Isn’t it interesting how a design feature sometimes pops up in unexpected places, or in cars that are totally unrelated?
I lately crossed the way of a 2006 Lexus IS, and especially its rear door shutline (basically, that’s what I looked at on all cars this month). It has an interesting treatment with its horizontal top part joining the curve of the rear window. Haven’t I seen that before? Right, it was there on the early Imprezas.
It’s a bit hidden in the black window framing, but it’s clearly the same shape. In case of the Subaru, it’s a very logical way to incorporate the frameless window in a way that doesn’t make the door look too short, and still make it possible to wind down the window (not completely, I guess).
On the Lexus, it’s less obvious. Did they want to convey the impression of frameless windows? The coupé-like glasshouse might imply these as a natural addition. But this impression is immediately destroyed by the divided window. It might also be a solution to have the curved trailing window line without creating a too obvious Hofmeister situation.
And it’s not a bad one – especially if we compare it with its successor from 2014: the point where the three lines (door shutline, upper and lower window line) meet in a corner, looks rather odd. On the other hand, the newer car has a few other shutlines that are very interesting. For example the line from the sill with its continuation along the rear bumper and the rear lights. Quite interestingly done, although I’d have preferred it without the additional folds on the sill and the bumper.