concept cars

concept cars

  A concept car is a car prototype made to showcase a new vehicle's styling, technology, and overall design before production. They are often shown at motor shows to gauge customer reaction to new and radical designs which may or may not have a chance of being produced.

The growing market for up-scale sedans has prompted a lot of automakers to step up their game in order to keep up with the times. European car brands have no need to worry because these models are already part of their vehicular lineups.

But for an American brand, like Ford , looking to gain some traction in a market ripe with premium competitors, it needed to step up.

And step up it did.

At the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show , Ford will introduce the Mondeo Vignale Concept, a premium and luxurious take of its European midsize sedan . The concept is Ford’s answer to calls from customers asking to see if the Blue Oval can offer them a vehicle that answers their checklist of styling and quality, advanced technology, and exclusivity.

For the most part, Ford has answered that call with the intention of bringing the Vignale Concept to production in the near future, making it only a matter of time before it enters a market ripe with competition and stakes a name for itself.

Click past the jump to read about the 2014 Ford Mondeo Vignale Concept

Posted on by Simona  

The new-generation Maserati Quattroporte made its debut at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show, and now the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show will bring us the Quattroporte Ermenegildo Zegna Limited Edition — a concept car that brings an "unique new look in color scheme, materials and finish." According to Maserati, a production version is expected to arrive in 2014.

As it name suggests, the concept was designed in cooperation with Ermenegildo Zegna — an Italian luxury fashion house, specialized in men’s clothing. The concept is painted in a special finish that uses ultra-fine aluminum pigments and simulates the fluidity and purity of metal. For the interior, the concept adds classical warm hues, like moka and greige — key colors in Zegna’s latest men’s fashion collections.

Maserati wrapped the seats, door panels and roof lining in genuine soft leather, while Zegna added a velvet-smooth, bright fabric.

Click past the jump to read more about the standard Maserati Quattroporte.

Toyota’s promise of showcasing its Le Mans hybrid technology on a road car will come to fruition at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show , as it prepares to unveil the Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept.

This new concept may seem unimposing when you read that it is based on a Yaris — blah — but save your judgement for something else because this is one sick miniature hatchback. With a TS030 -inspired drivetrain in tow that cranks out in excess of 400 ponies, this is not your typical grocery getter.

This bad boy will likely give plenty of supercars a run for their money while hauling a few gallons of milk, a loaf of bread and laundry detergent all at the same time. All of the details are not available yet, but Toyota has released all that we need to know to be able to chalk this one up and a certified bad-ass.

Toyota will unveil the concept on September 10th at 12:45 p.m. in Hall 8.

Updated 9/4/2013: Toyota has just released more images of the Yaris Hybrid-R. You can see them all in the gallery.

Click past the jump to read about the Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R

If Lexus wanted to make a splash at Frankfurt with its LF-NX Concept, it sure did pick a good design to get it done.

Redefining — yet again — what we’ve come to expect from its new and drastically improved design language, the Japanese automaker has once again thrown us all for a loop with its latest concept vehicle.

Suffice to say, the LF-NX Concept looks like its going to be one of the most popular cars that will be at Frankfurt next week. It looks absolutely stunning, combining its mean visage with a low-lying profile that makes you wonder if this is an actual crossover or an oversized coupe.

Obviously, it’s the former, but the mere fact that there are hints of sportiness and aggression on the LF-NX Concept that are normally attributed to coupes goes to show the lengths Lexus is taking these days to completely change the way we think about the brand moving forward.

Updated 1/29/14: At the 2014 NAIAS, Lexus revealed an image of the LF-NX that looks nearly nothing like the concept that we saw earlier. This leads us to believe that this is a preview of the production model. Unfortunately, this preview version is toned down to look like a traditional Lexus, as opposed to the hot concept that we all fell in love with. You can see the preview image after the jump.

Click past the jump to read more about the Lexus LF-NX Concept

A few years ago, Audi gifted us with an RS5 -based Audi Quattro Concept that was supposed to hit production until the German automaker decided to nix the idea shortly thereafter.

Well, now it looks like Audi is going to redeem itself, as the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show will bring a revised Quattro Concept . The model arrives just in time to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Sport quattro. Audi launched the first "Ur-quattro" in 1980 and since then "quattro" technology became a true Audi marque, as more than five million cars with permanent all-wheel drive were sold all over the globe.

Just like with the previous Sport quattro model, the new Audi Sport quattro concept was designed in the spirit of motorsport and following the tradition of all the recently launched supercar, it is a high-performance model offering three driving modes: EV, hybrid and sport.

Updated 10/28/2013: Audi is celebrating its 100,000 likes for its German Facebook account with the unveiling of a very cool video featuring the new Sport quattro concept that was unveiled at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. Enjoy!

Click past the jump to read about the Audi Sport Quattro Concept.

Posted on by TB +  

A Moroccan supercar is not an oxymoron. The 2013 Laraki Epitome Concept is a prototype showing off the otherworldly style of this $2,000,000 exotic, with nine production cars possible for sale.

There are dozens of really worthwhile supercar startup companies out there, and car guys generally root for all of them to succeed. After all, a world with more horsepower and exhaust rumble can only be a good thing, right?

The standard article caveat for even the most impressive new brands might as well be boilerplate stamp: most new supercars fail rapidly versus the rapidly evolving tech and style of giants, like Ferrari and Porsche .

This will make Laraki’s third concept launch since 2003, with none of the previous Borac or Fulgura models ever making production. A healthy bit of skepticism is only natural.

Laraki Automobiles folded in 2008 without making a single car for sale. Signs are not good for the Epitome’s success either.

Without a functioning Website, press releases, real specifications or any path to ordering one of these models (if you are not already a Laraki Yachts client like the King of Bahrain), the Epitome is not off to a good start.

Click past the jump for more info on this unique hypercar, which promises up to 1,750 horsepower and a 205 mph top speed for its outrageous price.

Ford’s S-Max MPV is widely regarded as one of the Blue Oval’s most popular and successful models. Back in 2007, it even won the prestigious Car of the Year award in Europe, which goes to show that the reach of the S-Max knows no geography.

Now that the current model is long in the tooth, Ford is ready to unveil a successor at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show .

Called the S MAX Concept , the vehicle is less of an actual concept than it is a preview of the future production S-Max model. Not that there’s anything wrong with that because one look at the concept and you’re immediately pining for the production version to come out sooner than later.

In addition to adopting the modern global design language of Ford, the S Max Concept also makes use of new some nifty new features from Ford’s SYNC system while also boasting of an interior that should make its customers happy.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Ford S MAX Concept

Posted on by TB +  

This fall’s second Mitsubishi lifestyle concept car looks good enough to cause a double take. The 2014 Outlander H360 Winter Edition adds rich white paint and 20-inch wheels outside, plus a gorgeous quilted leather and suede cabin, to create a very cozy and fashionable way to hit the slopes.

In partnership with lifestyle brand H360 and professional snowboarder Bryan "Guch" Iguchi, Mitsubishi has transformed their popular seven-seat crossover into the ultimate winter shuttle. The styling outside is refined and classy, with those giant wheels really transforming the regular Outlander’s lines into something much sleeker and sportier than the standard model.

The beauty of these H360 makeovers is that they can inspire other Mitsubishi owners to personalize their own cars, and draw people into the brands by reinforcing their outdoor credentials.

Looking like a mix between a Range Rover Evoque and an Audi RS4 Avant , the Outlander H360 Winter Edition is powered by a smooth V-6 engine with S-AWC traction and a very quick sprint pace versus some four-cylinder crossover competitors.

More importantly, the H360 Winter Edition will look at home in Beaver Creek Ski Resort’s valet parking line. A host of interior and exterior additions make up this concept car, which will do the rounds at major auto shows this year.

These H360 concepts are just design exercises, and are not for sale themselves. Even so, they show the scope of accessories and versatility of one of the only value-priced crossovers to offer a third row of seats.

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander H360 Winter Edition, with high-res images of this beauty’s quilted leather interior and trunk-mounted coffee maker.

Posted on by TB +  

Mitsubishi just revealed a pair of fitness and adventure-themed concepts, based on the best-selling Outlander and Outlander Sport . The Summer Edition is a thorough personalization effort, on par with the high-dollar luxury car makeovers from Kahn Design .

The custom Outlander Sport shows off: unique burnt orange metallic paintwork and 20-inch Vossen wheels, with matching satin graphite accents all around and sticky track tires. The wheel size jumps a full 2 inches over the 18-inch rims that are otherwise standard on all the Outlander Sport trims, which start from just $19,170 in manual front-drive configuration.

This H360 Summer Edition is based on the higher-range model, with a SportTronic paddle shift automatic and Mitsubishi ’s AWC four-wheel-drive system. Thule roof bars and matching Trek bikes are only a preview of the inside of this fitness machine.

Created with the help of celebrity fitness coach Jay Cardiello, the Outlander Sport Summer Edition is packing some bold color accents and numerous fitness and outdoor adventure gear. Hard-wired chargers are awesome details for the built-in GoPro and iPad mini in the grey suede headlining.

Click past the jump to get a closer look at those semi-slick Nitto 420S tires of the 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport H360 Summer Edition.

Concept cars have always served the purpose of introducing to the public the future styling direction an automaker has in store for its next generation model lineup.

Opel and sister company Vauxhall are the latest to do that with the introduction of the Monza Concept. Set to make its debut at the Frankfurt Auto Show this coming September, the Monza Concept represents what the automakers describe as "sculptural artistry meets technical precision."

Those are big words but not necessarily exaggerated, especially when you get a close look at the fancily designed Monza Concept. Even though we only have a pair of teaser photos to look at, you can definitely see hints of what the two automakers are preparing, particularly with the concept’s frontal styling.

Everything about what we can see speaks to an athletic and clearly defined design, highlighted by a clearly defined bonnet, a striking headlamp treatment and the overall low stance of the concept. Take a closer look at the headlamps and you’ll notice a pair of blades underneath it, signifying an extra level of appeal and sporty aggression you normally don’t associate with both car brands. Finally, the chrome grille bar proudly and prominently displays the brand logos and extends long enough to sweep up with winglets at its tips.

All that and we haven’t even received images of the rest of the car.

Clearly, the Opel Monza is a concept we all should be looking out for when it makes its world debut at the IAAs in September.

UPDATE 08/07/13: A new teaser photo of the Frankfurt-bonud Opel Monza Concept has just been released. Check it out and let us know what you think of the revealed front end of the concept!

Click past the jump to read about Opel’s history with the "Monza" name


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