Netflix and Toyota finally have something in common: Both are reviving "The Crown" in the U.S. this fall after an extended hiatus.
Only instead of a dramatized story of Queen Elizabeth II in the 1990s, Toyota dealers will get a hybridized fastback crossover, intended to replace the Avalon large sedan, with a resurrected nameplate that hasn't been sold in the U.S. in 50 years.
The 2023 Toyota Crown will be the brand's new top-of-the-line vehicle in the U.S., as the model has been in its native Japan for decades, and it revives the nameplate in the States for the first time since 1972.
Toyota calls the Crown a full-size sedan with a "higher ride-height design," but the styling is much closer to that of a fastback crossover — such as the Audi Q5 Sportback — though with fixed rear glass and a traditional trunk instead of a hatchback.
The 2023 Crown will offer two hybrid powertrains: a standard one tuned to maximize fuel savings on base XLE and midrange Limited models, and a second on the Platinum trim aimed at maximizing performance. Toyota estimates the standard hybrid will deliver up to 38 mpg combined, while the performance-tuned version, which it says delivers a combined 340 hp, will get an estimated 28 mpg combined.
The standard powertrain mates a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter inline-four engine to a continuously variable transmission, while the Platinum trim is powered by a turbocharged 2.4-liter inline-four engine mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox. Both feature an electronic on-demand all-wheel-drive system that sends power to the rear wheels via an axle-mounted electric motor that engages when needed for extra traction.
The 15th-generation Crown, built in Japan, will come standard with Toyota's new infotainment system and a 12.3-inch touch screen. It will be equipped with Toyota Safety Sense 3.0, the brand's suite of advanced safety and driver-assistance systems.
Pricing for the 2023 Toyota Crown was not revealed. Toyota says it expects the vehicle to be in U.S. showrooms in the fall.