As the world watches the Volkswagen shift its focus to mainstream/beige Corolla and Camry fighters, Akio Toyoda, the company’s chief officer asked Tokuo Fukuichi to head Toyota’s design group.
Fukuichi has been responsible for vehicles such as the ‘89 Previa MPV and has returned to make some changes, for example, he suggests that he wants to “…establish an image of eco and fun, not just eco. [For Toyota hybrids]” Fukuichi also hinted that he had been asked to produce “cool cars” for Lexus and Toyota.
The message is not just coming from the ‘yota’s Japanese end: “We’ve been vanilla long enough. If some buyers don’t like the new [Lexus] GS’s design, that means we’re doing the right thing.” These are the word’s coming from Andy Pfeifferhorn, Vice President of Lexus Europe.
Rumor has it that the new Lexus GS 350 is one of the tangible examples of Fukuichi’s work. In conclusion, it almost seems that as VW tries for 10 million cars per year, Toyota is interested in a little piece of Europe/VW’s former turf as suggested by Fukuichi: “We have a problem in that many of our cars have good proportions but they are not memorable. Too much time is spent on refinement. It is good for quality, but it does not make for character.”
– By: Sawyer Sutton