Whole Lada Love: The Xray Concept SUV That Rocked Moscow
One of the most interesting things that came out of the 2012 Moscow Auto Show was a Russian-created concept vehicle that actually look decent. Usually, cars recreated in and for the Russian automotive market either ineffectively tried to capture the essence of 1950's cold war design, or some kind of misinterpretation of Parisian avant-garde fashion. We can thank Steve Mattin who used to head up design for Volvo Cars.
In case you are unfamiliar with Lada, it is owned by Russian car maker AutoVAZ (or as they spell it in Russian "AutoBA3", possibly drunk). Lada is known for making memorable models like the...well, there was the....I think they rebadged a FIAT? However, today is a brand new day in Russian, and it's growing car market is second in hotness only to China.
All the American car manufacturers are making big inroads into the Russian market, so native brands have to up the ante to stay afloat in the competitive see. That's where the Xray comes in. The concept's name comes from the distinct X-shaped front grille. It carries the some of the same X-shapes onto the lower chrome accents, wheels and decidedly edgy fender cutouts. Check out the strange door edge that they create. Crazy Ivan.
They outfitted the interior with leather upholstery in two-tone brown and brushed aluminum. The futuristic dash has some nice backlighting that flows out from behind the lower portion of the media controls surround. These touches don't look of Audi quality, but much more forward thinking than what one might expect from Lada at this point.
While there are no plans on actually producing this concept, Lada representatives did mention that it is a good example of the future styling direction of the brand. Expect to see similar look start to appear across the Lada range around 2014.
The other interesting fact about this concept is that, while American car companies leak concept info and images like wikileaks, but Lada managed to surprise everyone with this unveiling. Kudos to you Lada for genuinely making an impression on the auto show, rather than disappointing people who thought the concept images looked a lot better.
You can see more images of the Lada Xray in our galleries.