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by Michael Hines
Lexus is attempting to reinvent itself as a luxury car maker whose models are both sporty and green.
Lexus has never really been known as a maker of sporty cars. The LFA was a major step forward in the sexy department, but it's still not enough to change the brand's vanilla image. Fortunately for Lexus lovers, the company has been hard at work churning out sporty and green concept cars. Combine Lexus' own efforts with the work of freelance designers and you've got a company that looks to be going from bland to bad arse in no time. The concepts featured are not ones you would see in your grandpa's driveway, and that's a good thing.
To say the Aileron is ahead of its time would be an understatement of epic proportions. Jiyun Seo's concept has body panels made out of bio steel - a material not currently in existence - designed to change shape depending on the speed. Here's hoping Lexus decides to show the Aileron at Geneva in 2050.
Rumor has it that the Lexus LF-LC pictured here is going from concept to reality. The LF-LC is a hybrid 2+2 sports coupe that will be slotted in below the LFA in terms of pricing and power. Hopefully the production LF-LC will include the concept's 12.3-inch touchscreen navigation system and keyboard.
The Lexus LF-GH (Lexus Future Grand-Touring Hybrid) is not nearly as sporty as the LF-LC, but it's still no slouch in the looks department. The hybrid sedan made its debut at the 2011 New York Auto Show and was described by Lexus officials as having a body designed to be purposefully contradictory. Contradictory or not, it looks like Lexus' spindle grille is here to stay.
Toyota's luxury arm is known for its affinity for hybrids, and that love extends beyond cars as evidenced by this hybrid bicycle concept. The bike is made from carbon fiber and is powered by a 240-Watt electric motor that gets its juice from a 25.9-volt lithium battery pack. Lexus reportedly has no plans to put the bike into production.