Lexus LF-1 Concept previews possible future flagship SUV

Lexus LF-1 Limitless concept takes a bow at the Detroit motor show

Lexus has revealed a new concept called the LF-1 Limitless at the Detroit motor show. First teased in early December last year, the LF-1 is the brand’s supposed third addition to its flagship range that's currently made up of the LC coupe and LS saloon.

To begin with, the LF-1 is meant to point towards a different type of luxury SUV for the Japanese luxury brand. The current flagship LX 570 SUV, which is not on sale in the UK, is based on the rugged Outback-ready Toyota Land Cruiser. This one is a little different.

> Click here for our review of the Lexus LC 500

Looking purely at the proportions, you’ll notice the distance between the front axle and dashboard is more akin to luxury saloons than an SUV. That’s because the eventual production version of the LF-1 is highly likely to make use of a platform derived from Lexus’ LS saloon and not a rugged body-on-frame off-roader. In contrast, the RX 450h crossover currently uses a platform derived from the Toyota Camry, which is great for packaging, but less so for creating a premium or dynamic driving experience. This change points towards Lexus’ ambition to create a true bespoke premium SUV, rather than one derived from Toyota’s vast product catalogue.

Designed by Toyota’s California-based design team at CALTY, the LF-1 adopts the L-Finesse design language currently employed throughout the range, showing off a smooth, more sophisticated surfacing language as befit a flagship model. At 5014mm long, the FL-1 is less than a centimetre shorter than other flagship premium SUVs like the Audi Q8 concept, putting the car into context in terms of possible future rivals.

The LF-1 also reflects Lexus’ current interior design direction, majoring on a prominent, centrally mounted dial flanked by high mounted controls and a driver-centric asymmetrical dashboard. The LF-1 also preview Lexus’ next generation infotainment and user-interface design, with a greater reliance on a large head up display. 

> Click here for our look ahead at the Audi Q8

Other concept car elements of complex LED lighting structures and promise of autonomous driving capability are present, although Lexus has yet to mention anything in the way of possible drivetrains.

As the luxury sector continue to veer towards SUVs it’s no surprise to see a concept like this on the Lexus stand, but if a possible production version is as well executed at the latest LC coupe, rivals like the Audi Q8 and BMW X6 might have to keep an eye over their shoulders. 

Recommended

Lexus IS500 F Sport revealed – naturally aspirated V8 sports saloon is back
Lexus IS500 F Sport -
Lexus

Lexus IS500 F Sport revealed – naturally aspirated V8 sports saloon is back

It’s a recipe that AMG, BMW and Audi say no longer appeals, but Lexus has gone its own way, with an almighty catch
22 Feb 2021

Most Popular

Sub-T.50 Gordon Murray Automotive Project Two supercar confirmed
GMA T.50 XP2
Supercars

Sub-T.50 Gordon Murray Automotive Project Two supercar confirmed

Two-seater retains Cosworth V12 and manual gearbox, but loses ground-effect fan
10 May 2021
Audi RS6 v Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo v Mercedes-AMG E63 S Estate – super-estates go head-to-head
Audi RS6 v Porsche Panamera v Mercedes-AMG
Features

Audi RS6 v Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo v Mercedes-AMG E63 S Estate – super-estates go head-to-head

Which 600bhp wagon is the current super-estate king? It‘s time to find out as the Audi RS6 Avant takes on Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turi…
8 May 2021
2022 Volkswagen Polo GTI set for reveal next month
2022 Volkswagen Polo GTI
Volkswagen Polo GTI

2022 Volkswagen Polo GTI set for reveal next month

Following hot on the heels of the ordinary Polo, Volkswagen has given us our first look at the 2022 Polo GTI
10 May 2021