There are two basic engines offered in the 2020 Toyota Highlander and each can be matched to either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive setups. The base engine is a 3.5L V6 making 295 horsepower, sent to the front, or to all-four wheels via an 8-speed automatic transmission. The optional, hybrid engine is a 2.5L 4-cylinder, aided by two electric motors for a total of 243 horsepower. In 2WD form, Toyota estimates around 36 mpg in combined city and highway driving for the Highlander hybrid, an astounding number for an SUV capable of transporting up to eight people.
There are five basic trim levels for the Highlander: L, LE, XLE, Limited and Platinum, though Hybrid versions of the Highlander only come in LE and above trims.
The standard L trim is relatively well equipped though, including items such as a smart key, heated and powered outside mirrors, LED headlights and taillights, 18-inch alloy wheels, power windows and door locks, three-zone climate control, an 8-way power adjustable driver's seat, dynamic radar cruise control, lane departure alert with steering assist, four USB ports, two 12v outlets and an 8-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
LE trims add a powered liftgate, blind spot warning indicators in the side mirrors, LED fog lights, a leather trimmed shift knob, a leather trimmed steering wheel and HD radio.
The XLE comes with machine finished alloy wheels, a power sliding moonroof, roof rails, wireless charging for mobile devices, an auto-dimming rearview mirror with a built in garage door opener, SofTex trimmed seats with heating for the front row and second row captain's chairs.
The Highlander Limited adds to the XLE with puddle lamps projected from the side mirrors, projector beam headlights, high output LED fog lamps, 20-inch wheels, a chrome grille surround, leather trimmed seats, a heated steering wheel, a 120V outlet, ambient interior lighting, an 11-speaker JBL premium sound system and front and rear parking assist systems.
At the top of the line is the Platinum trim. Standout features include adaptive front headlights, rain-sensing wipers, 20-inch alloy wheels, a panoramic moonroof with one-touch operation, a digital rearview mirror, heated second row seats, a 10-inch color head-up display, a Bird's Eye View Camera and a 12.3-inch touchscreen in the dashboard.
Toyota's Safety Sense 2.0 comes standard on all Highlanders. The suite of electronic aids and sensors should be able to both decrease the likelihood of an accident, as well as lessen the severity of any accidents should they occur. Features in Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 include a Pre-Collision system, Lane Departure Alert, Road Sign Assist, Lane Tracing Assist, Automatic High Beams and Dynamic Radar Cruise Control.
Spacious And Quiet Interior
Available Hybrid Drivetrain
Seating For Up To Eight People
Available All-wheel Drive
Powerful V6 Engine
The Toyota Highlander is all new for the 2020 model year, with sporty new styling and a ton of both safety and convenience technology built in. The hybrid model returns, with Toyota now claiming that the Highlander Hybrid has the best fuel economy in its class. Toyota has also been trying to standardize much of their safety tech across their entire range, with the Highlander benefitting from that change as Toyota's Safety Sense 2.0 comes on all Highlanders sold in 2020. In addition, Android Auto is now standard on the vehicle.
The Toyota Highlander is a three-row, mid-sized crossover SUV competing with vehicles such as the Honda Pilot, the Nissan Pathfinder and the Mazda CX-9. The Toyota Highlander is slightly more expensive than many of its rivals, but in return it offers a bit more comfort and the kind of legendary reliability that Toyota built its reputation on. The Highlander also offers a combination of both power and fuel economy that its rivals can't match, with more horsepower than the Honda, Nissan or Mazda while bettering all of them in fuel economy while driving on the highway.