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You heard it from Jalopnik, the Crown is cool!

When I saw the Crown “Sedan type” I wanted to be mad all over again, but I’d be feeling that way in bad faith — because the Crown crossover is much better than I expected. I had to bite my tongue and admit my first reaction was a knee-jerk response to Toyota wanting to have its cake and eat it, too.

That was before Toyota uncovered the car and made me reconsider my disdain for crossovers. Of course, it would take the Crown coming back to the U.S. to make me wonder why I’m mad at crossovers in the first place. I love small cars, is all. But I asked myself if the Crown would pass my personal litmus test: If you erase all the badges (and the history they imply), and see the car for what it really is, does it still carry the same impression?

Yeah, it passed the test. The 2023 Toyota Crown has a striking profile in person!

I know it’s hard to believe — I wouldn’t blame anyone for coming away with a different impression. But, dammit, this crossover looks good up close. Especially when you get past the initial shock of the new Crown being neither a traditional sedan nor a conventional crossover clad in swaths of black plastic.

The paint is the first thing you notice, because a Crown in anything other than a Steinway black finish is odd. Next you notice that the paint is actually two-tone, with gloss black accents. Once you get over the lack of tiny flags on the hood (many vintage Crowns were diplomatic or government vehicles in Japan), you notice the downward slope of the rear end and the dramatic ride height. Toyota calls it a “lift-up” style, and while the ride height kind of clashes with the sloping rear, it all comes together somehow. It’s just so much sleeker than photos suggest.
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