By Steve & Tamami Laser
With the theme “Open Future” the 46th Tokyo Motor Show opened its doors to the press and consumers this week at the Tokyo Big Sight convention center (below). And while the show is filled with the latest cars, trucks, motorcycles, commercial vehicles and more, there’s something different this time.
The Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) is providing visitors with the chance to “see what mobility will look like and how it will be integrated into the urban living experience of the not-so-distant future.”
Toyota Mobility Theme Park
This year’s show goes beyond Tokyo Big Sight to encompass the surrounding Odaiba area with newly themed attractions including “Future Expo” at Mega Web and the Aomi Exhibition area, “Open Road” on the street, “Drive Park” in an enclosed lot, and more.
Vans of all shapes and sizes remain incredibly popular in Japan. The Toyota e-Trans offers a look at a BEV future mobility vehicle designed for a ride-sharing service. It could also function as a delivery vehicle or perhaps be outfitted for camping.
The interior of the e-Trans is nicely finished and offers a futuristic look that includes a steering wheel. We find it interesting that the wheel is mounted on the left, which could mean that this dreamy van might one day make the journey to our neighborhood.
New Toyota Mirai
The new Mirai Concept, called a final-stage development model, transports Toyota’s fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV) to the next generation. It’s designed to offer greater driving range, improved performance, and a completely new, sporty design inside and out.
Based on Toyota’s premium rear-drive TNGA platform, the Mirai Concept offers increased room for passengers, along with a new 12.3-inch display screen.
Toyota has sold about 10,000 units of the first-generation Mirai in its efforts to help pave the way toward a hydrogen society and the benefits of reduced emissions and diversified energy sources. The new Mirai, planned for launch in Japan late next year, targets a 30 percent increase in driving range plus the ability to transport five passengers in luxury.
While Lexus announced that it plans to unveil its first BEV next month, the new LF-30 Electrified that made its debut in Tokyo is a forward-looking concept. And what an amazing-looking car it is.
Lexus says that the LF-30 Electrified embodies the vision of its product electrification and employs advanced technologies with a look ahead to the year 2030.
The LF-30 Electrified is powered by in-wheel electric motors with a body design that allows them to be pushed out to the corners of the car. Without the need for a traditional hood, the BEV offers a new look for the Lexus signature spindle. Huge gull-wing style doors make it easy to enter the front and rear seats.
The cockpit features next-generation interfaces, such as gesture control, and enhanced presentation of vehicle information through augmented reality (AR). The glass roof above the rear seats includes a “SkyGate” display window that uses AR to display information. LF-30 also includes “Lexus Airporter” drone support that could be used to transport luggage from a home doorstep to the car, for example.
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News sources and photos (as noted) courtesy of Toyota Motor Corp., Lexus International, and the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA)
Story (commentary) © 2019 CarNichiWa.com