Hand-stitched leather in the Lexus ES

Precision Craftsmanship from Lexus

It’s no secret that Lexus vehicles are created with masterful skill and attention to detail.

That’s because our craftsmen follow state-of-the-art engineering processes, inspired by traditional Japanese artisanship. This is evident at every stage of the manufacturing process, and is born from the phrase ‘Creating Amazing’.

At our manufacturing facility in Tahara, Japan, components for cars are created with exacting precision, using leading-edge digital technology.

These parts are then hand assembled and finished by master craftsmen called ‘Takumi‘. To be a Takumi is to demonstrate great skill, and to possess a synergy of technical expertise and sure senses honed by decades of experience.

There are a range of tests that have been developed to prove the skill of a Takumi, but perhaps the most unusual is this – the ability to create an origami cat in less than 90 seconds with one’s non-dominant hand. If you fancy trying it for yourself, follow the instructions listed here.

The test is designed to promote the Takumis’ speed and manual dexterity, both of which are key to building the very best cars possible.

A fine example of the quality this helps us deliver can be seen in the new Lexus GS, and the new Lexus RX. It can also be seen in the hand-stitched dashboard of the redesigned 2013 Lexus ES 350, available in the US.

At the launch of the ES earlier this year Lexus placed a selection of perfectly formed origami cats in front of guests, showcasing this skill.

Mark Rechtin, editor of Automotive News, tried his hand at creating the origami cat. “I was able to perform the task with prefolded paper, with time to spare, but that’s like painting by numbers. When attempting the feat with an unfolded piece of paper, I was able to fold the cat one-handed, using the table for an assist, but the final result looked more like a crashed stealth fighter than a cat’s face. If I had applied for the stitching job, my prospects would have been all thumbs.”



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