Motor show debut for new vehicle concepts and technologies
- Toyota to present five key concept vehicles at Tokyo Motor Show on theme of Ecology and Emotion
- Fine-X pioneers fuel cell hybrid power
- Debut for the i-swing, transport for one that opens up new personal mobility opportunities
- New Estima MPV, featuring latest high-efficiency hybrid system with electric four-wheel drive
- FSC blends passenger car style with enhanced MPV flexibility
- Youth-focused bB brings club culture to the highway
Toyota is taking the opportunity of the Tokyo Motor Show to highlight groundbreaking designs and technologies in a series of key concept vehicles. The powerful line-up demonstrates the company’s commitment to designing and engineering cars that address environmental concerns, while retaining the essential emotional appeal of being fun to drive and a pleasure to use.
Retaining the theme of Ecology and Emotion from last year’s show, Toyota will unveil the Fine-X, a compact hatchback powered by a fuel cell hybrid system, and the i-swing, individual transport that is almost the automotive equivalent of a suit of clothes. Other concepts provide cues for near-future developments, including the Estima MPV equipped with a new high-efficiency hybrid powertrain; the FSC, which bridges the divide between cars and MPVs with an ultra-flexible interior; and the outrageous bB, a sound system on wheels.
The Tokyo Motor Show runs from October 22 to November 6 at the International Convention Complex in Chiba.
The Toyota Fine-X provides a glimpse of the radical opportunities that a hybrid fuel cell system can provide, delivering strong environmental performance and exceptional manoeuvrability through four-wheel independent drive and the use of a large steering angle mechanism that allows the vehicle to turn on the spot.
The Fine-X follows Toyota’s ‘vibrant clarity’ design principles and has external dimensions slightly greater all round than the current generation Yaris. Interior space, however, is closer to that of an Avensis. The interior is designed to be welcoming, with variable lighting intensity and power seats that automatically move in and out of the car through the wide-opening gullwing doors.
Four-wheel independent drive with in-wheel electric motors and four-wheel independent steering with a large angle steering mechanism make the Fine-X exceptionally easy to manoeuvre. The car can rotate on the spot, execute tight U-turns and move into tight parking spots with ease. Driving is also made easier and safer thanks to the use of peripheral monitors, giving the driver a view right around the vehicle.
The hybrid system, combining a hydrogen fuel cell and electric motors, ensures strong environmental performance, while Toyota pursues a carbon-neutral profile for the vehicle by using plant-based materials in the construction of internal and external components. The source plants absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as they grow and, even if the components are burned when the vehicle reaches the end of its life, no additional CO2 is emitted.
The Toyota i-swing is a vehicle designed for one that allows drivers to express their individuality. It has a ‘wearable’ quality, almost like an item of clothing: its low-resistance urethane body is covered in cloth to soften any impact, should it bump into anyone on the street, and an LED panel can be customised to suit the owner’s mood.
When operating on a busy street, i-swing runs on two wheels, taking up little pavement space. If desired, it can move at walking pace, so the driver can keep up a conversation with someone moving on foot.
When you need to move more quickly, i-swing can change to three-wheel mode, with stick and pedal controls for a fresh cornering action that responds to shifts in the driver’s body weight, rather like moving on skis.
Using artificial intelligence, i-swing learns and stores data on the habits and preferences of its users to make it a highly personalised form of transport.
The Toyota Estima full-size MPV (equivalent to the European market Toyota Previa) is being shown as a new design concept equipped with Toyota’s latest hybrid system, THS II, and electric four-wheel drive.
The previous generation Estima was the first MPV to be offered as a production hybrid power model. With THS II, the new concept uses an exhaust heat recovery system to help further reduce carbon dioxide and other emissions.
It delivers the quiet and smooth acceleration characteristic of hybrid power vehicles, with added dynamic performance through Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM), which seamlessly co-ordinates braking and handling systems performance in all driving conditions. Combined with E-four electric four-wheel drive, it ensures higher levels of drivability.
The Toyota FSC is a new-category model that evolves and combines the elegant shape of a saloon with a functionality of an MPV. Spacious enough to accommodate four adults in comfort, it features an electrically-adjustable rear section to adapt the interior configuration for different passenger or load-carrying needs.
The innovative ease-of-use features include a smart rear hatch and touch-operated functions, while an innovative interior lighting design gives the car a distinctive and comfortable ambience.
The bB concept is where nightclub and car combine. Its youth-focused, edgy design is matched by a mighty nine-speaker sound system with surround DSP (digital signal processing) and lighting that flashes in time to the beat.