Home » The 2025 Toyota Crown Signia Will Get The Job Done

The 2025 Toyota Crown Signia Will Get The Job Done

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The 2025 Toyota Crown Signia is part of a new era for the manufacturer. Gone are the Avalon sedans and Venza SUVs, and in their place is a single brand name: the Crown. The Crown is Toyota’s longest-running nameplate worldwide at roughly 70 years old, but to a lot of U.S. buyers, it’s new.

The Crown Signia doesn’t just demonstrate Toyota’s commitment to the Crown nameplate in America, it also continues to give us a look into our hybrid- and SUV-laden future.

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[Full disclosure: Toyota flew me out to San Diego to drive a bunch of cars on an off-road course and street routes. Toyota provided travel, accommodations, and food. I had a chocolate milkshake with sprinkles. -AK]

What Is the Crown Signia?

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The Toyota Crown brand will be a family of cars, kind of like how the Ford Mustang is now a muscle car and an electric SUV. In the Crown family, “Signia” is just a fancy way to say “SUV.” The Crown sedan came first, replacing the Avalon. Now, it’s time for the Crown Signia to take the Venza’s crown.

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Avalon Crown Venza
Out: Avalon and Venza. In: Crown sedan and Signia.

The Signia is the Crown family’s first SUV, featuring a 240-horsepower, hybrid-only powertrain and all-wheel drive on all models. Toyota describes the Signia as having a “long, sweeping roofline, monochromatic grille, and wide front and rear fenders,” which was enough to make a few auto journalists optimistically toss the term “wagon” around at the drive event.

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Toyota

Toyota only has only two available trims for the Crown Signia: the XLE (which starts at $43,590 base, plus fees) and Limited ($47,990 base, plus fees). Standard features include leather-trimmed seating, the Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 driver-assistance suite, a 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen, a heated and telescoping steering wheel, and more. Toyota says the Signia can tow up to 2,700 pounds.

Toyota mentioned during a walkaround of the car that the higher base price and limited options are meant to make building and purchasing the car easier. If people have what they need and can drive off the lot without waiting for another car with a tiny spec-sheet difference, Toyota can move more cars and have fewer sitting around.

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Toyota

The Signia’s hybrid powertrain is not a plug-in, which means the car’s battery charges while it drives. While a plug-in hybrid like the RAV4 Prime gets 42 miles of electric-only range, the Signia’s EV mode is limited to low-speed driving — basically, if you’re gliding around a parking lot, you can do so solely electrically. If you accelerate much past that, the gas motor kicks on.

Like the new Toyota Camry, which is also hybrid-only, the Crown Signia’s all-wheel drive system sends power to the rear wheels through a dedicated rear electric motor, providing additional traction when you need it, while the electric motor-assisted gas engine powers the front wheels.

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Let’s look at the Crown Signia’s basic specs:

  • Price: $43,590 (XLE trim) and $47,990 (Limited trim) plus fees 
  • Engine: 2.5-liter four-cylinder 
  • Transmission: Electronically controlled continuously variable transmission (eCVT)
  • Drivetrain: Standard electronic on-demand all-wheel drive (AWD)
  • Horsepower: 240
  • Fuel Economy (mpg): Manufacturer-estimated 39 city, 37 highway, and 38 combined
  • Body Style: Five-seat crossover
  • Curb Weight: 4,210 pounds 

What It Looks Like

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The three most striking parts of the Crown Signia’s exterior, in my opinion, are the long roofline I mentioned earlier, the nose, and the headlights. The nose is different because it goes against the “make the grille as big as possible” trend we’ve seen for a long time now, instead wearing a body-colored nose panel with diamond-shaped holes.

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The headlights follow the Toyota lineup’s new “hammerhead” front end, where the hood lines, grill, and lights combine to look like a hammerhead shark. The lines blend elegantly and give the Toyota lineup a recognizable face, but I’m still not in love with that face yet.

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What About the Inside?

The Signia’s interior is pleasant but conservative; itdoes not take risks with interior design and materials choices like, say, modern Hyundais and Kias do. It’s livable but unmemorable in standard trim, but makes a stronger impression with the optional panoramic glass roof that makes the car feel spacious and airy inside.

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There’s also plenty of rear legroom. I’m 5-foot-8, and with the passenger seat scooted far back, I still had about 5 inches between it and my knee. The rear cargo space (24.8 square feet with the panoramic roof and 25.8 without) is massive – I could get my entire body inside and roll around.

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Rear passengers get USB-C charging ports and seat heaters, but they don’t have their own climate controls. Front passengers have wireless Apple CarPlay and a 12.3-inch screen, which is a nice size and easy to use.

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Toyota

I wish the buttons under the infotainment screen were fancier — they’re plasticky and dull — but I liked the two-tone caramel and black interior my Crown Signia had. It made the conservative styling more interesting, and the little bronze accents (like the dashboard trim and door handles) made the inside feel elegant.

How It Drives

The Signia drives like a nice commuter car, but it’s still a commuter car. There’s not a lot of wind noise at high speeds, and road noise varies. On less rough surfaces, the sound of the radio can easily cover the noise. On rougher ones, I noticed during my short drive some amount of drone.

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The engine also drones around 55 mph, and the car feels billowy at high speeds on tight, squiggly roads. It felt like a lot of weight transfer in the corners, a feeling that made me slow down for stability reasons. (I don’t think this is a terrible thing. As cars in general get more capable, I’d actually prefer people not drive faster than they’re capable of due to false confidence.)

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Toyota

The steering wasn’t too light or too heavy, and both the steering and pedals responded well to inputs. The pedals weren’t squishy or light; they had good tension without being heavy.

The most important part, though, is the hybrid system. Toyota is going all-in on hybrids, and while I think the company should make more fully electric models, hybrids are the perfect cars for current American infrastructure. They allow people to lightly transition to electrification — and get better fuel economy — without experiencing the range anxiety or general uncertainty they would with full EVs. That creates a lower barrier to entry for electrification, exposing more people to it and slowly moving us toward a more electric society.

A non-plug-in hybrid system like the Signia’s is even more friendly; buyers don’t have to change anything about their daily lives or relationship with their car in order to use it, yet they still get the benefits of hybrid driving and the limited EV-only mode.

Conclusion

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Toyota

If Crown Signia shoppers have never driven or owned a hybrid or fully electric vehicle, the “hybrid-only” moniker might scare them at first. The terms “hybrid” and “EV” come with the connotation that the car owner has to do something new and different — plug the car in — but I think having volume-sellers like the Camry and Crown Signia offered as hybrid-only (note: The Venza was also Hybrid only) is a step forward for all of us.

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Toyota

Popular hybrid-only models make gas-car buyers more comfortable with the future, and show them the benefits the electric future provides. I wrote more about that in my Camry review, so I won’t bore regular readers by saying it all again.

The Crown Signia does a lot of things right. It looks decent, drives well, has quality materials, and it continues to push our country as a whole to be more comfortable with electrified vehicles. Is it particularly exciting? No. But does it do the job, well and in style? Yes. That’s all most car buyers need, and it means this car will be a hit. At least, when compared to the Venza it replaces.

Second Opinion Split

I Also Drove The 2025 Toyota Crown Signia, And It Seems Promising

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Thomas Hundal here. I, too, have driven the new Toyota Crown Signia, and I have thoughts. Like the generous grandparents with kind smiles who gift their grandkids $100 bills every Christmas, or the first songbird you see as the calendar flips around to spring, its image can do no wrong. It’s supposed to be a moderately sumptuous two-row crossover for well-heeled yet grounded empty-nesters, and you know what? It does more than alright on that front.

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The 2.5-liter four-cylinder hybrid powertrain is plenty potent enough to keep up with traffic and indulge in the occasional overtaking maneuver. Suspension tuning, a hit-or-miss proposition on many mainline Toyotas, is effortlessly settled. Stereotypical Quebec pavement fails to perturb the chassis beyond the occasional hushed murmur making its way through the sound deadening, even as the cornfields start to blur.

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In addition, the JBL premium audio system goes properly loud, there’s loads of space for people and their things, the centre console accommodates pack rats, wind noise is generally hushed, and the front turn signals just look sharp. In fact, the whole vehicle does. Add in the perfectly toasted caramel textiles wrapped around the door cards and dash trims, and you get a package that could tempt people away from the current Lexus RX because it just feels like a more thoughtful experience. This isn’t a Toyota Outback, it’s something else entirely.

Nits to pick? Sure. There are some on every car. If you like a low driving position and have long legs, the Crown Signia isn’t the car for you. Try as I might, I simply couldn’t get comfortable behind the wheel. In addition, the digital gauge cluster is rather busy, and the steering wheel-mounted controls for the stereo, cluster, and driving assist systems must’ve been arranged by Jackson Pollock. Thankfully, there’s still a volume knob, and that’s all you really need. Oh, and the panoramic moonroof doesn’t open despite being a two-panel design. Strange, that.

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Still, minor quibbles aside, the Toyota Crown Signia is the sort of car a small group of people have been craving for years. First-generation Venza owners will have a collective orgasm when they realize how thoroughly and utterly pleasant the Crown Signia is, and how it fulfills all of their wishes. It’s a handsome, well-crafted, surprisingly economical, utterly composed midsize hybrid crossover without any snob factor. It’s a nice thing that doesn’t lord its status as a nice thing over others.

Now, will the Toyota Crown Signia forge a strong presence among the crossover extravaganza that is the current Toyota lineup? While models like the RAV4, Highlander, Grand Highlander, and even the weird Crown sedan likely won’t see a ton of cannibalization, you can’t help but get a strong sense that Toyota will sell every Crown Signia it sends to North American dealerships. It’s a Toyota crossover, people will buy it regardless, but it helps to know that it’s on a mission to satisfy.

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GokieKS
GokieKS
18 days ago

What I learned from reading this article is that I pay so little attention to Toyota’s lineup that I literally do not remember ever seeing the out-going Venza before (or if I have, at least it never registered in my brain).

Greg
Greg
18 days ago

New Toyota sucks.

Mr. Fusion
Mr. Fusion
18 days ago

Welp, I’ve been lamenting in these comment sections that I really need a wagon (because most SUV’s are too tall to hoist my disabled daughter into), and voilà, Toyota delivers one like they’re the Wagon Fairy. But not really, because the starting price is firmly in 3-row SUV territory and therefore out of my range.

Also, I watched the Kelly Blue Book video about this car, and you could hear that engine drone while the host was driving up a hill. He said that the drone was unavoidable when climbing any grade. But I guess I should be thankful that the car is not underpowered at least.

The lack of midsize wagons has forced me to go down a size class in my search (say Hyundai Kona territory), and the delightful result is that now the cars I’m looking at are about $10,000 less expensive. But even in this class, a lot of cars are too high up for my needs.

Last edited 18 days ago by Mr. Fusion
Mark M
Mark M
18 days ago
Reply to  Mr. Fusion

Check out the CX-50. Love mine. The wagon-like dimensions were what drew my interest, and the chassis tuning and steering sold it for me. My only complaints are the torsion bar rear suspension and ancient transmission (at least its not a CVT). Mazda says the hybrid will be available later this year.

Mr. Fusion
Mr. Fusion
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark M

I did look at that one, and the dimensions put it at about the same height as my 2018 Outlander, which is to say, too high for me. I was surprised, but I think the elongated styling makes it look lower than it is. Another one that shocked me was the Chevy Trailblazer — I thought it would be about as low as the Trax, but it’s actually really tall.

I have been relying on Carsized.com to compare dimensions, so of course I will need to do some in-person walkarounds to confirm all of this for myself, because nobody publishes the actual H-point dimensions of vehicles for some ungodly reason.

Dirk from metro Atlanta
Dirk from metro Atlanta
18 days ago

basically, if you’re gliding around a parking lot, you can do so solely electrically. If you accelerate much past that, the gas motor kicks on.

Just curious and maybe the Autopian hive mind can inform–is there anyone who’d be in the market for a hybrid, who’s shopping at a dealership, who wouldn’t already be aware that this is how such four wheeled critters typically operate?

Drew
Drew
18 days ago

I wouldn’t think readers here would be unaware, but the target market for this car might have no idea. I’ve explained to my parents several times that hybrids like these are different from my PHEV, and they still don’t understand them or how they would be usable to them. And I have a coworker WITH a regular hybrid who talks about sometimes driving on full electric as if he’s going to find the trick to make his full commute electric somehow.

I think some of it comes from articles talking about limited full-electric driving in regular hybrids without clearly adding the limitations, and some of it comes from limited education on hybrids. So I don’t mind the inclusion of these bits.

PresterJohn
PresterJohn
18 days ago

Is this the answer that finally replaces Hardigree’s terrible Subaru?

Last edited 18 days ago by PresterJohn
Mr E
Mr E
19 days ago

It’s one of the best-looking Toyota models to my eyes (not that any of them are lookers). The side profile seems to echo the Fisker Ocean a tiny bit, but that could just be since all crossovers start to look alike after a while.

The Artist Formerly Known as the Uncouth Sloth
The Artist Formerly Known as the Uncouth Sloth
19 days ago

the grille (sic) is simply something you cannot unsee. No stars, and may God have mercy.

Myk El
Myk El
19 days ago

I would like a proper hybrid wagon. We’re getting closer…

Gilbert Wham
Gilbert Wham
19 days ago

It’s not hideous, which seems, pleasingly, to be the direction that Toyota is lurching slowly towards these days, design-wise, which is nice. Maybe other car makers can follow suit…

Andrew Wyman
Andrew Wyman
19 days ago

We are so close to having wagons back. CUV’s are getting very close to that “line” in the sand between wagons and them.

ADDvanced
ADDvanced
19 days ago

Whoever wrote the 2nd opinion (having trouble finding the author) should wipe their lense before shooting things, it will get rid of that haziness look.

So how do the headlights work on this thing? Are those projectors just below the slit?

Mechjaz
Mechjaz
19 days ago
Reply to  ADDvanced

>Thomas Hundal here

It’s the first sentence, my dude. I read out of order a lot myself, so I get you.

Last edited 19 days ago by Mechjaz
ADDvanced
ADDvanced
19 days ago
Reply to  Mechjaz

LMAO, wait, you read things? No real interest in this vehicle so I skipped the words, I am curious about the headlights tho!

MikeInTheWoods
MikeInTheWoods
19 days ago

I really wish someone would make a vehicle with a more vertical hatch for the cargo area. People with big dogs would be in favor and the dogs would be happy too. We inherited a 2019 RX450h and immediately traded it in since the cargo area was tiny due to the battery under the “floor” and the steeply angled hatch.

DadBod
DadBod
19 days ago
Reply to  MikeInTheWoods

The new Santa Fe looks like it has a near-vertical liftgate

Huja Shaw
Huja Shaw
19 days ago

Looks like the Goldilocks size between the Mazda CX-50 and CX-90 that many were hoping for from the CX-70 rather than simply a 2-row CX-90.

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