Scion C-HR Concept looks sharp at LA Auto Show

The Scion C-HR concept was shown off as a Toyota concept last year at the Paris Motor Show, and we've been told it will show up at next year's Geneva Motor Show in production form. In the transition from a Toyota to a US-focused Scion, though, it's been saddled with a regrettable piece of marketing-speak: the press release says the C-HR concept was designed for "yuccies." That's an acronym describing 'young, urban creatives,' and it should go away.

The C-HR is at the LA Auto Show, however, a visually fascinating concept that we're looking forward to seeing in production form; it could be good, or it could be meh. The C-HR stands for "Compact size and High Ride height," partly an effect of 21-inch wheels, and Scion says it will combine "supreme functionality" and "sporty performance" under that "polarizing" skin.

We don't know much more than that about it now, save that its purpose is to be "a fantastic urban driving car." The press release below has lots of adjectives to help you imagine what that means; apparently, if you like cutting boards with grid lines and "earthy, modern terrariums," this will be for you.

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Scion's Next Icon: World Debut of C-HR Concept Car at Los Angeles Auto Show

TORRANCE, Calif., Nov. 18, 2015 – When the designers for the Scion C-HR concept began their research, they were told by young urban creative customers, "Polarizing is ok. Boring is not." That sentiment was evident today as the Scion C-HR concept had its World Debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

With an iconic design that also incorporates functionality and sporty performance, the Scion C-HR concept is much like Scion's customer in that it strives to stand out from the crowd.

"Scion is known for doing things differently, and maybe even being a little weird," said Scion Vice President Andrew Gilleland. "This C-HR concept embraces that idea and wears it like a badge of honor. We couldn't be more excited to add the production version to our line-up."

The C-HR concept is named for its Compact size and High Ride height. With five doors and a hatch for supreme functionality, it's the perfect vehicle for "yuccies," the young urban creatives who inspired the design.

These customers put an emphasis on great design and wanted something distinctive, sophisticated, passionate and clean. They viewed most SUVs as too boring and wanted something for their urban lifestyle that sparked emotion.

Participants in the research identified images that had a harmony of form and function: sleek chopsticks made from recycled materials, an earthy but modern terrarium, and a cutting board with grid lines for precise slicing.

Given that creative license, Toyota's international design team embarked on a design that not only makes a statement, but reinforces the C-HR's purpose as an urban lifestyle vehicle.

Taking inspiration from a diamond with sheered sides, the C-HR cabin is like a precision-cut gemstone. From the overhead view, the diamond points have been sharply cut in the front, rear and sides, giving view to the round fender flares visible from every angle of the car. The lower body is sensual and instills strong emotions while the chiseled, faceted cabin suggests protection, giving the C-HR contrasting features that satisfy two desires. Graphite black accents on the grille, rear bumper, fender flares and lower side panels reflect the strength and stance of the vehicle. Meanwhile, the all-piano black roof enhances the C-HR's sleek and stylish profile.

The 21-inch wheels continue the cut gem theme and feature spokes with chiseled cut-outs shaped with the car's profile in mind.

Underneath the captivating design of the C-HR is a platform featuring Toyota's New Global Architecture (TNGA). TNGA is an innovative and integrated approach to developing new platforms and powertrains for Toyota. It creates a lower center of gravity, increased body rigidity, more responsive handling and improved ride comfort.

The increased body rigidity reduces body movement and roll in cornering. This allows for better ride comfort while maintaining dynamic performance. Improvements will be felt through responsive handling, agility and straight-line stability.

"Even though the C-HR has a high ride height, our focus was on creating a fantastic urban driving car," said C-HR Chief Engineer Hiro Koba. "My favorite place to be on a weekend is at a race track and I wanted to build a car that I would have just as much fun driving in the city during the week with refined driving comfort and responsive, precise steering."

More information about the timing and technical specifications for the C-HR will be available when the production version debuts in 2016.

"The Scion C-HR will be a stand-out vehicle for us" said Gilleland. "Its styling will lead the way, but its substance will seal the deal. It's got amazing driving dynamics, superb functionality, and, like all Scions, premium features at an accommodating price. There's no doubt this will be the next iconic vehicle for Scion.

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