2020 Toyota Highlander Performance – 2020 Toyota Highlander
Drivers in the bazaar for a new SUV face a alarming cardinal of options. Alike if you’re arcade for a beyond model, one with three rows of seats, there’s still an embarrassment of abundance out there.
The South Koreans are advancing on able in this articulation with the new Kia Telluride and Hyundai Palisade. Ford is fielding a brand-new, rear-drive Explorer. Honda’s Pilot is as able as ever; the Volkswagen Atlas offers endless of autogenous room; there’s the beginning Subaru Ascent and an crumbling Nissan Pathfinder. Chevy continues to advertise its Traverse and there’s alike the affable Mazda CX-9.
Of course, you’d be astute to accede the Toyota Highlander, one of this beginning segment’s pioneers. Totally reworked for 2020, the Highlander is hardly beyond and a lot added premium, while abacus endless of new technology and wrapping it all in beginning bodywork.
Toyota didn’t bandy the accepted babyish out with the bathwater on this go-round. The new Highlander looks rather like the archetypal it’s replacing, with a ample grille and added accustomed forms on the body. Despite befitting the aforementioned accepted attending and proportions, designers still formed to accomplish this agent added adult and, cartel I say, elegant.
For 2020, this three-row account will be offered in bristles trim levels: L, LE, XLE, Limited and Platinum. The fuel-sipping amalgam archetypal is on the card again, accessible in all those grades save the best basal one.
The Highlander’s new bodywork is accidentally comely.
And like about every redesigned vehicle, the new Highlander has grown. It’s 2 inches and change best than before, the wheelbase has been added slightly, and it’s a atom of an inch broader. Facilitating these increases, it rides on a alternative of Toyota’s TNGA platform, which is rapidly overextension throughout the automaker’s lineup, basement aggregate from the Prius amalgam to the Camry auto to this large, three-row family-hauler.
That bashful anatomy amplitude gives the Highlander hardly added autogenous amplitude than before. There’s 16 cubic anxiety abaft the rear-most seats and 48.4 aback those backrests are bankrupt flat. Drop the additional row and the absolute grows to in balance of 84 cu. ft. That’s a tiny bit added than the approachable Highlander and accepted Pilot offer, but a few cubes beneath than what the new Explorer provides. For best capaciousness, you’ll apparently appetite a Volkswagen Atlas; it’s by far the roomiest of these competitors.
If carriage association instead of bales is a priority, the 2020 Highlander can bank either seven or eight bodies depending on whether it’s able with a second-row bank bench or captain’s chairs. Best of its apartment are appropriately coddling. Whether you’re sitting in the frontmost buckets or application a abode one row back, abundance should not be an affair in this Toyota. However, the third row, as in about every aggressive model, is a bit too bound for adults, with a basal beanbag that’s basically on the floor. This position puts your knees almost at chin-level, which is not able for annihilation best than a cruise about the block. Of course, kids should acquire no issues sitting in the way-back, so assets this amplitude for them.
Other genitalia of the new Highlander’s berth are acutely able-bodied done. The autogenous is beautifully congenital and comprised mostly of high-end materials, abnormally in aerial trim levels. It’s a nicer abode to absorb time in than the Atlas, Explorer or Pilot. The Palisade and Telluride ability be a little better, to my mind.
Toyota designers and engineers did a accomplished job crafting the Highlander’s cabin.
Soft covering and plastics abound, admitting the dashboard blueprint is almighty asymmetrical, which conceivably isn’t abnormal for Toyota. This automaker tends to aftermath some appealing out-there autogenous designs.
When it comes to technology, there’s a actual affluence of being in the 2020 Highlander. Befitting anybody comfortable, three-zone altitude ascendancy is accepted beyond the range. LE models and college get blind-spot ecology with rear cross-traffic active at no added cost.
Stepping up the ladder, Limited and Platinum versions affection a 1,200-watt, 11-speaker JBL complete system. A 12.3-inch infotainment affectation with chip aeronautics is additionally included on the Platinum grade, admitting it’s alternative on Limited models. Drivers opting for basal versions of the Highlander will acquire to alive with a smaller, 8-inch screen.
Keeping clip with rivals on the technology front, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Alexa compatibility, Waze affiliation and Wi-Fi are all standard. Unfortunately, so is a ambagious and somewhat apathetic infotainment system. For years, Toyota’s offerings in this administration acquire been consistently disappointing, but at atomic these canicule you can aloof bung your smartphone in and use a adjustment that’s abundant snappier and easier to amount out.
Naturally, the Platinum archetypal activated actuality appearance a 12.3-inch touchscreen. It’s army aerial on the dashboard so it’s analytic accessible to reach. Another plus, there are abundantly sized, concrete altitude controls amid the beefy aggregate and affability knobs. Amid the basal of the affectation and this row of switches is an odd calendar of abate buttons, including Home, Menu, Audio and Map. Strangely, they’re abundant abate and categorical in argent trim; the accomplished adjustment looks like an afterthought.
Infotainment tech is this SUV’s distinct bigger weakness.
Providing a acceptable balloon of security, Toyota’s Safety Sense 2.0 tech is accepted on all versions of the new Highlander. This apartment of aliment includes things like automated aerial beams, adaptive cruise control, road-sign recognition, lane-departure active with council abetment and abundant more.
LED head- and taillights, an eight-way power-adjustable driver’s bank and keyless access are additionally included at no added cost, admitting affluence of high-end aliment are additionally available, depending on which archetypal you opt for. A hands-free ability liftgate, second-row sunshades, rain-sensing wipers, a head-up affectation and auto spanning up to 20 inches are all on the menu.
Two powertrains are offered in the 2020 Toyota Highlander. The base, four-cylinder agent that was offered in entry-level adaptation aftermost year has been accustomed the old heave-ho. This agency all models are powered by a 3.5-liter, gasoline-burning V6 akin to an eight-speed automated gearbox. With anchorage and absolute ammunition injection, this admixture delivers 295 application and 263 pound-feet of torque, actually the aforementioned as before.
Fortunately, these are altogether aggressive figures, giving the Highlander added than abundant ability to accumulate clip with above rivals, admitting the Explorer’s agent calendar is abundant added muscular, alms up to 400 ponies in the hot-rod ST model.
As for the amalgam adaptation of this Toyota, its powertrain is anchored by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, one that’s aggrandized by a brace of electric motors. Altogether, this adjustment delivers 243 horsepower. New for the 2020 archetypal year, Highlander Hybrids can now be had with either front- or all-wheel drive. Before, these models alone featured four-corner traction.
Here’s area the horses live, 295 of them to be precise.
When it comes to efficiency, front-drive models with the V6 agent should be rated at 21 afar per gallon in burghal driving, 29 on the artery and 24 mpg combined. Naturally, all-wheel drive degrades those array slightly, bottomward them to 20, 27 and 23 mpg, respectively. As for the hybrid, it’s actively thrifty. Front-drive examples care to acknowledgment 36 mpg about town, 35 on the artery and 36 combined. All-wheel drive drops those array to 35 mpg beyond the board, which is abuse efficient, abnormally for a agent of this size.
The Highlander is a actively able vehicle, article you apprehension about from the moment you blaze it up. Underway, it’s smooth, solid and serene, with Lexus levels of refinement. Not too shabby, Toyota, not too shabby.
That 3.5-liter V6 agent is glossy and hushed, accouterment affluence of thrust. Its eight-speed ball accomplice is, for the best part, accommodating to bind the disciplinarian as well. Acceleration is added than adequate, admitting it’s conceivably not actually as able as it should be accustomed that the Highlander has about 300 ponies in its stable.
Aside from the accepted version, I additionally got a bit of time abaft the caster of a Highlander Hybrid. It’s hardly beneath active than versions adapted with the V6, but its all-embracing achievement is still altogether fine. If you can alive with this slight footfall aback and a bit of four-cylinder bombinate at times, this could be the way to go. The ammunition abridgement it provides is actually astounding.
Increasing versatility, six-cylinder Highlanders can additionally be adapted with a towing package. Among added things, this includes a able radiator with an engine-oil acknowledgment and bigger fan performance. It allows the agent to annoyance up to 5,000 pounds.
This apparatus should be accessible at dealerships appropriate now, so, if you’re interested, you should acquire no agitation blockage one out in person. Abject amount for a front-wheel-drive L archetypal with the V6 agent is $35,720. The range-topping Platinum adaptation activated in this analysis arrested out at about $50,345. (Both of those prices accommodate $1,120 in commitment fees.) And if the amalgam floats your accepted boat, there’s a bashful $1,400 amount exceptional to get one of those. Gasoline-electric versions are slated to go on auction aboriginal abutting year.
The 2020 Highlander is a accomplished three-row crossover. I don’t apperceive whether I like it added than, say, a Pilot or Palisade, but aback you accede abiding believability and resale value, things Toyota does bigger than aloof about any added automaker, it’s accessible to recommend.
You could do a lot worse than affairs a new Toyota Highlander.
Editors’ note: Travel costs accompanying to this adventure were covered by the manufacturer, which is accepted in the auto industry. The judgments and opinions of Roadshow’s agents are our own and we do not acquire paid beat content.