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2018 Toyota Century

2018 Toyota Century

The most luxurious Toyota you can’t buy!

Introduced in 1994, the Avalon helped Toyota become a notable force in the full-size segment in the United States. At the same time, the Lexus LS achieved a similar status in the luxury market. However, the Avalon isn’t Toyota’s largest vehicle. While the Japanese-spec Crown is slightly shorter than the Avalon (by some three inches), the second-generation Century trumps even the latest Lexus LS in terms of length at a whopping 207 inches. Or at least it did until it was discontinued in October 2016. But only one year has passed, and Toyota is getting ready to launch the third-generation model at the 2017 Toyota Motor Show.

Longer and wider, the new Century has been redesigned from the ground up. But, interestingly enough, it retained the traditional boxy design of its predecessor, which makes it a classy, old-school limo that reminds of the 1990s. In a good way! Toyota also replaced the old 5.0-liter V-12 with a V-8 and added an electric motor for enhanced fuel economy. As usual, it’s equipped with Toyota’s most luxurious features and technology, but updated to modern standard compared to the 20-year-old second-gen model. Unfortunately, the Century remains a Japan-only model, so don’t get your hopes up seeing it on North American roads. Let’s have a closer look at what we’re missing.

Continue reading to learn more about the Toyota Century.

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2017 Toyota 86 Solar Orange Limited

2017 Toyota 86 Solar Orange Limited

Once again, it’s exclusive to the Japanese market in limited quantities

It seems like we’ve been down this road before, doesn’t it? A special edition Toyota 86 that’s exclusive to the Japanese market is nothing new and yet, as often as our friends in Japan get these limited edition 86s, we haven’t had as much luck in that regard. In any event, a new limited-run Toyota 86 is fresh from the oven over there in Japan, and it’s promising, among other things, improved braking, sharper handling, and a special edition paint color. It’s called the Toyota 86 Solar Orange Limited and yes, it’s not coming to the States.

The upgrades themselves didn’t turn the 86 Solar Orange Limited into a full-blown performance car, but in the technical sense, they helped create a better driving experience for those who are willing to spend the money for the car. In a lot of ways, it’s similar to past special edition 86s that have made their way into Japan, including the 86 Yellow Limited and the curiously designed 86 Style CB. The latter is arguably the most unique of the three examples, but the Solar Orange limited is different too in some respects. The Creamsicle paint finish, for example, is exclusive to this edition, as is Toyota’s new High Performance package, which adds a number of functionally useful components that help improve the 86’s overall driving and handling experience.

Toyota didn’t say how many examples of the 86 Solar Orange Limited it plans to build, opting only to say that pricing starts at 3,251,880 yen for the manual transmission model and 3,318,840 yen for the automatic transmission model. Based on current exchange rates, those prices convert to around $29,400 and $30,000, respectively. Interested customers have only between January 31 to March 10, 2017 to place their orders, after which Toyota will likely stop production to retain its overall exclusivity.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Toyota 86 Solar Orange Limited.

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2015 Toyota 86 Yellow Limited

2015 Toyota 86 Yellow Limited

Toyota is offering another limited edition of its Hachi Roku successor, the GT 86, and it comes in three forms that progressively add tweaks to the car’s interior upholstery, exterior styling, and handling performance. It’s called the Yellow Limited, and it’s only available to Japanese customers.

The three iterations include the base Yellow Limited, which comes with new details on the inside and outside, the Yellow Limited aero package, which throws on a wing big enough to need navigation lights, and the Yellow Limited aero package FT, which adds new components to the suspension.

Toyota says the special edition was created to “highlight the sporty feeling” of the GT 86 (aka, Scion FR-S/Subaru BRZ here in the states), and on paper, I’d say highlight is an understatement. This thing is practically dipped in neon, depending on the desired specification.

But does it work? Is it worth extra outlay? Or is it just another limited run without any real substance?

Continue reading to learn more about the Toyota 86 Yellow Limited.

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2015 Toyota 86 Style Cb

2015 Toyota 86 Style Cb

The GT86, along with its two brothers, the BRZ and FR-S, hit the production line in 2012 as a joint venture between two of Japan’s best automakers: Toyota and Subaru. Since their debuts there have been cries and screams for a convertible or turbocharged model, but Subaru holds the cards on the production side of this partnership, and it’s reluctant to change anything. However, Toyota does have some freedom with the GT86, and it used that to create a special model dubbed the Style Cb based on the existing sports car.

This special-edition GT86 appears to be a Japan-only model, so don’t get your hopes up of seeing a Scion FR-S-based Cb any time soon. Look for this new model to debut in Japan in April 2015.

Does the Cb have what it takes to fill the void left by the lack of a turbo or convertible version of the GT86?

Click past the jump to read my full review to find out.

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2014 Toyota GT 86 14R60

2014 Toyota GT 86 14R60

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not the biggest fan of the Toyota GT 86. I used to be, but my joy soured over time due to what I felt was a lack of initiative from Toyota’s to make the GT 86 a more performance-oriented sports car. The closest Toyota came was with the TRD-enhanced GT 86 Griffon Concept that was unveiled at the 2012 Tokyo Auto Salon. Well, it may have taken some time, but finally - oh, finally! - Toyota now has a production GT 86 that can live up to its sports car name.

The model is called the GT 86 14R60 and it’s everything the GT 86 was supposed to be - and then some. It still doesn’t have any performance upgrades, but I’ve all but given up hope on seeing anything on that front. Instead, Toyota decided to build around the limitations of the GT 86’s 2.0-liter four-cylinder boxer engine and build a car that was light enough to the point that its performance capabilities wouldn’t be defined by its 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque output.

Toyota injected plenty of lightweight materials into the car to not only cut down it weight, but also improve its aerodynamic performance. There are, after all, more than a handful of ways to make a car faster without any performance mods on the engine.

That’s the good news. The bad news is that the car will only be available in Japan at a price of 6.3 million yen, which is close to $60,000 based on current exchange rates. That’s more than double the price of a standard GT 86. Ouch.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Toyota 86 14R60.

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2014 Toyota Land Cruiser 70

2014 Toyota Land Cruiser 70

Toyota’s commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Land Cruiser 70 by doing something it’s never done before. The Japanese automaker is reintroducing the model, except that it’s going to be limited to its local market. I don’t know if I speak for everybody here, but I’m completely jealous that Japan’s getting exclusive dibs on the re-released Toyota Land Cruiser 70. All 200 planned models, to be exact. It doesn’t seem fair, does it?

To make things interesting, Toyota’s also producing a double-cab pickup version of the Land Cruiser 70, which will also be limited to the Japanese market.

Granted, I’m not that excited about the pickup version as I am about the traditional enclosed body classic. The latter model speaks to a level of nostalgia you don’t see in today’s models anymore. I’m counting those retro-inspired ones, too.

If I knew that Toyota was considering re-releasing the model due to widespread requests in Japan, I’d be screaming for the model to go Stateside. Unfortunately, it’s unlikely that Toyota will do that, leaving me with no other choice than to just drool over these photos. Such a shame.

Click past the jump to read more about the Toyota Land Cruiser

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2013 Toyota Camatte57s Concept

2013 Toyota Camatte57s Concept

Admittedly, when we first saw this, our first thought was this was something MINI would do. But when we found out it came from Toyota, we weren’t surprised either.

Toyota knows when it’s time to think out of the box and it recently did so by presenting a colorful sports concept called the Camatte57s. The out-of-the-box part comes into focus because the Japanese automaker isn’t brining the car to an auto show.

It’s bringing it to a toy show, specifically the 2013 Tokyo Toy Show.

Essentially, the Camatte57s takes its name from the Japanese word for "care" with the “57” symbolizing the number of body panels it comes with. If you’re getting the hints by now, this concept is actually a kit car that’s simple enough to be assembled from the ground up.

The uniqueness doesn’t stop there, either. The car’s configuration is such that it has an open-top body with a 1+2 seating configuration. The seats, as well as the pedals, have all been configured in such a way that even kids can drive it. And as far as powertrain is concerned, Toyota says that it runs on electricity.

The whole point of the concept, according to Toyota, is to present the notion that people should feel more in touch with each other and with their vehicles.

Certainly, building a kit car like this - it measures 3,000 mm (118.1 inches) long, 1,440 mm (56.7 inches) wide, 1000 mm (39.4 inches) high and has a 1,800 mm (70.9-inch) wheelbase - will go a long way in fostering that driver-car relationship from an early age.

Click past the jump to read the press release

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2013 Toyota Mark X G Sports Carbon Roof Concept

2013 Toyota Mark X G Sports Carbon Roof Concept

TheToyota Mark X G Sports Carbon Roof Concept is a car that we probably won’t ever get to see on these shores. Having said that, it’s a pretty popular ride in Japan and Toyota is doing its part to drum up even more interest on the sedan in its homeland.

At the Tokyo Auto Salon, the Mark X G Sports Carbon Roof Concept was displayed. For this model, though, the Japanese automaker decided to introduce a carbon-fiber roof that not only looks pretty cool, but also shaves off 6 kg (13.2 pounds) of fat from the sedan. With the new roof, Toyota was also able to lower the car’s center of gravity by 3.5 mm (0.137 inches), which is always a good thing when trying to improve handling. The carbon-fiber weave pattern on the roof is an unmistakable reminder of the material’s high-quality characteristics.

Add that to a 3.5-liter V-6 engine that produces 318 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque and mates to a six-speed automatic transmission, and you have a car that’s poised to be a hot ticket in Japan. Wish we had this baby stateside because it would get considerable interest here too.

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2013 Toyota GT 86 Griffon by TRD

2013 Toyota GT 86 Griffon by TRD

Details are still very sketchy and all we have to show you is the blurry teaser image that TRD has unveiled, but there is a new GT 86 concept from TRD heading to the Tokyo Auto Salon. Sure, we already talked about the new Sports FR Concept Platinum and how awesome it is, but its partner in Tokyo – the GT 86 Griffon Concept – just may blow it out of the water.

Like we said, the details are sketchy, but we do know that TRD went to task lowering the GT 86’s overall weight, then tweaked at least the suspension and exhaust. TRD then took the GT 86 Griffon out to the Tsukuba circuit and laid rubber to tarmac, netting a best lap time of 1:01.872.

That may seem like nothing on paper, but when you start adding in the fact that time beats out times of the Ferrari 458 Italia, Ferrari 360 CS, Nissan GT-R Spec-V, Corvette ZR1, Lambo Gallardo, Porsche 911 GT2, and so on, you realize that this must be one beastly `Yota GT 86.

We will find out more on the 11th of January when TRD officially releases the specifications, but were are 100-percent certain that there is a lot more tweaking going on than just some suspension stiffening and exhaust work.

We’ll update this review once we get the official info.

UPDATE 07/13/13: New photos of the Toyota GT 86 TRD Griffon have been released. Check them out in the gallery below!

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2013 Toyota Mark X

2013 Toyota Mark X

One of the many advantages of being in Toyota’s home country of Japan are the number of models the automaker builds exclusively to their homeland. The Toyota Mark X, which we first saw in concept guise a few years ago, is one of them.

Unlike any model Toyota produces for the international market, the Mark X is exclusive to the Japanese market. More importantly, the 2013 model of the car gets a facelift, making it even more distinguishable than its past incarnations.

For one, the front grille of the car is probably the only one amongst Toyota’s many models to have a huge "X" adorning it. In addition, the car also gets LED infused headlights, bulging fenders, a trunk-mounted rear spoiler, and wraparound taillights that resemble the Toyota Camry. Inside, the Mark X also gets plenty of new equipment and features, particularly the higher trim Premium and 350 G’s models that both have leather upholstery, heated front seats, stainless steel door sill plates, and a comprehensive infotainment system that includes GPS navigation, a TV tuner, and 12 speakers.

As far as performance goes, the Mark X comes with two powertrain options with the first being a 2.5-liter V6 engine that produces 200 horsepower and 179 lb/ft of torque. Meanwhile, a more powerful 3.5-liter V6 engine is also being offered with 314 horsepower and 280 lb/ft of torque.

In case you’re interested - and you live in Japan - the 2013 Mark X retails for 2.4 million yen, which is around $30,500 based on current exchange rates.

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2012 Toyota iQ Supercharger by GRMN

2012 Toyota iQ Supercharger by GRMN

The Toyota iQ, which us in the States know as a Scion iQ, is never mistaken for a speedster or a sports car. However, weighing in at only 990 kg (2,182 lbs) means that it doesn’t take too much power to make it quick. The folks at GAZOO Racing decided to see what happens when they toss a supercharger on a Toyota iQ with the optional 1.33-liter engine.

The end result is a super-lightweight car that pumps out an impressive 122 PS (120 horsepower) at 5,200 rpm and 174 Nm (128 pound-feet) of torque at 4,800 rpm in a compact package. This means that the supercharger added a full 28 PS (27 horsepower) and 56 Nm (41 pound-feet) of torque. GAZOO Racing is building a very limited number of these iQs – 100 to be exact – and they have dubbed this machine the Toyota iQ GRMN Supercharger.

In addition to a supercharger, GAZOO Racing included an updated suspension and transmission. Also added in were 4-wheel disc brakes, allowing its driver to bring this micro-machine to a halt quickly.

The Toyota iQ GRM Supercharger retails at 3,550,000 Japanese Yen, which is $45,367 at the current exchange rates. That’s a full $27,332 more than the base-level Scion iQ, which is quite a price hike.

The 100 units are already sold out, so if you are looking to snag one of these iQ GRMN Superchargers, you’re going to have to check out the used car market and hope you’re lucky enough to find one.

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2012 Toyota GT 86 by TOMS

2012 Toyota GT 86 by TOMS

Back at last month’s Tokyo Auto Salon, Toyota unveiled a number of GT 86 variants that made our heads spin.

Now, we’re being treated to another program for the Japanese sports car, this time courtesy of Japanese tuning firm, TOMS. As part of the program for the fabulous 86, TOMS built and designed an aerodynamic program that consists of a new carbon fiber front spoiler, a new rear spoiler, a pretty intense quad exhaust system, a plethora of brake chambers, a mechanical processor for the aforementioned exhaust system, and a new set of aluminum wheels that improves on the Japanese sports car’s already aggressive stance.

According to TOMS, their aero program can also serve as a supplementary kit for any of the other 86 kits being prepared by TRD, Modellista, or GRMN. Sharing is caring, right?

Mechanical improvements done on the GT 86 have yet to be announced, but we do expect some serious performance gains for the Toyota sports car.

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2012 Toyota GT86 RC Spec

2012 Toyota GT86 RC Spec

The new Toyota GT 86 is now officially on sale on the Japanese market and Japan was lucky enough to get a bare bones model that most likely won’t be available on any other market. It’s called the GT 86 RC Spec and will be offered as an entry level model, stripped of many of its features to save weight and cost. That decrease in cost will be passed on to Toyota’s customers as well; the RC Spec is cheaper than any other GT 86 version offered, priced at $25,800 at the current exchange rates. This is about $5,500 cheaper than the next model in the line-up.

So what do we mean by bare bones? The RC Spec will be void of the usual perks like air conditioning and cup holders, as well as the underfloor, intake manifold cover, and boot lamp. The fascia cover and plastic covering for the steering wheel and gear shifter were also stripped. The exterior also gets minimized with unpainted front and rear bumpers, exterior mirrors, and door handles, and the 17" alloy wheels were replaced with 16" steel wheels. As a result, the GT 86 RC Spec is about 132 lbs lighter and consumes less fuel than the standard GT 86.

The Toyota GT 86 RC Spec is powered by the same 200 HP 2.0 liter, naturally-aspirated petrol engine found in the standard model, but only a six-speed manual transmission will be available to partner with it. The limited slip differential also gets tossed out to save weight.

The Toyota GT 86 RC Spec will be joined on the Japanese market by G Spec, GT Spec, and GT Limited versions.

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2012 Toyota Yaris Turbo Concept by GRMN

2012 Toyota Yaris Turbo Concept by GRMN

The Toyota Vitz, or the Yaris as it’s known in a lot of international markets, isn’t exactly the type of car that would receive a sports concept program. Apparently, Toyota and GRMN, thought that it would be a pretty good idea. Thus, the Vitz/Yaris Turbo Concept was born.

Prepared by GRMN, which stands for "Gazoo Racing Master of Nurburgring," the three-door Yaris received some pretty impressive bodywork, complete with Gazoo Racing’s signature livery, a new grille set-up, a redesigned front bumper, a front lip spoiler, widened front and rear fenders, side skirts, a roof spoiler, a new rear bumper and diffuser, and a new set of 18" wheels wrapped in high-performance tires. In terms of performance, the Yaris Turbo Concept received an improved engine, courtesy of a modified 1.5-liter supercharged engine that produces 180 horsepower and 162.3 lb-ft of torque. The engine was then combined with a five-speed manual transmission, a new lowered sports suspension, and a high-performance braking system.

It wasn’t surprising to see Toyota and GRMN pull out all the stops with their Tokyo Auto Salon contingent. What raised our eyebrows was the impressive detail Toyota and GRMN went through to build a sporty and aggressive Toyota Yaris.

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2012 Toyota GT86 by TRD

2012 Toyota GT86 by TRD

Our heads are spinning with the overload of tuned up Toyota GT 86’s that are being revealed at the 2012 Tokyo Auto Salon.

Whatever form the GT 86 - or BRZ and FR-S - comes in, one thing we do know is that it exudes some serious hot metal. That’s why a lot of people have been looking forward to the first tuning programs of these cars, with one in particular being the TRD-tuned, Satin White Pearl-finished Toyota GT86.

As it turns out, the GT 86 TRD comes with plenty of new aerodynamic accessories courtesy of TRD. There’s a new front lip, new side skirts on both sides of the car, new front and rear anti-roll bars, a carbon fiber strut, a rear diffuser, additional road-bracing, a high-response exhaust system, interior sports seats, and a new set of 18" alloy wheels.

Needless to say, TRD really went the whole nine yards in dressing up the Toyota GT 86 with a comprehensive list of impressive aerodynamic applications. It stands to reason that after seeing this, a lot of prospective owners of the GT 86 will be falling in line to get their own sports coupes set up exactly just the same.

And yes, that includes us.

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Toyota iQ 130G

Toyota iQ 130G

They say that beauty comes from within, and it seems Toyota is taking that statement to heart as they are providing the iQ with a facelift consisting solely of a modified interior just in time for the Paris Auto Show. But before that, Toyota will unveil a special edition iQ just for the Japanese market.

This special edition is called the iQ 130G and is distinguished by a revised bumper, exterior mirrors painted in a gray finish, and a revised exhaust tip. On the interior the 130G will get a new color combination for the leather finish and piano black trimming. Japanese customers will also be able to choose from a long list of options in order to customize their car.

The iQ 130G is powered by a 1.3 VVT-i engine that can produce 95 HP in JDM (Japanese Domestic Market) spec. The engine is mated to either a manual gearbox or a continuously variable transmission.

Considering this special edition was made specifically for the Japanese market, not everyone will be able to enjoy it. We guess we will just have to wait for the Scion iQ to be launched on the US market in 2011 before we get to see any iQ action.

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2010 Toyota Mark X G Sports Concept

2010 Toyota Mark X G Sports Concept

The Japanese automaker Toyota unveiled the Mark X G Sports Concept at the 2010 Tokyo Auto Salon. Like all the other creations in the G-Series lineup, the highly modified Mark X comes complete with a sport tuned suspension, aggressive looking aero parts and a racing inspired interior. The exterior of the tuned Mark X is dressed up with a few trick items like a new vented hood, big mouth front bumper with strips of LEDs and intricate air ducting, IS-F style vented front fenders with matching elements in the back bumper along with an integrated rear diffuser that frames the true dual exhaust as well as a carbon fiber roof panel up top and a set of 20 inch Work alloys wrapped in sticky Yohokama Advan rubber housing a ridiculously over sized big brake kit.

The interior of the Mark X G Sports Concept is all business. The driver straps into a Recaro racing bucket and grabs hold of a leather wrapped multifunction steering wheel with red accent stitching and a few well placed Alcantara inserts. The gauges are bright and easy to read, while the center stack is dominated by a large LCD multifunction display and is surrounded by quite a bit of carbon fiber. The floor mats carry the red accent theme while a set of aluminum racing pedals put the driver in direct contact with the controls. The G Sports Concept is powered by a 3.5 Liter V6 developing a total of 313 HP and 280 lb-ft of torque coupled to a paddle shifted six speed automatic transmission sending power straight to the rear wheels.

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2010 Toyota Sai

2010 Toyota Sai

The fuel efficient Japanese automaker Toyota has just launch the Sai luxury hybrid sedan, a model based on the Lexus HS 250h, into its home market. The new four door Hybrid Synergy Drive sedan is both bigger and more luxurious than the automobile manufacturer’s current flagship hybrid, the Toyota Prius. With the Sai’s scheduled launch only a few days away at the Tokyo Auto Salon, Toyota is taking a step forward to shake up the gas/electric car market.

Compared to the Lexus HS 250h, the new Toyota Sai features a distinct front end design with new head lamps, a unique hood, grill and bumper as we;; as a set of different taillights. On the inside, the new Sai gets its own instrument panel and center console design as well as a different steering wheel than the entry level Lexus hybrid.

However this where the differences end, under the hood the Sai features the same hybrid drive train as the Lexus HS 250h which includes a 2.4 Liter four cylinder engine running on an Atkinson cycle combined with an electric motor and a reduction gear to take over power train responsibilities when the gas burning engine isn’t required, when combined, the pair of conventional and electric motors can delver up to 190 HP. The Sai successfully bridges the gap between the entry level Prius hatchback and the more expensive Lexus HS 250h as far as the Japanese automaker Toyota’s lineup of hybrids is concerned.

Press release after the jump.

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2010 Toyota Mark X

2010 Toyota Mark X

The Japanese automaker Toyota has just launched an all new rear wheel drive luxury sedan for its home market called the Mark X. Built on the same platform as the Lexus GS, the new four door is powered by a choice of two engines, the first being a 2.5 Liter V6 that delivers a maximum output of 203 HP and is 15% more efficient than government regulations require as well as a powerful 3.5 Liter V6 that puts down a total of 318 HP. No matter which power plant you choose, both engines can be mated to Toyota’s gas sipping ECT six speed automatic transmission complete with sporty paddle shifters mounted on the steering wheel. The Mark X is good for a 0 to 60 MPH sprint of about 8.3 seconds and will return an average of 49.2 MPG.

For 2010, the Toyota Mark X features a widened front bumper opening, a sporty mesh grill, wraparound taillights and very thick C pillar giving the car a very muscular appearance. Keeping with the Mark X’s luxurious theme, the upscale sedan offers a spacious interior for up to five passengers and driver amenities like an ergonomic leather wrapped steering wheel and motorized lumbar support that combine quality and precision evoking a feeling of pure driving pleasure.

The Mark X is also loaded with high tech gadgets like an adaptive radar based cruise control system, equipped with a brake-control function that can maintain a fixed distance from the car in front, adaptive front lighting system, hill start assist control, HDD navigation system with map on demand and a digital T.V. tuner as well as the automaker’s intelligent parking assist system.

Press release after the jump.

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