AutoShow concept cars hint at future design trends

The Rinspeed Oasis easily takes the title of "Weirdest Concept" at this year's AutoShow. It includes a small garden plot behind the windshield.

Toronto, Ontario — February 8, 2017 — Concept cars don’t usually make it into production, but they frequently provide hints as to the features and designs we’ll eventually see rolling down the road. The Canadian International AutoShow will feature a total of 16 concept cars, ranging from high-speed performance vehicles to SUVs intended for daily driving.

The Canadian International AutoShow opens February 17 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and runs until February 26. According to AutoShow management, manufacturers gauge public reaction to their designs and concept features as they head to the drawing board to create new models or refine designs for existing ones.

Collision Repair magazine’s Barett Poley will be on site at the Autoshow when it opens, so make sure to keep an eye on collisionrepairmag.com and bodyworxmag.com for the latest updates. In the meantime, let’s take an advance look at the concept cars hitting the Autoshow.

Rinspeed: Oasis

The Oasis from Rinspeed is the undisputed weirdest concept vehicle at this year’s Autoshow. It’s a self-driving electric vehicle designed for use in urban areas. Among its odder features is an integrated small garden plot behind the windshield. There’s no way to tell if that feature will ever make it into production, but we eagerly look forward to the first time a parts order includes a 50 lb. bag of potting soil.

Aston Martin: AM-RB 001

The Aston Martin-Red Bull concept hypercar AM-RB 001 will make its first appearance in North America—and global auto show debut—at the Canadian International AutoShow. The unique AM-RB 001, introduced in July at the Aston Martin headquarters in Gaydon, England, is an unprecedented fusion of form and function the likes of which has never before been seen in a road-legal vehicle.

Codenamed AM-RB 001, the hypercar uses a lightweight carbon fibre frame and the suspension system features innovative technology and employs principles honed by Adrian Newey, Red Bull Racing’s Chief Technical Officer, over his 30-year career.

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Aston Martin’s AM-RB 001 makes its first North American appearance at the {source}<br/>{/source}AutoShow.  


Toyota: FCV Plus Hydrogen Fuel Cell Concept

Toyota’s FCV Plus rivals the Rinspeed Oasis in weird looks, but we suspect we’ll see hydrogen fuel cells in wide numbers long before gardening while driving becomes commonplace. The FCV Plus has its own hydrogen tank, enabling it to generate electricity directly from hydrogen and transform it into a stable source of electric power for use at home or away.

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Toyota’s odd-looking FCV Plus concept vehicle boasts its own onboard hydrogen tank.  


Acura: Precision Concept

With an emphasis on high-contrast details and the intersection of modern, sheer surfaces and muscular, organic sculpting, the Acura Precision Concept communicates Acura’s focus on performance and prestige through its ultra-low and wide stance, long dash-to-axle ratio, deeply sculpted surfaces and the debut of a new Diamond Pentagon grille. The Acura Precision Concept’s crouched and athletic stance is further emphasized by its deeply sculpted side surfaces pouring over swelling rear wheel arches covering 22-inch wheels and tires. The forward-looking concept also features signature lighting designs in front with its Jewel Constellation LED headlights composed of organically arranged fractal elements, and in back with floating LED taillights.

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Acura’s Precision Concept.  


Buick: Avista Concept

The Avista concept is a 2+2 coupe featuring sleek, sweeping proportions. A 400-horsepower twin-turbocharged V6 drives the rear wheels and a driver-focused cockpit offers a comfortable, connected centre of control. The Avista’s uninterrupted body lines stretch front to rear, suggesting motion. In this it resembles Buick designs introduced on the Avenir concept and carried into production on the 2017 LaCrosse.

The Avista lacks conventional B-pillars, enhancing the flowing profile. The interior features intense technical and surfaces details, including 3D-printed door and seat trim to a future vision of Buick’s IntelliLink, with touchscreen controls on a widescreen instrument panel display.

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Buick’s Avista concept does away with conventional B-pillars.  

Cadillac: Escala Concept

The Cadillac Escala features RWD-centric mixed-material construction and a handcrafted interior. Inside you’ll find an OLED touch screen spanning the front console, a central module control that responds to your voice, touch and gestures, and a rear seat connectivity system. The Escala also offers a robust performance system featuring a powerful 4.0L V8 engine.

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Cadillac’s Escala concept uses mixed-material construction.  

Genesis: New York Concept

Genesis is the luxury division of Hyundai. The New York Concept is a luxury sports sedan that hints at future design directions for the company. Overall, the vehicle uses similar design principles to the company’s earlier Vision G concept and its production vehicle, the Genesis G90. Inside, the concept car combines advanced technology with luxury, contrasting innovative electronics against finely-crafted materials.

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The New York Concept from Genesis, Hyundai’s luxury division.  


Honda: Civic Type R Prototype

The radical Honda Civic Type R Prototype builds on the low and wide proportion of the new Civic Hatchback and is enhanced by muscular body styling and modifications to aid aerodynamic performance. The exterior is wrapped in a highly reflective, finely-grained brushed aluminum-effect finish, which is unique to the prototype car. At the front, the aggressive fascia is accentuated with a winged carbon fibre splitter and red accent line. Additional slatted ducts add width to the fascia, and diamond-mesh inserts fill the sculpted air intakes.

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Honda’s Civic Type R Prototype features a unique brushed aluminum-effect finish.  


INFINITI: QX50 Concept

The QX50 Concept showcases INFINITI’s vision for a next-generation mid-size premium crossover. Demonstrating how the design of the 2016 QX Sport Inspiration, its conceptual forebear, could be adapted for a future production model, INFINITI’s latest concept is the next step toward the company’s future autonomous drive support technologies. Central to the strategy for the development of all future INFINITI autonomous drive support systems, they ensure the driver retains ultimate control over their vehicle. The QX50 Concept also illustrates a potential application for INFINITI’s advanced Variable Compression Turbo (VC-Turbo) engine, offering drivers a powertrain that adapts to offer both power and efficiency.

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INFINITI says its QX50 is the next step towards its future autonomous driving tech.  

Lincoln: Navigator Concept

Lincoln’s design team drew inspiration from luxury sailboats and yachts when designing the new concept. This influenced everything from the clean, modern lines and Storm Blue paint on the exterior that mimics the grays and blues of sea and sky, to the teak finishes, custom gear and wardrobe management system found inside.

The Navigator Concept features Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection, which uses radar and camera technology to scan the road ahead. In the cabin, head restraint monitors provide passengers Wi-Fi connectivity, allowing them to wirelessly share music and content from personal devices. For drivers, a large panel screen clearly displays key information. The display can be customized from a digital touch screen housed in the centre stack.

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Lincoln’s Navigator concept.  

Mitsubishi: GT-PHEV

A next generation crossover, the Mitsubishi GT-PHEV concept features advanced, and proprietary, electric and all-wheel control technologies, a 2.5-litre gasoline engine and three electric motors (one unit at the front and two at the rear), a 25-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack, estimated electric-only range of approximately 120 km, and a total cruising range of nearly 1,200 km and CO2 emissions of less than 26 g/km.

Seen at the Canadian International AutoShow for only the third time in the world, the GT-PHEV shows off the company’s new signature Dynamic Shield front design concept. The GT-PHEV also employs the latest in connected car technology that feeds the car route information as well as data on weather and road surface conditions acquired from information networks and onboard sensors and cameras.

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Mitsubishi’s GT-PHEV.  

Nissan: Vmotion 2.0 Concept

The Nissan Vmotion 2.0 is the evolution of the “V-motion” front design signature seen on many current Nissans, including the Murano mid-size crossover and Maxima 4-door sports car. Vmotion 2.0 takes the design a step further by forming an intelligent three-dimensional shape to create the volume and architecture of the vehicle. In this concept, the V-motion grille becomes the main fuselage. Providing hints at the future of “Nissan Intelligent Mobility,” the lighting around the front Nissan emblem glows to indicate when the vehicle is in ProPILOT mode, which is envisioned to provide autonomous driving support technology on urban roads and at intersections. The vehicle also features wrap-around rear glass and a floating C-pillar.

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Nissan’s Vmotion 2.0 concept features ProPILOT mode to support autonomous driving.  

Lexus: LF-FC Concept and UX Concept

Lexus is showing off two concept vehicles at this year’s AutoShow. The new LF-FC flagship concept vehicle was first revealed at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show but the AutoShow marks its Canadian debut. The Lexus LF-FC is Lexus’ first-ever fuel cell system.  

The Lexus UX Concept also makes it Canadian debut at this year’s AutoShow. Front fenders and the roof bar penetrate the cabin, and the rear passenger compartment is styled as a soft-lounge sofa that wraps around the rear-hinged back doors.

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The Lexus LF-FC is the company’s first fuel cell vehicle.  


Subaru: Viziv-7 Concept

Subaru VIZIV-7 has full three-row capability and uses Subaru’s DYNAMIC x SOLID design philosophy. According to the company, the concept shows the size direction of the all-new three-row midsize SUV that will be introduced to the North American market in early 2018.

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Subaru’s Viziv-7 concept vehicle, the company’s first attempt at a three-row SUV{source}<br/>{/source} since discontinuing the Tribeca in 2014. The company says it provides size {source}<br/>{/source}hints regarding three SUVs Subaru will debut in 2018.  

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