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Old 9th December 2011, 10:58   #1
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Default Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

All future Toyotas will undergo sweeping changes in the design and styling department.

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The styling and design of future Toyotas will undergo a revolution under a plan hatched late last year by company president Akio Toyoda. Toyoda personally asked Tokuo Fukuichi to take over as chief officer in the design group and “short circuit” the company’s current design processes in an attempt to create “much more characterful” future models.

Fukuichi has been the guiding hand behind a new number of Toyota models, including the highly regarded 1989 Previa MPV. Talking to Autocar, Fukuichi said he had been asked to return to Toyota to produce “cool cars” for Toyota and Lexus.


Tokuo Fukuichi did not expand on when the first results of his efforts to revitalise Toyota’s styling would appear, but it is possible that the aggressive nose styling of the new Lexus GS was a late addition under his guidance.
The car is Lexus’s first in its new era of bold design as it moves away from being a “vanilla” brand.

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Complete story - Toyota plans design overhaul - Autocar.co.uk


Pics courtesy - Lexus GS 350 Home page, Wikipedia.
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Old 9th December 2011, 12:00   #2
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

About time! The latest Camry looks so dissapointing compared to the earlier ones...the new one looks like is was inspired by an Accord. About our Etios, the less said the better.
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Old 9th December 2011, 12:18   #3
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

Yeah please spice up Liva, Etios and Innova. The look plain ugly/utilitarian or whatever.

And the person who was in charge of design dept of Toyota till now, put him on a diet of boiled vegetables(not even salt) forever.
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Old 9th December 2011, 12:33   #4
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

Now it's Honda's turn to face the music, the latest Honda Civic has got a big thumbs down in the US so much so that Honda CEO has almost sounded apologetic at one of the press meets and has vowed to redeem the insipid design fast: so expect a design overhaul of the latest Civic pretty fast. Follow the link to read: Honda CEO takes responsibility for poor reception of redesigned Civic

Last edited by Durango Dude : 9th December 2011 at 13:01.
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Old 9th December 2011, 12:43   #5
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

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Originally Posted by download2live View Post
And the person who was in charge of design dept of Toyota till now, put him on a diet of boiled vegetables(not even salt) forever.
Mr. Toyoda gave a speech at the Tokyo Show recently where he said that, people who aren't passionate about cars headed important posts at Toyota and that was the reason for their 'soul-less' cars.
He promised to change all that.

Is this the beginning of the change?
Tokyo motor show 2011: Subaru BRZ and Toyota GT 86 - Telegraph
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Old 9th December 2011, 13:22   #6
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

Very interesting news and did someone say "About time!"

"Soul-less" - Mr Toyoda couldn't have chosen a more apt word.

How about VW? Haven't they done enough copies of "understated" look? How many more years can they pull it off?
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Old 9th December 2011, 14:50   #7
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

I actually like clean understated designs (including the Altis) and hope Toyota don't go all quirky. Toyoda has been promising better looking Toyotas for a decade now, and we'll believe him when we actually see the exciting designs from the big T.

If you ask me, it's Lexus that actually needs striking clothes for its cars. Most of them look far too staid in comparison to the Germans, and even the Americans. But for the mass market cars, Toyota should stick to inoffensive neutral designs.
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Old 9th December 2011, 16:48   #8
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

I actually loved the present camry looks when it came out first. But under pressure from competition it has aged quite fast, that said it has done quite well (not in India of course due to CBU pricing.)

Though I loved the Egg shaped Corolla design when it came out first, it has outlived it's utility and now it needs to be a lot more edgy in keeping with the times.

That said there is a consistency about Toyota Designs that you dont find with Honda with each varient being almost a fresh family start rather than a transition to the future.

The Lexus though are clearly the most understated in their segment and a wake up call was desperately needed.
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Old 9th December 2011, 16:56   #9
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I actually like clean understated designs (including the Altis) and hope Toyota don't go all quirky. Toyoda has been promising better looking Toyotas for a decade now, and we'll believe him when we actually see the exciting designs from the big T.

If you ask me, it's Lexus that actually needs striking clothes for its cars. Most of them look far too staid in comparison to the Germans, and even the Americans. But for the mass market cars, Toyota should stick to inoffensive neutral designs.
One of the few occasions that I'll disagree with you. Even I like clean and understated designs. Like new Jetta/ new 3 series/ current Civic etc. However, the Toyota designs are plain boring. The big difference between the Europeans and Toyota is that most Euro cars have solid build quality, so although some of them are plain jane, they look hefty. The Toyotas don't. And that makes them neither desirable, nor sturdy.

On top of it all, with the rise of Hyundai, I don't know how long will 'reliability' be a feature. Though I agree that the none of the Euros have a reputations of being trouble free. No surprise that Toyota looks at Hyundai as the biggest threat to its dominance.

And, yes, we'll believe it, when we see it.

Last edited by Abhi_Automobile : 9th December 2011 at 16:58.
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Old 9th December 2011, 17:09   #10
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

Somehow, until Etios and Liva happened, whenever you thought of Toyota, it was sophistication and elegance that came to your mind - Altis and Camry being good examples. Hence, probably, their cars were so well received despite the designs of their cars being duller than competition.

However, the market itself has matured so much that compromise is really not a virtue possessed by many buyers. To add to that, competition - eg. Honda with the new City, Hyundai with the fluidic concept, has raised its ante too.

If Toyota does add in more character to its line up, all the better!
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Old 9th December 2011, 19:53   #11
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

I hope as per the design strategy they tricle down design updates to Innova and Fortuner to make them more presentable. Needless to say, they must bring the updates to india as fast as possible.
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Old 9th December 2011, 20:06   #12
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

Well, it might work in favour of Toyota, if they decide to shed the vanilla-brand image by going for a complete make-over. It's much needed IMO. There are understated and clean cars, and then there are boring and uninspiring cars like the Etios/Liva (which honestly, is an attempt to make a car that ticks all the practical boxes). Looks, as we know, have no real practical purpose.

But the way a car is designed speaks a lot of the manufacturer behind it. If you make boring cars, you will be tagged a 'boring' manufacturer. It just shows their disinterest in making a car that appeals to the heart instead of solely the head. In fact, IMO, if the car looks boring, outdated and ugly, it just shows that the manufacturer is just into it for the business, and not driven by passion.

There is a fine line between understated and boring, mind you! And the Liva is not just boring, it doesn't look solid enough. It looks very tinny. Don't get me wrong, it's a fabulous product, albeit, a bit unfinished. Half-baked, if you will.

If Toyota decides to give design priority, hopefully, we'll see more cars designed on the lines of the stunning FT-86.

Designs can be appealing and neutral/inoffensive at the same time. The Altis being the prime-example.

Last edited by suhaas307 : 9th December 2011 at 20:11.
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Old 10th December 2011, 17:52   #13
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

The Toyota 86 is one fantastic design.
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Old 12th December 2011, 20:01   #14
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

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Originally Posted by scopriobharath View Post
I hope as per the design strategy they tricle down design updates to Innova and Fortuner to make them more presentable. Needless to say, they must bring the updates to india as fast as possible.
What do you find unpresentable about the current Fortuner's looks? In fact, I find the new one - coming in 2012 - looks softer.

Designers are making crossovers look butch and true SUVs look less 'in your face'. I understand why, but don't like the fact that most new SUV designs look somewhat neutral. If only they could bring back the looks of the old Patrol! Now that was a looker...
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Old 13th December 2011, 15:46   #15
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Default Re: Toyota plans design and styling overhaul

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Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
What do you find unpresentable about the current Fortuner's looks? In fact, I find the new one - coming in 2012 - looks softer.

Designers are making crossovers look butch and true SUVs look less 'in your face'. I understand why, but don't like the fact that most new SUV designs look somewhat neutral. If only they could bring back the looks of the old Patrol! Now that was a looker...
Fortuner is really a looker and its my next vehicle (Hopefully)

I feel that the Liva, Corolla look too plain jane, compared to a Verna. If they could add some flair to their cars that would be great. For an example the Acura portfolio looks good from the design department.
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