Lexus LF-CC Concept Car Preview

The LF-CC Concept Car looks ready to roll – if Lexus decides to build it.

John Scott Lewinskiby John Scott Lewinski

Lexus unveils concept cars unlike any other luxury or high performance automaker in the world.

When most car companies introduce a concept design at an international auto show or press event, a strange and fictional creation hits the stage. A concept car is futuristic and showy – in some cases, flashy and silly. Millions of dollars in research and development money goes into building a car that looks like the vehicle of tomorrow (even if concept cars rarely get built with much resemblance to the original showy design).

But, when Lexus premieres a new proposed design – like the LF-CC Concept Car they first introduced at the 2012 Paris Motor Show – it looks like it could be on the road tomorrow. The early look at the LF-CC reveals a car that looks every bit road worthy right now – at least from the front. It displays an evolution of the L-finesse design language currently used by Lexus and features the signature spindle grille similar to what we’re already seeing on vehicles like the 2012 Lexus GS or what we will see on future Lexus D-Segment vehicles.

There’s two ways to look at a concept car design like the LF-CC. Some will say it’s Lexus being Lexus again. They’re playing it safe, being deliberately conservative and flirting with stodgy boredom by not showing off a concept called the MMMq that sports missile launchers.

But, alternatively, car lovers can give Lexus credit for unpacking a concept that’s not too far afield from reality and serving up a clearer vision of where the automaker is really headed.

From the side or the rear, the Lexus LF-CC Concept edges more toward that futuristic, showy look I described earlier. With a low cockpit and sweeping bullet lines to a compact back end, the design looks like the cars sci-fi movies of the 1990s said we’d already be driving these days.

A three LED-projector headlamp design is housed in the narrow gap between the lower and upper fender surfaces, without a conventional, one-piece cover. Independent Daytime Running Lights are integrated into the upper bumper surface to complete the new design.

The LF-CC would offer a new 2.5 liter, fully hybrid powertrain with class-leading CO2 emissions. Driving enthusiasts should be pleased that the LF-CC would come standard with rear wheel drive – packing a little taste of performance car pedigree into a luxury model.

I doubt there’s much chance, this exact design will hit the streets. While not on insane fringe by an means, it’s just a little too sporty and showy for the Lexus line as it now stands. Let’s put it this way: As designed, the LF-CC looks hotter than the Lexus flagship supercar, the LFA. And nothing mass produced by the automaker will be allowed to live that can out-flirt the LFA.

But Toyota’s richer sister is using the LF-CC to announce the market launch of a mid-size coupe in the near future.