Lexus recently unveiled the compact hybrid LF-Ch Concept earlier this year at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The forward thinking hatchback is a preview as to what the future of luxury will be all about, set to compete head to head with other efficient space saving luxury vehicles like the the BMW 1 Series and Audi A3 when the LF-Ch makes its scheduled debut sometime in 2012.
In an official statement, Lexus General Manager Mark Templin said that "There is a group of buyers growing up now who won’t buy cars by the pound. We have already seen a structural shift to the smaller and lower-priced segments of the luxury market over the last couple years." The compact premium segment has been strong in congested urban areas for years, especially in Europe. The challenge that not only Lexus but a host of other automakers are setting for themselves is how to get the American market to warm up to the idea of paying mare and getting less. One of the steps that will most likely be taken when the LF-Ch becomes production ready is the use of a conventional power train in order to pass the savings along to the customer, but with any success you can expect Toyota to release a hybrid versions shortly after.