Behind the Wheel of the Only V-12 Toyota Century in North America
The Japanese auto industry has more than two dozen manufacturers producing everything from cargo trucks to motorcycles, compact urban runabouts, and world-beating all-wheel-drive supercars. They have only ever built one V-12 engine, and it’s inside a Toyota Century, the 17-foot-long limousine generally considered to be the equal of something like a Rolls-Royce Silver Seraph. Yes, you read that right: a Toyota being compared to a Rolls. In the hierarchy of Tokyo traffic, these stately livery cars are the top of the food chain. Salarymen and middle management ride the subway. Foreigners take a cab. A Mercedes S-Class or a BMW 7-series is the ride of choice for flashy up-and-coming youngsters in the boardroom.