Attendees of this week’s Tokyo Motor Show can expect a more subdued exhibition, as organizers decide to tone down the glitz in the wake of Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the U.S.
The Japan Motor Industrial Federation already has canceled the show’s opening ceremonies, a move some believe will help redirect the spotlight to where it belongs — on the vehicles. And there will be plenty of them. The 35th biannual exhibition will showcase 39 automakers and scores of concepts with an eye toward lifestyle and, as in 1999, tech-centric environmental solutions.
Motor Corp., which promised 29 concept and 56 production cars from 40 vehicle series, plans to combine its stand with mini-vehicle partner Daihatsu Motor Co. Ltd. under the banner "New Dream-Filled Mobility."
Significant among the many concepts are the WiLL VC, targeted at young, hip Japanese consumers, and the Voltz, which will be sold as theMatrix and Pontiac Vibe when it bows in early 2002. Other new Toyota concepts include the "ist" compact, DMT minivan and the tech-oriented "pod" developed in collaboration with Sony Corp. It lights up in various colors — a happy orange-yellow if it detects its owner approaching, sad blue if a tire is punctured and angry red if it is made to swerve suddenly or brake too hard. The back features a tail-wagging antenna.
Motor Co. Ltd. will emphasize the environment with a hybrid Civic and sports car among 19 models it has planned. It also will showcase the Capa replacement, dubbed the Mobilio, a facelifted NSX, "wic" minicar and Fit-based minivan called the SUU (smart, urban, useful).
Motor Corp. is slated to debut the RX-8 rotary-engine sports car. The automaker will unveil the 5-door version of its upcoming new 626 replacement, billed the Atenza in Japan and the Mazda 6 in other markets, as well as the Secret Hideout, which hints at the future for Mazda interiors.
Motor Co. Ltd., is set to unveil the much-anticipated 3.5L Z, along with six concepts, a new Primera hatchback, an updated March, and a minicar being built for the automaker by mini-vehicle specialist Motor Corp.
also lends its small-car expertise to the Chevrolet Cruze, built in conjunction with Corp., which owns 20% of the Japanese automaker. The Cruze is the production version of the YGM-1, shown at Tokyo in 1999, and promises to be the first in a series of co-designed cars slated for Asia.
DaimlerChrysler AG has scheduled a world premier of its own with a new Jeep concept, while DC-partnerMotors Corp. gives a peek at its "Z" car, which will be based on a platform the two will share. MMC also will feature the Airtrek, a small sport/utility.
Motor Co. Ltd. is promising to unveil a 1L world car it will launch in Japan next year.