15/08/2022

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The car that cares

Hydrogen-powered Lexus ROV buggy concept revealed at Tokyo Auto Salon

Unveiled at the stop of previous calendar year, Lexus brought its ROV off-highway buggy thought to this year’s Tokyo Automobile Salon. It previews a doable extension to the Lexus manufacturer, as very well as some experimental hydrogen know-how that performs on the identical concepts as a traditional combustion engine.

Lexus’ European boss, Spiros Fotinos, a short while ago explained the ROV as a car or truck that was designed to “unlock a new form of off-roading adventure for our consumers in a correct Lexus way” – and we’d say Lexus has the “off-road” aspect of that quick nailed down very well.

It’s a small, two-seat buggy with a comparable style to the Can-Am Maverick, sporting an exposed building, very long-travel suspension and chunky off-highway tyres. It actions just 3.one metres very long and one.seven metres large – and its visual appeal has small in typical with Lexus’ highway cars and trucks, whilst the headlight style does trace at a relationship.

The cabin is even considerably less like a common Lexus, with exposed carbon-fibre trim, a leather steering wheel, a straightforward rev-counter and only a handful of switches. Also, the seats are trimmed in wipe-down artificial leather upholstery, since they are designed to get dirty.

Whilst these off-the-wall style selections are absolutely fascinating from a manufacturer these types of as Lexus, the authentic importance of the car or truck is its preference of powertrain. It employs a one.-litre a few-cylinder combustion engine which is fuelled by hydrogen, fed from a superior-pressure storage tank.

Lexus has but to verify any effectiveness specifications, whilst the manufacturer suggests the quick-burning hydrogen creates lots of torque. As an additional gain, Lexus also promises the engine consumes far considerably less oil than a common petrol-run engine.

The transmission is a sequential paddle-shift unit, with a few drivetrain configurations. Working with a rotary switch on the centre console, the driver can decide on to run the car or truck in two-wheel travel, four-wheel travel or with the differential locked.

Lexus suggests the ROV’s main emission is drinking water, just like a hydrogen gasoline mobile – but the manufacturer admits there are “marginal levels” of CO2 and NOx. But the manufacturer holds agency on the car’s eco qualifications – and Fotinos informed Automobile Express that this alternative would, in theory, allow for the car or truck to appeal to the expanding development for rural exploration, when keeping credible sustainability.

Engineers selected to use a combustion engine rather of a gasoline mobile on the grounds of price, packaging, pounds and technical complexity. Lexus also suggests the conclusion signifies the ROV maintains the “excitement designed only doable by the vibrations of an engine-run car or truck.”

Lexus has no plans to create the ROV – but the agency does have a heritage of experimenting with extensions to its manufacturer and then having them to the manufacturing level following favourable client opinions. A pair of yrs in the past, the enterprise designed a yacht and subsequently place the vessel into manufacturing as the LY 650.

Now look at out the latest Stellantis plans for a hydrogen van…