Toyota Highlander Review

Toyota Highlander Review: Low-profile as well as sensible, the Highlander could haul up to 8 in quiet convenience. The base 185-hp 2.7-liter inline-four teams with a six-speed automatic and front-wheel drive; the optional 295-hp 3.5-liter V-6 obtains an eight-speed automatic. Four-wheel drive is optional for V-6 designs as well as standard for the crossbreed, which sets the V-6 with two electric motors; we saw 24 mpg in our test. The Highlander supplies an ample driving experience, yet it's more concentrated on interior precisions and storage space.


Toyota Highlander Review


Like the 1986 film Highlander, the Toyota SUV that shares its name is a crowd-pleaser that fails to inspire fervor amongst doubters. After greater than 190,000 Highlanders rolled off supplier whole lots last year, Toyota's mid-size crossover SUV entered 2017 with a host of adjustments targeted at pleasing the masses and also experts alike.

Notably, all Highlanders, from the base $31,590 LE to the high-grade $48,840 Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum, currently come common with a pre-collision warning system with pedestrian discovery as well as automated emergency braking, plus lane-departure caution, lane-keeping help, flexible cruise ship control, and also automated high-beams. Our all-wheel-drive $43,184 Highlander XLE test automobile also loaded blind-spot monitoring, a feature unavailable on the lower-level Highlander LE and also LE And also.

Going along with the 2017 Highlander's numerous safety systems is the current version of Toyota's 3.5-liter V-6 engine. The six-cylinder is typical on almost the base front-wheel-drive Highlander LE-- which remains to utilize a frail 185-hp inline-four-- as well as incorporates a host of modern-day technologies, consisting of a direct and port fuel-injection system as well as an upgraded valvetrain that permits the engine to run on the extra efficient Atkinson cycle. Ranked at a healthy and balanced 295 horse power and 263 lb-ft of torque, the modified V-6 makes 25 more horses and also an added 15 lb-ft compared to the previous system. Gas economy is up, also, with the front-wheel-drive 2017 Highlander V-6 gaining an EPA-rated 23 mpg incorporated; all-wheel-drive versions accomplish 22 mpg. Both figures mark a 2-mpg improvement over in 2014's Highlander and also put the crossover within 1 mpg of the four-cylinder Mazda CX-9's mixed fuel-economy numbers.

Toyota's 2GR-FKS 6 is a treasure of an engine that constructs power almost all the means approximately its 6800-rpm redline. At the track, this Highlander shaved 0.3 second off of its predecessor's zero-to-60-mph as well as 30-to-50-mph times, hitting the marks in 7.0 and also 3.8 seconds, respectively. Unfortunately, the 2017 Highlander's 5.6-second 50-to-70-mph death time was both sluggish for the class as well as virtually a second behind that of its forbear. Condemn the brand-new eight-speed automatic transmission's hesitancy to downshift. Regardless, the modified Highlander's V-6 uses a lot of grunt in the majority of real-world driving scenarios. Thanks partially to our test auto's automatic stop-start system, we managed a sensible 21 mpg throughout our time with the crossover, 2 mpg better than exactly what we obtained from a Mazda CX-9.

The Element of Crossover

If the 2017 Highlander's V-6 powertrain is the equivalent of Highlander's enchanting Juan Sánchez Villa-Lobos Ramírez (played by Sean Connery), then the crossover's revamped outside design is akin to the movie's handsome yet featureless lead character, Connor MacLeod (Christopher Lambert). New front as well as rear fascias, upgraded headlamps, and an eye-catching collection of LED taillights offer the Highlander a more natural, SUV-like look. Yet we still would not place it quite on the exact same level of appearance as the butch Dodge Durango or the shapely CX-9.

Unlike the outside, the Highlander's inside has actually been left mostly unblemished. Toyota did include four more USB ports, bringing the overall to 5-- 3 ahead as well as 2 in the rear. The cockpit features a variety of helpful storage nooks, consisting of a rack that spans the reduced control panel and a huge center-console bin that can suit nearly a cubic foot of various items. Ergonomic faults consist of difficult-to-grip temperature handles for the climate-control system and also a touchscreen that's as well far away from the motorist.

While base-level LE and LE Plus Highlanders come with a standard second-row bench seat, the XLE, SE, Limited, and Restricted Platinum grades come with captain's chairs in the middle. (The bench seat is a no-cost option on the XLE, Limited, and Minimal Platinum.) Area abounds in the second row, yet we found that our seven-passenger examination vehicle's pail seats were placed also low for optimal comfort. Still, the Highlander's moving and also reclining second-row chairs resembled a set of La-Z-Boy recliner chairs compared with the thin as well as flimsy 60/40 split-folding third-row bench. Legroom in the wayback is simply 27.7 inches, a full six inches fewer compared to exactly what the Volkswagen Atlas's rearmost row deals. If you frequently transport enough passengers to merit frequent use of the 3rd row, take into consideration the Atlas, a Honda Pilot, or a Ford Flex.

Darkness of an SUV

Despite the Highlander's carlike unibody building and construction and also low step-in height, this mid-size crossover's managing reminds us of an old-fashioned body-on-frame SUV, as its softly sprung suspension allows excessive body coming in turns. On the bonus side, the suspension soaks up road irregularities with nary a shudder, as well as the electrically aided guiding is fairly quick and also generally well weighted.

At 4560 pounds, our all-wheel-drive Highlander examination auto was no lightweight, and also the excess mass made itself known when using the brakes, as the Toyota needed 181 feet of tarmac to quit from 70 miles per hour-- 11 feet more than a 161-pound-lighter all-wheel-drive GMC Acadia Denali.

With an as-tested rate of $43,184, our Toasted Walnut Pearl Highlander XLE sported $3704 in options. Of that tally, four-wheel drive adds $1460 as well as brings vestigial mud flaps, hill-descent control, as well as a screen setup within the 4.2-inch gauge-cluster screen that shows torque distribution amongst the Highlander's four wheels. An $1810 rear-seat home entertainment system was the most expensive option, while $434 purchased flooring mats and also body-side moldings. Standard things consisted of navigation, a proximity trick with push-button begin, and also a sunroof, in addition to abovementioned attributes such as a blind-spot tracking system and leather-trimmed initial- and also second-row seats (Toyota drapes the 3rd row in vinyl).

While the Highlander's lifeless handling and confined third row continuously curb our excitement for the Indiana-built crossover, the updated 2017 Highlander's lengthy checklist of conventional safety and security as well as ease features, more effective and fuel-efficient V-6 engine, and boosted exterior designing will remain to draw in hoards of customers looking for a comfortable and also moderately priced mid-size crossover SUV.