Toyota Highlander Le Plus

Toyota Highlander Le Plus: Unnoticeable as well as sensible, the Highlander can haul up to eight in quiet comfort. The base 185-hp 2.7-liter inline-four groups with a six-speed automatic as well as 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 and requirement for the crossbreed, which pairs the V-6 with 2 electric motors; we saw 24 mpg in our test. The Highlander gives an appropriate driving experience, however it's even more focused on indoor details and also storage.


Toyota Highlander Le Plus


Like the 1986 movie Highlander, the Toyota SUV that shares its name is a crowd-pleaser that cannot inspire fervor amongst critics. After more than 190,000 Highlanders rolled off supplier great deals last year, Toyota's mid-size crossover SUV went into 2017 with a host of modifications targeted at satisfying the masses as well as pundits alike.

Significantly, all Highlanders, from the base $31,590 LE to the high-grade $48,840 Highlander Crossbreed Limited Platinum, now come typical with a pre-collision caution system with pedestrian detection and automated emergency braking, plus lane-departure warning, lane-keeping help, adaptive cruise ship control, and also automatic high-beams. Our all-wheel-drive $43,184 Highlander XLE examination car also packed blind-spot surveillance, a feature inaccessible on the lower-level Highlander LE and also LE And also.

Going along with the 2017 Highlander's many safety and security systems is the most up to date variation of Toyota's 3.5-liter V-6 engine. The six-cylinder is standard on just about the base front-wheel-drive Highlander LE-- which continues to utilize a frail 185-hp inline-four-- as well as includes a host of contemporary technologies, including a straight and port fuel-injection system and an upgraded valvetrain that permits the engine to work on the more efficient Atkinson cycle. Ranked at a healthy and balanced 295 horsepower as well as 263 lb-ft of torque, the revised V-6 makes 25 even more ponies as well as an added 15 lb-ft compared to the previous device. Gas economic situation is up, as well, with the front-wheel-drive 2017 Highlander V-6 gaining an EPA-rated 23 mpg incorporated; all-wheel-drive designs achieve 22 mpg. Both numbers note a 2-mpg enhancement over last year's Highlander and put the crossover within 1 mpg of the four-cylinder Mazda CX-9's mixed fuel-economy figures.

Toyota's 2GR-FKS six is a treasure of an engine that constructs power almost all the means up to its 6800-rpm redline. At the track, this Highlander cut 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 3.8 secs, respectively. However, the 2017 Highlander's 5.6-second 50-to-70-mph passing time was both sluggish for the course as well as almost a 2nd behind that of its forbear. Condemn the new eight-speed transmission's hesitancy to downshift. Regardless, the changed Highlander's V-6 uses plenty of grunt in the majority of real-world driving situations. Thanks partially to our test car's automated stop-start system, we managed a reasonable 21 mpg throughout 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 matching of Highlander's captivating Juan Sánchez Villa-Lobos Ramírez (played by Sean Connery), then the crossover's revamped exterior design belongs to the film's good-looking but featureless protagonist, Connor MacLeod (Christopher Lambert). New front and also rear fascias, updated headlamps, as well as an attractive set of LED taillights offer the Highlander a more cohesive, SUV-like look. But we still would not put it quite on the same level of good looks as the butch Dodge Durango or the hot CX-9.

Unlike the exterior, the Highlander's inside has actually been left mostly unblemished. Toyota did add four more USB ports, bringing the total amount to five-- 3 in front as well as 2 in the rear. The cockpit features a number of convenient storage space nooks, including a shelf that covers the lower dashboard and also an enormous center-console container that could accommodate nearly a cubic foot of assorted things. Ergonomic mistakes consist of difficult-to-grip temperature level knobs for the climate-control system and also a touchscreen that's too far away from the vehicle driver.

While base-level LE and LE Plus Highlanders include a standard second-row bench seat, the XLE, SE, Limited, as well as Limited Platinum qualities come with captain's chairs in the center. (The bench seat is a no-cost option on the XLE, Limited, as well as Restricted Platinum.) Space abounds in the second row, but we located that our seven-passenger examination auto's bucket seats were placed also low for ideal convenience. Still, the Highlander's gliding as well as reclining second-row chairs resembled a pair of La-Z-Boy recliner chairs compared to the slim as well as lightweight 60/40 split-folding third-row bench. Legroom in the wayback is simply 27.7 inches, a full six inches less than exactly what the Volkswagen Atlas's rearmost row offers. If you frequently transport enough passengers to quality regular use of the 3rd row, take into consideration the Atlas, a Honda Pilot, or a Ford Flex.

Shadow of an SUV

Even with the Highlander's carlike unibody building and construction and low step-in elevation, this mid-size crossover's dealing with reminds us of an old-fashioned body-on-frame SUV, as its softly sprung suspension permits extreme body roll in turns. On the plus side, the suspension absorbs road abnormalities with nary a shudder, as well as the electrically assisted steering is relatively quick and also normally well heavy.

At 4560 extra pounds, our all-wheel-drive Highlander test car was no lightweight, and also the excess mass made itself known when applying the brakes, as the Toyota needed 181 feet of tarmac to stop from 70 miles per hour-- 11 feet greater 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 alternatives. Of that tally, four-wheel drive includes $1460 as well as brings vestigial mud flaps, hill-descent control, as well as a display screen setting within the 4.2-inch gauge-cluster screen that shows torque circulation among the Highlander's four wheels. An $1810 rear-seat amusement system was the most pricey alternative, while $434 purchased floor mats and body-side moldings. Standard things consisted of navigation, a distance key with push-button begin, and also a sunroof, in addition to aforementioned attributes such as a blind-spot monitoring system as well as leather-trimmed very first- and also second-row seats (Toyota upholsters the third row in vinyl).

While the Highlander's drab handling and also confined third row continuously curb our excitement for the Indiana-built crossover, the updated 2017 Highlander's lengthy listing of standard safety and ease features, a lot more effective as well as fuel-efficient V-6 engine, and enhanced exterior styling will continuously bring in heaps of buyers trying to find a comfy and moderately priced mid-size crossover SUV.