Brand expansion is the name of the modern automotive game, and the Toyota Crown is branching out into the world of crossover-style hatchbacks with the new Toyota Crown Sport.
The new Crown Sport is closely related to the sixteenth-generation Crown Crossover — known simply as the Crown in the US and as the Crown CrossSport in China — which went on sale globally last year.
While the Crown Crossover is a high-riding sedan, the new Crown Sport is a family-friendly hatchback with crossover-styling cues.
Although it too rides on the GA-K transverse engine platform, the Crown Sport’s exterior looks to be unique and, thanks to its thin C-shaped headlights and silhouette, has more than a passing resemblance to the Ferrari Purosangue.
Measuring 4720mm long, 1880mm wide, 1565mm tall, and a 2770mm wheelbase, the Crown Sport is 210mm shorter, 10mm wider, 10mm taller, and has a 80mm shorter wheelbase than the Crown Crossover.
At launch, the Crown Sport will only be available with the “E-Four” 2.5-litre hybrid drivetrain that drives the front wheels via an e-CVT, while the rear wheels are driven by a separate electric motor.
No power figures have been released yet, but the same setup in the Crown Crossover is rated at 176kW. The Sport rides on 21-inch alloy wheels, and has rear-wheel steering.
This drivetrain will be joined in the not-too-distant future by a plug-in hybrid option, but there’s no mention of the 250kW/543Nm 2.4-litre turbo hybrid system available on the Crown Crossover.
The interior of the Crown Sport seems to be shared with the Crown Crossover, and includes a 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment display.
The Crown Sport is the second member of the expanded sixteenth-generation Crown family to be fully unveiled. It will followed by new Crown Wagon — which is actually a more traditional crossover style — and Crown Sedan models.
While the Crossover, Sport, and Wagon are the first Crown models to be based on a front- and all-wheel drive architecture, the upcoming Crown Sedan will stick to the sub-brand’s more traditional front-engine, rear-wheel drive layout.
The Crown Sport, as well as the Crown Crossover, are available through Toyota’s Japanese sales network. In addition to this the automaker is setting up a small chain of five dedicated Crown dealerships throughout its homeland. Starting in December, special edition models will be only available through these outlets.
Pricing for the Crown Sport starts from 5.9 million yen ($62,000). It’s unknown if the Crown Sport will be available in markets outside of Japan. Currently the Crown Crossover is sold in North America, China and Japan.