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The Longest-Produced Toyota Models

From compact sports cars to serious off-roaders, some of these Toyota vehicles stayed in production for decades.

If it works don't change it is a term that hardly applies to the modern-day automotive industry. After all, how can companies sell new cars if the old ones keep running? Regardless, manufacturers like Toyota, somehow, manage to pull that off. Over the years, the brand has had many iconic model names, which are still in production after many generations.  

I decided to look at some of the longest-produced Toyota models, some of which may surprise you. I am not counting variants, produced in, or for, third-world countries where certain generations are relevant for a much longer period compared to other markets.

I am also looking at separate generations and not model names as a whole. Even so, some of these Toyota models were produced for decades, and that's just for one model generation. 

Toyota Supra Mk4 (A80) - 9 Years 

The A80 Toyota Supra is a true JDM legend, priced out of attainability for most

Easily one of the most popular JDM cars ever made, the fourth-generation Toyota Supra solidified its presence in the automotive scene thanks to pop culture. While that started it, there is no denying the car's mechanicals pack substantial performance potential. Hailing from the golden era of Japanese sports cars, the Mk4 Toyota Supra packs a robust, 2JZ-GTE engine that could easily go well over the advertised "280” horsepower.  

EU-spec models were, actually, rated at 330 horsepower. The chassis and transmission were also capable of handling big power with ease. Produced between 1993 and 2002 (until 1998 in North America), its nine-year production cycle isn't that long, but still long according to modern-day standards. 

Toyota Soarer Z30 Series - 9 Years 

The third-generation Toyota Soarer, also known as the Lexus SC in some markets, is often referred to as the affordable Supra. Both vehicles share drivetrain components, including the 1JZ and 2JZ engines as well as many of the drivetrain components. The only real difference, mechanics-wise, is the Soarer's extra length and slightly different suspension geometry in the rear suspension. 

It's worth noting that since the Soarer was more of a luxury GT compared to the Supra, only the 1JZ-GTE engine could be paired with a manual transmission. Also, the 2JZ offered here is the non-turbo one, so you'll have to swap one in or modify the 2JZ-GE unit if you are looking for power. The third-generation Soarer was produced between 1991 and 2000. 

Toyota MR-2 (SW20) - 10 Years 

The Japanese, mid-engine pocket rocket made the Ferrari 348 sweat

The second-generation Toyota MR-2 solidified the model's reputation as the "Poor man's Ferrari". With its light weight, punchy turbo engine (in the higher trims), and a mid-engine layout, the range-topping MR-2 GTS could easily give the Ferrari 348 a run for its money, as it shared the 245-horsepower version of the 3S-GTE engine with the rally-bred Toyota Celica GT-Four

Luckily, this, mid-engine JDM classic by Toyota is still relatively cheap, and good examples can be found for around $14,000. This, however, doesn't include import taxes. The SW20 Toyota MR-2 was in production for 10 years – from 1989 to 1999. 

Toyota Tacoma (Second generation) - 11 Years 

The second-generation Toyota Tacoma still enjoys a large, faithful community

Toyota Tacoma is currently in its third generation, which is attempting to emulate the success of the mid-size Toyota truck's second generation. With versions like the Tacoma GR Sport, it may succeed, but the second-gen Tacoma's lineage spans 11 years and multiple revisions, making it better and better. 

The second-generation Toyota Tacoma was consistently produced in three body styles – Single Cab, Access Cab, and Double Cab – between 2004 and 2015. Then, there was the mad, 2005-2014 Toyota Tacoma X Runner, which was recently reimagined with the third-generation Tacoma. 

Toyota Land Cruiser Prado J150 – 14 Years 

The fourth-generation Toyota Land Cruiser Prado offered its most powerful variants to an unlikely market

Similar to the Levin-badged Corolla sold in the Chinese market, the Prado nameplate was a bit diluted. While still recognized as the smaller Land Cruiser, the hybrid-only J250 Toyota Land Cruiser is sold as the Prado in China.

Things were a bit different with the previous, fourth generation of the model, which was produced from 2009 to 2023. The fourth-generation Prado underwent two facelifts – one in 2015 and another in 2019. Interestingly enough, it was China that got the most powerful J150 Prado variants. Those were powered by the 1GR-FE, 4.0-liter V-6, and later, the 7GR-FKS 3.5-liter V-6. 

Toyota Sequoia (Second generation) - 15 Years 

The second-generation Toyota Sequoia is the last of the Japanese V-8 SUVs

The second-generation Toyota Sequoia was the Japanese carmaker's full-size SUV for what seems like an eternity. The pre-facelift version of the big SUV, alone, was produced for 10 years – until 2017 – until Toyota finally decided to update the Sequoia. The most important update was that the smaller V-8 engines were dropped, leaving the 5.7-liter, 3UR-FE V-8 as the sole option.

The second-generation Sequoia carried on until 2022 when it was replaced by the controversial, third-generation Toyota Sequoia. The second-generation Toyota Sequoia was produced from 2007 to 2022 and is considered by owners one of the best Toyota SUVs ever made. 

Toyota Tundra (Second generation) - 15 Years 

Even with the new Tundra on sale, fans still praise the old Tundra's robust V-8

The Toyota Tundra is, essentially, the "workhorse” variant of the Sequoia. It trades some passenger space and rear-seat amenities for a truck bed. Depending on the configuration, the Tundra can be over 40 inches longer than the corresponding-generation Sequoia.

It can also tow up to 10,500 pounds – substantially more than the second-generation Sequoia's 7,400-pound towing capacity. The second-generation Toyota Tundra was produced from 2006 to 2021. 

Toyota Century G50 (Second generation) - 20 Years 

Toyota, apparently, has a thing for keeping second-generation models in production longer than others. There is no better example than the second-generation Toyota Century. Internally dubbed the G50, Toyota's flagship luxury sedan meant for heads of state and the like, kept the same basic design of the original Century, but with a few modern touches.  

Something that makes the second generation truly special is the fact it is the only Toyota model to be sold with a V-12 engine. The 1GZ engine was the only option for the Japanese luxury sedan, and it also had a version running on compressed natural gas (CNG). As expected, JDM variants were rated at "276” horsepower while export variants had an output set at 299 horsepower. The G50 Toyota Century was produced from 1997 to 2017. 

Toyota Century G20/G21/G30/G40 (First generation) - 30 Years 

The original Toyota Century is pure, unadulterated, Japajese luxury barge

If you thought the second-generation Century had a long production cycle, the original Toyota Century makes it look like a fleeting infatuation in the automotive world. The modern-day Toyota Century took a very different approach, but back in 1967, the nameplate gave birth to Toyota's most luxurious line of executive sedans.

The first-generation Century underwent a couple of phases, hence the four different chassis codes. Interestingly enough, they corresponded to the engine. These were all V-8 engines, ranging from 3.0 liters in the very early model years to 4.0 liters in the later model years.

The original Toyota Century is also one of the first concepts for a Toyota hybrid. At the 1975 Tokyo Motor Show, Toyota unveiled the Century gas turbine hybrid concept, featuring a GT45 gas turbine and an electric motor. Although it never went into production, it deserves its separate article. 

Toyota Land Cruiser 70 Series – 40 Years (and counting) 

The old legend never dies, and for 2023, Toyota once again, refreshed the Land Cruiser 70, which first arrived in 1984

It seems, when Toyota started making the 70 Series Land Cruiser, it forgot to stop. The second generation of the rugged, Japanese off-roader came out in 1984 and is still produced in various forms today. Body styles were quite a few, with 70 and 71 being the short wheelbase, 73/ 74 – medium wheelbase, and 75/ 78 – long wheelbase. There was also a pickup truck variant dubbed the 79 Series.  

The Toyota Land Cruiser 70 did not get any major refresh until 2007 when the model was upgraded to wider axles and wider chassis to fit a Euro 4-compliant, 4.5-liter, V-8, 1VD-FTV, turbo diesel. In total, 16 different engines powered the 70 Series Land Cruiser during its production cycle, which started back in 1984 and is still ongoing. The most modern interpretation of the Land Cruiser 70 came in 2023 and is powered by a 1GD-FTV engine. 

About the author

Dimitar Angelov's automotive interests made him an expert in a wide variety of vehicles. Japanese brands like Toyota are closest to his heart, although performance cars in general are his favorite segment, which is why he is constantly on the lookout for the best deals on the market. Dimitar Angelov's car passion and knack for the written word led him to complete a Master of Arts in Media and Communications, and classic car restoration. Dim is happy to get behind the wheel of any car and share his impressions. You can follow Dimitar on XLinked-inInstagram, and Facebook.

Image sources: 1967 Toyota Century, Toyota Supra Mk4, Toyota MR-2 SW20, 2005 Toyota Tacoma, 2023 Toyota Land Cruiser Prado, 2021 Toyota Sequoia Nightshade, 2015 Toyota Tundra, 2023 Toyota Land Cruiser 70