Posted Apr 16th 2012 3:59PM
For a car that still hasn't donned its new body yet, not even under copious camouflage, there's been chatter about the 2014 Lexus IS for an awful long time. We saw the first mule 18 months ago, and it was about that time that intel predicted Lexus' next-generation small sport sedan would run on a four-door version of the Scion FT-86 chassis and be followed by a coupe.
The snappers at CarPix caught a modern mule out on test, the only change so far from 2010 being the panels obscuring the front intakes and a roll of packing tape applied to some panel gaps. The car we eventually see will continue the sportification of the Lexus brand in both appearance and capability. As well, the IS-F begat by this IS, having been planned for and developed from the beginning, should really show us what an M3-fighting Lexus can do.
Posted Oct 13th 2011 4:44PM
Remember how the Lexus LFA race car debuted long before we ever saw the final production car? Well, it appears that parent company Toyota is planning to pull a similar stunt with its
FT-86 Scion FR-S coupe.
Here, we see a racier FR-S prototype being prepped for this weekend's German VLN race at the Nürburgring. Even with the revised wheels, front fascia, and Subaru STI-embarrassing wing out back, we can still get a good glimpse of what the production FR-S will look like when it debuts at the Tokyo Motor Show next month.
We'll have more details after this weekend's activities, and we're eagerly awaiting the official FR-S reveal in just a few weeks.
Posted Sep 19th 2011 12:32PM
We spy, with the lens of our spy guy, a rather unique Lexus LS that's taken to the track. Spotted lapping Germany's Nürburgring, this particular LS is wearing puffed-out fenders, a strongly styled decklid spoiler, what appears to be a faux nose hiding new bodywork, deep side skirts and a pair of vents on the hood. Something sporty is afoot, and we're itching to know more.
Toyota is clearly testing a super sporty version of its flagship luxury sedan. What's not clear, however, is what exactly is going on underneath the bodywork. We do know that this is work of the automaker, and not an aftermarket tuner testing some new performance parts out. The license tags on the car are from Cologne, and the car was spotted at the automaker's garage nearby.
Could we be staring at a Lexus LS F in disguise? The automaker has hinted in the past at such a car coming to market over the years, and this luxury sedan is certainly wearing some athletic upgrades. Funny, we thought for sure that a variant of the new GS was going to be next in line to get the F Sport treatment. Could this just be a one-off piece for the Tokyo Motor Show or Tokyo Auto Salon, or is it indicative of something more?
Final amusing note: The wheelman at the helm of this mystery "LS F' must be new to the 'Ring – that giant "L" on the rear window indicates he's a Learner.
Posted Jul 30th 2011 9:22AM
Toyota was busy introducing all flavors of the 2012 Toyota Camry to the media earlier this week, but since all that stuff's embargoed, there's not much to tell. Yet. But what isn't under embargo is this collection of spy photos showing the 2012 Camry Hybrid in its birthday suit while shooting a television commercial.
The new Camry's familiar roofline communicates practicality overall, but the updated sheetmetal has more crisp lines, with new fascias fore and aft. The hybrid's grille treatment apes that of the facelifted Highlander Hybrid, and yes, those headlights are indeed the ones Akio Toyoda teased a few weeks ago.
In a nutshell, it's still a conservative look, but decidedly less frumpy than before. Now, let's see what changes Toyota's made below the surface to bring the Camry in line with the current midsize family-sedan competition.
Scion FR-S spy shots – Click above for high-res image gallery
Adding the body kit makes the FR-S look much more like the concept car that debuted in New York, and while that big rear spoiler will certainly look more appropriate on the Subaru-badged version of the FT-86 joint venture, it still makes us swoon. (Supra Turbo, anyone?)
We fully expect to see more of the Toyobaru rear-wheel-drive sport coupe as it goes through the full gauntlet of summer testing. Stay tuned for more information as the swirly camouflage gets peeled away.
Spy Shots: Scion FR-S – Click above for high-res image gallery
We've been waiting, rather patiently we might add, for Toyota to bring out its latest sports car for what seems like millenniums. This new coupe will be wearing a Scion badge and go by the name FR-S, which stands for "front-engine, rear-wheel-drive sport." It's the "R" and "S" that has enthusiasts eager to lay eyes on this Scion in the flesh. A concept version was trotted out at the 2011 New York Auto Show, but spy photographers managed to capture a camo-covered development mule adding "Germany" to the stamps in its passport book.
What specific area of Germany, you ask? Just a little town called Nürburg, which is home to a slice of asphalt you may have heard of before. This means Toyota engineers are fine-tuning the sports car, and theNürburgring is sure to provide lots of data points for them to dissect. Data points make engineers happy, and happy engineers make fun-to-drive cars.
Looking over the pics, it appears those engineers have ditched the concept's rear diffuser but added in a rear spoiler. We can't wait to see what else is in store once that swirls come off.