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The Crown is a nameplate that has adorned many vehicles and even more types of vehicles. It’s no surprise that the Crown name has appeared on yet another body style. The latest vehicle to wear the Crown badge takes the form of a raised sedan. Though the AMC Eagle is a raised sedan that comes to mind, most people probably think of the more modern Volvo XC70 or S60 Cross Country as examples of this niche body style. Despite its very recent introduction into the Toyota fleet, the 2023 Crown has been awarded a spot on Good Housekeeping’s “Best New Family Cars.” Let’s find out what the fuss is all about. 

Front angle view of silver 2023 Toyota Crown sedan, showing that its name means the same as Corolla and Camry
2023 Toyota Crown | Toyota

The Toyota Crown is an excellent option for families 

The new Crown is fundamentally a replacement for the now-discontinued Toyota Avalon. The 2023 Crown slots in as Toyota’s latest full-size sedan but comes with a clever twist: it’s got extra height and ground clearance.

It’s an intriguing decision, given the market has been all about crossovers, trucks, and big three-row SUVs—decidedly NOT sedans. However, Toyota may be capitalizing on a growing market segment, a segment that, until recently, was only populated by Volvo and their “Cross Country” range of sedans and wagons.

It’s unclear whether or not “raised wagons” are an official class of car. Still, it’s a great compromise that gives you additional ride height, ground clearance, and ease of entry, but with the aerodynamic efficiency and style of a sedan.

Good Housekeeping says the design is one positive worth noting, especially with the two-tone paint options. They aren’t wrong either; it doesn’t make it beautiful, but it’s unique and stands out from the crowd.

Efficiency is one of the Crown’s greatest strengths, especially in contrast to its crossover SUV competitors. The base powertrain manages an astonishing 42 mpg city and 41 mpg highway. Despite the Crown being almost identical in length to a Toyota Highlander, those are impressive numbers.

It’s essentially a sedan made for people who want a crossover. It’s got standard AWD which even the RAV4 doesn’t offer, and the seating position is similar to a compact SUV. In other words, if you want Subaru Forester ride height in a sedan body, Toyota has got you covered. 

The Toyota Crown makes a case for itself on paper

The Crown gets impressive fuel economy in the base trim, but let’s provide a little context. It’s slow. That doesn’t and shouldn’t matter for consumers looking for a family vehicle, but the base 2.5L engine, along with three electric motors, put out 236 hp.

With a curb weight of around 4,000 lbs, it clocked a 7.6 second 0-60 time. Thankfully, though the Crown isn’t exactly lacking in the corners, many reviewers point out a notable improvement over similarly specced SUVs.

If you opt for the Platinum trim, not only do you get a 2.4L turbocharged four-cylinder that, in conjunction with the hybrid batteries, produces 340 hp, but you get adaptive dampers. The Platinum trim, with its adaptive dampers and the increase in power, makes for a better driving experience but significantly decreases fuel economy.

In the Platinum trim, expect 29 mpg city and 32 mpg highway—still not bad when you factor in the power increase. Unfortunately, the Platinum trim will set you back $52,350. Quite pricey, but if you don’t require ventilated seats, heated rear seats, or a 360 top-down camera system, the base XLE trim comes with just about everything you need for under $40k.

Though some of the luxury features are missing, the XLE gets the same 12.3” infotainment screen as the upper trims in addition to Toyota’s “Safety Sense 3.0” which includes adaptive cruise and lane keep assist. 

Good Housekeeping had a stacked list of great sedans

Along with the Toyota Crown, Good Housekeeping also included five other sedans on their list. Their pick for the best compact car was the Honda Civic—a no-brainer based on the exceptional interior and driving experience in a car that costs under $30k.

For a luxury compact, they chose the Audi A3, which in its latest generation includes some great tech and can even be quite reliable with its third-gen 2.0L TSI engine. The Honda Accord took the “Best Sedan” category, while the Genesis G80 took the luxury category. In the full-size luxury segment, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class took the top spot—nearly the same price as some small houses, but always the leader in luxury. 


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