One-off Toyota Century drop-top to be Crown Prince Naruhito’s coronation trip


Japan’s emperor-to-be, Crown Prince Naruhito, has chosen a brand new Toyota Century as his official each day royal transport. For his coronation, nevertheless, Naruhito, who ascends to his father Emperor Akihito’s throne on Wednesday, will eschew driving within the Japanese automaker’s flagship sedan. As a substitute, Naruhito will trip in a specifically commissioned, one-off open-top Century that has but to be seen in public. The selection was confirmed in an official discover from the Japanese Authorities (PDF).

At Crown Prince Naruhito’s final large ceremony, in 1993, he and Crown Princess Masako appeared in a black Rolls-Royce Corniche Convertible to mark their nuptials. There was evidently some discuss reconditioning that very same car and urgent it into service for this week’s ceremonies, however in accordance with Japan’s Asahi Shimbun newspaper, the automobile has fallen into disrepair and spare elements have confirmed troublesome to supply. Therefore, the Century.

Toyota’s new Century sedan, you might recall, hit the market final yr. Beginning at round $180,000, this ultraexclusive home-market-only limousine is common amongst CEOs, politicians and sure, royalty. (It is also coveted by Japan’s legendary organized crime contingent, the Yakuza). Simply 50 examples are hand-assembled every month by specifically skilled grasp craftspeople, and the mannequin enjoys an enormous waitlist. 

In response to Toyota officers reached for remark by Roadshow, the automaker has by no means constructed a Century and not using a roof earlier than this automobile. For the second, mum’s the phrase on specs, not to mention photographs for this particular coronation trip. In truth, it is not even clear if the car provides a folding convertible high or if it is merely a devoted roofless parade automobile with out climate safety. We’re hoping to study extra as soon as the automobile breaks cowl throughout ceremonial duties later this week. 

The brand new king of old-school cool, Toyota’s Century options out there woolen seats, an influence ottoman and reside television.


Primarily based on the last-generation Lexus LS hybrid sedan, this new Century appears notably traditional and upright within the mannequin’s grand custom, however it’s absolutely updated in the case of comfort and security options. Additional, the electrified 5.0-liter hybrid V8 has loads of oomph, with Toyota quoting 425 horsepower and 376 pound-feet of torque. (In case you’re taken with studying extra about this distinctive car, I used to be lucky sufficient to turn out to be the primary Western journalist to drive the brand new mannequin, and you may learn my impressions of the Century right here). 

It is becoming that this third-generation mannequin of Toyota’s flagship sedan can have a job within the altering of the guard of Japan’s imperial household. In spite of everything, Akihito simply turned the primary emperor to abdicate his throne in additional than 200 years — that is two Centuries to you and me. 


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