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The Crown was Toyota's first export to the US, to Europe and to Africa, and this year the company's oldest nameplate marks its 60th anniversary.

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Posh JDM Cruiser Is Too Soft For America

We don't often come into contact with the Toyota Crown Hybrid, especially in colors other than pink. But when Toyota offered us the keys and a half-hour window to test out the Japanese version of the Lexus GS on US soil not long ago, we had to accept.

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Akio Toyoda is doing a pretty decent job at the helm of the Toyota empire. This is the man, after all, that declared that Toyota would get new sports cars, and that they needed to be, not should be, rear-wheel drive. We can respect that. Toyoda is also trying to do away with his company's conservative styling and bring edgier vehicles to market.

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2010 Lexus LS460 Sport – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Toyota's Crown Hybrid gets brownie points for good gas mileage, but it's apparently a troublemaker in the motor noise department. Instead of merely adding insulation to the bulkhead, Toyota engineered an Active Noise Control system to reduce engine noise inside the cabin.

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Toyota has an ambitious goal to begin selling one million hybrids per year by early next decade, and the Japanese automaker's home market Crown sedan reveals part of Toyota's strategy. The Crown Hybrid will only be available on the top line model, which also features industry firsts such as an LCD instrument panel, and a night vision pedestrian detector. The goal for Toyota is to make an actual profit on all of its hybrids, and the added tech amenities will help make the sharply higher prices ea

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