In an interview with Automotive News, Toyota president Akio Toyoda speaks frankly on the future direction of Lexus and what it means for the long-rumored seven-seat crossover:
The key words are “emotional and cool,” [Toyoda] said. The kind of cars being considered internally underscores the new outlook. “If it had been a few years ago, the vehicle symbolizing the new chapter would have been a station wagon,” Toyoda said.
“Dealers are telling me that all the time,” Toyoda said of requests for a seven-seat crossover. “My answer is: ‘That’s the Toyota brand.'”
Toyoda did not rule out a new seven-seater. But when asked whether he was putting the brakes on the project, he said: “At the moment, yes.”
Such a definitive statement is unusual from executives, but there’s no reason to believe Toyoda’s words are anything but true. In fact, this “emotional and cool” product philosophy has can be seen clearly in the introduction of the RC & NX last year — both vehicles could be said to favor form over function.
Obviously, this will not make the USA dealer body very happy, nor anyone waiting for a larger version of the RX. The one thing I don’t understand — if Lexus was able to make the new RX and new LX “emotional and cool”, what’s stopping them from doing the same with a three-row crossover?