Saturday, November 9, 2013

The First Fruit of the BMW-Toyota Deal May be Hybridized Supercar – Next Lexus LFA?

BMW’s collaboration with Toyota brought the latter the promise of more exciting, engaging and emotionally stirring cars destined to change the staid perception the industry and buyers now have of it.

The first rumors we heard claimed that the manufacturers were already working on a spiritual successor to the Supra, that was reportedly going to ride on Bavarian underpinnings.

Now, after some downtime, it seems that the rumor mill is turning again, and Motoring reports that they have bigger plans than we originally thought  for their first lovechild. The Australian report bases its writing on “a source close to the two companies,” who informed them that the common plan is to make a Lexus-badged hybrid supercar that would build on the philosophy of the LFA supercar.

As I understand it, after having been leaders in all things hybrids for many years, they have lost their head start, especially in the ultra-high performance sector, where Ferrari, Porsche and McLaren have stepped their game up. Even BMW is ahead in this sector, with the i8, a hybrid that, at least for me, makes a lot of sense as a genuine sports car – too bad it’s so darn expensive for the actual numbers it puts down.

If this new LFA build on its predecessor’s philosophy, it might also incur the same penalty when it comes to pricing – it may, in fact, be even more expensive than the old car, if it uses the same costly carbon construction, plus the additional financial burden of the batteries, motors and controllers needed for smooth running.

By Andrei Nedelea

Note: 2007 Toyota FT-HS Concept pictured



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