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This is the C-HR Concept, and it looks quite unlike anything you’ll currently find in a Toyota showroom. Which is to say bold and beguiling as opposed to a little bit boring (GT86 excepted, of course).

It’s essentially a future design study, hosting ‘the introduction of themes which signal a future direction for Toyota vehicles’, but it’s also the clearest hint yet that Toyota has the Nissan Juke in its crosshairs. Toyota helped bring the SUV to the mainstream via the original RAV4 20 years ago, lest we forget.

But now that the RAV4’s matured a bit, Toyota has no direct rival for the Juke (and the myriad other crossovers you can currently buy). And it’s a hugely successful market with a plenty of buyers to mine at the moment…

If a production version can look like this, Toyota will certainly earn plenty of respect from us lot. It’s a crackers looking thing, and there’s some equally crackers blurb to accompany it.

‘The lower bodywork has been sculpted to create faceted surfaces, like the precision cutting of a gemstone’, Toyota tells us. At the rear, meanwhile, ‘distinctive, aero-inspired floating rear lamp clusters add further emphasis to the vehicle’s broad-shouldered look’. It doesn’t mention the hint of Renault Wind in the rear three-quarter view that our eyes are seeing, mind.

Other points of note? The headlights look impressively complex, the roof floats like a Mini’s (and looks primed to supply some solar charging to the powertrain) while a more kerb-fearing set of alloy wheels we’re yet to see.

There’s plenty of bold stuff going on, and we’re just praying Toyota has the balls to let more of it see the showroom than just a sliver of new grille treatment.

There’s not a lot of information about anything below the C-HR’s skin, but we’re putting our money on the ‘HR’ aspect of its less-than-sexy name denoting some hybrid propulsion, being as keen on petrol-electric drivetrains as Toyota is.

Over to you: should this join the iQ and GT86 at the interesting end of Toyota’s range? Or forever remain a frivolous concept car?

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