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Holy Wow! Lexus LF-C2 Teasing RC350 Convertible Ahead of LA Show

  On first glance at this exciting teaser image – we thought for a moment this might be a drop-top LF-A like seen below in the previous Concept Flashback article. But on further analysis, we have a strong hunch that this is the new Lexus RC in convertible form. Very exciting – stay tuned for the full details. What do we know so far from transparency analysis? It is definitely an RC. But it is not the RC-F based on the nose, which does not show the larger hood bulge of the RC-F. The Lexus RC350 Convertible and even an …

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Concept to Reality – 2011 Kia GT Was Stunning; Too Bad About The K900

Looking over the details of the gorgeous 2011 Frankfurt concept from Kia, the GT, really triggers frustration. Sure, some of these ideas like the C-pillar and roof accent made it into the latest Optima — but the most desirable rear-drive nature was lost on that front-drive model. Lost forever? One would think — until the K900 flagship debuted this year with pricing from $60,000, rear-drive, and a V8 engine. But where the GT concept is artful in its form, the K900 is a blob of vaguely-melted shapes, like a plus-size model who is not afraid to show some skin. The …

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Concept To Reality – Part Two – 2007 Lexus LF-A Roadster

PART TWO: THE ROADSTER Why show a nearly-identical roadster version of the LF-A Concept for the 2007 show season? Mainly, to show the potential of the front-engine supercar design, as well as to prove that the idea was still progressing nicely on the road to production. In lipstick red, the LF-A Roadster certainly got hearts racing. People we palpably excited for the car at this point — but would have to wait another two years for the production coupe to drop its silk robes. 2007 Lexus LF-A Roadster   PREVIOUS How time flies! Versus the 2010 Lexus LFA production supercar, …

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Concept to Reality: 2015 Ford Mustang Sketches That Led To Gorgeous New Ponycar

We really like that Ford has been releasing so much information on the design development of their models. A big part of the One Ford program means getting these core models absolutely correct — but such success in styling is not easy to guarantee. So how did Ford get to the 2015 Mustang design? Looking at some of the ideas behind the final look of the Mustang is interesting — with bits from various sketches coming together to form a clean and holistic look for the car. One of the biggest challenges is getting the nose right. In order to …

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2011 Peugeot HX1 Concept Shows Sumptuous Detailing and Scale, But Front-Drive Proportions

A low, long and and wide super-wagon! YES! Is there anything not to like? Very little, in the case of the gorgeous HX1 concept from Frankfurt 2011. The car is part of a numerous series of concepts exploring and fleshing out the latest Peugeot design themes – ideas that are in a final point of production-readiness via the latest 508 RXC and 508 Estate. But while the exterior panels of the crash-safety-obsessed French car brands can easily be re-stamped in sexier shapes, the underlying platforms will require a much bigger overhaul. Therefore, even the fantasy HX1 rides with a far …

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Concept to Reality – Acura TLX Prototype vs. TLX GT Racer vs Real 2015 TLX Production Car

Updated June 18, 2014 Yes, yes — the real TLX is out already so this preview concept is not very relevant anymore. But it is very attractive and desirable, in a way that bodes really well for the upcoming production TLX as a 2015 model from Acura. We have compared the two in detail (prototype versus real thing) and the sheetmetal is (almost) all shared between the two road cars. The shaping of the rear fender strake in profile is less artful in the production model. The TLX GT takes a wide-body fender treatment and has pronounced air vent cut-outs …

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Concept to Reality — Design Analysis — Hyundai HCD-14 to the All-New 2015 Genesis — Plus US Pricing and Equipment

Last week we explored the fresh and innovative appearances of the Hyundai Intrado concept SUV, HCD-9 Coupe concept and the PassoCorto sports car concept — with generous praise for the ideas and execution shown in all three.   Will that gravy train keep rolling with the new Genesis? Unfortunately, after comparing the two side-by-side and in detail: the answer is a firm “No.”   Overall, the transition from HCD-14 to Genesis loses all of the concept’s unique surfaces, elegance,  and all semblance of premium appeal. The artful and contemporary sweeping shapes of the HCD-14 are all completely gone; replaced by …

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Concept to Reality: Infiniti Essence vs. Emerg-E vs. Q30 vs. Next Q60 Coupe?

Very exciting, fast moves from Infiniti this year.   While the name change is still being fine-tuned for its roll-out beyond the Q50 and the new QX60 Hybrid — all the foundation building blocks are in place for an all-star mid-term future for the company. In short: Fast luxury cars, made well. Now even more beautiful!   More beautiful in large part from the Infiniti design skunkwerks in uptown Paddington. For this Concept to Reality article, the Concept Q30 from Frankfurt 2013 will step in as the near-production example of these design ideas. The Q30 looks great. It is confusing …

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Concept to Reality – 2006 SAAB Aero-X to 2013 SAAB 9-5 Turbo6 Aero XWD

Concept to Reality – 2006 SAAB Aero-X to 2013 SAAB 9-5 Need a reason to save SAAB? Here it is: the 2006 Aero-X concept — which presented a number of jaw-dropping ideas for a potential Swedish GT supercar. This template and aesthetic was the guiding light for the production 9-5 that never quite made it to volume production. So how close is the Aero-X to the doomed 9-5? You be the judge — but we’d say: very, very close. Front Angles Front Three-Quarter Angles Side Profiles INTERIORS Rear Three-Quarter Angles Rear Angles  


Concept Flashback: 2007 BMW CS

This design is still really stunning. Much of the purity from this nose, in particular, seems long gone from the latest 6-series and 7-series. Then again, many great ideas were instantly frozen between 2007 and the present, so these themes may crop up again in the future. At least one aspect of this design seems to have been embraced by many non-BMW brands: the rear arch strike line. In various forms, it populates many other cars after six years since this concept’s debut. None bring quite the elegance and relaxed attitude of this show car, however, to these eyes.

Concept to Reality, Honda Shows Good Design Momentum

Concept to Reality: Honda Shows Good Design Momentum with Vezel and FCEV

Honda Design. Not two words that make sense together, but that seems to be changing. The latest concepts show great direction, and movement to a new brand style. This is great news for the new, production-ready Honda Vezel crossover, which carries much of the panache of the Urban SUV Concept. But it is even better news for the forthcoming NSX. Whether an Acura or Honda, the bold vision is a relief versus some – private – concerns about the prototype’s appearance. 2013 Honda FCEV Concept 2013 Honda Urban SUV Concept Honda Vezel Hybrid   Honda Vezel Hybrid Official FCEV Release …

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Concept to Reality: 2013 Ford Atlas vs. Super Chief vs. F-250 Super Duty Platinum

Past, Present and Future Super Duty Fords The truck business is becoming cut-throat competitive. Even after decades of loyalty battles, mud-slinging with the Calvin peeing on _____ stickers, and the constant one-ups-man-ship in tow ratings: things are getting seriously rough out there. Following huge, huge investments from Toyota and Nissan earlier in the 2000s: executive management is getting impatient with sub-100,000-units annual sales totals for the Tundra and Titan. But what to do? The Ram, Chevrolet and Ford trucks are continually improving, and seem forever a step ahead of the somewhat boring second-tier trucks on the market. No where is …

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