Lexus and Infiniti came into existence in the same year (1989) as new premium brands created by Toyota and Nissan, respectively. It was the next step in the growth of the companies which had gained increasing popularity in America from the 1970s onwards. However, Toyota and Nissan were well known for their reliability, build quality, economical operation and durability; they were not yet in the premium class. Wisely, both companies created new brands when they decided to venture into the premium segment and challenge the Europeans for a share of the segment.

Although the two brands have been sold in other countries in the past decade, North America remains the one where they do best, so it’s natural that when a new model is to be launched, it will be on that continent, usually preceded by a concept car that serves as a preview.

For this year’s North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, both brands will be displaying concept cars that are almost certain to be the next generation of existing models, if not additions to the range.

Front lights and rear view of the Lexus concept car

Lexus will reveal the LF-1 Limitless which is a striking new concept that reflects the next genre in luxury crossover vehicles. Created by Calty, its advanced design studio in California which began operations in 1973, the LF-1 Limitless is a flagship crossover that Lexus says redefines the boundaries of luxury.

Infiniti’s concept previews a new generation of the brand’s vehicles and will show the first manifestation of its new form language. The concept car will take the traditional sedan architecture to its next stage of evolution.

“As a new wave of technologies begins to take shape, our Detroit concept car heralds a new generation of Infiniti. A seamless and stunning new design philosophy demonstrating Infiniti artistry in the new age of autonomy and breakthrough drivetrains,” said Alfonso Albaisa, Senior Vice-President Global Design.

“In Detroit, shown alongside Prototype 9, Infiniti aims to showcase a new elegance, one that strikes harmony and simplicity in a complex world. With its long cabin, balanced proportions and muscular stance, the concept car heralds in a new era for Infiniti models,” he added.

[Chips Yap]

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