At the 2021 Auto Shanghai, we expected Toyota to reveal the all-new Crown crossover called the Crown Kluger. They delivered on that front, but they had another surprise. Toyota debuted another Crown-badged model over there.
Meet the 2021 Crown Vellfire. For those that aren’t familiar with the model, the Vellfire is the sibling of the Alphard and the more luxurious Lexus LM. Unlike the Alphard and LM, however, most Vellfire vans are sold in right-hand drive configuration. But, Toyota does offer it in left-hand drive for the Chinese market.
The Crown Vellfire is based on the latest version of the upscale minivan sold in Japan – the Vellfire Z G Edition. It also has the most aggressive-looking front end compared to its siblings. Unlike the Alphard with a massive grille, the one on the Crown Vellfire is more subtle. Instead, the bumper is the main attraction featuring tons of chrome all around. Rather than a Toyota logo, however, it features the Crown’s signature logo on the center.
No photos of the rear were available, but we bet it’s the same as what you would find on the Vellfire. Unlike the front end, it’s also more similar to Alphard. The main difference would be the taillights. The Vellfire features clear taillights with square elements compared to the red units fitted on the Alphard.
Like most luxury minivans, the magic of the Crown Vellfire is inside. If it looks familiar, it’s because it is identical to the one found in the Alphard. Unlike the Crown Kluger, however, Toyota kept the Toyota logo on the steering wheel. Instead, the Crown logo shows up on the large infotainment display in the center. The second and third-row seats appear to be lifted from the Alphard, including the trim color. To prevent viruses from getting into the cabin, it comes with a CN95 air-conditioning filter element.
The China-only Crown Vellfire is powered solely by a 2.5-liter hybrid mill. There is no mention of total output, but over in Japan, the same model produces a combined power of 150 PS and 206 Nm torque. Yes, it’s down on power compared to the 3.5-liter V6, but at least you get better fuel economy.
So with Toyota now offering three variants of the Crown – sedan, crossover, and MPV – the question now is whether the lineup will be expanded even further in the future. Will we see a Crown badge on like a pick-up or a HiAce too?