Special Coverage

New York Int’l Auto Show

Toyota Motor Corp. unveils at the New York International Auto Show today the Scion Hako Coupe, a concept car that reflects the interplay between trendsetting American and Japanese youth.

Tokyo Design Div. penned the concept after studying global, youth-inspired trends, drawing inspiration from the boxy Scion xB production vehicle and the emergence of vintage American styles among young Tokyo trendsetters, the auto maker says.

“We took the xB’s iconic boxy shape and explored something more vivacious, yet just as emotionally appealing,” says Jack Hollis, vice president-Scion division, ahead of today’s premier. “This concept is the sporty version of a box.”

With the classic American coupe in mind, designers offer what they call a concept with “a powerful stance in a compact and bold package.” The exterior design boasts an aggressive, 2-piece front fascia; slim, race-car inspired side mirrors; vertical windshield; and a high beltline with a “chopped” greenhouse.

Scion designers also add a flat, panoramic roof that contains a random, barcode-like pattern visible from the vehicle’s interior and exterior. Bright orange paint provides an exclamation point.

Inside, the Hako Coupe receives orange and metallic details, which exude “a modern environment with entertainment possibilities,” the designers say. Easy-cleaning urethane and rubber-like upholstery cover the front and rear seats, while a large “crevice” for storing magazines, cell phones and other small items divides each row.

A gaming theme pervades the driver’s position, with instrumentation and warning lights cascading from what the designers call “an art-inspired instrument panel,” while a shifter mounted at the center console resembles a joystick.

High-tech entertainment plays a major role in the concept, as well. The dash receives a pair of video monitor screens for radio, video and music, with upload capabilities via a Bluetooth connection.

Designers also locate video monitors on the doors and on each side of the second row seating area that project distorted, fish-eye images from orange-filtered cameras mounted on the exterior beneath the A-pillars. The cameras capture travel scenes, and the system includes an editing capability while the car is parked. Users would share the scenes with friends or post the clip online for others.

Hollis says elements of the Hako Coupe could work their way into future Scion products.

“Polarizing style fits in well with our lineup. And of course we love a good box,” Hollis says. “We’ll listen to the feedback from this concept to help us determine how our brand could evolve and grow over the next five years.”