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Toyota targets the rich with new Century, Lexus models in Japan

Automaker hopes to take on luxury heavyweights like Rolls-Royce and Bentley

An SUV version of Toyota's Century luxury car will go on sale later this year. (Photo courtesy of Toyota)

NAGOYA, Japan -- Toyota Motor plans to flesh out its lineup of large ultraluxury vehicles in Japan, in a bid to capture a downturn-resilient market and upgrade its brand image.

The company plans to release an SUV version of the Century luxury model focused on the Japanese market, as well as a minivan under the Lexus brand that has sold well in China. Both are likely to be priced in the mid-10 million yen range to over 20 million yen (10 million yen equals $76,300).

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