The Toyota Lexcen was a rebadged version of the second-generation Holden Commodore, with just a few minor differences. The car was produced between 1989 and 1997 and named after Ben Lexcen, the famed Aussie designer of the award-winning Australia II yacht in 1983.
Critics questioned the existence of the Lexcen, considering how successful the Holden Commodore already was on its own. The vehicle was a product of a model-sharing agreement between Holden and Toyota Australia, the United Australian Automobile Alliance (UAAA), which was in line with policies set by the Australian government in the late '80s.
The difference between the Holden Commodore and the Toyota Lexcen was primarily in their aesthetics. They differed in the grille, front fenders, wings and guards. Other than those parts, the Lexcen was basically the same car as the second-generation Commodore.
Toyota offered the Lexcen in sedan and station wagon body types and only three trim levels were available: base, GL, and GLX.
All versions of the Lexcen came with a 3.8-litre V6 engine matched with a four-speed automatic transmission. The engine produced a maximum output of 127 kW of power and 293 Nm of torque.
The base model was marketed as the 'Lexcen Sedan'. The mid-range option was the Lexcen Sedan GL, followed by the top trim level the Lexcen Sedan GLX. The car also had two versions with five-doors, the Lexcen Wagon and the Lexcen Wagon GL.
All trim models came with power mirrors, power steering, a remote boot release, and a radio cassette with two speakers as standard features. Higher trim levels offered additional features like air conditioning and radio cassette with four speakers, as well.
Starting in 1991 to 1997, the Lexcen went through four updates, somewhat timed to follow Holden Commodore's model cycle. The T2 update was released in 1991 when Toyota started designating the trim levels as the CSi, the VXi, and Newport.
There weren't many notable differences between the previous base model and the current CSi. For example, the CSi standard equipment had the same inclusions but only added central locking and four speakers instead of the two-speaker unit previously offered. The range-topping trim level (the Newport) has significantly levelled up. It now includes a driver's airbag, ABS, anti-theft alarm system, automatic air conditioning/climate control, alloy wheels, leather-accented upholstery, independent rear suspension, radio cassette with six speakers, cruise control, and a trip computer. The powertrain, however, remained the same.
Eventually, the Toyota Lexcen was discontinued in 1997 when the model-sharing agreement Holden and Toyota ended.
Despite what critics had to say about the vehicle, they also recognized the car as being sturdy and reliable with the kind of interior space that Australian buyers would expect for their family cars.
If you need parts for your Lexcen or its twin, the second-generation Commodore, try looking into Carpart.com.au classifieds. We have thousands of sellers advertising auto parts and accessories that they have currently on sale. You may also send us a parts request, and we will help you find what you need.