Toyota La Coupe Prototype Is Real And Really Weird (Official Update)

We reached out to Toyota and spoke to Senior Manager Nancy Hubbell about the La Coupe. She said that it’s an internal study from the carmaker’s Japanese division with no plans for getting it on the road. “It was just a concept study and they had to get some patents on it to show it in public,” Hubbell told Carscoops. “It was designed for Japan audiences and there’s no talk of putting it into production.” (Update 4/18/2019)

We recently came across patent photos of a mysterious Toyota coupe and it appears the model is actually a real vehicle.

As noticed by members of the SupraMKV forums and pointed out to us by Carscoops reader TXSupra11, the mystery model is called the La Coupe and it was displayed in Naoshima, Japan, as recently as a few weeks ago. However, the car appears much older than that as we found tweets showing that the car was in Ginza Sony Park last October.

This is a bit strange as we haven’t heard about the model before and Google searches reveal pretty much nothing about it. Even after searching various press and corporate sites, we came up empty handed.

While little is known about the car, it’s a two-door coupe concept with an adorable face. The latter has distinctive headlights which are surrounded by stylish daytime running lights.

The model also has a front lip spoiler and a Toyota emblem with blue accents. Toyota uses that logo on hybrid models, so this suggests the concept has an eco-friendly powertrain.

While the front half of the concept is fairly traditional, the rear end is pretty unique. The fascia is almost a mirror image of the front end, but the headlights are swapped for taillights and the hood is replaced by a long trunk. We can also see stretched body panels and a contrasting black roof which flows into a rakish rear window.

We’ve only come across a few interior pictures, but they show the model has two, circular digital displays. One shows the current speed and fuel level, while the other displays the current gear and battery level.

It’s certainly an interesting concept and we’ve reached out to Toyota to learn more about it.  We’ll update this post when we hear back.




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  • anonymous

    Eh this is kinda cute and unique. Toyota should put it into production, but they might not gonna do it considering the S-FR is not going into production either.

  • no25

    tbh it looks better than the leaked patents, but still not great. kind of looks like it should have come out in the early 2000s.

  • Steve Cohn

    Profile general shape is similar to the first Audi TT. Seems to be larger than the Japanese Kei cars. Not sure why they wanted the rear to copy the front.

    • PhilMcGraw

      Actually, I think the overall silhouette is reminiscent of the VW XL1 with an elongated rear end to improve aerodynamics. But I agree there is some older Audi TT in there as well with the lights.

  • Rocket

    What’s this? A unique Toyota that doesn’t rely on a massive grille or polarizing styling to stand out? I didn’t think it was possible. Kudos, Akio and Company.

    • paulgdeaton

      Thatt, unfortunately, means they will never produce it.

    • PhilMcGraw

      Toyota vehicles that are dedicated to being a hybrid vehicle typically do not feature large grilles because they are not aerodynamic. Both the Prius and the CH-R (which is not a hybrid in US but primarily is in hybrid form overseas) do not feature large grilles.


    • Some ol’ bloke


  • PhilMcGraw

    For the past few years, Toyota has been messing with hybrid sports cars. The Toyota GR HV concept is the last example I can think of that showcased a hybrid powertrain in a sports car. This could be another attempt at showcasing a hybrid sports car, which will inevitably come in one form or another.

  • ErnieB

    A Mazda RX7 and a VW beetle got drunk and had a dwarf baby..

    • Andrewthecarguy

      First thing I thought was that Toyota is letting VW know that if the Beetle disappears, Toyota is ready to fill that niche.

    • Well I was thinking of Toyota’s own interpretation of the Peugeot RCZ, just minus the big grill.

  • XtremWize

    It has a design language of 25 years ago.

  • Wayne Alan Carr Heyes

    What is Toyota up to ? How can they keep a car off radar for so long?

    • Some ol’ bloke

      They keep it in a shed for 6 years

      • MRPRCAT

        Haha! This made me laugh. Thanks!

  • Androuffle

    First pictures are taken at the ferry terminal in Naoshima, right in the waiting room for the ferries to Uno train station.

    FYI, Naoshima is a small Japanese island known for the numerous contemporary art museums and scenic point of views with famous outdoor artwork it offers. Toyota may have taken promotional pictures of the concept in front of the all concrete museums that are themselves architecture pieces of art.

  • MarketAndChurch

    I like it. Way cooler than a Prius. I know it’s a hybrid but I can imagine a modern MR2 with a more aggressive version of this design language.

  • C Noi

    Love it!

  • ME
  • Andrewthecarguy

    A very well done retro future design that doesn’t lean in any direction too much. Easily a desirable hybrid or pure electric…350 mile range? Doesn’t need to beat a Tesla 0-60, just need to be priced around $35k or less. Would sell VERY well.

  • Some ol’ bloke

    looks like a speedtail from some angles… =)

    • alex.remsen

      I swear to you that’s exactly what I thought when I saw the first image of its rear

  • Dariush

    looks sweet!!

  • Socarboy

    Definitely distinctive kind of looks like a VW Beetle that was melted and then stretched

  • jasmaz16

    Zundapp Janus?

  • California Guy 90

    It might not be the best looking car but a very refreshing car between all these unnecessary crossovers and SUVs flooding our streets.
    I hope it reaches production. It will sell in Japan for sure.

  • Leconte Dave

    Something straight from the 90’s

  • Julien Lachemoi

    I don’t understand what it’s supposed to be.

  • sean tooher

    its kike a cross between a toad and a vw beetle

  • Scherpereel Clement

    I like it 🙂

  • Ary Wisesa

    Hey, surprisingly it’s looking good enough and cute!

  • OMG they were serious about this??

  • Zed68

    I find it quite cute. Looks like a toon.

  • Bill Nguyen

    Wow, an actual mystery! Don’t see stuff like this often nowadays!

  • Merc1

    Not sure why, but I kinda like it. It’s weird AF and pure Japanese design.


  • Joe

    Scion was killed off in early 2016.

    • Andrewthecarguy

      Yes, and foolishly so. Should have been kept alive to lead the full electric charge for Toyota

      • Сафиуллина-Мохамед Рамазанов

        They killed it when they increased there share in Subaru & Daihatsu

  • ok it’s weird… but we’re talking about Toyota… have you seen the Prius? Yaris? Lexus current line up? It’s almost good looking, and it’s cute. And not that weird if you look at Toyota’s lineup.

  • Six Thousand Times

    I like my Japanese concepts a little weird.

  • Perry F. Bruns

    It’s a non-beige Toyota. Nice that they occasionally make those.

  • designer_dick

    It isn’t really any weirder than the first-generation Audi TT or the Peugeot RCZ. I kinda like it.

    • StrangerGP

      The difference is that Peugeot RCZ still looks good.

      • designer_dick

        That’s subjective.

  • newborn baby of mclaren speedtail.

    • ErnieB

      More like an underdeveloped Mclaren speedtail fetus..

  • The friendly front fascia is refreshing in a time of pissed and angry mugs that look like they’ll eat other cars in the road hah. Would be nice to see this concept as the base design for the next gen Prius

  • Сафиуллина-Мохамед Рамазанов

    It’s front fascia reminding me of the Daihatsu coupen
    I really like it

  • enthusia

    I’m absolutely loving this! This is what I thought cars would look like in the future when I was little. It looks like a concept from 2001 but it actually looks production ready. I hope we can see this on roads soon.

  • StrangerGP

    More like La Crap.

  • Vanishing Boy

    Left. Hand. Drive.
    We could see this at the NYAS in a few days. This car is a good basis for the Prius Coupe/Prius S. Toyota is basically picking up on where Honda left off for a 2-door hybrid sporty car-ish coupe.

  • KAG25

    Could turn it into a mini truck

  • J-Triumf

    It looks like it was built backwards, judging by the side profile. The A-pillars need to be pushed out more for a better “fast front” shape. Until then I’d rather it stay a concept.

  • I like it, but they will ruin it by making it a stupid hybrid or all electric piece of crap. Save petrol engines, manual transmissions and actual CARS. Not these cuv/ SUV s*#t

  • ErnieB

    Update from the peanut gallery: it’s still as ugly as when it was first posted.. Toyota cannot make a good looking vehicle.. but I guess that’s okay since most people have poor tastes anyways.. most look for function not form and Toyota delivers.. if you are the form over function type of person then Toyota is just offensive..

    • Stephen G

      Maybe it needs a Big Mouth Bass grille?

  • ME

    MR2 or new Celica?

  • Ray Filetti

    McLaren Speedtail’s little brother.

  • Sydromir

    I could see that, it’s style definitely fits.

  • Duke Woolworth

    Angry, screaming Toyota mouth in front. No. The rest is quite slippery Yes.

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