One of the world’s longest-running sedan nameplates is about to be used on an unusual high-riding fastback.
Toyota has confirmed it’ll reveal its new-generation Crown on July 15 at 3:30PM AEST.
In the lead up to the reveal, the Toyota has made a dedicated landing page on its Japanese website for the new Crown which displays a countdown to the reveal and also a short video with slides that read, “Sedan? SUV?” and “Discover your Crown”.
Despite the mystery surrounding what the new Toyota Crown will look like, we already know it’s going to have quirky fastback silhouette thanks to leaked patent images, with a higher ride height and subtle black plastic cladding.
Up until now the Crown has always offered a traditional, three-box sedan body style, though it’s been available as a coupe, wagon and ute in the past.
The patent images also show what appear to be full-width light bars at the front and rear, and it bears some resemblance to two of the bZ electric concepts revealed by Toyota late in 2021.
This Toyota Crown crossover will reportedly measure 4930mm long, 1840mm wide, 1540mm tall on a 2850mm wheelbase.
That makes it 20mm longer, 40mm wider and 85mm taller than the current car, albeit on a 70mm shorter wheelbase.
BestCarWeb reports the Crown crossover will use the 2.4-litre turbocharged hybrid all-wheel drive powertrain from the upcoming Lexus RX500h F Sport High Performance, as well as Toyota’s 2.5-litre hybrid powertrain with eFour all-wheel drive.
A previous report from Reuters in April indicated that Toyota would launch a Crown SUV in markets like China, Japan and North America.
It’ll reportedly be offered with hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric powertrains, with hybrid sales to begin in 2023 and the electric model due in 2024.
It’s unclear if an Australian launch is on the cards, though Toyota did trademark the Crown name locally last year.
It’s also unclear if an updated version of the current rear-wheel drive Crown sedan will still launch, as previously speculated.
The Toyota Crown may be a sedan in a global market that’s shifting away from this body style, but the Crown is still an important vehicle for the Toyota brand.
Toyota launched the first generation of the Crown in 1955 and it was the first passenger car developed and built entirely in Japan. Three years later it became the first Toyota exported to the US.
Though its initial US run quickly fizzled, Toyota refined the car and subsequent generations were offered in the US until 1973.
With the end of seventh-generation production in 1987, the Crown largely disappeared from Europe and it was discontinued locally.
The 12th through to the 14th generation were produced in China, but today the Crown is effectively a Japanese market-only vehicle. It sits below the exclusive Century.
In China, Toyota has been using the Crown nameplate in a different way with the launch of the Crown name as a luxury sub-brand in 2020.
The Kluger SUV and Vellfire people-mover have both received the Crown treatment in China, with various aesthetic tweaks inside and out and high level of equipment.