives it the appearance of a two-seat design, although two occasional seats are provided in the rear.
The design incorporates convex and concave surfaces with the pronounced crease picked up from the lower section of the A-pillar and flowing into the edge of the hood. From the rear a deeper crease picks up the beltline, bringing it back forward with the crease flattening under the lower edge at the front of the doors
The result is a subtle blend of what would normally be sharply contrasting shapes. The shape of the front grille is echoed in the rear panel of the car. Features such as the L-shaped rear lamp clusters and Lexus arrowhead motif reflected in the shape of the daytime running lights are design features that can be seen in current Lexus production models.
Lexus insisted that the LF-SA is not an autonomous vehicle design study, suggesting that it is a driver-focused vehicle where drivers can enjoy the luxury of driving themselves, while still being able to experience the latest in infotainment, connectivity, and safety.
The driver-focused theme is emphasized inside the car by the adoption of unique upholstery colors for the driver and front passenger seats. This is further reinforced by giving the driver a seat with a fixed position but adjustable pedals and steering wheel. Rear seat passenger access is from the passenger side where the front seat will slide to permit entry. Instrumentation includes a wide-angle head-up display and a hologram-inspired digital display for the infotainment system.
LF-SA is intended purely as a design study and not a concept for a future production model. No indication of a possible powertrain was given.