Lexus gets new boss, and he’s a designer

Lexus gets new boss, and he’s a designer

February 27, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Hirings/Firings/Layoffs , Lexus , Toyota , Design/Style A reshuffle in the uppermost ranks of Lexus could see the Japanese luxury brand further energize its recent focus on design. Tokuo Fukuichi, Toyota’s global design boss, is the new head of Lexus International. Fukuichi will retain his role as the overall head of design for Toyota , Lexus and Scion , and will assume his new position at the head of Lexus and on its board on April 1 (no fooling). This is going to be an interesting move for fans of design to watch, as Fukuichi has repeatedly been mentioned as a designer that enjoys pushing the envelope and experimenting. He is, after all, the man responsible for designing the most awesomely odd minivan of the 1990s, the mid-engined, rear-drive Toyota Previa, and more recently, he signed off on the controversial Lexus LF-NX concept , which is said to presage a new production small crossover. “Regarding changes in design, no one has 100 percent confidence,” Fukuichi told Forbes back in January 2013. “No one can really say with pure certainty that, ‘In two years, this will sell well.'” As Akio Toyoda continues to demand more assertive, edgier designs, it’s that point of view that should make Fukuichi a valuable addition to Lexus, as it continues to challenge the competition from Germany. Fukuichi replaces Kiotaka Ise, who will become the chief officer at Toyota Research and Development, according to Automotive News . Lexus gets new boss, and he’s a designer originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 26 Feb 2014 14:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds .

Icon, Mattel speak on FJ40 trademark claims

Icon, Mattel speak on FJ40 trademark claims

June 22, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Filed under: Performance , SUV , Government/Legal , Toyota , Toys/Games , Specialty , Off-Road Things are looking up for Icon . The company just moved from its tiny original location to a sprawling new facility, and every machine its craftsmen produce is sold before the final bolts are tightened. There’s even talk of finding ways to triple production in order to keep up with demand. In addition to the off-road titans and clever Derelict models we know and love, Jonathan Ward, CEO and Lead Designer with the company, is busy working to expand his business with corporate partnerships and new products that go beyond old metal. But Icon recently made headlines for another reason all together. As you may recall, Icon recently accused Hot Wheels and parent company Mattel of infringing on the customizer’s design and naming trademarks. Jonathan Ward, CEO and head designer for Icon, says the trouble started in September, 2010 when he pitched the idea of a die-cast Icon model to Alec Tam, the design director for Hot Wheels . Ward sent an email with the full Icon product book to Mattel to no avail. Six months later, he received a note from a customer congratulating him on scoring a deal with Hot Wheels. The client had spotted a rendering on the Hot Wheels future product page that looked awfully similar to a promotional shot Icon uses for the company’s FJ40 model.

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