Toyota C-HR Prologue design review: ‘hope this good work reaches production’

With the original C-HR, according to Toyota, the goal was to create a new genre within the C-segment. Although that is a bit overambitious, it cannot be denied that the car is full of character. It was also popular with customers and Toyota itself. Because for the next generation, the design team has set itself to surpass what the first C-HR has achieved. Car designer Niels van Roij reviews the design work of the C-HR Prologue Concept.

The Toyota C-HR Prologue Concept is a true concept car. No pre-production car on bigger wheels. A strong indication of what is to come in the mass-produced variant is emphasized in this prelude in pronounced proportions, surfacing and jewellery.

The unique proportional statement of the first C-HR has remained. We also see three new elements, some of which have already become part of the DNA of the brand in other Toyotas.

Toyota precision

It’s the first design DNA, called Precision Organic by Toyota. This design language has evolved continuously over the past few years and is rooted in two seemingly opposing values. On the one hand, we see the epitome of typical Toyota precision. The brand communicates its high-tech accuracy here. An organic, more fluid and natural form spectrum contrasts with this. This emphasizes the human side of the brand. Combined, they create a beautiful field of tension in the skin of the car.

C-HR gets Hammerhead from the Prius

The second new aspect is the Hammerhead identity of the DRG. We know this from the new one Prius. It is cleverly shaped: Toyota has determined that their brand identity will depend less and less on conventional grille openings in the future. After all, cooling (of a combustion engine) is superfluous due to electrification: the grille function is no longer needed. Furthermore, thanks to LED technology, headlights are slimmer than ever. Several driving sensors are combined in the Hammerhead with the slim LED headlights to form a three-dimensional architecture. In this way, the nose forms a new character and strong signature that expresses the Toyota face across the range.

A third essential component of the C-HR’s DNA is the stance. Toyota designers wanted to continue this quality. They came up with the key phrase: the condensed stance monster. Perhaps strange to the outside world, but car design teams often use such names during the design processes. They explain what the car is about, what the essence is.

There’s no question that the C-HR Prologue Concept is a true stance monster! With the wheels positioned on the extreme corners, the concept looks exquisitely sporty and tough.

Toyota C-HR Prologue

The concept car is, logically, considerably more provocative and daring than the current C-HR. But it is also more refined, cleaner. The current C-HR may be daring, but also rather messy. For example, the hidden door handle of the rear door consists of an extraordinary number of edges, rubbers and other parts.

Toyota C-HR door handle

Design C-HR Prologue conceived for bi-tone color use

Also the Prologue Concept color & trim designers have done a good job. They chose the right distribution of the bi-tone color version on thegraphics. This takes the C-HR Prologue to a higher level. The color split is clearly not an afterthought. It surfacingdesign is conceived for bi-tone color use. The silver mask is emphasized by the black stern and vice versa. The whole comes into its own through the powerful shutline of the back door. As icing on the cake, the copper-colored element on the roof, combined with the same-coloured subtle line in the front spoiler and the elements in the diffuser really something special from the C-HR. Getting a car this good takes a lot of discipline and knowledge of shape, lines and sculpture.

The designers now have one important task left. Let hardly any of this good work be lost in the push to production!

Toyota C-HR Prologue

Toyota C-HR Prologue


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