Aug
18
2016 Toyota Highlander

Toyota’s midsize Highlander starts at less than $31,500 with a 4-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive, but our test V6-powered XLE with all-wheel drive and about $2300 in options stickered for roughly 10 grand more.

Consumer Guide Automotive2016 Toyota Highlander XLE AWD

Class: Midsize Crossover

Miles Driven: 365

Fuel Used: 20.6 gallons

CG Report Card
Big & Tall comfort ratings are for front seats only. "Big" rating based on male tester weighing approximately 350 pounds, "Tall" rating based on 6'6"-tall male tester.
Room and ComfortA
Power and PerformanceA
Fit and FinishB
Fuel EconomyC
ValueB
Report-card grades are derived from a consensus of test-driver evaluations. All grades are versus other vehicles in the same class. Value grade is for specific trim level evaluated, and may not reflect Consumer Guide's impressions of the entire model lineup.
Big & Tall Comfort
Big GuyA
Tall GuyA

Real-world fuel economy: 17.8 mpg

Driving mix: 75% city, 25% highway

EPA-estimated fuel economy: 18/24/20 (city/highway/combined)

Base price: $38,275 (not including $900 destination charge)

Options on test car: Rear-seat BluRay DVD entertainment system ($1810), 2nd-row captain’s chairs ($275), floor and cargo mats ($225)

Price as tested: $41,485

 

Quick Hits

The great: Seating for up to eight, interior storage

The good: Driving dynamics, separate-opening back window

The not so good: It’s a stretch to reach some right-side infotainment controls

Check out Consumer Guide’s Midsize Crossover Best Buys

 

2016 Toyota Highlander

Highlander is nicely finished in XLE trim, and plenty roomy, even for larger and taller occupants.

Unusual features of the Highlander include great interior storage — including a wide under-dash tray — a separate-opening back window in the hatch (easier to open than the whole hatch, and handy for carrying long items), and a 3-place 3rd-row seat that allows up to 8-passenger capacity. It’s also the only vehicle in the midsize-crossover class to offer a hybrid version. Our test vehicle was equipped with a rear-seat entertainment system that included a BluRay DVD player — another unusual feature. One of Highlander’s very few demerits is that some controls on the right side of the infotainment system are out of easy reach for the driver.

2016 Toyota Highlander

Separate-opening rear glass is a handy feature, and rare among contemporary crossovers. Three smaller occupants will fit in Highlander’s 3rd row, which is reasonably simple to access.

 

Quick Spin: 2015 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited

 

CG Says:

Although many rivals have been blessed with redesigns since the Highlander received its latest back in 2014, Toyota’s midsize SUV still holds its own in this very popular segment. Good V6 driving dynamics, frugal 4-cylinder and (even more frugal) hybrid versions, ample interior storage, and seating for up to eight are its strongest selling points, along with the fact it exhibits very few weaknesses.

2016 Toyota Highlander

The Highlander lineup spans seven trim levels. From least- to most-expensive, those models are LE, LE Plus, XLE, Limited, Limited Platinum, Hybrid Limited, and Hybrid Limited Platinum.

Test Drive: 2016 Honda Pilot Elite

 

 

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