Some vehicles, and Toyotas specifically, usually get referred to by automotive fanatics as "devices." The comparison is made in between a Camry as well as a fridge, or a Corolla as well as a washing machine, for instance. The effects (generally less than kind) is that these cars have qualities that are much less fun and also more useful. One wouldn't take a refrigerator to an autocross, or drag-race a washering from a stoplight. But for countless people around the world, an appliance is specifically just what they want in a car-- something they do not have to think about to use, that isn't really quirky or ostentatious, that's reputable and also easy. For those individuals, lots of Toyotas are definitely best-- as well as the 2013 Highlander is the peak of such appliancelike, comfy, practical reasoning.
2013 toyota highlander hybrid
This is the last year for this design of Highlander, with a new 2014 model on its way that was unveiled at the 2013 New York International Vehicle Show in March. However, there's a lot to like regarding the present Highlander, which has roominess, power, comfort and utility in droves.
Absolutely Nothing Fancy, Just Basic Competence
The form knows now, with rather hostile styling that has been replicated by a number of makers. (The new Nissan Pathfinder, as an example, looks a lot similar to this Highlander in lots of methods.) It's a tidy, moving layout that experiences a bit from wheels that look somewhat too little in the base V-6 trim level I checked. If you like the means it looks, however, obtain one currently, as the 2014 design will certainly receive an instead significant styling upgrade that's not to everyone's liking.
The inside is similarly pleasing. Nothing outrageous, simply well laid out, exceptionally comfy and made from high-quality materials that have actually been screwed together well. In advance, the low, soft-touch dash and high seats setting integrate for a powerful view over the hood, with exceptional presence sideways and back as well. Controls on the facility control board are big and clear, with huge buttons and chunky knobs that make operating the climate-control system a breeze (sorry). The evaluates are bright, clear as well as easy to check out at a glance. There's absolutely nothing impressive concerning the forms and appearances in below, but there's nothing to annoy either-- unless you're a person that calls for some aesthetic interest in your transportation selection, as there's none to be found in the countless sea of grey plastic extending from door to door. At least in the Highlander it's respectable plastic, unlike in other Toyota products, like the Venza.
Seating is functional as well as extremely spacious, specifically in the second row, which features amazing quantities of legroom. This is a three-row SUV, consisting of a fold-down seat for two people in the freight location, easily accessible through the fold-and-tumble second-row seats. That 3rd row is broad sufficient for full-sized adults, yet legroom is seriously jeopardized. This is simply a midsized SUV, after all, not a full-sizer like the Toyota Sequoia or Chevrolet Traverse. Folding up the 2nd row for entrance to the third is simple, with manages atop the seatbacks creating straightforward operation even by youngsters. Both the 2nd and third rows fold level, producing a huge freight room able to hold big, cumbersome things.
Inside electronics are basic as well as not extremely complicated on the entry-level Highlander (the just significant options my examination model had were a V-6 engine as well as four-wheel drive). The common touch-screen multimedia show is big and also easy to use, yet a second, smaller sized screen above it showed restricted vehicle information, as well, with just a handful of screens to choose from. You could choice up a Highlander to the handle with things like Toyota's Entune (a cloud-based amusement as well as details system), a navigation system and also even more, but my tester had none of that-- only satellite radio and a windshield-wiper heater, part of the $60 Cold Weather Plan. On the bonus side, an absence of functions means the inside is minimalist as well as uncomplicated. It likewise indicates there's little to do but drive.
Roly-Poly, however Not Pokey
Thankfully, driving the Highlander is equally as positive as sitting in or checking out one. In the base model, power originates from a standard 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine making 187 horsepower, yet my tester had the optional 3.5-liter V-6 engine, bumping horsepower up to a much more confidence-inspiring 270 hp. In true Toyota style, the V-6 is the picture of smoothness, so much so that the only way to know it's going for still is to blip the pedal. Struck that same pedal while the Highlander's in gear, and also you're rewarded with strong, smooth velocity. A six-speed transmission is basic with the four-cylinder, but the V-6 comes just with a five-speed automatic. A gasoline-electric hybrid version is also offered. With the exception of the hybrid, nevertheless, the drivetrain overall is a bit behind the moments-- most rivals are offering six-speed automatics throughout the array, plus turbocharging or at the very least direct-injection technology. The good news is, the majority of customers will not be aware of any technical deficiency thanks to the Highlander's buttery operation and simple and easy acceleration.
Just what they may observe, nonetheless, is gas economic situation. Highlanders with the base four-cylinder engine as well as front-wheel drive are rated 20/25 mpg city/highway-- okay for a huge seven-seat cruiser. Gas economic climate drops to 18/24 for the bigger V-6 engine, and even additionally, to 17/22 mpg, when you include four-wheel drive. My week with the Highlander returned 19 mpg in blended driving; tolerable, but definitely not class-leading anymore. It falls well except the brand-new all-wheel-drive Nissan Pathfinder, rated 19/25 mpg, and also the new seven-seat Hyundai Santa Fe, which comes in at 18/24 mpg. It likewise usually matches the much larger Chevrolet Traverse for mixed gas mileage ranking (19 mpg), and does 1 mpg better in the city and also 1 mpg worse on the freeway. The Highlander schedule's gas economic situation champ is the crossbreed, ranked 28/28 mpg, but that comes at a considerable rate costs as well as with standard four-wheel drive.
The Highlander is undoubtedly tuned for convenience instead of driving fun. As the suspension is soft, the body movements are tippy and also the whole truck rolls and also lolls in rapid corners. You won't be doing any kind of spirited driving in this family truckster, yet what you get in return is superb flight top quality that's smooth also over some of one of the most terribly damaged pavement, helped by high sidewalls on the 17-inch tires that absorb bumps with little sound or interruption to your serenity. Hang an iPad on the seatback, and the munchkins won't be bothered by road problems in the least. Faster freeway driving is just as calm and hushed.
Safety and security
The present Highlander has been crash-tested by both the National Highway Web Traffic Safety And Security Administration as well as the Insurance Policy Institute for Highway Safety. NHTSA ranked the Highlander four out of 5 star overall, while IIHS provided the Highlander its top ranking of Excellent in all its significant examinations, gaining it Leading Security Pick standing.
As for equipment, the Highlander has all the requisite electronic precaution, like traction control, anti-skid brakes and also an electronic stability system. Front, side, motorist's knee and also side drape air bags are common. There was no back-up video camera on my test vehicle, yet it's a $699 choice on base designs (criterion on all other trim degrees), an instead obviousing omission from the tools checklist for a purported family members lorry.
Highlander in the marketplace
The Highlander V6 four-wheel drive I examined had one remarkable quality that could not be ignored: a comparatively low as-tested cost of $33,477, consisting of an $845 location charge. The beginning cost for this base V-6 version with four-wheel drive is $32,690, indicating options on my tester were couple of: just a $60 Winter Plan, a $29 first-aid kit, a $49 freight web and a rather costly $649 three-row flooring mat package. If you intend to miss the V-6 as well as four-wheel drive, the Highlander with a four-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive begins at $29,865. At the various other end of the spectrum is a completely packed Highlander Crossbreed Limited all-wheel drive, which begins at $47,215-- fairly a dramatic array.
Midsize SUVs have actually been taking over for minivans in family-hauling tasks, and the variety of entries in the field is higher than ever before. Requiring seven seats does reduce the note down ever before so slightly. The Highlander's main competitors are the Nissan Pathfinder, Honda Pilot, Chevrolet Traverse/GMC Acadia, Ford Traveler, Hyundai Santa Fe, Mazda CX-9 and Dodge Durango. If you can cope with just five seats, add the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Nissan Murano, Ford Side, Toyota Venza and Kia Sorento. That's more than a lots various other automobiles to consider, demonstrating how affordable this sector actually is. The closest suits are the Pathfinder, Explorer as well as Santa Fe (not the Santa Fe Sport, mind you, which is a smaller, five-seat design). The Pathfinder includes only a V-6 as well as constantly variable automatic transmission, while the Santa Fe's seven-seat version provides just a V-6. The Traveler uses two V-6 engines and also an optional turbo four-cylinder, all mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. All are equivalent in terms of room, rate as well as utility, yet the Highlander's competitors usually have the advantage in fuel economic situation and on-board innovation.
The 2014 Highlander will lastly get a six-speed transmission for its V-6 engine, which should enhance gas economy and acceleration. It also obtains sitting for 8 thanks to a bigger freight location as well as a larger third-row seat. Engines will rollover unmodified, nevertheless, indicating there will still be no direct-injection or turbocharging. The exterior and interior updates look good and also need to keep the Highlander competitive, which's truly all Toyota needs to do to maintain the Highlander's sales numbers up-- aesthetic modifications that keep it fresh in an ultra-competitive market. Toyota currently has the energy, convenience, skills as well as family-friendly parts down pat. Servicing its visual charm and also on-board technology will just enhance the Highlander's setting.