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AIMS: Lexus locks in world debut for Sydney

Lights up: This teaser picture is the only image Lexus Australia has provided for the “advanced hybrid coupe concept” that will make its world premiere at AIMS 2012.

Global premiere for 370kW hybrid Lexus concept at Sydney motor show in October

27 Aug 2012

LEXUS is primed to steal the Australian International Motor Show in Sydney this October with the announcement that its stand will host a world premiere, which we expect will be the all-wheel-drive version of its LF-LC concept.

The first global debut confirmed for AIMS 2012 will be what Lexus describes as a “further development” of a hybrid coupe concept shown at the Detroit motor show in January this year, pointing to a revised version of the sleek and sexy petrol-electric LF-LC that won the Eyes On Design award for best concept at Detroit.

Lexus Australia says its stand at AIMS will “centre exclusively” on the debut concept, leaving it unclear whether the company will display any of its current production models.

As we reported last week, the Japanese luxury car-maker will hold back the Australian debut of its all-new LS limousine until the Melbourne Cup carnival in November.

Details are scarce at this stage, but Lexus has confirmed the vehicle on display will be all-wheel-drive, unlike the original LF-LC that sent power only to the rear wheels, and will “provide a glimpse into the future of supercars and their use of advanced materials”.

The company has only released a tiny teaser image that appears to be of a rectangular tail-light, surrounded by a silver finish and intricate red diodes. The electric blue body paint in the image is a substantial change from the electric red hue of the original LF-LC concept.

 center imageLeft: Lexus LF-LC concept.

Power output from the show car’s hybrid drivetrain will be more than 370kW, outstripping the target outlined at the Detroit show of 368kW. This would be coupled with a Toyota Camry Hybrid-like carbon emissions figure of 150 grams per kilometre.

The original LF-LC was designed for a V8 engine/electric motor combination, but Lexus global product planning general manager Karl Schlich told GoAuto earlier this year that a V6-based hybrid was also under consideration, and it could be that this will feature on the AIMS concept.

The 2+2 LF-LC concept was originally designed as a preview for a potential Lexus rival to the iconic Porsche 911 and is tipped to hit showrooms around 2015.

Lexus Australia chief executive Tony Cramb told us in May the car was about a 50/50 chance for production at that stage.

In a release today, Mr Cramb said the concept would be a show-stopper that would display Lexus design and engineering credentials.

“We've pulled out all stops this year to secure a world first for Australia,” he said.

“The Lexus concept is an absolutely stunning vehicle and is set to be one of the drawcards of the show.

“The concept will highlight Lexus’ design and engineering expertise – marrying design with function to deliver a glimpse into the future of supercars.” AIMS director Russ Tyrie told GoAuto last week that this year’s show would feature at least one world debut and said today that Lexus’ decision to debut its concept reinforced the significance of the local show, which 22 brands have chosen not to attend.

“We are thrilled Lexus have chosen the Australian International Motor Show as the stage to unveil this new concept,” he said.

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