One of the stars of this year’s Tokyo Motor Show is the Lexus LF-30 concept vehicle. It’s grabbing attention because of its very bold design, but also because this vehicle is previewing the brand’s delayed entry into the battery-electric vehicle arena.
The headliner of this concept is actually its powertrain. It isn’t just a traditional battery-electric layout. Lexus has slotted an in-wheel electric motor at all four corners. These motors are provided power from a massive 110-kWh battery pack. The combination promises 536 horsepower and 310 miles of range on the WLTP cycle.
A hefty battery is probably a necessity due to the laws of physics with this vehicle. The LF-30 is huge; coming in at a wheelbase comparable to the Lexus LS sedan and weighs 5,300 pounds. Despite its heft, Lexus says it can go from zero to 60 mph in 3.8 seconds, important for those who still want to actually drive. For those who don’t want to drive, the LF-30 is a fully-autonomous concept.
There’s some crazy, concept-specific features found in the LF-30 too. Lexus has built in a drone that will take cargo items from your house to the vehicle. Equally outlandish is a gesture-controlled glass roof that can display movies and navigation data for passengers to enjoy while reclined and letting the car drive itself.
It’s unlikely the LF-30 is previewing any specific future Lexus product. Instead, this is an exercise for Lexus to show off what it is capable of doing with electrification since the brand is arguably behind. Expect to see a production version of the LF-30’s powertrain sometime in the coming years as Lexus has promised its first battery-electric model sometime in the early 2020’s.