Famed Japanese designer presents three new cars ... and a tractor
By Ben Coxworth
November 26, 2013
While you might not know who Ken Kiyoyuki Okuyama is, you've no doubt seen his creations. The Japanese auto designer has worked with Pininfarina and General Motors, overseeing the design of cars such as the Ferrari Enzo and P4/5, the Honda NSX, and the C5 Corvette. He was also employed at Porsche, where he helped design the 996 and Boxster. At this year's Tokyo Motor Show, he's showing four vehicles that he created as part of his own Ken Okuyama Design brand. Three of them are intended for the road and/or track, while the other is made for the field.
The kode 9 concept
Looking sort of like it belongs in the Speed Racer TV series (especially with that rear dorsal fin), the kode 9 is a street-legal racer that was inspired by race cars from the 1963 to 1973 era. Its body features a hydro-formed aluminum chassis, along with custom carbon fiber, 3D-printed and CNC-cut components. All of the components in its adjustable suspension are also unique to the car.
It's powered by a Japan-sourced 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine with an HKS supercharger, that puts out 370 hp. The car's total weight is a lithe 890 kg (1,962 lb).
The kode 7 Clubman
This open-top racer is a simplified version of Ken Okuyama Design's existing k.07, which has actually been manufactured and sold in limited numbers since 2008. In order to make it faster and lighter, changes introduced in this model include a movable front cowl, retractable headlights and less driver comforts in the cockpit. Additionally, a reported 50 percent of its parts are 3D-printed.
Power is provided by a 250 hp 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine, although no performance stats are available. If you want one, it'll cost you 8.5 million yen (US$83,900).
The kode 7 Exclusive
This one is the regular k.07, with some new features and a new name. The aluminum and carbon fiber-bodied car is hand-built to the specs of each buyer. It's claimed to deliver "motorcycle-like handling and performance," thanks to its 230 hp 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine.
Again, there's no word on exactly what it's capable of doing, other than making a 25 million yen ($246,880) dent in your bank account. It can be seen in action in the video below.
Yanmar Y Concept YT01 Advanced Tractor
Yes, and then there's this thing. It was designed in collaboration with the Yanmar tractor company, and reportedly features "superb all-around visibility" in a comfortable, safe cockpit. Driver comfort may ultimately not matter, however, as its GPS satnav system is intended to allow it to eventually operate autonomously – and it wouldn't be the first tractor to do so.
Source: Ken Okuyama DesignShare
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