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Toyota launches a lower-priced Mark X sporty, luxury sedan

Toyota launches a lower-priced Mark X sporty, luxury sedan

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Toyota Motor Corp. launched nationwide Monday a new, sportier Mark X luxury sedan that comes with an affordable starting price and better fuel efficiency as the automaker eyes lifting flagging sales of conventional gasoline-powered cars.

The second-generation Marx X, fully-remodeled for the first time since 2004, comes in three types — standard, sports and premium — with a starting price of 2.38 million yen for the rear-wheel-drive model with a 2.5-liter, V-6 engine. The starting price is about 100,000 yen cheaper than the first-generation model.

The new premium sedan has a more powerful 3.5-liter, V-6 engine and the high-end model is priced at 3.8 million yen.

”We set a (starting) price that would strongly interest former Mark X users,” Toyota President Akio Toyoda said at a launch event in Tokyo. ”I hope this price will lift the market.”

The automaker, which enjoys booming demand for its gas-electric Prius hybrid, is pinning hopes that sales of other models will also recover by reducing prices and reinforcing fuel efficiency. Toyota aims to sell 3,000 units per month in Japan.

The 2.5-liter, two-wheel-drive models can travel 13 kilometers per liter and are all eligible for government subsidies for energy-saving cars.

The first-generation Mark X is a successor to the Mark II, which was launched in 1968.

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