Japanese automaker Toyota looks set to debut an SUV version of its flagship Century luxury saloon by Aug this year. The model has long been rumoured to be in development, and now credible sources are reporting it is indeed happening.
Like the flagship saloon it underpins, it is likely that this SUV offshoot will be aimed at wealthy people overseas as well as government officials. That’s because sources online indicate that it could command a starting price of US$151,412 (approx. RM660K), or roughly three times that of a base Land Cruiser.
Reports further indicate that the 2023 Century SUV will be built at the Tahara Plant where Toyota assembles various Toyota and Lexus models presently. While the vehicle is expected to largely target buyers within its own homeland of Japan, the Century SUV could see life outside the land of the rising sun as well as an export model.
First published by Japan’s Best Car magazine, the outlet notes that it will be based on the latest North American Highlander model, though this hasn’t been confirmed yet. If that’s the case, the SUV should be longer than the donor car, offer two rows of seating, and have plenty of room for rear passengers. A hybrid powertrain hasn’t been ruled out either.
Leading on to that, this upcoming full-sized SUV is rumoured to be equipped with Toyota’s brand-new Hybrid Max Powertrain, which you can find in the latest Crown. The setup combines a front and rear electric motor with a 2.5-litre 4-cyl petrol engine that has at least 340 HP and 542 NM.
Would you fancy an SUV version of what is perhaps the most prestigious and luxurious saloon that’s still largely hand-built by Toyota? Hit the comments below with your thoughts, folks…