Lexus took the wraps off the fifth-generation LS at the beginning of the year, but it’s already showing us how its fullsize luxury sedan could evolve in the next decade. Introduced today at the Tokyo Motor Show, the LS+ concept is a sight to behold thanks to its gargantuan spindle grille incorporating a shutter that not only helps with the cooling, but it also boosts aerodynamics.
The high-tech headlights look futuristic and employ laser technology for some of the functions to guarantee superior illumination. The luxobarge sits on large 22-inch alloy wheels and uses cameras instead of conventional mirrors to enable a sleeker side profile also enhanced by the recessed door handles that sit flush with the body.
Judging by the overall shape, it appears the concept is largely based on the latest LS, but with some significant changes at the front and rear fascias. It’s quite imposing due to its sheer size and we’re particularly fond of the full-width taillights that should look spectacular at night, though we will never know as the LS+ will remain a concept.
It doesn’t come as a big surprise that Lexus has decided to implement its latest and greatest autonomous driving systems. The fullsize premium sedan uses the firm’s “Highway Teammate” automated driving technologies that will be implemented on a production car as early as 2020. A model featuring this kit will be smart enough to facilitate automated merging, lane changes and diverging, along with keeping the vehicle in its lane and at a safe distance from the car in front.
The LS+ has the ability to learn new things without having to drive to a Lexus dealer thanks to over-the-air updates by communicating with a data center feeding it information about the road up ahead. The concept is not destined for production as it’s simply a technology showcase to preview features scheduled to arrive around the end of the decade.
Gallery: 2017 Lexus LS+ concept
Lexus Premieres 'LS+ Concept' Flagship with Eye toward
Application of Automated Driving Technologies in 2020
Main features of the LS+ Concept
The LS+ Concept, equipped with state-of-the-art technologies, indicates the future image of the "LS" flagship sedan. With its advanced yet dignified styling and automated driving technologies planned for application in 2020, the LS+ Concept was developed as a model that symbolizes Lexus' vision.
Advanced yet dignified styling representing the future image of the "LS" flagship sedan
- As a concept vehicle that suggests the future look of the LS, the LS+ Concept produces a dignified expression as a flagship and indicates the direction of next-generation Lexus design based on Lexus' L-finesse*3 design philosophy. In addition to a boldly evolved Spindle Grille, with a large grille shutter that contributes to both improved cooling and enhanced aerodynamic performance, distinctive Lexus vision is expressed in the LS+ Concept through, among others, partly laser-lit headlamps and rear combination lamps, as well as through electronic side mirrors.
Latest automated driving technologies
- Lexus is pursuing a world in which all people can enjoy safe, smooth and untethered mobility through automated driving technologies. Specifically, it intends to make automated driving from entrance ramp to exit ramp on motor-vehicle-only roadways possible by using its "Highway Teammate" automated driving technologies, which, with an eye toward application in 2020, are featured on the LS+ Concept. On motor-vehicle-only roadways, through appropriate recognition, judgment and operation by onboard systems in response to actual traffic conditions, these technologies can enable automated merging, lane changes and diverging, as well as keep a vehicle in its lane and maintain vehicle-to-vehicle distance.
- The LS+ Concept can communicate with a data center to update its systems' software, allowing new functions to be added. Meanwhile, AI that learns from big data, including information on roads and surrounding areas, ensures a high level of automated driving. The car, which can learn and grow along with its users, represents a new age for the image of cars to which people can become emotionally attached.