Back to the Future 2 promised much of 2015. It promised us self-tying shoelaces, flying cars, 19 Jaws films, and hoverboards, neither of which have materialised in the public realm at the time of writing. This could all be set to change though, thanks to a new development from luxury car manufacturers Lexus, who have partnered with CHI&Partners to create an actual, working hoverboard as the fourth part of the “Amazing in Motion” campaign.
Whilst they have striven to achieve the inconceivable across the entire multi-award-winning “Amazing in Motion” series, CHI&Partners has taken it one step further this time by partnering with global leaders in super-conductive technology to create a genuine hoverboard, which operates through magnetic levitation. The Lexus Hoverboard combines liquid-nitrogen-cooled superconductors and permanent magnets to achieve frictionless movement. Made of materials found in Lexus’ luxury cars, the board features the iconic Lexus spindle grille signature shape, and is not only actually real, but looks a hell of a lot sexier than the pink Mattel board famously ridden by Marty McFly in Back to the Future 2.
Lexus have partnered with CHI&Partners to create an actual, working hoverboard for their “Amazing in Motion” campaign
CHI&Partners will release images of the board across digital, social and editorial media globally in the build-up to the campaign, which was overseen by creative director Monty Verdi. Verdi, who has worked across all three “Amazing in Motion” campaigns, said: “Each new Amazing in Motion project has been more boundary-breaking than the last, and we’re incredibly proud of all three. This time, we wanted to achieve something truly unimaginable, and we’ve worked tirelessly to make it happen. Now the Lexus Hoverboard is a reality, we’re counting down the days until the world gets to see it in motion. We hope millions of people across the world will join us in our countdown.”
The real, rideable hoverboard from Lexus
Mark Templin, executive vice president at Lexus International, added: “At Lexus, we constantly challenge ourselves and our partners to push the boundaries of what is possible. That determination, combined with our passion and expertise for design and innovation, is what led us to take on the hoverboard project. It’s the perfect example of the amazing things that can be achieved when you combine technology, design and imagination.” And you can see these amazing things yourself in the 30 second spot above! Though we have yet to see anyone actually riding it.
The three previous Amazing in Motion campaigns could be seen as a build up to this latest spectacle. “Steps” and the Cannes Lion-winning “Swarm,” respectively featured a choreographed stunt using 11-foot tall puppets and a real swarm of quadcopter robots exploring downtown Vancouver. Last year’s “Strobe” project, meanwhile, saw acrobats and stuntmen in LED light suits suspended across Kuala Lumpur’s skyline and lit up in succession to create the illusion of a daring acrobatic journey. All four campaigns have been shot in-camera with no added CGI, and all involve feats of technology, engineering and sheer human endeavour. The series has picked up awards at ceremonies worldwide, including Cannes Lions, D&AD, Clio Awards, Eurobest, Epica, London International Awards, Campaign Big Awards, Kinsale Shark Awards, BTA Craft Awards and The A-List Hollywood Film Advertising Craft Awards.
The campaign was overseen by creative director Monty Verdi. Verdi, who has worked across all three “Amazing in Motion” campaigns
The latest campaign is by far the most impressive, but Lexus isn’t the first company to attempt to bring the hoverboard into the realm of science fact. Last year, the California-based company Arx Pax showed off its hoverboard model called the Hendo board. The company, which launched its product on Kickstarter, quickly sold out of its few flying skateboard models for $10,000 each. That board, however, could only be used on an even more specific magnetic surface and was significantly bulkier than the Lexus model. It is, however, technically available to the public, whereas currently, the Lexus Hoverboard is only available as a prototype. But at least there's hope!
Benjamin Hiorns is a freelance writer and struggling musician from Kidderminster in the UK. He believes Back to the Future 2 to be superior to the original in almost every conceivable way and welcomes debate on the matter.