Even as newbies like the Ford Traveler and also Dodge Durango take on against the Highlander as well as the Honda Pilot, I still locate the Highlander a qualified underdog. If you choose the V-6 engine, it executes along with the rest, too.
I tested a new 2011 model with simply 65 miles on it, yet the 2012s are already for sale as well as are geared up and valued practically identically.
2012 Toyota Highlander For Sale
While the majority of family members would certainly be well-served by nearly any three-row crossover on the marketplace, the Highlander has some notable functions that establish it apart.
The front seats of my tester fit on a long-haul journey from Chicago to Wisconsin. The second-row seat has lots of support, also, and all seats have ample thigh support. The second row could move forward and back, which is most advantageous for third-row travelers.
A third row is typical even on the base Highlander. With the 2nd row moved completely back, there is hardly any room for third-row travelers. Move the 2nd row up even a little, though-- about two notches-- and third-row passengers need to be as comfortable as I was at 5-foot-10. It's the moving 2nd row that makes this crossover as functional a choice for carrying seven people as a lot larger crossovers, like the Chevy Traverse and also Ford Explorer. The Honda Pilot is sized likewise to the Highlander as well as supplies sitting for three in the 3rd row. That gives it an optimum sitting ability of 8, unlike the remainder of the course at seven.
The middle area of the Highlander's 2nd row can be eliminated completely, transforming the bench right into 2 captain's chairs with a pass-through to the third row. The pass-through is a favorite feature of minivan proprietors, and also while other crossovers may offer a choice in between a bench or more chairs, just the Highlander provides owners both in the exact same car.
On the whole, I found products top quality to be good, yet various other editors and also a family associated with a contrast examination thought the Highlander appeared low-cost. However, as furnished, our tester was priced thousands less than much of the competitors. Besides some harsh finishes on the plastic around the door pockets, I located the inside on par for the rate. My other half likewise liked it, recommending it's a step up from her 2010 Subaru Wilderness.
In regards to security attributes, a backup electronic camera is typical on the Highlander SE as well as higher trim levels, or it can be had as part of an optional Technology Bundle, which was included on my base tester. On models without navigating, there's a tv at the top of the control panel that reveals trip info while driving, after that switches over to the rearview display when the transmission is put into Opposite. Navigation-equipped models reveal the rearward view on their bigger touch-screen.
If there was one thing my other half enjoyed concerning the Highlander, it was the four cupholders in the center console between the traveler as well as vehicle driver, with one more in each of the 4 doors as well as four even more for second-row travelers. Every other crossover consisted of in our current comparison examination featured just two cupholders around.
If you have actually ever before taken care of the sippy cups, water bottles and also soft drink cans a household of just 4 requires for a Saturday out on the community-- which for us involves striking an indoor play area with giant blow up bounce-houses, lunch and also either a bookstore or library stop-- you realize drinks build up.
For 2012, the Highlander comes requirement with a 187-horsepower, 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine teamed with a six-speed automatic transmission, for gas mileage rated at 20/25 mpg city/highway. The engine is very anemic; the version I drove this moment had the V-6, but in previous tests I've located that the four-cylinder-powered Highlander seems like an underpowered lummox. Four-cylinder designs come geared up only with front-wheel drive.
There's a crossbreed version with a 3.5-liter V-6 and also an electric motor that make a mixed 280 hp, helpful for 28/28 mpg city/highway. The hybrid comes furnished just with four-wheel drive, makings those mileage figures fairly remarkable.
My examination vehicle-- as do the bulk of sales-- featured the 270-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 engine teamed with a five-speed automatic transmission, great for 18/24 mpg with front-wheel drive and also 17/22 mpg with all-wheel drive.
Gas mileage gets on par with the remainder of the section, with many players score only 1 mpg above or below the Highlander.
Power was plentiful in my front-wheel-drive Highlander, which ran from a stop with gusto as well as passed strongly at freeway speeds. Guiding was light and also a bit vague, as it is in the majority of crossovers. The ride fit, the engine silent and wind noise almost nil, that made for enjoyable driving and the capability to listen to every cry, issue as well as occasional track from my backseat guests.
Braking was the real issue I had with the Highlander. After a week and numerous miles of driving, I had a tough time judging the brake action. I consistently snagged my wife onward in her seat when I needed to add more stress than anticipated near a stop. This is a quality of numerous Toyota cars, and it's one I do not particularly appreciate.
There's simply 10.3 cubic feet of freight space when the 3rd row is up. The Honda Pilot has substantially extra, at 18.0 cubic feet. The Traverse, with 24.4 cubic feet, is significantly bigger.
With the third row down, freight room broadens to 42.3 cubic feet, as well as for my usage that was plenty big enough. I packed a 32-gallon wastebasket in the back-- actually 2 piled into each other-- and also those healthy lengthwise with the second-row seats simply slightly onward. The Pilot is ranked at 47.7 cubic feet, so the distinction between both versions there is much less considerable than it lags the third row. I favored the Pilot's under-floor storage, however.
Features & Pricing
For 2012, the Highlander starts at $28,090 for the base four-cylinder with front-wheel drive. That does not get you a lot in terms of features, but it does include 17-inch alloy wheels, colored back home windows, remote access, cruise control, a tilt/telescoping wheel as well as 2 12-volt power outlets.
My test automobile was a base V-6, however I really did not seem like I was missing a lot in terms of attributes due to the fact that it also had the $1,835 Technology Bundle, which includes a USB port, Bluetooth for phones and songs streaming, as well as a great trip computer. While I take pleasure in fancy entertainment systems as much as the following guy, this is the sort of feature established that the majority of family members will certainly need, for a practical as-tested cost of $32,845. Four-wheel drive is only $1,450 even more. In this sector, it typically costs $2,000 to go up to all- or 4x4.
SE designs begin at $32,695 for four-cylinder, front-drive models, including a power moonroof, a back window that opens independent of the liftgate, roofing system rails, fog lamps as well as a power liftgate. Heated natural leather pole position, HomeLink, a natural leather steering wheel with audio and Bluetooth controls, and all the features in the Tech Package are also included. For a comparable rate, I would certainly choose the V-6 version as opposed to the SE four-cylinder.
The high-grade, all-wheel-drive Minimal V-6 Highlander starts at $37,045 and is loaded: 19-inch wheels, three-zone climate control, keyless ignition as well as access, as well as higher-grade leather seats.
The Highlander Crossbreed is available in 2 trims: a base version for $38,140 as well as a Minimal model for $43,795, with similar tools offerings as V-6 gas designs.
Pricing is similar to the Traverse, Pilot and the rest of the course. Toyota also uses 2 years of free upkeep with new-car acquisitions, which none of its rivals in the sector offer.
The Toyota Highlander is an Insurance Policy Institute for Highway Security Top Security Choose; that's the institution's highest award. To make the ranking, automobiles need to get top ratings of Excellent ahead, side and back accidents, along with pass roof-strength examinations that determine rollover defense.
The Highlander made a four-star total rating from the National Highway Web Traffic Safety And Security Management. Five stars is the greatest rating, which the Chevy Traverse made.
Highlander in the Market
If it weren't so darn sensible with a great engine, it would be simple to discount the Highlander in an area that contains some splashier brand-new designs. But there are simply way too many things in the Highlander's support to rule it from your buying strategies. Due to their smaller sized footprint in your driveway and garage, the Highlander and Pilot are extra obtainable for even more families.