Our gold leaf decoration has been adopted by the new model of LEXUS LS!

The world’s first* car interior decorated with platinum leaf!

The gold leaf decoration of Hakuichi Inc. has been adopted for the interior of the new model of LEXUS LS to be released on Nov. 19, 2020 by Toyota Motor Corporation.The specifications of this model uses platinum leaf to decorate the door trims. For the first time in the world*, a car interior has been decorated by platinum leaf, which has been produced by gold leaf artisans with great care using traditional techniques without modifying them in any way.

* Based on available information collected by Hakuichi as of Nov. 2020.

[The Adoption of Platinum Leaf for LS: The Background]

Created with genuine materials as an item of Japan’s luxury brand, the new model of LEXUS LS has a simple and powerful form. Platinum gold leaf was adopted for this new model with the aim of integrating traditional craft and industrial products. It all began when the LEXUS team found out about our gold leaf decoration. Since then, we worked on verifying our techniques while proposing a wide range of gold leaf types and decoration designs. Although it was extremely challenging to ensure quality while making the best of the traditional beauty of gold leaf, we managed to achieve the development goals and finally the productization and release of an LS with gold leaf decoration became a reality after all these years.

Industrial products are required to be supplied with the exact same design and quality. On the other hand, each traditional craft product is unique due to the difference in the expressions of the gold leaf pieces and how they are attached; this is because in addition to the fact that each gold leaf sheet has individuality, each and every product is handmade by artisans. We held many discussions about the design and many other aspects in preparation for productization and succeeded in integrating the quality of an industrial product and the worldview of a traditional craft by setting detailed settings for the specifications and materials in each process of our gold leaf decoration production process and verifying those settings. In this way, our platinum leaf was adopted as an interior decoration material for the new LS model. As platinum gold leaf is attached without processing its distinct wrinkled texture (the material’s texture) to the door trims, people can feel the exquisiteness of the handicraft of artisans inside the car.

[The New Model of LEXUS LS]

Released in 1989, LS is the flagship model that built the foundation of LEXUS with the high praise earned by its exceptional quietness and comfort. The successive LS models have cumulatively sold 870,000 units over a span of more than 30 years. The new LEXUS LS was designed by pursuing “Time in Design,” a concept derived from Japan’s distinct aesthetics. As a result of embodying this concept, the interior and exterior of the new LS are coordinated based on the motif of a scene of the path of the moon. This mystical natural phenomenon that can be seen only during the few days before and after a full moon is expressed using platinum leaf and a traditional textile called nishijin-ori. By adopting the craftsmanship of Japanese master artisans while paying great attention to detail, the interior has turned into a creative and original space where the handiwork of artisans and the latest technologies integrate.

[Hakuichi’s Kanazawa Gold Leaf Decoration]

Our architectural decoration business started out from the production of Kanazawa gold leaf crafts. Based on the concept “Add the Beauty of Kanazawa Gold Leaf to Everyday Life,” we started making items for table decoration and expanded our business into architectural decoration for adorning spaces. Unfolding around the world in addition to Japan, our architectural decoration has been adopted for the interior of commercial facilities mainly in Europe.