1993 Toyota Crown (S140) 2

  -  

Let’s carry on from yesterday’s JDM hardtop sedan theme, but kick it up a notch or two. Here, in all its faded glory and peeling paintwork, we have the first iteration of a new species of Toyota Crown – the top-of-the-line Majesta. Twenty-five years ago, this was about as glitzy a Toyota as you could get on the mở cửa Japanese Domestic Market: the Century was not really available for mere mortals, and the new Lexus was only for foreigners. So how did Toyota’s flagship come about và did it succeed in its mission?

*
*

I don’t think this one was ever featured on CC before, but I could be wrong. There are many cars called Crown – Toyota, Ford và Chrysler saw lớn that. But I’ve searched the archives, and it seems we haven’t had the first generation Majesta. So let us atone for this crime of lèse-majesté forthwith, starting with a little historical background. The origins of the Toyota Crown are well documented (by none other than gentleman and scholar Don “The Meg” Andreina) & ancient: the first car bearing that name came out in 1955 with a mere 1.5 litre 4-cyl. Under its bonnet, but it soon became a hit with the carriage trade. It was also the first Toyota khổng lồ be exported far và wide, including the US.

Bạn đang xem: 1993 toyota crown (s140) 2


*
*

1964-67 Toyota Crown Eight (VG10)


When the second generation (S40) arrived in 1962, it was pretty much the Crown as we know it already: a relatively big (within Japanese regulations) RWD four-door saloon / wagon with a choice of a 2-litre 4-cyl. Or a two 6-cyl. Engines (2.0 & 2.3 litres). This was the blueprint of the Crown for the remainder of the century (he he). Or at least it was, until they created the Crown Eight in 1964, which was a wider car – with almost identical styling – and a V8. The Crown Eight did not last very long, for it was superseded by the Toyota Century in 1967.

*
*

Said Century lasted for what seemed lượt thích a hundred years, aloof & alone at the top of the Toyota range, with its ever-increasing V8. But as Japanese motorists got wealthier và began khổng lồ harbor ideas above their station, lusting after the plush chauffeur-driven Centuries owned by their companies và government, the pressure mounted on Japanese automakers lớn democratize their V8-powered cars.


The return of the V8 Crown: 1989-91 Toyota Crown S130 Royal Saloon G


Interestingly, Toyota did this in two separate models simultaneously in the fall of 1989: they launched Lexus LS400 for the global market (the Japanese domestic market never saw a Lexus until 2005), & launched the Crown S130 “Royal Saloon G” hardtop sedan in Japan. Both the Royal Saloon G và the Lexus were available with a brand-new quad-cam 3968cc V8 that had no relation khổng lồ the Century’s older OHV “Hemi” 3994cc V8.


1991-95 Toyota Crowns – top: S130 saloon; middle: S140 hardtop; bottom: S140 Majesta


That’s when things got bit complicated, Crown-wise. Toyota split the Crown into three ranges, essentially. The S130 “pillared” saloon / wagon was re-skinned in 1990 và continued production until 1995 under the same S130 code as before. In late 1991, the hardtop became the new S140 – it broke new ground for the Crown with its IRS, but it was only available with 6-cyl. Power. At the apex of this new Crown family, Toyota introduced the S140 Majesta. It had some distinctive sheetmetal to lớn give the V8 a modicum of exclusivity, though perhaps that was not enough for most potential buyers.

*
*

The S140s did not sell all that well, apparently, and they are not a common sight in the nhật bản of 2019. This one is a little tired, but at least it’s the genuine article, with the correct amount of cylinders. You could order your Majesta with a 3-litre straight-6 if you wished lớn mitigate your tax and fuel bill – the maroon Majesta in the composite pic above being one of those sheep in wolf’s clothing. But if you’re splurging on the biggest Toyo in the pet shop, why not go all in and get the 4-litre V8? Speaking of which, how’s it lượt thích inside?

*
*

Ah, the untold velours delights of Japanese interiors of yestertear, complete with the lace seat covers fitted as standard, of course. I’m sure most Lexuses (I abhor the imbecilic mock-Latin plural “Lexi”) have leather trim, but you’ll never find smelly and noisy cowhide inside a true JDM luxury car. Bonus items in this particular vehicle include trắng driving gloves & a special lace mitten for the gear selector. What more can a gaijin want?

*
*

Well, this gaijin might want to lớn sit in the back. Và it’s pretty nice over there, too. I’m sure those seats are a damn sight more comfortable than the thinly-padded wooden benches found in rival German cars of the period. There doesn’t seem to lớn be many toys & gadgets to play with compared khổng lồ more recent luxury cars, but this is a pre-information superhighway interior at its coziest. Và I’m sure the A/C & sound system are đứng top notch.

Xem thêm: Sinh Tháng 2 Là Cung Tháng 2 Thuộc Cung Hoàng Đạo Gì? Sinh Tháng 2 Thuộc Cung Hoàng Đạo Gì

*
*

Looking at this Majesta nearly 30 years after its launch, it has a certain appeal that cannot be denied. It’s a big V8-powered RWD hardtop sedan, after all. & it was built lớn last by a very serious và competent automaker at the đứng đầu of its game, from a technical standpoint. But compared lớn the tank-like Mercedes W140 S-Class, the classic series III Jaguar XJ12 or even the blubbery D-body Cadillac Fleetwood, it looks a tad timorous. It doesn’t scream khổng lồ the world: “I’m the biggest, most luxurious series-made peasant-crusher (Justy Baum™) available for purchase” like these other cars do.

*
*

Perhaps because the Century was the true đứng đầu of the Toyota pecking order, or because this was the first time they were attempting to lớn split the hallowed Crown line in this manner, Toyota kind of misfired with the S140. The styling is a bit too common, a bit too close to lớn the Crown for comfort (he he again). They got much better with the subsequent generations, & continued splitting the Crown range further with the creation of the Athlete & the ubiquitous XS10 Comfort, a.k.a the Tokyo taxi, in 1995.


3rd ren (1999-2004) Crown Majesta, which I caught in the monsoon in Rangoon a few years ago


The Majesta also went on its merry way, with more assertive styling. When the 6th generation Majesta went out of production last year though, the nameplate was retired. It seems Toyota are done with their multiple Crown experiment now – it’s back khổng lồ a single range for the current 15th generation.

*
*

Was the Majesta all that necessary? Yes, probably. The relative failure of this first iteration – and the ultimate death of the name, albeit 25 years later – does not mean that Toyota were misguided in their efforts. Mercedes & BMW were a threat to lớn be countered on the JDM like anywhere else. Và arch-rival Nissan were not sitting on their hands, either. It was impossible for Toyota not to make a super-Crown. It’s just a pity it took them two or three tries to lớn get there.

Xem thêm: Google Discover Là Gì ? Nghĩa Của Từ Discover Trong Tiếng Việt


cjiguy

Nice find! The Majesta was slightly longer & wider than the “regular” Crown hardtop S140 series, and as such, was competing with two other Toyotas back home; The Aristo (our Lexus GS) and Celsior (the Lexus LS). This was problematic for sales, seeing as all three were within the same tax bracket, with the Aristo offering more style (and the 2JZ-GTE twin turbo in addition khổng lồ the Majesta’s two engine choices), and the even more upmarket Celsior not being priced much further up than a V8 Majesta, while being a clearly distinct, premium product. The one chất lượng aspect the Majesta had was the availability of four-wheel steering, but considering the conservative positioning between the three it had, this was largely a mute point. That particular peculiarity is confusing in that the Majesta và Aristo utilize the same platform; one would think that feature would be more marketable in the sportier Aristo.