An alternate universe has collapsed. For half a century, Toyota has been building a rear-wheel drive family sedan (not sold in the U.S. since the ‘90s), and now it has announced that it’s over. The Toyota Mark X, stops production this year.
The Toyota Mark X, versions of which have been built since 1968, is nearly no more. Toyota said Wednesday that it would stop production of the iconic sedan with the Mark X Final Edition, concluding at end in December 2019 per Toyota’s press release.
You haven’t been able to buy this car in the U.S. since 1992, back when it was sold to us as the Cressida. Still, it was nice to know it carried on overseas, an upscale, sporty-ish sedan for drivers with taste. Get it while you can.
The Mark X, of course, is the successor to the Mark II, the first generation of which looked like this, also known as the T60 or T70:
The second generation (X10 or X20) looked like this:
You can feel the class oozing from the car from here. The styling on the third generation (T40 or T50) I like a little less, but the lines are still nice and it’s got the sportiness down:
The fourth-generation (T80 or T90) is where things began to get more grown up.
This is the Mark II with a suit on. The fifth generation (X70) continued in this vain:
The sixth generation (X80) is when the Mark II started looking more like a modern car. Though it debuted in the end of the ‘80s, the styling was very much ‘90s Toyota, meaning it was a handsome devil, everything very flat.
The seventh generation (X90) is where the modern Mark II really started to come into focus, and it really capitalized on being, basically, a Camry or Avalon in styling, but with a rear-drive. These are ultra-popular drift cars worldwide, as they (along with its predecessor and next two successors) came with the legendary JZ engine stock.
The eighth generation (X100) is what most people consider the Mark II’s peak. The styling had reached pretty much its final form.
The ninth generation (X110) was basically the eighth generation but uglier. It’s not terribly surprising Toyota would end on this note.
And then came them the Mark X, the so-called tenth generation (X120) of the Mark II. This one looks very, very good. Our own Raphael Orlove was recently in Shanghai and saw a couple Mark Xs, which told me were “delightful whales.”
This last generation (X130) was produced beginning in 2009.
What we were talking about again? Oh yes, this Final Edition, which will have some trim enhancements and also a nice-looking interior.
What was always nice about the Mark II’s is inline six cylinder engines were usually an option, if not standard, and it was rear-wheel drive, meaning in a few generations of the Mark II you were basically driving a four-door Supra.
The Mark Xs are a little less interesting in this respect, all coming with V6s, but the cars never stopped looking great. I hope to ship a Final Edition Mark X here in 25 years, and race it with a Camry.