In 1996, Toyota Town Ace and Lite Ace minibuses underwent a complete upgrade. As a result of this modernization, the Toyota Town Ace Noah appeared - a compact one-room car (4.4 m long, 1.7 m wide) with three rows of seats and a capacity of 7-8 people. Distinctive features of the new model are increased impact resistance, reliability and wide functional passenger space of the cabin. Town Ace Noah can be safely called a car designed for active recreation with the whole family. The minivan attracts with its appearance, and the hood in front (semi cab-over layout) gives an additional feeling of confidence. At the same time, the location of the engine in the front and the relatively free engine compartment space greatly simplify maintenance compared to previous generations. In the power section, the manufacturer limited himself to two engine options: gasoline 2.0 (130 l. sec.) and turbodiesel 2.2 (91 h.p.).
In the Town Ace Noah line, two body styles were available: standard roof and high roof. Some trim levels include easy closer and power assist door closing and opening systems. The basic version - with an 8-seater transformer saloon and three rows of seats, the position of which can be changed for different tasks. Field Tourer models are best suited for outdoor recreation - they feature reinforced bumpers, large foglights, standard rails and a handle on the trunk. There is an option for an eight-seater saloon with tables built into the seatbacks of the second row. In the top configuration Royal Lounge with a 7-seater saloon, the car has two separate second-row seats with individual armrests and free passage from the first row of seats to the third. The list of standard equipment of Town Ace Noah includes an electric package for controlling glass and mirrors, a central lock, air conditioning, a spacious glove compartment and various pockets, compartments for things, cup holders. Optional equipment includes a second stove / air conditioning in the cabin, additional storage compartments, curtains, two hatches, a large selection of audio and navigation. In addition to passenger Wagon models, the manufacturer also offered a “practical-oriented” low-cost version of SW (Space Wagon), which externally and internally corresponded to the van, but had a passenger suspension, was equipped with a 3S-FE engine, a 6-seater cabin, 4 or 5 doors . Variations in the characteristics of Town Ace Noah will not disappoint the buyer: you can choose between a 2-liter gasoline engine or a 2.2-liter turbodiesel, between four-wheel drive modifications or models with a 2WD drive, and also stop either on a 5-speed manual transmission or on a 4-speed automatic . 130 hp 3S-FE gasoline engine (181 Nm of torque) is considered one of the examples of reliability and unpretentiousness, although it is quite noisy, and the timing is overloaded with a pump and oil pump drive, it is not uncommon to increase oil consumption, but, as a rule, with significant mileage. The engine calmly digests AI-92 gasoline, which is quite high-torque, but with active driving there may be a lack of power. The 3C-T turbocharged diesel engine (91 hp, 194 Nm) is also quite unpretentious with proper maintenance, but its dynamic characteristics are modest and its head is afraid of overheating, although this problem has become less relevant due to the front engine position in Town Ace Noah than before. The suspension at Town Ace Noah has kept the design classic for Japanese minibuses. Front - “double lever” with torsion bars instead of springs. Rear - continuous axle with springs. The Part time all-wheel drive system of the 4WD models was replaced by a permanent all-wheel drive (Full time 4WD). Power steering, ventilated front disc brakes, rear drum brakes. The wheelbase is 2715 mm, the minimum turning radius is 5.4-5.7 m. With three rows of seats, the Town Ace Noah trunk has small dimensions, but the position of the back row can be changed back and forth by as much as 155 mm, or you can fold the seats along the side and get a very decent volume compartment. Fit in the cabin and long objects, if you lower the seat backs of the rear three rows and the front passenger, or using the free space between the front seats. Toyota Town Ace Noah has a safe body structure with programmed deformation zones front and rear and protective side bars, two front airbags as standard (for driver and passenger), anti-lock braking system. For an extra charge, parking sensors and a rearview camera were installed.
The main advantages of Town Ace Noah and Lite Ace Noah are a high landing, large mirrors, a spacious and comfortable lounge for long trips. Disadvantages - explosive plastic and poor sound insulation, stiffer suspension, for 4WD cars, the upper ball bearing changes together with the lever, which makes repairing the front suspension more expensive. But problems with spare parts usually do not arise - this mass family can be considered “popular”. Given the small differences between the Town Ace Noah and Lite Ace Noah (in the design of the front bumper and grille, the form of fog lights), the problem of choice is only in preferences for the configuration of the cabin and its configuration. More simple cargo-passenger models are produced under the former names (Town Ace / Lite Ace).