2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Review

2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Review - Low gas rates have actually begotten hard times for hybrids. Even today's most effective gas-electrics-- the Toyota Prius, the Kia Niro, and also the Hyundai Ioniq-- don't pencil versus much less efficient however much less expensive nonhybrid counterparts in the same basic course. And those are hybrids that top 50 mpg. The Toyota Highlander hybrid SUV remains in an also harder area, given that its EPA scores are just a few mpg better than a regular Highlander's.

Upgraded for2020  together with the rest of the Highlander schedule, the hybrid, as before, marries a V-6 engine to a 167-hp motor/generator to power the front wheels, with a second 68-hp electrical motor fitted to the rear axle supplying on-demand four-wheel drive. The engine, nevertheless, is brand-new, and also for the first time is shown the nonhybrid Highlander. It's now direct infused as well as makes 295 horsepower and also 263 lb-ft of torque, improvements of 64 horses and also 48 lb-ft over the previous version, nudging the hybrid powertrain's total output (thinking about both electrical motors) from 280 to 306 horse power.

2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Review

2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Review

Of the 4 Highlander crossbreed trim degrees, the base LE version boasts the greatest EPA scores: 29 mpg integrated, 30 mpg city, as well as 28 mpg freeway. The figures for the other three (consisting of the Restricted checked below) are each 1 mpg reduced. Either way, compared to the all-wheel-drive V-6 Highlander, the crossbreed's EPA price quotes are just much better by a few mpg. Our real-world gas economic situation was even less excellent, at 23 mpg on the whole-- just 4 mpg much better compared to the last nonhybrid Highlander we tested, a 2014 design that had the previous, less-efficient V-6 engine as well as a six-speed automatic transmission. With its new V-6 and also eight-speed automatic, the present version likely would narrow the effectiveness space further. In our 75-mph highway fuel-economy test, this latest Highlander crossbreed achieved 26 mpg-- exactly the same as a nonhybrid 2016 Highlander V-6-- or 1 mpg even worse than its EPA highway ranking as well as no much better than a few of its nonhybrid peers, such as the Mazda CX-9.

If there's a positive side, it is that the Highlander's hybrid rate premium is smaller sized compared to the majority of. The entry-level LE is only $2130 greater than an all-wheel-drive, V-6-- powered Highlander LE; on the XLE trim, the crossbreed's cost charge is simply $1350, whereas the Limited and Platinum crossbreeds are $1620 dearer than their gas-only counterparts. Oh, and also this hybrid (thanks to the updated, more effective V-6 engine) is the quickest Highlander we have actually ever examined, reaching 60 miles per hour in 7.0 seconds level. That's 0.6 second quicker compared to the old hybrid and 0.3 second quicker than the pre-refresh conventional Highlander with the previous V-6 engine.
Still, we 'd conserve the money and just get the nonhybrid version, which likewise gains from a much more standard driving experience. Speed up quickly in the crossbreed, as well as the V-6 and also electric motors integrate for a kind of mooing soundtrack as the engine revs to its power top and remains there while the transmission engages the optimal drive proportion.

In spite of the hybrid's AWD setup, there is obvious torque guide as the front wheels fight for purchase during difficult velocity. Approximately regarding 30 mph, the crossbreed really feels vivacious and also quick; above that speed, the feeling of velocity winds down as the electric motors shed wind and the V-6 shoulders more of the problem. This isn't totally unexpected; inning accordance with Toyota's weight figures, the battery-assisted Highlander Limited crossbreed is 310 pounds heavier than an equal nonhybrid.

Dynamically, the three-row Highlander is unexciting, with lifeless guiding, occasionally saggy body activities, and also awful brake feeling. Toyota has yet to identify how you can change smoothly from regenerative stopping-- in which the electric motors imitate mechanical brakes, transforming kinetic energy into electricity-- to conventional rubbing stopping by means of the brake rotors. The outcome is unclear and also uncertain reaction from the brake pedal, although the crossbreed's actual quiting distances are par for this course.

A Normal Three-Row Show
Powertrains apart, the crossbreed adheres to the general Highlander script as an experienced household hauler. All models amass aesthetic updates for 2017, consisting of a wide-mouth grille, even more LED lights accents front and also back, as well as a normally classier appearance on the whole. The cabin's assembly is premium quality and also handsome, and we like the large shelf that extends most of the reduced dashboard and also is handy for saving everyday sediment. Bad marks consist of the touchscreen's range from the vehicle driver (it's a simpler grab the front traveler) as well as the squat audio and also HVAC knobs that are virtually flush with the surrounding surface and also consequently difficult to grip.

The Restricted tested below, together with the top-end Limited Platinum version, includes a pair of second-row captain's chairs and also a third-row bench, however purchasers could opt for three-person benches in both rows to seat eight in overall on the LE as well as XLE. The Highlander's second row supplies a lot of area, plus fore/aft and also recline changes-- although the seats have an instead low padding-- while the cramped third row is unbearable for any person however little kids. Usefully, the third row, when folded up, develops a tidy ramp in between the freight floor and the fold-flat second-row chairs, so one can move boxes or various other heavy things in without getting freight on anything.

At $46,154 with only extra-cost floor mats as well as body-side moldings, the Limited you see here isn't really unreasonably expensive for a perfectly equipped mid-size three-row crossover. Every 2017 Highlander currently comes criterion with forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, and also adaptive cruise ship control, as well as every trim over the base LE also has blind-spot monitoring. The Restricted includes warmed and also ventilated front seats, 19-inch wheels, and a lot more chrome outside trim in addition to the sunroof, power pole position, power liftgate, and also natural leather seats (plastic in the 3rd row) that the XLE brings.

So the Highlander hybrid is equally the functional as well as valuable three-row family members crossover that its gasoline-powered sibling is. And also therein exists the rub: There's no engaging need to pay additional for it or to take care of its drivability traits. The tiny fuel-economy improvement is not likely to be of much passion, specifically when gas is so cheap.

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