2013 toyota Highlander Review

2013 toyota highlander review: Even in its final model year before a redesign, the 2013 Toyota Highlander excels, solid, standard household transportation-- nothing to set the heart aflame, but incomparably experienced.

Some cars, and also Toyotas particularly, typically get referred to by auto enthusiasts as "devices." The contrast is made in between a Camry and a fridge, or a Corolla and also a washing machine, for instance. The ramification (usually less than kind) is that these automobiles have qualities that are much less fun as well as more useful. One wouldn't take a refrigerator to an autocross, or drag-race a washering from a traffic light. But also for numerous people around the globe, a home appliance is precisely what they want in a car-- something they do not need to think of to make use of, that isn't really unusual or ostentatious, that's dependable and easy. For those people, many Toyotas are definitely excellent-- and the 2013 Highlander is the pinnacle of such appliancelike, comfortable, practical thinking.

2013 toyota highlander review

This is the in 2014 for this style of Highlander, with a brand-new 2014 model on its way that was revealed at the 2013 New York International Car Show in March. However, there's a whole lot to like concerning the existing Highlander, which has roominess, power, convenience and also utility in droves.

Absolutely Nothing Fancy, Just Basic Capability

The shape knows by now, with relatively aggressive styling that has been replicated by numerous producers. (The brand-new Nissan Pathfinder, for instance, looks a great deal similar to this Highlander in several means.) It's a clean, flowing style that experiences a little bit from wheels that look a little also small in the base V-6 trim degree I checked. If you like the way it looks, nevertheless, obtain one currently, as the 2014 design will certainly obtain a rather considerable styling update that's not to everyone's liking.

The inside is likewise pleasing. Absolutely nothing outrageous, simply well set out, extremely comfortable and made from high-quality materials that have been screwed with each other well. In advance, the reduced, soft-touch dash and high seating setting combine for a powerful view over the hood, with exceptional exposure to the sides as well as back also. Controls on the facility control panel allow and also clear, with large buttons and chunky knobs that make running the climate-control system a breeze (sorry). The determines are brilliant, clear as well as very easy to read at a glance. There's nothing remarkable concerning the forms as well as textures in below, however there's absolutely nothing to offend either-- unless you're someone who needs some aesthetic interest in your transport option, as there's none to be found in the endless sea of grey plastic stretching from door to door. A minimum of in the Highlander it's decent plastic, unlike in some other Toyota products, like the Venza.

Seats is functional as well as very spacious, specifically in the second row, which showcases astonishing quantities of legroom. This is a three-row SUV, consisting of a fold-down seat for 2 people in the freight area, accessible via the fold-and-tumble second-row seats. That third row is wide enough for full-sized adults, however legroom is seriously compromised. This is simply a midsized SUV, besides, not a full-sizer like the Toyota Sequoia or Chevrolet Traverse. Folding up the second row for access to the 3rd is very easy, with deals with atop the seatbacks making for easy operation also by children. Both the 2nd as well as 3rd rows fold flat, producing a large freight area able to hold big, bulky objects.

Inside electronics are basic as well as not extremely made complex on the entry-level Highlander (the just significant alternatives my examination model had were a V-6 engine and four-wheel drive). The standard touch-screen multimedia show is big and easy to use, however a 2nd, smaller screen above it presented restricted vehicle details, too, with simply a handful of displays to choose from. You could option up a Highlander to the handle with points like Toyota's Entune (a cloud-based amusement as well as details system), a navigating system and even more, yet my tester had none of that-- just satellite radio and a windshield-wiper heating unit, part of the $60 Cold Weather Bundle. On the plus side, an absence of functions indicates the interior is uncluttered as well as straightforward. It also suggests there's little to do however drive.

Roly-Poly, yet Not Pokey

Luckily, driving the Highlander is just as positive as being in or taking a look at one. In the base design, power comes 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 approximately a far more confidence-inspiring 270 hp. In real Toyota style, the V-6 is the picture of level of smoothness, so much so that the only way to recognize it's performing at still is to blip the pedal. Struck that exact same pedal while the Highlander's in gear, and also you're compensated with solid, smooth velocity. A six-speed transmission is typical with the four-cylinder, yet the V-6 comes only with a five-speed automated. A gasoline-electric crossbreed variation is also readily available. With the exception of the hybrid, nonetheless, the drivetrain overall is a little bit behind the times-- most rivals are using six-speed automatics across the array, plus turbocharging or a minimum of direct-injection innovation. The good news is, a lot of purchasers will certainly not recognize any technological shortage thanks to the Highlander's buttery operation and also easy velocity.

Exactly what they could notice, nonetheless, is gas economy. Highlanders with the base four-cylinder engine as well as front-wheel drive are ranked 20/25 mpg city/highway-- tolerable for a large seven-seat cruiser. Gas economic situation drops to 18/24 for the bigger V-6 engine, and even further, to 17/22 mpg, when you add four-wheel drive. My week with the Highlander returned 19 mpg in mixed driving; tolerable, however definitely not class-leading anymore. It falls well except the brand-new all-wheel-drive Nissan Pathfinder, rated 19/25 mpg, and the new seven-seat Hyundai Santa Fe, which comes in at 18/24 mpg. It likewise typically matches the much larger Chevrolet Traverse for mixed gas mileage rating (19 mpg), and does 1 mpg better in the city and 1 mpg worse on the highway. The Highlander lineup's gas economic climate champ is the crossbreed, ranked 28/28 mpg, yet that comes with a considerable cost costs and also with standard all-wheel drive.

The Highlander is certainly tuned for convenience as opposed to driving fun. As the suspension is soft, the body movements are tippy and also the entire truck rolls and also lolls in fast edges. You won't be doing any perky driving in this household truckster, yet just what you get in return is sublime trip high quality that's smooth also over a few of the most terribly busted pavement, assisted by tall sidewalls on the 17-inch tires that absorb bumps with little sound or disruption to your calmness. Hang an iPad on the seatback, as well as the munchkins won't be bothered by road conditions in the smallest. Faster highway driving is equally as calm as well as hushed.


The current Highlander has actually been crash-tested by both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Policy Institute for Highway Safety And Security. NHTSA ranked the Highlander four out of 5 star on the whole, while IIHS gave the Highlander its leading ranking of Excellent in all its significant examinations, gaining it Top Safety Choose status.

As for devices, the Highlander has all the requisite electronic precaution, like grip control, anti-skid brakes as well as a digital security system. Front, side, motorist's knee as well as side drape airbags are typical. There was no back-up cam on my examination vehicle, yet it's a $699 choice on base models (requirement on all other trim degrees), an instead blazing omission from the devices list for a purported household automobile.

Highlander in the marketplace

The Highlander V6 four-wheel drive I examined had one notable top quality that could not be ignored: a fairly low as-tested rate of $33,477, consisting of an $845 location fee. The beginning price for this base V-6 design with four-wheel drive is $32,690, meaning choices on my tester were couple of: only a $60 Cold Weather Plan, a $29 first-aid set, a $49 freight web as well as an instead expensive $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 as well as front-wheel drive begins at $29,865. At the various other end of the spectrum is a fully loaded Highlander Crossbreed Limited four-wheel drive, which starts at $47,215-- quite a significant variety.

Midsize SUVs have actually been taking over for minivans in family-hauling duties, and the variety of access in the field is above ever before. Needing seven seats does cut the list down ever before so slightly. The Highlander's main rivals are the Nissan Pathfinder, Honda Pilot, Chevrolet Traverse/GMC Acadia, Ford Explorer, Hyundai Santa Fe, Mazda CX-9 as well as Dodge Durango. If you can cope with simply five seats, include the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Nissan Murano, Ford Side, Toyota Venza as well as Kia Sorento. That's more than a loads various other lorries to think about, demonstrating just how competitive this segment really is. The closest matches are the Pathfinder, Traveler and Santa Fe (not the Santa Fe Sporting activity, mind you, which is a smaller sized, five-seat design). The Pathfinder includes only a V-6 as well as continuously variable transmission, while the Santa Fe's seven-seat version supplies only a V-6. The Traveler supplies two V-6 engines as well as an optional turbo four-cylinder, all mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. All are similar in regards to room, rate and also utility, but the Highlander's competitors typically have the advantage in fuel economic situation and also on-board innovation.

The 2014 Highlander will lastly obtain a six-speed transmission for its V-6 engine, which must improve fuel economic climate as well as velocity. It also obtains sitting for eight thanks to a bigger freight area as well as a wider third-row seat. Engines will rollover the same, however, implying there will still be no direct-injection or turbocharging. The exterior and interior updates look good and must keep the Highlander affordable, which's truly all Toyota needs to do to keep the Highlander's sales numbers up-- aesthetic modifications that keep it fresh in an ultra-competitive market. Toyota currently has the energy, convenience, skills and family-friendly parts down pat. Working on its curb allure as well as on-board innovation will just reinforce the Highlander's placement.

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