Toyota Highlander Body Styles
Like the 1986 film Highlander, the Toyota SUV that shares its name is a crowd-pleaser that fails to inspire eagerness among critics. After more than 190,000 Highlanders rolled off dealer great deals last year, Toyota's mid-size crossover SUV went into 2017 with a host of modifications focused on pleasing the masses as well as pundits alike.
Notably, all Highlanders, from the base $31,590 LE to the top-of-the-line $48,840 Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum, currently come basic with a pre-collision caution system with pedestrian detection and also automated emergency braking, plus lane-departure caution, lane-keeping aid, flexible cruise ship control, and also automatic high-beams. Our all-wheel-drive $43,184 Highlander XLE examination car likewise packed blind-spot tracking, an attribute not available on the lower-level Highlander LE as well as LE And also.
Going along with the 2017 Highlander's many safety and security systems is the latest variant of Toyota's 3.5-liter V-6 engine. The six-cylinder is basic on all but the base front-wheel-drive Highlander LE-- which continuouslies make use of a frail 185-hp inline-four-- and also integrates a host of contemporary technologies, including a straight and also port fuel-injection system and also an upgraded valvetrain that enables the engine to work on the extra efficient Atkinson cycle. Rated at a healthy 295 horse power and also 263 lb-ft of torque, the revised V-6 makes 25 even more ponies and an extra 15 lb-ft compared to the previous system. Gas economic situation is up, also, with the front-wheel-drive 2017 Highlander V-6 making an EPA-rated 23 mpg integrated; all-wheel-drive designs accomplish 22 mpg. Both numbers note a 2-mpg improvement over in 2015's Highlander and also placed the crossover within 1 mpg of the four-cylinder Mazda CX-9's combined fuel-economy numbers.
Toyota's 2GR-FKS six is a treasure of an engine that develops power mostly all the way approximately its 6800-rpm redline. At the track, this Highlander shaved 0.3 second off of its predecessor's zero-to-60-mph and also 30-to-50-mph times, hitting the marks in 7.0 and 3.8 seconds, respectively. Regrettably, the 2017 Highlander's 5.6-second 50-to-70-mph passing away time was both sluggish for the course and almost a second behind that of its forbear. Condemn the brand-new eight-speed transmission's hesitancy to downshift. Regardless, the revised Highlander's V-6 supplies a lot of grunt in the majority of real-world driving scenarios. Many thanks partly to our examination cars and truck's automatic stop-start system, we took care of a sensible 21 mpg during our time with the crossover, 2 mpg better compared to just what we obtained from a Mazda CX-9.
The Component 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), after that the crossover's overhauled exterior style belongs to the film's handsome but featureless protagonist, Connor MacLeod (Christopher Lambert). New front and rear fascias, updated headlamps, as well as an eye-catching collection of LED taillights provide the Highlander an extra cohesive, SUV-like look. Yet we still wouldn't put it quite on the very same level of attractiveness as the butch Dodge Durango or the shapely CX-9.
Unlike the exterior, the Highlander's interior has been left mostly unblemished. Toyota did include four even more USB ports, bringing the total to five-- three in front and 2 in the rear. The cabin includes a variety of handy storage spaces, including a shelf that covers the reduced control panel and also an enormous center-console container that can accommodate virtually a cubic foot of various things. Ergonomic mistakes include difficult-to-grip temperature level knobs for the climate-control system and a touchscreen that's also far from the vehicle driver.
While base-level LE and LE Plus Highlanders come with a common second-row bench seat, the XLE, SE, Limited, and Restricted Platinum qualities include captain's chairs between. (The bench seat is a no-cost alternative on the XLE, Limited, and also Minimal Platinum.) Room is plentiful in the 2nd row, yet we found that our seven-passenger test auto's pail seats were mounted too reduced for ideal convenience. Still, the Highlander's sliding as well as reclining second-row chairs were like a set of La-Z-Boy recliners compared with the slim and also lightweight 60/40 split-folding third-row bench. Legroom in the wayback is just 27.7 inches, a full 6 inches fewer than exactly what the Volkswagen Atlas's rearmost row offers. If you regularly carry adequate guests to benefit regular use of the 3rd row, think about the Atlas, a Honda Pilot, or a Ford Flex.
Darkness of an SUV
Despite the Highlander's carlike unibody building as well as reduced step-in elevation, this mid-size crossover's dealing with advises us of an old-fashioned body-on-frame SUV, as its softly sprung suspension allows extreme body coming in turns. On the plus side, the suspension soaks up road irregularities with nary a shudder, and also the electrically aided guiding is fairly fast as well as usually well weighted.
At 4560 pounds, our all-wheel-drive Highlander test cars and truck was no light-weight, and also the excess mass made itself recognized when applying the brakes, as the Toyota needed 181 feet of tarmac to stop from 70 miles per hour-- 11 feet more than a 161-pound-lighter all-wheel-drive GMC Acadia Denali.
With an as-tested cost of $43,184, our Toasted Walnut Pearl Highlander XLE showed off $3704 in options. Of that tally, all-wheel drive includes $1460 and brings vestigial mud flaps, hill-descent control, and also a display setup within the 4.2-inch gauge-cluster display that shows torque circulation amongst the Highlander's four wheels. An $1810 rear-seat entertainment system was the most costly alternative, while $434 bought flooring mats and body-side moldings. Standard items included navigation, a closeness trick with push-button start, and a sunroof, as well as previously mentioned functions such as a blind-spot monitoring system and also leather-trimmed first- and second-row seats (Toyota drapes the third row in plastic).
While the Highlander's drab handling and also cramped third row continuously suppress our excitement for the Indiana-built crossover, the upgraded 2017 Highlander's lengthy checklist of common security and also convenience functions, much more powerful and fuel-efficient V-6 engine, and also enhanced outside styling will certainly continue to bring in stockpiles of shoppers seeking a comfy as well as reasonably valued mid-size crossover SUV.