2006 Toyota F3R Concept
January 9, 2006 — Detroit, MI — The essential Toyota values of roominess, style and environmentally advanced performance come together in a dynamic new way in the F3R, the latest concept vehicle from Toyota.
The surprising F3R, which makes its debut at the North American International Automobile Show in Detroit January 9, is an exercise in providing maximum space, efficiency and style from the combined concepts of box and wedge. It is a creative, sporty extension of a concept all but forgotten in today’s automotive world – that of the minivan.
The decision to explore the possibilities of three-row seating made sense. ”It’s the most practical package there is. It’s useful and versatile. But it’s most often associated with minivans, and there’s a stigma associated with minivans,” said Cartabiano, chief designer for the vehicle’s exterior. ”I think that today’s young drivers see the minivan as the vehicle they were carted around in when they were kids. It’s their parents’ car. They don’t want anything to do with one.”
To create that extension, the design team came up with three very modern looking sets of seats. Each is unique, composed of modern, metal-edged bottoms and asymmetrical backs whose symmetry is completed by semi-integrated headrests. They can provide roomy, comfortable seating for eight adult passengers.
Up front, the driver’s seat reclines and swivels, and the passenger seat reclines to form a comfortable chaise. In the middle, the right and center sections of the 40/20/40-percent second-row seats fold into the floor and the left-hand seat reclines fully to form, with the rearmost or third row, an avant-garde sofa built around the sort of conversation area you might find in an upscale home.
This is surrounded by a casual, wrap-around backrest formed by the continuous, flowing curve of the instrument panel, doors and rear seatback panels. These are accented by fiber-optic lighting panels in the seat sides, and in the F3R’s right-center grand entry, that can be lit to provide illumination during lounge chat sessions.
Cartabiano’s starting point for the F3R’s exterior shape, meanwhile, featured a van that conveyed maximum volume, with a tall, wedged body shape that incorporated wide, dynamic shoulders, with its sporty 22-inch wheels and wide performance tires planted at the extreme boundaries of all four corners.
ith a dramatic, iconic shape that is as distinctive as that of the Toyota Prius and an interior that is more adaptable and more family friendly than anything previously seen, it’s reasonable to suspect that the automotive world could soon be seeing styling elements from the F3R on future Toyota production vehicles.
Story by Toyota