With 15 generations and 67 years to its name, the Toyota Crown enters a new era where it diverges from the norm that was the three-box sedan shape and transitions into one that has grown the Crown name into a new series of models spanning four lifted bodystyles – the Crossover, the Sport, the Sedan (really more a lifted fastback) and the Estate.
The development team in charge of the new Crown went through a thorough re-examination of what the Crown name meant, and in Toyota’s own words, the outgoing Crown has become “unable to fully meet the diversifying needs of its customers” and diminished its presence as a flagship vehicle because of it, so the result is this significant shift.
As described by Toyota, the Crossover is its new style that combines the form of a sedan with that of an SUV; the Sport offers a “sporty driving experience” in an easy to drive package; the Sedan is aimed at the chauffeur-driven segment, and the Estate is a “functional SUV with a mature atmosphere” with spaciousness in the mix.
Of these, the Crossover will lead the market debuts, going on sale in Japan this autumn, and wider Crown series will be made available in around 40 countries and regions, says Toyota.
Built on the transverse-engine layout TNGA-K architecture, the 2023 Crown differs from previous generations in using a higher hip point to make for easier entry and exit as well as better visibility through the use of larger diameter wheels, while the new shape also enables the offering of increased front and rear headroom. Suspension duties here are handled by MacPherson struts in front, and a multi-link setup at the rear.
Powertrains offered with the 2023 Crown at launch are a pair of hybrid AWD offerings, starting with the Crossover X with the 2.5 litre naturally aspirated A25A-FXS hybrid engine at 4,350,000 yen (RM139,450) ranging up to 5,700,000 yen (RM182,747) for the Crossover G with the Advanced and Leather package. This powertrain is combined with a continuously variable transmission.
Positioned above that is the Crossover RS with the T24A-FTS 2.4 litre inline-four petrol turbo hybrid engine and the E-Four Advanced driveline, from 6,050,000 yen (RM193,943) to 6,400,000 yen (RM205,163) for the Advanced trim package. This powertrain is paired with a six-speed Direct Shift automatic gearbox.
In the United States where the 2023 Crown has also been launched, the 2.4 litre turbo hybrid powertrain carries the Hybrid Max name and is rated for a combined output of 340 PS, and tuned to attain peak torque output at a crank speed range of 2,000 to 3,000 rpm.
Trim variants offered in the US market are the XLE, Limited and Platinum, and the Hybrid Max 2.4 litre turbo hybrid powertrain is exclusive to the top Platinum trim variant. The entry XLE trim packs the 2.5 litre hybrid e-Four powertrain, three drive modes, 19-inch alloys, heated and power-adjustable front seats in Softex fabric and the 12.3-inch Toyota Multimedia System touchscreen infotainment unit with six speakers.
Next, the Limited trim variant builds upon the equipment list from the XLE, and adds multibeam LED headlamps, a fixed panoramic roof, leather seats (heated and ventilated in front, heated for the rear), 11-speaker JBL audio, rain-sensing wipers plus parking sensors and rear cross-traffic braking. Here, the Advanced Technology pack adds 21-inch 10-spoke alloys, a birds-eye view camera and digital key.
Topping the launch range for the US market is the Platinum with the aforementioned Hybrid Max 2.4 litre turbo petrol hybrid powertrain, packing features from the first two trim variants and adds Adaptive Variable Suspension, six drive modes, Advanced Park and a unique set of 10-spoke two-tone alloys.
Here, the Platinum trim offers a two-tone exterior paint finish, with black paint applied to the bonnet, roof and boot and is paired with Oxygen White, Heavy Metal, Supersonic Red or the two-tone exclusive Bronze Age paint finish.
All trim variants of the 2023 Crown in the United States get Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 as standard, which includes Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC), Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist and Lane Tracing Assist, Road Sign Assist, and Rear Seat Reminder. Further safety kit includes the blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert and hill start assist control.
Manufactured at the Motomachi and Tsutsumi plants in Japan, the 2023 Toyota Crown goes on sale in Japan in autumn, while the US-market Crown will arrive in dealerships later this year, says Toyota.
GALLERY: 2023 Toyota Crown, US market