Sale of the Week

For just $6300, a buyer gets to wear the (Toyota) Crown

by Andrew Newton
24 March 2023 2 min read

I’ll admit it, we highlight a lot of expensive cars, even on this Sale of the Week series. From Paul Newman’s $80,000 brick last week to Mercedes-Benz’s $142M 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupe last year, there’s something about a spit take-inducing dollar figure that tends to grab attention. But we like cheap cars, too, and there are some weeks when a low price stands out more than a record-breaking one.

Such is the case with this week’s car: 3700 pounds of pillowy-soft, range-topping JDM luxury magnificence with V-8 power, rear-wheel drive, and even an air purifier to keep back-seat passengers breathing clean as they enjoy their sprawling fields of legroom. Sounds expensive, no? In fact, it changed hands on Cars&Bids for $6314. Sounds more like a few months of groceries (thanks, inflation) than a rare vintage luxury car, but here we are.


The vehicle in question is a 1995 Toyota Crown Majesta. Now, the Crown has been Toyota’s mainstream domestic sedan for decades. In fact, it’s Toyota’s longest-running model and one that spawned other royal headwear-themed models like Corona and Tiara. Corolla even means “small crown” in Latin and Camry is derived from a Japanese phrase for “little crown.” The “Majesta,” however, is the upmarket version and Toyota’s flagship model in many countries. The second generation Majesta, also known as the S150, debuted in 1995 with the looks of a Lexus LS 400 that got rear ended by a Cadillac, and it carried over Toyota’s 4.0-liter 1UZ V8 from the previous-generation Crown Majesta (and the Lexus LS). Just about any Toyota powertrain is robust, but there’s a twin-turbo version of the 1UZ that’s one of very few road car engines certified by the FAA for use in an airplane. How’s that for reliability?


Speaking of aviation, this thing really flew under the radar at just above six grand. Sure, it isn’t perfect. At 106,700 km (66,300 miles) there are bumps and scrapes, splits in the dash top, the paint on the left side doors doesn’t match, and it needs new tires. It also has air suspension, and though no issues are reported, any air suspension system is expensive to repair. But let’s move on to the “pros” column.

It already has a US title, so there’s no confusing import paperwork. Being a high-spec luxo-cruiser it is also remarkably well-equipped, especially for the ’90s. Wood interior trim, power-adjustable front and rear seats, all-digital gauges, head-up display, automatic climate control with oscillating front vents, rear audio and climate control, and the aforementioned air purifier are all there to enjoy. And just look at that interior, draped in more industrial gray carpet than a convention center. Ok, maybe that’s more con than pro, but at least it’s in very good shape, and the floor mats do have a nifty wave pattern on them. There also don’t appear to be any modifications.

Bottom line—we like the car and we like the result. In a collector car market (especially for Japanese classics) that is coming out of a superheated couple of years it’s always nice to see a bargain, even it is for a car that most people on the road see as just an old refrigerator white Toyota with the steering wheel on the wrong side. The new owner, though, has a fun, usable, comfortable, and downright interesting classic with JDM street cred, all for the price of a project car.


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