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by Matt Campbell

A Lexus van is apparently in hot demand in Japan.

One of the country’s biggest Toyota and Lexus dealers has put in a request that such a vehicle be built on behalf of fellow dealers across Asia, according to industry journal Automotive News.

The images seen here are of a Toyota Alphard/Vellfire van – sold in the Japanese domestic market – fitted with a Lexus-inspired styling pack by tuners Wald International, and give an indication of how a Lexus-badged van may look, give or take a few aero accoutrements.

The unnamed dealer reportedly suggested that sedans such as the Lexus LS flagship limousine are too cramped and not practical enough for multiple purposes such as a doubling as a meeting room or office space, or a place to quickly change clothes.

“If I go out to dinner with four people, I can’t take my chauffeured LS,” the dealer is quoted as saying, claiming he instead gets his driver to take him in his Toyota Alphard van. “There is space to change my clothes, and I can go to a funeral and a wedding in the same day.”

Lexus van 2

The dealer said there is a groundswell of support for such a car, and that it could give Lexus a point of difference among its luxury rivals.

However, the dealer admitted that Lexus and Toyota power-brokers aren’t so keen for such a car.

“They don’t want it,” he said.

German luxury rival Mercedes-Benz obviously thinks there’s a market for such a vehicle – its Vito/Viano/Valente models have proved popular as a chauffeur option for moving the masses, and it recently unveiled an all-new V-Class model which is designed to up the luxury factor considerably.




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