‘LQ’ Marks the Spot: What Does Toyota’s Odd Trademark Application Mean?

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Lexus_LF1_Limitless

Trademark applications provide a very hazy window into the future of an automaker’s lineup, and this one’s no different. On May 7th, Toyota filed an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for use of the name “LQ” on a motor vehicle.

While it partially fits into the Lexus brand’s naming scheme, the second letter of the name (after L for “luxury”) is meant to designate the style of vehicle. So, just what kind of flagship model could this be?

The trademark application, uncovered by Lexus Enthusiast, seems to point to a different type of vehicle. In the upper echelon of the Lexus stable, “LS” means a luxury sedan, “LC” designates a luxury coupe, and “LX” covers the SUV/crossover field.

So, what about that Q? The best guess out there is that “Q” refers to a sportier luxury crossover, possibly one previewed by the brand’s LF-1 Limitless concept vehicle. Far more athletic than the range-topping LX SUV or midsize RX, the unibody, comparatively low slung Limitless debuted at January’s Detroit auto show with no production promises in tow.

Still, the automaker claimed the concept had “the potential to shape the future of a flagship luxury crossover for Lexus.”

Crafted at CALTY Design Research, the crossover showed off what could become the brand’s future styling direction. The jury’s out on whether that’s a good thing. With creases aplenty and an evolution of Lexus’ signature spindle grille leading the way, the crossover’s rakish profile oozed sportiness. Dual rear spoilers completed the look. Lexus claimed the concept could handle any number of propulsion sources.

While there’s no shortage of crossovers and SUVs in both the Toyota and Lexus lineups, the company has hinted it isn’t against fielding two vehicles in the same segment. The LQ could easily become another cash cow positioned near (or at) the top of the Lexus heap.

[Images: Lexus, Bozi Tatarevic/TTAC]

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