Patent images allegedly showing an SUV-like variant of the next-generation 2023 Toyota Crown sedan have surfaced online.
Posted by the Japanese outlet Creative Trend, and spotted by CarExpert, the images show a much sleeker sedan than the current Crown, but that's in keeping with Toyota's recent trend of more expressive exterior styling.
According to Motor1, the car shown here is a variant to be badged Crown Cross, which explains why it appears to have a raised ride height and exterior cladding. It's reportedly 194 inches long and 60.6 inches tall, with a 112.2-inch wheelbase.
Alleged 2023 Toyota Crown patent image
The Toyota Crown is a large sedan that dates back to 1955, and is currently in its fifteenth generation. It's not currently sold in the U.S., but the latest generation is closely related to the Toyota Mirai and Lexus LS. The Crown is Toyota's mainstream flagship (the automaker also has the exclusive Century sedan that sells for Bentley money), and the nameplate is significant as the original Crown was the first car developed and built entirely in Japan.
Reuters reported in April that Toyota would unveil a redesigned Crown this summer, followed by a Crown SUV a year later. The SUV will reportedly include hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions that will be exported to the U.S. and China beginning in mid-2023. An all-electric version is also reportedly planned, but it may not be sold in the U.S.
It's possible the Crown SUV will be related to a new Lexus SUV sitting alongside the LS and LC in the luxury brand's flagship range, possibly wearing an LQ badge. The Lexus LF-1 Limitless concept unveiled in 2018 is thought to preview this flagship SUV.