Toyota Crown FAQ

Please, please, please read this before you send me a question on the Toyota Crown, MS137 as it might already have been asked and answered.

This is for the sake of your and my time. Don’t be too offended if you ask a question and the answer is purely “Please look in the faq!”

If some of these answers seem sarcastic or flippent then I apologise but some of the questions I get asked you wouldn’t believe, Honest..

So on with the questions:-

1. Can you get parts from Japan?
I cannot source parts from Japan anymore.

Okay heres the score regarding parts from Japan.

Anything under 2 Kgs and small can be sent post via airmail from Japan, this isnt too expensive, about £15 and will take about 5 days. BUT if the part is over 2kgs or large then it will have to go via sea to keep the cost down. They can be sent airmail but its bloody expensive. Sea frieght takes approximately 6 weeks and is checked at customs and if its expensive, over £200, then you have to pay tax on it. Remember the Tax Man!


In most cases where I have tried the asking party is either unable or unwilling to either pay for the parts or thinks they can get them cheaper elsewhere. If you require parts then please contact as they can probably help.

If your after body kit parts or badges etc, then have a look at

I am no longer willing to get parts and if I could how can I ship them to Trinidad and Tabago?

2. I am trying to find out how much U.S. Dollars is equal to this amount of yen 5,748,000. Could you possibly tell me how much that is in american dollars? Well anyway I hope you can help me.
Sorry, but if you can t be bothered to find out this yourself then what the hell are you using the internet for? Maybe a little one handed surfing!

If you need exchange rates then try

3. I want some information about model X, such as engine – power hp/rpm-photo.
If I have to answer this one again I will scream.

Please try not to ask for specific details about power and all that as you have a massive resource at your finger tips and I’m damned sure, that if I can find this information on the internet then so can you!

I’m not going to give a search engine tutorial but you’ll be amazed at what you’ll find on Google and Altavista if you presevere and try different searches. You’ll be amazed at what Altavista throws up if you put your seach words in “”

After all you found this site, the information you require is out there….

4. Where can I buy a Toyota Crown in the UK?
You can’t unless your buying a second hand Crown.

Toyota stopped selling the car in the UK in the early 1980’s and later models can only be bought second hand or imported from Japan, New Zealand or Australia, of which all will be right hand drive as the UK.

If you want to import a Crown, then for a brand new motor expect to pay about £30K in Japan, If you want a second hand crown they can be bought from Japan, New Zealand or Australia, you could buy one from the middle east but would you want to?

If you manage to find a Crown here, be sure that they have all the documentation especially the document listing deregistration of the car in Japan and all the import papers. If it ain’t got them then walk away, these are the history of the car from Japan to the UK, without them how do you know that the car isn’t stolen.

Older Crowns can be bought here that are UK spec but they are lower spec then there Japanese counterparts and are probably more likely to be rusty. I have seen a few models around at shows and there are some nice looking Crowns in the UK but most are of the 110 or 120 series variety. There are according to the DVLA, Feb 2003, only four, 130 Series Crowns in the UK, so they are very rare.

5. Is it true that the Crown became the Lexus in the UK?
This is a subject of many a heated discussion between those of us in the “Think we know” group.

The Lexus GS and LS series both have parts which are found on the Crown, although the Lexus GS series has more in common with the Crowns running gear and suspension, however the LS series looks similair and has the same engines and interiors.

Perhaps somebody at Toyota can rectify this?

6. One of my rear shocks burst and a mechanic installed springs and ordinary gas shocks for me but the ride cannot compare with the ride of the air shocks. I want to go back with the air shocks give me your opinion.
Okay, the air suspension system on the Crown is very good, and is very reliable.

However if it breaks then prepare to dig deep into your wallet because its very expensive as part will have to come from Japan. I know from experience that its roughly £500 a corner to replace, although it can be fixed in Japan, not much help if your in Down town Grosney.

You can replace them with Springs and Shocks but this will make your Crown handle and feel differently than with the air suspension. Usually better handling and a firmer ride! Cost about £200 fitted.

There is quite a large fraternity of Japanese Boy racer who use Crowns and most of these will have had the air suspension ripped off to make the car handle better.

7. My Crowns suspension won’t level out, it either too high or too low at the back, what wrong?
This is a problem with one or more of the following.

1. Your air suspension is broken
2. The pendulum device which controls the level of the car is stuck, incorrectly aligned or broken.
3. You have an electrical fault on the suspension system.

If the cars backside is right down then it is probably 2 or 3. however if the cars backside is right at the top then it will probably number 2.

The pendulum can be found if you jack up the back, left hand side of the car, take off the wheel and you should be able to see it on the rear axle. If you can get at it, it might be disconnected, loose or covered in dirty, check this first before you put your hand in your pocket for new parts.


If you do then this is the quickest way to screw up you air suspension.

If this fails then park the car on an unlevel surface and leave the engine running and get out of the car. Does the suspension try to level itself out?

Yes. The something is wrong with either the suspension or the air system, not the pump. If no then check the pump relay in the fuse box. Check the manual for details.

If this fails seek professional help and make friends with your bank manager!

8. I have a Crown but my engine is broken what car parts can I use to fix it.
Depends on what model of Crown you have, but many of the earlier models engines can be repurposed with engines from the newer Lexus motors or Toyota Supra or Soarer engines.

Toyota fitted 5 different types of engine into the Crown and each is desiganted with a letter. Lets take my car for example, the engine is a 7M-GE, so if I have an engine from a Toyota Supra 7M-GTE then this will fit into my car. Basically any engine will fit into the Crown if the engine designation is the same. IE MS112 will take a 7M-GTE engine.

Don’t ask me for more technical information as I haven’t done it so I can’t advise on the ins and outs.

9. Is there a UK version of the satellite navigation system?
In short, NO!

The Crown was withdrawn from sale in 1982 in the UK and therefore the Sat Nav system was never installed in a UK Crown.

So, no!

If you are looking for English versions for other Import Navigation systems then the answer is probably still no.

If you approach your local dealer and they can get it, then grab it.

All the CDs I have come across for Sat Nav maps of England, whilst in Japan, have English Maps but Japanese voices. Great if you speak Japanese.

10. I need an exhaust, I’m in the UK, where can I get a replacement.
Hmmm, phone JP Exhausts in Macclesfield on 01625 619916 or try, they have the patterns and can make a replacements, they can also fit them as well.

They make the exhausts in stainless steel and your looking at £400 ish. You will get a 5 year guarentee with it as well.

11. What I would like to know is, does your Crown MS137 burn a lot of gas against a 1500cc engine or in general, for a given distance? Down in the Caribbean the Crowns we get from Japan are not economical on unleaded fuel, the fuel burns rather fast for a six cylinder fuel injection 6M engine.
To be honest the crown isn’t very fuel efficient due to its size.

Mine is the 3 litre variety and I get about 22mpg around town and if I am really lucky 35mpg on a long drive at 70mph with the gear box in ECO mode!

If your not getting around the same figures then I’d say get a good injector cleaner to de-coke the engine. Also the crown is bad on fuel if its only driven short distances and needs a long drive once a month to keep the engine clean.

The only way to keep it more fuel efficient is to

1. Keep the Gear box in ECO mode (if you car has this?)
2. Dont accelerate hard! (That’s not much fun though is it!).

Compared to smaller engined cars it is a gas guzzler and I do wish sometimes it was better on fuel especially as fuel in the UK is £0.75 per litre.

12. I am in search of a crown owner’s manual for the toyota crown model MS125 NM yr,1987.
As this model was never sold by Toyota anywhere apart from Japan then all the manuals for it are in Japanese.

Official Toyota publications are listed below. (I haven’t got a clue where you’d get them from though!)

Pub. No. RM081E Repair Manual for Chassis & Body, Crown MS13#, YS132 and LS130 series, from Aug., 1987
Pub. No. RM086E 7M-GE, 7M-GTE Engine Repair Manual, from Aug., 1987

If you’re in the UK and after technical manuals for engine repairs then find out your engine number then visit the Classic Crown website if you can find it on Yahoo, to find out what engines yours is the same as. A Toyota Supra manual will help for some models.

13. Question is foreign languages!
I only speak English, Spanish, Japanese and a little French so questions in these languages only please!.

Spanish and French questions might take a bit longer to answer as my Spanish and French wouldn’t be considered as Fluent.

14. I have been thinking about purchasing a car for import whats involved.
Well, I can only speak from experience of importing from Japan but if you take a look at this page it will give you a better understanding of the time and cost involved.

Japanese imports

15. How much do you want for your car?
If I had a pound for every time I’ve been asked this, well I’d have about 15 pounds!
16. Can the crown be converted to run on LPG?
In short yes!

One of my friends lives in New Zealand and he has seen loads of Crowns converted to run on gas. The only problem is you will need another tank for the LPG and this takes up already precious boot space.

17. I have just purchased a Toyota Crown Royal Saloon. I think it s an 81 model. 2.8 efi, auto. It has done a lot of miles, 250,000km & blows a lot of smoke. It runs smooth & starts well. Is there any adjustment which might cause excess oil burn?
The crowns engine is pretty rock solid and the only things I can think of are listed below. One thing you didn’t say is what colour the smoke was! or what model of engine you have, its either the SOHC – 5M-E or DOHC 5M-GE. It should be listed on your VIN plate or engine block, however I digress!

I am assuming its blue smoke, as you mentioned oil burning. So first things to check are

1. The quality, thickness, colour and amount of oil in the sump. If its old it won’t help as the thickness will mean any weaknesses in the engine, Valve seals etc will allow crap/old oil through.

2. The Oil filter is clean! A new one should be no more that about $10. this is linked to no 1.

3. Check the valve seals. The easiest way to check if they are leaking is as follows.

On the top of the engine on the left hand side as you look into the engine bay from the front you should see the air intake pipe which leads to the engine from the air box. Near this you’ll see a small rubber pipe which has two circlips on at each end. Take the one off, on the opposite side to the air intake. if its full of oil the the valve seals have gone, which cause oil to be blown back in to the inlet and outlet manifold, hence the oil in the intake system and smoke from the exhaust….

If this is the case then you might want a mechanic to do this for you.

4. If the above seem okay then your lookin at possibly a oil blockage at the top end of the engine, or the piston rings are knackered, Ouch, expensive.

However, I would seriously look at the top of the engine before you touch the bottom.

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