2023 Toyota Crown Receives Mixed Reviews With Redesign And Raised Ride Height

  • The Toyota Crown (originally called the Toyopet Crown) was the first Japanese car sold in America in 1958.
  • The 2023 model represents the 16th generation and the first Crown available in the U.S. since 1972.
  • While Japan gets a wagon, SUV, and sedan, the U.S. market will only receive a raised crossover-like AWD hybrid sedan.
  • Toyota introduced a new 340hp 2.4-liter turbocharged inline-four hybrid engine with two electric motors.

I’ve always been a fan of the Toyota Crown, growing up as a JDM/VIP enthusiast. Big body sedans with ultra-wide wheels, crazy low aired-down stance, and a lounge-like interior that often saw window curtains, wood tables, fancy mirror ornaments, and champagne bottles… Yes, VIP builds were rad, and the Crown was one of many popular sedans in Japan that received the full VIP treatment. Outside of the aftermarket, the Crown served as a premium vehicle used for chauffeuring around politicians and CEOs. They are the cream of the crop in the Toyota lineup, which is why it made some noise in the car community when the 16th generation of the Crown was revealed. It was also announced that the Crown will return to the U.S. after a 50-year hiatus.

Now we know everyone will have their opinion about the new Crown’s bold and polarizing redesign. We’re still digesting its looks ourselves, quite honestly, especially the two-tone treatment, massive front grille, and crossover-like ride height. What we can give Toyota is props for taking some risks. They’ve designed a raised sedan with unorthodox styling that will be offered in a country that is clearly trending towards more SUVs, trucks, and crossovers. We can’t predict whether the Crown will be a hit on American soil, but what we can say is that it’s officially here, and it’s cool to see the Crown’s name, even if we can’t all agree with how it looks.


  1. The Crown will come as a hybrid in three trims. The Platinum model is what you care about with a brand new 2.4-liter four-cylinder turbo that adds two electric motors, good enough for 340hp and a 0-6mph of 5.9mph. Peak torque will hit between 2000-3000rpm. The Platinum also comes with a new six-speed trans with wet start clutch and paddle shifters that should put the standard CVT to shame.
  2. All Crowns will be AWD, but the Platinum grade’s system is designed to maximize torque to the rear wheels, capable of distributing power to front and rear wheels between 70:30 to 20:80.
  3. If those wheels look big, it’s because they are. 21-inch wheels are standard on the Platinum and optional on the other two trims. This is the largest wheel ever offered in a Toyota sedan.
  4. I’ve been told by Toyota reps that the Crown handles surprisingly well and can be fun on canyon drives. The Platinum grade even gets adaptive suspension that will adjust the dampers at the flick of a knob; however, I still can’t come to terms with the “lift-up” ride height setup that makes the Crown four inches higher than the Camry.
  5. If there’s one thing I don’t see much to complain about, it’s the cabin. During the reveal event, I popped into the driver seat, closed the doors, and was impressed with the seats, driver-centric layout, and sound deadening. The interior is undoubtedly VIP; however, will this Crown be ever accepted into the VIP community? For now, my guess is no, but I’ve been wrong many times before.