TAS 2019: Toyota Century GRMN – Akio’s company car

TAS 2019: Toyota Century GRMN – Akio’s company car

The exceedingly regal Toyota Century isn’t the sort of car you’d give to your in-house tuning company, but when your name is Akio Toyoda and you’re looking for a new company car, that’s exactly what you’d do – take an iconic luxury sedan celebrating your family’s rich history and imbue it with a sporting edge courtesy of a Le Mans-winning motorsports division.

Last year, the company president was seen being driven around in a one-off, hotted-up Century GRMN (short for Gazoo Racing Masters of Nürburgring, as it were), even making an appearance at the Toyota Gazoo Racing Festival at the Fuji Speedway with Kamui Kobayashi at the wheel. The car was so popular among fans that Toyota decided to build another one for this year’s Tokyo Auto Salon.

While Toyoda’s unit was white, the show car is finished in a deep black, making it look even more menacing – and even more popular with the yakuza crowd, were it ever offered for sale. All the trimmings are present and correct, including a more aggressive front splitter, side skirts, a rear diffuser and a subtle carbon fibre bootlid spoiler – all tied together with red pinstripe detailing.

A set of 19-inch BBS alloy wheels (wrapped in Yokohama iceGuard iG60 snow tyres, funnily enough) hint at the hardware found under the skin, and hide large GR-branded disc brakes. The interior remains unchanged, however, trimmed in light wood panelling and glorious beige 100% wool upholstery.

No details of the modifications within have been announced, but it’s safe to assume the GRMN retains the same hybrid powertrain as the Century – a 381 PS 5.0 litre 2UR-FSE direct-injected V8 paired to twin electric motors to produce a total of 431 PS. Like Toyoda’s car, this one carries an “1867” number plate, referring to the birth year of Toyota Industries founder Sakichi Toyoda – which the original 1967 Century commemorated.

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Jonathan Lee

After trying to pursue a career in product design, Jonathan Lee decided to make the sideways jump into the world of car journalism instead. He therefore appreciates the aesthetic appeal of a car, but for him, the driving experience is still second to none.



  • Abang Alza Pakai Topi on Jan 22, 2019 at 3:58 pm

    Sugoi ne.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0
    • John Crying Like a Baby on Jan 22, 2019 at 4:08 pm

      This car is so regal and majestic. In Malaysia we had not many Century but we had many Crowns in the 80s and 90s.

      This is before our old corrupted Government raised car prices to the highest prices in the world.

      Every teksi was a Crown!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1
  • YB Kunta Kinte on Jan 22, 2019 at 3:59 pm

    Toyota is the choice of Japanese Mafias. Well built and got good quality. Super rich Yakuza bosses only choose this car cause they know it is No 1 quality

    Pity Malaysia mafias and big bosses do not choose Proton Perdana as Perdanas got no standard.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 6
    • p2macai on Jan 22, 2019 at 6:06 pm

      Honda Fanboi Detected

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
    • Haha mafia want to use what car you also want to be anal, is it? Got nothing better to say better just keep quiet than being annoying!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
    • Haisan Geehin Inc on Jan 23, 2019 at 1:51 am

      We choose Alphard Veilfire as standard road transportation. Mitsu Perdana is driven by our apprentice macai. Lexus for our mistresses.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • Yakuza looks on yakuza car. R they trying to say something about the big boss?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1
  • YB Kunta Kinte on Jan 22, 2019 at 4:02 pm

    john see this car, he cannot tahan. Terus resign from being Proton salesman in Glenmarie and join Parkson Grand or Metrojaya

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
    • Tenkiu for ur business. Dun worry, ur secret is safe with me. Oh wai…. this is open forum…

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • thykrupp on Jan 22, 2019 at 4:47 pm

    Japanese prime minister was given a Toyota Century few years back. He will only use it within Japan, while for official visit to foreign countries he will bring Lexus instead. Maybe he thinks sitting in a century makes him an old folk.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3
  • Faris on Jan 22, 2019 at 4:58 pm

    Now this car looks freakin boss.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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