Toyota Highlander Limited 2015

Toyota Highlander Limited 2015: The 2014 Toyota Highlander's cavalcade of renovations make a formerly dull, middle-of-the-road SUV stand out with vibrant styling and also boosted household friendliness.

Toyota listened to customers while redesigning the seven/eight-seat 2014 Highlander and responded to demands for more cabin as well as freight space, vibrant designing and costs amenities. Ask for a much more vibrant driving experience ought to have been pleasantly neglected, nevertheless, as the 2014's harsher trip is a tradeoff I do not believe numerous midsize SUV purchasers must need to deal with in return for sportier handling.

Still, various other renovations will definitely appeal to customers who had actually damaged the previous Highlander off their list or a minimum of to those that do not take into consideration a comfortable trip a must-have. The 2014 Highlander's raised cargo area behind the common third-row seat is a much-needed enhancement; plus, it's simpler to get right into the 3rd row, which now sittings 3 and bumps typical sitting ability to eight.

Toyota Highlander Limited 2015

With upgrades that extend the schedule of LE, LE Plus, XLE, Limited and also Limited Platinum trim levels, the 2014 Highlander is currently in much better shape to tackle the 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe, 2014 Ford Explorer and 2014 Honda Pilot.

I drove four-cylinder, six-cylinder and also Hybrid 2014 Highlanders at a Toyota media event.

Outside & Designing

Toyota returned to the attracting board to revamp its aging and stylistically devoid Highlander. Fast-forward to 2014, and you can't call the Highlander boring looking any type of longer. The 2013's dull look changes right into a hulking SUV with a beefier stance, protruding fenders as well as vibrant front styling. Its visibility was big on the 2013 New York International Vehicle Program flooring where it debuted, and also it looks equally as good rolling down the street.

Exactly how It Drives

The driving experience isn't the car's most appealing quality, even with an array of promising new chassis as well as suspension modifications, so it excels the brand-new SUV does so several other points well.

Toyota picked curved canyon and coastal roads in The golden state to show the Highlander's brand-new handling chops. Driving a 2013 as well as 2014 back to back, the 2014 does show higher levels of road grasp and also a boosted steering response. It's even more sports when excavating right into an edge, though I wouldn't call the Highlander enjoyable to drive. The 270-horsepower V-6 doesn't have an instant strike of acceleration in the heavy Highlander. It's an unlike the lighter, 290-hp Hyundai Santa Fe, which is a "little" round of enjoyment to name a few similar three-row SUVs. A six-cylinder Highlander LE with front-wheel drive is 4,244 extra pounds, while a V-6, front-wheel-drive Santa Fe GLS is 3,933 pounds.

A negative impact of the Highlander's newfound characteristics is a choppier flight over harsh roads. After driving 2013 and also 2014 versions, I could inform the 2014 sends more roadway blemishes via the chassis and into seats. Hey, Toyota: It's OK to have a hostile design as well as trip like a sofa; see the 2014 Chevrolet Impala.

On the advantage, the 2014 Highlander has a much more considerable feeling over harsh roads, with less rattles, squeals as well as chassis flex. It's a matured experience with increased audio insulation, acoustic glass and a stiffer chassis assisting maintain outside sound marginal.

I briefly hung out in the four-cylinder Highlander with front-wheel drive, which Toyota anticipates to account for 5 to 10 percent of sales, and in the all-new Highlander Hybrid. Both the front-wheel-drive-only four-cylinder (20/25/22 mpg city/highway/combined) and all-wheel-drive-only Hybrid V-6 (27/28/28 mpg) are a little harsh around the sides as far as engine noise as well as resonances. The Hybrid's gas mileage is fairly unchanged for 2014, down 1 mpg in city rankings to 27 mpg however keeps its 28 mpg combined ranking. The transition from electric to when the engine fires up is visible with raw sounds originating from under the hood, audible from throughout a car park. Vibrations from the transition are marginal, yet the noises are loud enough to take notice.

An additional 353 pounds added to the hybrid from three electrical motors-- 2 in the front as well as one in the back-- as well as a nickel metal hydride battery is noticeable in just how the Hybrid drives compared with the Minimal V-6 with four-wheel drive. It's a kicked back experience much less fired up about increasing and dealing with despite 280-hp incorporated, and it additionally does not ride any type of smoother compared to the non-hybrid.

The Crossbreed's abnormally loud engine sounds wouldn't be as much of an issue if the Highlander Hybrid just weren't $48,160 with destination, $7,130 greater than 2013-- a 2014 Lexus RX 450h is $47,320, though a lot smaller sized on the in. The Highlander Hybrid's deluxe vehicle price doesn't reflect high-end improvement now that the feature-loaded Hybrid Limited is the only Crossbreed used; the less-expensive variation got the axe for 2014.

The volume-seller V-6 is the most refined of the bunch, supplying smooth and predictable acceleration along with the best handling with four-wheel drive. The V-6-powered Highlander's gas mileage of 19/25/21 mpg with front-wheel drive and 18/24/20 mpg with four-wheel drive is likewise extra competitive than the outbound 2013 thanks to a brand-new six-speed automatic transmission changing a five-speed device on V-6 versions. The all-wheel-drive system, which is additionally new, aids add 2 mpg highway over the 2013 variation. All-wheel-drive Highlanders send torque to the rear wheels when slippage is spotted, versus the previous system that always sent torque to four wheels.


Part of the 2014's makeover includes calling up the interior styling with numerous soft-touch and accent-stitched interior panels that improve the classiness. The top quality is Toyota-Avalon good with a stitched dashboard, guiding wheel and soft-touch, premium materials in famous areas. Plastic areas that typically aren't textured, stitched or covered are still on par for the course. Even the base LE Highlander exhibits the virtually luxurylike niceness of the higher-optioned Minimal trims.

Seats fits in the very first and second rows with soft, wide pole positions and a very adjustable 2nd row that glides as well as reclines with two captain's chairs or the basic three-seat bench configuration-- captain's chairs are readily available on the XLE and also typical on the Limited. The rest of the Highlander may have been redone with dynamism in mind, yet the seats speak with its comfort-focused roots. Many people on our staff will certainly miss out on the 2013's removable second-row facility seat. I won't, as it was uncomfortable as well as large to eliminate and also change with the center table that saved under the facility console.

In the 3rd row, Toyota increased size and also added an extra seat for an optimum ability of 8 passengers in conventional setup. A brand-new, more small back suspension freed the extra room. The third row still does not fit adults with as much convenience as the larger Chevrolet Traverse, however it readies in a pinch. There are likewise new one-touch folding second-row seats on both sides. Previously, only the curbside seat folded and also glided ahead by means of the one-touch bar. Third-row bikers also gain from the second row's enhanced seat travel, which enables very easy entry and exit.

Ergonomics & Electronics

Technology is a huge emphasis in the 2014 Highlander and also done effectively. Toyota's Entune multimedia system functions much better compared to ever compared to other Toyota vehicles in which I have actually used the system. Functioning the Entune system's voice commands is impressive. The designs I checked detected the various voice commands I talked.

Those with cumbersome phones or that regularly have their phone linked to the SUV will appreciate a gadget storage space ledge below the environment regulates that provides a pass-through for USB cords. There must disappear Medusa-like dangling of cables ensnaring the equipment selector.

The conventional Entune on base LE models consists of a 6.1-inch touch-screen with backup video camera, USB port with iPod connectivity, complementary input, voice acknowledgment, Bluetooth phone connectivity and also Bluetooth streaming audio. LE And also trims have Entune Sound And also with a higher-resolution 6.1-inch screen, HD Radio and also 90-day satellite radio registration. The next step up is Entune Costs Audio with Navigating as well as Application Suite on XLE versions with an 8-inch touch-screen and app collection with Pandora, Yelp as well as Facebook combination with a smartphone and accompanying Entune downloadable application. A JBL sound system is standard on Limited trim levels.

The substantial facility storage space bin between the pole positions could devour anything plus-sized, like a purse, iPad or Blu-ray collection for the readily available rear-seat Blu-ray player. And when you fail to remember that Blu-ray in your home, an intriguing brand-new feature called Easy Speak transmits the booming voice of an angry mama or dad via the rear stereo speakers via the Bluetooth microphone to keep rowdy youngsters in check. Just how much more family concentrated can you get than providing an attribute that enables parents to chew out kids?

Freight, Towing & Storage

Freight space behind the third row enhances over the previous Highlander's revealing ledge, which struggled lugging groceries, let alone an infant stroller or golf bag. The freight quantity is currently rated at 13.8 cubic feet, up from 10.3 cubic feet. It's not a massive renovation, yet at the very least it makes the area useful. It's still small compared with others in the section: The Traveler has 21 cubic feet as well as the Pilot has 18 cubic feet behind the third row. Toyota's hoax to raise cargo space included relocating all three rows of seats onward, including length behind the back wheels and also making use of an extra portable rear suspension.

The power liftgate is a remarkable attribute to be typical on LE And also trim degrees and above, and also has a trick up its sleeve: It gets used to various elevations, not simply 1 or 2 predetermined height setups. With the liftgate moving, individuals can quit the liftgate as well as program it to open up to that established elevation the next time. The function will make much shorter drivers and also proprietors of low garages extremely satisfied. (If the gate goes too expensive, much shorter individuals could struggle to get to the power-close button on its bottom edge.) One more special attribute on the back is an oldie yet a reward: On LE And also models and also above, the back home window opens for very easy gain access to independent of the cargo gate.

A 5,000-pound tow ranking on XLE and Limited trim degrees has a basic towing bundle that consists of engine/transmission coolers and also upgraded radiator and also alternator. Crossbreeds can tow 3,500 extra pounds, V-6 LE/LE And also can tow 2,000 extra pounds and a four-cylinder LE is rated at 1,500 extra pounds.

Safety and security

The 2014 Highlander hadn't been crash-tested at the time of this writing.

The 2014 Highlander provides lower supports as well as tethers on outboard second-row seats for child-safety seats, however only a secure support on the center third-row seat.

Advanced security functions are offered, though just on the pricey Restricted trim level where a dead spot surveillance system and also back car parking help are conventional, and also pre-collision, flexible cruise control and also lane separation warning are optional. Minimal trim levels are also the only designs with a back-up video camera that makes use of anticipating guidelines to show the vehicle's path-- a backup electronic camera with fixed lines is typical on all other trim degrees.

Worth in Its Class

Toyota states prices is up about $1,500 generally throughout the 2014 trim levels, which include extra functions over the 2013. Base prices begins at $30,075 for a base four-cylinder LE with location, while volume-seller XLE designs with all-wheel drive are $38,360 and also include natural leather seating with warmed pole positions, navigating, three-zone climate control, clever keyless entrance, second-row sunshades as well as more. Pricing for the XLE is extremely competitive to three-row midsize SUVs like the Honda Pilot, Ford Traveler and even the Hyundai Santa Fe.

The 2013 Highlander was absolutely a midpack three-row SUV, hanging back in vital areas like indoor top quality, freight area and technology. Rest assured, if you're a Highlander proprietor planning to upgrade-- as long as you're unconcerned concerning ride quality-- the 2014 is not just a compelling upgrade, but additionally worthwhile of cross-shopping the sector's finest.

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