Earlier this week we all got a taste of things to come from Lexus, the luxury vehicle division of Japanese automaker Toyota. From the very beginning Lexus has catered specifically to luxury consumers, which makes their new Hoverboard doubly perplexing. Not only are they venturing from their automotive roots, but they are doing so by creating a product that could not be less luxurious: a floating skateboard.
In the short teaser video released by Lexus, you see a skateboarder transitioning from his skateboard to the SLIDE, Lexus’ new Hoverboard. While the video certainly provokes a healthy amount of skepticism, it also excites the viewer of the possibility that a working Hoverboard has finally arrived. Made from bamboo and carbon fiber, the video shows the SLIDE levitating 1-2 inches over a concrete surface.
This is all quite exciting until you read Lexus’ press release on the SLIDE, in which they describe the Hoverboard as employing “magnetic levitation” to maintain lift. As such, one has to assume that there was a healthy amount of magnets or steel embedded into that concrete surface.
Not For Sale
While the SLIDE is currently being tested in Barcelona, Lexus is clear that it is not going to be for sale to the general public. At the end of the day, projects like this are all about increasing sales by showcasing the brand’s innovation and creativity.
As Mark Templin, Executive Vice President of Lexus states in the company’s press release: “…we constantly challenge ourselves and our partners to push the boundaries of what is possible. That determination, combined with our passion and expertise for design and innovation, is what led us to take on the Hoverboard project. It’s the perfect example of the amazing things that can be achieved when you combine technology, design and imagination.”
A couple of the ways Lexus is linking the SLIDE to their cars is through the materials and design of the Hoverboard. Both share the signature Lexus spindle grille, and use both natural and high-tech materials.
The SLIDE campaign will be launching this summer. Until then, the project can be followed on Twitter using the hashtag “LexusHover”
Update 5 august 2015
Lexus made the impossible, possible: The Lexus Hoverboard is here! See the world’s first hoverpark in action, as Lexus demonstrates the desire to create enjoyment out of motion. The Lexus Hoverboard represents true innovation and imagination, together pushing the boundaries of technology even further.