Toyota Century

The Toyota Century is a large four-door sedan that of the Kento Auto Works, Ltd.. on behalf of Toyota, is made primarily for the Japanese market. Production began in 1967 and there were 30 years only small changes to the model. Only in 1997 it was revised. The name Century was chosen as the year of the launch fell on the 100th anniversary of Sakichi Toyoda, founder of Toyota Industries. It is written in Japaneseセンチュリーand pronounced as in English. Since its introduction in 1967 until its revision in 1997, there was only the Century with a V8 engine. Since then, he is only available with a V12 engine, which is only used in this model.

The Century is produced in only small quantities, virtually by hand. It is used by royalty, the Prime Minister of Japan, senior government officials and business leaders. From his character fro the Century is comparable to the Austin Princess in the UK or Malta, the ZIL / ZIS in Russia, the Chinese Red Flag, Rolls -Royce in the UK or the Maybach in Germany. The Century is equipped with mounted on the front fenders rear-view mirrors, as is typical for Japanese cars, but can also be supplied with the "normal" side mirrors.

The exterior of the Century remained despite some minor improvements since its introduction unchanged because it is " a symbol of conservative success". It is usually painted black. The most comparable competitor in Asia is the Nissan President with a similar reputation. In the early years of the Century ( in the 1960s and 1970s ) announced that its reputation with the Mitsubishi Debonair.

  • 2.1 Changes to the second generation of
  • 2.2 chassis codes

1st Generation ( 1967-1997 )

Toyota Century (1967 )

The first Century was based on the Crown Eight of 1964, of a 2.6 -liter V8 engine, type Toyota 3V, possessed. 1967, a revised version of this engine was fitted with 3.0 liter displacement. In 1973 the 3.4 -liter V8, Toyota Type 4V -U, and 1982 he moved to the 4.0 -liter V8, Toyota Type 5V EU. The names 3V, 4V and 5V U -EU is saying nothing about the number of valves but designates the generations of the Toyota V engine. There was also a long version of the Century, the Century L, its wheelbase 3010 mm and the length of 5270 mm, respectively.

The first-generation Century remained essentially unchanged for 30 years. 1982 received the Century a revised body in detail; the style of the vehicle output, however, was retained. Besides minor cosmetic changes, there were also improvements to the engine.

Changes in the first generation

Chassis codes

  • VG20: 3.0l V8, 3V, 1967-1973
  • VG21: 3.4 -liter V8, type 4V -U, 1973
  • VG30: 3.4 -liter V8, 4V -U type, 1973-1977
  • C- VG30: 1977
  • E- VG35: 1978-1982
  • VG40: 4.0L V8, type 5V -EU, 1982-1997
  • VG45: long version, 4.0 liter V8, type 5V -EU, 1990-1997

Century Limousine

A further extended by 500 mm version compared to the long version to a total length of 5770 mm. The Century sedan was available in the versions Type H and Type S and exclusively with partition between the front seats and the rear bench.

Century hybrid gas turbine

A Toyota Century with a GT45 gas turbine and an electric motor was shown in 1975 at the Tokyo Motor Show as the Century gas turbine Concept Vehicle.

2nd generation (since 1997)

Toyota Century (1997)

In 1997, the Century has been completely revised, even though the new model looked very similar to its predecessor. This model is still built is powered by a 5.0 -liter V12 engine, type Toyota 1GZ -FE, with 206 kW of power. Originally the car had a four-stage automatic; later he got a 6-speed " intelligent " automatic. It also has air suspension. The Century is the only Japanese production car with a V12 engine.

Since its launch was the most luxurious model Toyota Century and retained this status during the entire previous production time. Even today it ranks on the Lexus models, making it the most luxurious and prestigious model of Toyota. The Century is delivered in its own color palette.

Since 2006, he has also standard Toyota Navigation System G -BOOK.

Like no other car of the upper class is the Century designed for rear seat passengers. The rear seats can be pushed back and the front passenger seat has a collapsible center section so that the rear seat passengers can stretch their legs. The rear seats are equipped with a massage system. The exterior door handles open the doors electrically since the mechanical noise when opening the door was perceived as " too annoying ". The doors do not have to be added; it is sufficient if they have slight contact with the castle, so that they are electrically drawn.

The interior is usually ordered in wool fabric and not leather, because the smell of leather in Asia is perceived as not as comfortable and the wool material provides an even greater seating comfort. The car can be ordered in any desired by the purchaser interior paint, the most desired colors but are medium brown, burgundy or royal blue, each with a black finish. In the rear window, a white lace curtain is usually attached.

The Century costs ¥ 11,445,000 (ie, 85,000 EUR, value of 2009). In comparison, the price of the most luxurious Lexus LS ( ie about 74 000 EUR, value of 2009) is 460 ¥ 10,000,000 and for the Lexus LS 600h L ¥ 15,000,000 ( about 111,000 EUR, value of 2009).

Although the Century is not exported in large numbers, you can see him occasionally because it is often used by government officials stationed in foreign countries.

The Century is deliberately not advertised as a symbol of wealth and abundance. The marketing literature puts it like this: " At a Century takes you through diligent work, namely the way in which one is doing in a simple but elegant suit ".

Changes in the second generation

  • 2005: 6- speed automatic
  • 2008: standard digital television

Chassis codes

  • GZG50: 5.0 -liter V12, type 1GZ -FE, since 1997

Century Royal (since 2006)

A special version, named the Toyota Century Royal, was built for the Japanese imperial family, which is used by their older members, like the Bentley State Limousine for the British Royal Family. This special version has wool cloth upholstery, granite running boards and a headlining Japanese rice paper. Originally five copies were ordered, but because of high costs were eventually only four built. The model replaced the 30-year old Nissan Prince Royal Pullman limousines which already showed senility, as one during the ride broke down. The Century Royal may be used only by the imperial family.


Toyota Century (1982 ): rear end of cars registered in Germany

Toyota Century (2007)

A Toyota Century at the Tokyo Motor Show 2007