Toyota Celsior – Built for Power and Comfort

The Toyota Celsior first entered the global market in 1989 in the Lexus format, but later metamorphosed into its current form.

Slip behind the wheel of a Celsior and you will be looking at a carbon-copy of a Lexus LS400. There is the same dashboard layout, effective sound insulation, timber trim and high-quality materials throughout. The cabin is biased towardas intimate luxury rather than outright space.

The centre console and door trims are bulky and lavishly trimmed, and rear seat legroom is quite ample. The driver can get comfortable thanks to an electrically-adjustable seat (with memory settings) and an electric tilt-away steering column. A driver’s airbag is also fitted as standard.

Under the bonnet is the 1UZ-FE 4.0 litre V8 engine, boasting DOHC [Dual Over Head Cam] and four valves per cylinder head. V8 means that the vehicle has a V-shaped engine with eight cylinders. Here, it means the car owner will have to replace eight spark plugs each time they do the vehicle servicing. It also means the engine’s rate of fuel consumption is quite high compared to the four-cylinder engines.

All Celsiors are fitted with a four-speed automatic transmission. Driven with the transmission in default settings (Overdrive and Economy modes), the engine constantly runs at low rpm to help reduce fuel consumption. However, for spirited driving, the transmission should be locked out of overdrive and switched to Power mode – this makes a noticeable difference to the Celsior’s on-road feel.

It comes with cruise control which also enables the driver to reduce on fuel consumption in case one is not in need of high-speed bursts. The Celsior has four doors, with a wide interior, meaning even tall people will have a comfortable ride. The seats are in leather finish.

Celsior is fitted with g shock absorbers and well- built suspension plates that can withstand all kinds of punishment from bad terrain. It rides on double wishbone suspension at each corner. Lower-spec versions use conventional springs while others are fitted with switchable TEMS [Toyota Electronic Modulated Suspension]. The TEMS system offers ‘normal’ or ‘sport’ damping modes for a discernible change in chassis feel.

However, amidst all the goodies it brings with it to the table, Celsior also hauls in some disaantages with the baggage. For instance, it is so electrical in functionality that almost everything one touches is electrically powered. And although this can get quite exciting, it could also be the source of a load of trouble in case of breakdowns.

Very few mechanics have the requisite knowhow of ably repairing such complex systems. Also, since its engine is a V8, it means it is of a big capacity and therefore quite thirsty and not economical to run. Besides, the vehicle has a low resale value. And to crown it all, its spare parts are hard to come by in Uganda, drastically impacting on its maintenance costs.


Engine: 4.0 V8 (260 Hp).

Doors: 4.

Power: 260 hp.

Seats: 5.

Model: 1UZ-FE.

Fuel System: Multi-point injection.

Valve train:DOHC.

Wheel drive: Rear.

Frontrear brakes: Ventilated discs.

Additional information from:

Source : The Observer

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