New Toyota Century limo brings old-school class to Tokyo 2017

Published: 25 October 2017

► New Toyota Century
► Japan's new exec transport
► Shown at 2017 Tokyo show

You can forget the new Audi A8 or the recently-facelifted Mercedes S-class – this is the executive car business folk need in their life. Toyota has revealed a new Century limousine and it’s gone down a storm at the 2017 Tokyo motor show.

Wait, is the Toyota Century still a thing?

Absolutely. The first-gen Century was in production for thirty years between 1967 and 1997, while the second one was on sale from 1997 and only stopped rolling off the production line in October 2016.

The new Century doesn’t look that different…

Well, no – this is true. But this is a car steeped in reputation in Japan; it would have raised a few eyebrows if Toyota had done too much to change the look.

The new third-gen Century seems to take design inspiration from the Lincoln Continental on sale in the US. There’s a bluff front end complemented by a big rectangular grille, rectangular LED headlights and a stretching bonnet.

What about inside?

An explosion of fine wool, wood panelling and leather. It’s so uncompromisingly old-school inside; not like the current-generation S-class or the all-new Audi A8 – that’s for sure.

Toyota says that the fresh Century has a raised ceiling for a airier cabin and the rear seats have power leg rests and a massage function. There’s a multi-function touchscreen mounted on the central armrest means that the rear passengers can control everything about the car, positioning of all four seats, the climate control and audio controls.

Toyota Century rear seats

A range of options that ‘can be used for business or pleasure’ include a writing table, reading lights, a rear-seat entertainment system and a 20-speaker audio system.

Toyota’s Safety Sense kit is included, too, so the driver… sorry, chauffeur has blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert and collision avoidance systems at their disposal.

Sounds plush – is it powered by an aga?

Well yes and no. The old V12 of yesteryear has been ditched with a slightly more modern 5.0-litre V8 hooked up to an electric motor and battery, making it a hybrid.

There aren’t any performance of economy specs mentioned, but the Century’s new powertrain was developed ‘in pursuit of the lowest fuel consumption in its class.’

Toyota Century 2017

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By Jake Groves

CAR's staff writer, office Geordie, gamer, lover of hot hatches

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