The Toyota Crown is one of the oldest and most prestigious nameplates in the automotive world. It has been in production since 1955, making it the longest-running sedan in history. The Crown has been a symbol of Toyota’s engineering excellence, innovation, and luxury for generations. It has also been a popular choice for government officials, business executives, and taxi drivers in Japan and other Asian markets.
However, the Crown has been absent from the North American market for over 50 years. The last time it was sold here was in 1971, when the Corona Mark II replaced it. Since then, Toyota has focused on other models such as the Camry, Avalon, and Lexus ES to cater to the sedan buyers in this region.
But now, Toyota is ready to bring back the Crown to North America. The 2024 Toyota Crown is a new model that replaces the Avalon as Toyota’s flagship sedan. It is based on the same platform as the Lexus ES, but it has a distinctive design, a hybrid powertrain, and a high seating position that blurs the line between a sedan and a crossover.
What’s New for 2024?
The 2024 Toyota Crown Hybrid is a new addition to Toyota’s U.S. lineup. It is the 16th generation of the Crown, which debuted in Japan in 2018. The U.S. version differs from the Japanese one in some aspects, such as the powertrain, the trim levels, and the styling details.
The 2024 Toyota Crown Hybrid is offered in three trim levels: XLE, Limited, and Platinum. All of them come with a hybrid powertrain and all-wheel drive as standard. The XLE and Limited models use a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine paired with three electric motors and a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). This system produces a combined output of 236 horsepower and 163 lb-ft of torque. It also delivers an impressive fuel economy of 41 mpg combined.
The Platinum model gets an exclusive Hybrid Max powertrain that combines a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with an electric motor on the rear axle. This system generates a total of 340 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. It also uses a six-speed automatic transmission instead of a CVT. The Hybrid Max powertrain offers more performance and responsiveness than the base one, but it sacrifices some fuel efficiency, achieving 30 mpg combined.
Design and Features
The Crown’s design is one of its most striking features. It has a tall roofline and a fastback shape that give it a unique profile among sedans. It also has a large grille, LED headlights, and chrome accents that emphasize its premium status. The Crown offers two-tone paint options that contrast the roof color with the body color, adding more flair to its appearance.
The Crown’s interior is spacious and luxurious, with high-quality materials and craftsmanship. It has a high seating position that provides good visibility and comfort for the driver and passengers. It also has a large trunk that can accommodate up to 16 cubic feet of cargo.
The Crown comes with a generous amount of standard and available features that enhance its convenience, safety, and entertainment. Some of these features include:
- A 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Amazon Alexa, and wireless charging
- A 10-inch head-up display that projects key information on the windshield
- A 14-speaker JBL sound system with Clari-Fi technology that restores audio quality from compressed digital sources
- A panoramic sunroof that lets in natural light and fresh air
- A heated steering wheel and heated and ventilated front seats
- A rear-seat entertainment system with dual 11.6-inch screens and wireless headphones
- A suite of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) that includes adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning, lane-tracing assist, road-sign assist, automatic high beams, and rearview camera
How Does It Drive?
The Toyota Crown’s driving experience depends largely on which powertrain you choose. The base hybrid system offers adequate acceleration and smooth operation, but it lacks excitement and refinement. The CVT can be noisy under hard acceleration, and the engine can sound coarse at high revs.
The Hybrid Max powertrain is more satisfying and engaging to drive. It delivers strong performance and quick response thanks to its turbocharged engine and rear electric motor. The six-speed automatic transmission shifts smoothly and smartly, and it can be controlled manually via paddle shifters.
The Crown’s handling is composed and stable but not very agile or sporty. It has a soft suspension that absorbs bumps and road imperfections well, but it also causes some body roll and lean in corners. The steering is light and accurate but not very communicative or feedback-rich.
The Crown’s brakes are regenerative, meaning they capture some of the kinetic energy from braking and use it to recharge the hybrid battery. This helps improve fuel efficiency, but it also affects the brake feel and modulation. The brakes can feel grabby and inconsistent at times, especially at low speeds.