In an interview with Autocar, Lexus chief designer Yasuo Kajino explained the reasoning behind the spindle grille design that’s now seen on every Lexus:
“We have a challenge,” he explained. “Lexus is a young brand and our line-up is still very small compared to those of our rivals. We need to get noticed, and the way to do that is strong design.”
How does he judge what’s strong, as opposed to too strong? “We ask the customers,” he says. “It’s true that we have been told by our bosses to be bolder and more challenging, but the most important people to listen to are our customers – and they love what they see.”
The spindle grille has been constantly evolving since its introduction on the fourth-generation GS, and I believe the RC and (what I’ve seen of) the NX are the strongest designs yet.
When thinking about the spindle grille, I always go back to the quote from former Lexus Global general manager Karl Schlicht’s Lexus Enthusiast column:
“…it’s good there are people that don’t like our design – because good design will split opinion, and it will make you love something instead of just being OK with it.”