2018 Toyota Highlander

#10
in Suvs
2018 MODEL
$31,030 - $46,660 See Inventory Prices

8.1

Overall Rating

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2018 Toyota Highlander Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

Ever since its release in 2001, the Toyota Highlander has been one of the most popular SUV for families seeking a safe, secure, and comfortable 8 seater. And after being redesigned in 2017, the 2018 Toyota Highlander is ready to take on rivals like the Honda Pilot and Nissan Pathfinder. The Highlander is a solid mid-pack choice because of its upscale interior, good V6 engine power, and comfortable ride.

The 2018 Highlander doesn't stand out in any one dimension, but still provides a comfortable overall experience. But some unintuitive features and a lower safety score than some rivals pull the Highlander back from being higher in the SUV hierarchy.

See detailed review »

Pros

Ample cargo space

Satisfactory off-road capabilities

Efficient hybrid available

Assuring resale and repair history

Cons

Unneeded 4 cylinder base model

Confusing infotainment system

Unsatisfactory brake feel

Body roll

What's New?

No major changes


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$31030

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

8

top speed

115 mph

drivetrain

FWD

engine type

displacement

163 cu. in.

horsepower

185 hp @ 5800 rpm

torque

184 lb.-ft. @ 4200 rpm

transmission

6-speed automatic

chassis

brake rotors (f/r)

12.2 in. ventilated front disc/12.9 in. solid disc brakes

dimensions

wheelbase

109.8 in.

length

192.5 in.

width

75.8 in.

height

68.1 in.

curb weight

4134 lbs.

ground clearance

8 in.

capacity

passenger volume

144.9 cu ft.

cargo volume

13.8 cu ft.

towing capacity

1500 lbs.

payload capacity

1455 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

10.2 sec.

standing ¼-mile

17.8 sec.

braking (70-0 mph)

181 ft.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

20/22/24 mpg

highway range

460.8 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

3 years/36000 miles

drivetrain warranty

5 years/60000 miles

corrosion warranty

5 years/unlimited

roadside assistance

No


Pictures & Videos


Styles

 2018 Toyota Highlander in blizzard pearl color  2018 Toyota Highlander in Celestial Silver Metallic color  2018 Toyota Highlander in Salsa Red Pearl color  2018 Toyota Highlander in Predawn Grey Mica color  2018 Toyota Highlander in Midnight Black Metallic color
blizzard pearl

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

8.1

Engine

7.9

Fuel Economy

7.1

Interior

7.8

Exterior

7.9

Safety

8.6

8.1

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2018 Toyota Highlander LE

LE

power
295 hp @ 6600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
23 combined

$31,030 - $34,540


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
LE 4dr SUV (2.7L 4cyl 6A) Starting at $31,030 MSRP (20/22/24) 185 hp @ 5800 rpm, 2.7 L, I4, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
6-speed automatic front wheel drive 8
LE 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $33,080 MSRP (20/23/27) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic front wheel drive 8
LE 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $34,540 MSRP (19/22/26) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic all wheel drive 8

 2018 Toyota Highlander LE Plus

LE Plus

power
295 hp @ 6600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
23 combined

$35,460 - $36,920


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
LE Plus 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $35,460 MSRP (21/23/27) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic front wheel drive 8
LE Plus 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $36,920 MSRP (20/23/27) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic all wheel drive 8

 2018 Toyota Highlander XLE

XLE

power
295 hp @ 6600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
23 combined

$38,920 - $40,380


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
XLE 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $38,920 MSRP (21/23/27) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic front wheel drive 7
XLE 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $40,380 MSRP (20/22/26) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic all wheel drive 7

 2018 Toyota Highlander SE

SE

power
295 hp @ 6600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
23 combined

$40,090 - $41,550


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SE 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $40,090 MSRP (21/23/27) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic front wheel drive 7
SE 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $41,550 MSRP (20/22/26) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic all wheel drive 7

 2018 Toyota Highlander Limited

Limited

power
295 hp @ 6600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
23 combined

$42,080 - $43,540


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Limited 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $42,080 MSRP (21/23/27) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic front wheel drive 7
Limited 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $43,540 MSRP (20/22/26) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic all wheel drive 7

 2018 Toyota Highlander Limited Platinum

Limited Platinum

power
295 hp @ 6600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
23 combined

$45,200 - $46,660


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Limited Platinum 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $45,200 MSRP (21/23/27) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic front wheel drive 7
Limited Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 8A) Starting at $46,660 MSRP (20/22/26) 295 hp @ 6600 rpm, 3.5 L, V6, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
8-speed automatic all wheel drive 7

Top Toyota Cars

2017 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV
8.4/10

Engine: 194 hp @ 5700 rpm, 2.5 L I4

MPG: 32 combined

2018 Toyota Tacoma TRD Double Cab
8.8/10

Engine: 278 hp @ 6000 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 18 combined

2017 Toyota Camry hybrid Sedan
9.0/10

Engine: 200 hp @ 5700 rpm, 2.5 L I4

MPG: 40 combined

2019 Toyota Avalon hybrid Sedan
8.2/10

Engine: 215 hp @ 5700 rpm, 2.5 L I-4

MPG: 44 combined

2018 Toyota Highlander hybrid SUV
8.5/10

Engine: 231 hp @ 5800 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 29 combined

2017 Toyota Highlander hybrid SUV
9.3/10

Engine: 306 hp @ 5800 rpm, 3.5 L V6

MPG: 29 combined

2017 Toyota Avalon hybrid Sedan
8.7/10

Engine: 200 hp @ 5700 rpm, 2.5 L I4

MPG: 40 combined

Expert Review


CARHP Editorial September 24, 2018

8.1

Overall Rating


The base model starts at $ 31,030 and houses a 2.7 liter four-cylinder engine that generates 185 hp and 184 lb.-ft. of torque. All other trims have a 3.5 liter V-6 providing 295 hp and 263 lb.-ft. of torque. The top trim costs about $ 43,500. The I-4 is mated to a 6 speed automatic and the V6 is paired to an 8 speed automatic transmission. The 2018 Toyota Highlander is also available as a hybrid, with a 3.5-liter V-6 with three electric motors, a CVT and a nickel metal hydride battery for a total output of 306 hp.


8.1/10
Features

 

7.9/10
Engine

 

7.1/10
Fuel Economy

 

7.8/10
Interior

 

7.9/10
Exterior

 

8.6/10
Safety

 
 
 

2018 Toyota Highlander Features

8.1/10

The 2018 Toyota Highlander is available in 5 trim levels: LE, LE Plus, XLE, SE and Limited. The limited variant is the most expensive and feature filled amongst the trims. For those who strive for a little extra, a ‘Limited Platinum’ level is available over the Limited variant. The Limited Platinum adds panoramic moon roof, a heated steering wheel, heated second-row seats, front parking sensors, and a surround-view camera.

Trims LE LE Plus XLE SE Limited
MSRP (AWD) N/A $34,540 $36,920 $40,380 $41,550
Hybrid Engine Gas/Electric V-6 3.5 L/211 N/A Gas/Electric V-6 3.5 L/211 N/A Gas/Electric V-6 3.5 L/211
Hybrid MSRP $36,670 N/A $41,730 N/A $45,160
Features 18-inch alloy wheels All Features of LE : All features of LE Plus : All features of XLE : All features of XLE :
  heated mirrors Height-adjustable power liftgate Sunroof LED running lights LED running lights
  rear privacy glass flip-up rear window roof rails sport-themed styling elements and suspension tuning different 19-inch wheels
  automatic high beams tri-zone automatic climate control keyless entry and ignition 19-inch wheels rear parking sensors
  adaptive cruise control power-adjustable driver seat blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert systems sporty interior trim rear cargo cover
  lane departure intervention leather-wrapped steering wheel leather upholstery (first and second rows)   heated and ventilated front seats
  forward collision mitigation with higher-resolution 8-inch touchscreen simulated leather third-row upholstery   driver-seat memory settings
  automatic emergency braking satellite and HD radio heated front seats   heated second-row captain’s chairs
  rearview camera   power-adjustable passenger seat   12-speaker JBL audio system
  rear air conditioning   auto-dimming rearview mirror    
  height adjustable driver seat   110-volt power outlet    
  5 USB ports   Driver Easy Speak    
  6.1-inch touchscreen   navigation system    
  Bluetooth        
  Six-speaker sound system with a CD player        

Our Recommendation

For those looking for the best features in a reasonable price, the XLE trim is the trim to go for. It adds more comfort features like navigation, leather, and heated front seats and 8-inch touch screen, tri-zone automatic climate control, satellite radio, HD Radio, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert systems, and keyless ignition and entry.

If fuel economy and a greener vehicle are your thing, then Highlander’s hybrid versions are your best bet. The hybrid version uses a 3.5 Liter Gas/Electric V6 engine and is available in the LE, XLE, Limited, and Limited Platinum trims. The fuel economy goes as high as 30 / 28 in city / highway, and the V6 engine generates a powerful 306hp at 5800 rpm.

2018 Toyota Highlander Engine

7.9/10

Engine and Transmission

Out of the 6 trim levels available for the 2018 Toyota Highlander, the base LE version is available in a 2.7 Liter Inline 4 engine, which can be upgraded to a 3.5 Liter V6 engine. The V6 is standard in all the other trims. The base engine generates 185 BHP and 184 pound-feet of torque. The bigger V6 engine is able to generate 295 BHP and 263 pound-feet of torque.

  Toyota Highlander Honda Pilot 4Runner Ford Explorer
Engine Regular Unleaded V-6 3.5 L/211 Regular Unleaded V-6 3.5 L/212 Regular Unleaded V-6 4.0 L/241 Regular Unleaded V-6 3.5 L/213
MSRP $ 30,202 $ 32,545 $ 34,410 $ 31,990
BHP 295 @ 6600 280 @ 6000 270 @ 5600 290 @ 6500
Torque 263 @ 4700 262 @ 4700 278 @ 4400 255 @ 4000

As one would expect, the base inline engine struggles to keep up when the vehicle is weighed down by passengers and/or cargo. The V6 also picks up slowly in the start, but flies smoothly thereon after.

The 2018 Highlander is on the cheaper side when it comes to mid-size SUVs. Its powerful V6 is able to generate more power than most of the competitors. Ford Explorer plays a close second to Highlander, with less power from the engine, but a little more cost than Highlander.

The base engine’s 185 horses haven’t kept up with the Highlander’s growing dimensions. Trust us, if you carry more than two people, need power for passing and merging or pull a small trailer, the V6 is the engine you’ll want (and need)” – KBB

Acceleration

Models Toyota Highlander Honda Pilot Toyota 4Runner Ford Explorer
0 – 60 MPH 7.1 seconds 6.5 seconds 8.1 seconds 7 seconds
Quarter Mile 15.2 seconds 15.2 seconds 16.1 seconds 15.6 seconds

The Highlander had set one of the most impressive quarter mile numbers in 2014, and the 2018 Toyota Highlander aims to do even better. The V6 engine of 2018’s Highlander takes a second to rev up after flooring the pedal, but then it picks up fast and reaches the quarter-mile mark in the fastest time in its class.

Honda Pilot does well to go from 0 – 60 MPH, beating Highlander by half a second. But Highlander catches up with Pilot on the quarter mile and both finish at 15.2 seconds.

Handling and Ride

Highlander’s steering is good when you remember the fact that it is a 4,370 pound SUV. The overall driving is not exceptional. There is little feel and some noticeable body lean while taking corners but still provides reassuring feedback.

The total driving experience is comfortable. Highlander glides smoothly over most surfaces, and the cabin is quiet even at high speeds. And with a turning radius of 5.9 m combined with the various driver guidance tools, the Highlander makes parking a piece of cake.

Braking

Toyota Highlander comes equipped with a 12.9 inch rotor in the front and 12.2 inch rotor in the rear. The average distance to come at standstill is acceptable.

  Toyota Highlander Honda Pilot Toyota 4Runner Ford Explorer
70 – 0 MPH 181 Feet 182 Feet 183 Feet 177 Feet
Brake Rotor – Front (in) 12.9 12.6 13.3 12.8
Brake Rotor – Rear (in) 12.2 13 12.3 12.8

The brake pedal of the new Highlander could use some tuning, as it feels loose and vague at times. But the pedal’s feel has nothing to do with the brake’s effectiveness. Highlander displays impressive numbers for its class in the brake tests. It has one of the least panics – stop distance and a good fade resistance.

Towing Capacity

SUVs are capable of towing a good amount of load, but Highlander is not very capable of towing even a decent amount of it. The Highlander can tow 1500lbs of load and it is not as good as its competitors can offer.

Toyota Highlander Honda Pilot Toyota 4Runner Ford Explorer
1,500 – 5,000 pounds 3,500 – 5,000 pounds 5,000 pounds

2,000 – 5,000 pounds

2018 Toyota Highlander Fuel Economy

7.1/10

The base I-4 engine of 2018 Toyota Highlander gives 20/24 MPG in city/highway. The highway mileage gets better with the V6 engine, increasing to 27 MPG. Although these numbers are higher than some key competitors, they are about average for this class.

Model Toyota Highlander Honda Pilot Toyota 4Runner Ford Explorer
MPG (City) 20 19 17 17
MPG (Highway) 27 27 21 24
MPG (Combined) 23.15 22.6 18.8 20.15

For better fuel economy, Highlander has hybrid versions with AWD. The hybrids can earn almost 29/27 MPG in city/highway. The hybrids are so economic that they make up for their price difference in about 7 years.

2018 Toyota Highlander Interior

7.8/10

Seating and Comfort

The interior of Toyota Highlander is one of its strong points. They are mostly unchanged from the last year’s model, with the addition of more USB ports, better seat upholstery, and a few other upgrades. The dashboard is wide and accommodating for your wallets, smartphones, keys, etc. The center console opens up to provide a huge bin to keep anything too big for the shelf.

Model

Toyota Highlander

Ford Exlporer

Honda Pilot

Toyota 4Runner

Passenger capacity

8

7

8

6

Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

40.7/59.3/44.2

41.4/61.5/42.9

40.4/61.5/41.3

40.3/NA/41.0

Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

39.9/59.6/38.4

40.6/61.0/39.5

39.4/61.0/36.8

NA/58.7/39.7

Third (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

35.9/55.0/27.7

37.8/50.8/32.0

37.8/57.6/33.20

NA

The seats are roomy and comfortable. The many options for adjustments and the heated leather front seats provide for a comfortable travel. The front and the second-row seats are roomy, while the third-row seats are best suited for children. The second-row seats feel a bit firmer, but slide and recline to provide tailor-made experience for every individual.

For the little travelers, there are two complete sets of LATCH anchors in the second row. The middle seat of both rear rows offers an upper anchor. The latch system is quite easy to use than most of the competitors.

The Highlander’s cabin is one of the quietest in its class. Even at high speeds and blowing winds, there is barely a sound inside.

Heated leather front seats are as comfy as furniture and offer tons of adjustment, including extendable thigh support. The second-row seats are firmer, but they slide and recline in a wide range. The third row is merely acceptable; certain competitors do better” – Edmunds

Interior Features

Highlander is filled to the brim with a standard as well as optional features. Some of the standard features include Bluetooth, five USB ports, voice recognition, a rearview camera, a 6.1-inch touch-screen infotainment system, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, automatic high beams, and adaptive cruise control.

The optional features include tri-zone automatic climate control, satellite radio, HD Radio, smartphone-linked navigation, an 8-inch touch screen, a moonroof, proximity key entry, push-button start, a 120-volt outlet, Driver Easy Speak, integrated navigation, the Entune app suite, a 12-speaker JBL audio system, a panoramic moonroof, front parking sensors, rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and a surround-view camera.

Infotainment

The 2018 Toyota Highlander comes standard with a 6.1-inch touch-screen infotainment system. This can be upgraded to an 8-inch screen. Although the system is up-to-date in almost all aspects, the absence of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto remain to be a deal breaker for many people.

The learning curve for Highlander’s infotainment system may prove to be a bit steep for some, and the knobs and buttons also feel a little out of reach while driving. Another problem is the absence of a ‘Nav’ button for direct opening of the navigation app.

The entertainment isn’t limited to the front seats. The rear seats get a Blu-Ray Disc entertainment system with a 9-inch display screen which comes with RCA jacks, remote, and two wireless headphones.

Cargo

The numbers for Highlander’s cargo capacity align perfectly with the expected numbers for this class. There is an option of a power liftgate and a window on the cargo hatch that can open separately from the rest of the tailgate.

Model

Toyota Highlander

Ford Exlporer

Honda Pilot Toyota 4Runner

Cargo Volume to seats 1 (ft.3)

83.7

80.7

116.3

79.0

Cargo Volume to seats 2 (ft.3)

42.3

43.8

70.3

41.7

Cargo Volume to seats 3 (ft.3)

13.8

21.0

24.4

12.8

The Ford Explorer does better in the cargo aspect. It provides more space behind the third row. Otherwise, the 2018 Toyota Highlander provides decent cargo space.

2018 Toyota Highlander Exterior

7.9/10

Dimension & Weight

One of the distinctive features of Highlander is the dynamic front grille and expressive headlights. This gives Highlander’s front fascia a solid and bold impression. The grille is tailored for each trim, which provides for a custom look to match your style.

Model Toyota Highlander Honda Pilot Toyota 4Runner Ford Explorer
Curb Weight (lbs.) 4370 4054 4675 4443
Length (in) 192.5 194.5 190.2 198.3
Width (in) 75.8 78.6 75.8 78.9
Height (in) 68.1 69.8 71.5 70
Wheelbase (in) 109.8 111 109.8 112.8
Ground Clearance (in) 8 7.3 9 7.8
Track Width – F/R (in) 64.4 / 64.2 66.3 / 66.3 63.2 / 63.2 67 / 67

The SE grade of Highlander has a distinctive gloss-black grille and headlights with black housings. And if that wasn’t enough, SE is equipped with 19 inch multi spoke alloy wheels to emphasize on the sporty look.

The lights are another feature that adds to Highlander’s expressive looks. They now feature integrated Daytime Running Lights (DRL). The SE trim comes with dark black headlights, and the Limited Platinum trim has a chrome headlight housing.

Another exciting feature are the alloys in SE and Limited Platinum. SE sports 19 inch multi spoke wheels with a machined finish, while Limited Platinum adds 5 spoke Dark Chromtec alloy wheels.

“Highlander’s grille is huge, following the big-grille trend that’s been stylish for the past few years. Yet it emphasizes the already blunt nose of this midsize SUV, with different models getting different trims, seeming to shrink the headlights in the process. The rest of the Highlander isn’t as dramatic, although the sporty Highlander SE features a blackout trim package that tones down the grille and ultimately looks pretty good” – KBB

2018 Toyota Highlander Safety

8.6/10

Although some rivals surpass Highlander’s score in safety, Toyota remains as an industry leader when it comes to providing driver’s assistance techs. Highlander gets many such features, like the forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and pedestrian detection, rearview camera, lane-departure warning, lane keep assist, automatic high beams, and adaptive cruise control.

Some optional features include front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and a surround-view monitor. Other safety features include.

  • Passenger Air Bag    
  • Front Head Air Bag  
  • Driver Side Airbag 
  • Rear Head Air Bag
  • Front Side Air Bag      
  • 4-Wheel Disc Brakes    
  • Brake Assist
  • Traction Control  
  • Daytime Running Lights    
  • Child Safety Locks  
  • Lane Keeping Assist
  • Electronic Stability Control    
  • Lane Departure Warning    
  • Integrated Turn Signal Mirrors
NHTSA Ratings

Overall Frontal Crash Rating

4 Star

Frontal Crash Rating Driver Side

4 Star

Frontal Crash Rating Passenger Side

5 Star

Overall Side Crash Rating

5 Star

Combined Side Barrier and Pole Rating Front Seat

5 Star

Combined Side Barrier and Pole Rating Front Seat Rear Seat

5 Star

Side Barrier

5 Star

Side barrier Driver

5 Star

Side barrier Rear Passenger

5 Star

Overall Side Pole Star Rating

5 Star

Rollover Rating

4 Star


IIHS Ratings

Crashworthiness

Small overlap front driver side

Good

Small overlap front passenger side

Acceptable

Side

Good

Roof strength

Good

Head restraints & seats

Good

 

Crash Avoidance & Mitigation

Front Crash Prevention

Superior

Headlight

Acceptable

LATCH

Good

2018 Toyota Highlander Competition

Toyota Highlander vs Toyota 4Runner

Another strong performer in Toyota’s arsenal is the 4Runner. It is similar to Highlander in size but weighs almost 300 pounds more. The V6 is the standard engine for 4Runner.

Toyota 4Runner is predominantly an off-roader. It provides exceptional handling and control on uneven terrains, and the Highlander cannot beat it once the road ends. But in the city and highway, Highlander is clearly better. Highlander provides a better fuel economy along with a better-styled cabin. It also has Driver Easy Speak that enables the driver to better communicate with the passengers, which the 4Runner lacks.

Toyota Highlander vs Honda Pilot

Honda’s Pilot is one of Highlander’s toughest competitors. It surpasses Highlander in many aspects, with a spacious third-row seat, better safety scores, and a powerful V6 standard engine. The pilot also has a better handling and on-road control.

The only downside to all this is that these features come at a cost. Honda Pilot is reasonably more expensive than Highlander, and you would have to further spend some dough to add features like a touch-screen system and some additional safety features, which are standard for Highlander.

Toyota Highlander vs Ford Explorer

Ford’s Explorer is one of those competitors that are easily thwarted by Highlander. Although Explorer is a decent SUV with good performance, its shines less brightly when Highlander’s aura engulfs it. Explorer feels unimpressive inside, and the material feels cheap as compared to Highlander’s premium finishes.

Explorer has a wider range of engines to choose from, 3 to be precise. These engines range from being fuel efficient to powerful, but still, don’t match Highlander’s performance. Explorer is also large, which makes maneuvering a bit tougher.

2018 Toyota Highlander Final Verdict

The 2018 Toyota Highlander is a well-rounded SUV that does well in almost all aspects. It has a comfortable, high-end interior with many features as standard, which is available in other SUVs as optional. It is capable and powerful, as long as you don’t opt for the base inline 4 engine, which frankly, we don’t see the point too.

If you have certain criteria which act as a deal breaker for you, then you should probably take a look at other manufacturers, too. For example, if you are looking for a huge towing capacity, competitors like the Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee do pretty well as compared to the standard 5,000 pound limit of Highlander. If your main aim is to take your car off-road, then Toyota’s 4Runner proves much better on the uneven terrain. If cargo space is your priority, then Honda’s Pilot might just be the car for you.

Although there are competitors that surpass Highlander in one feature or two, the Highlander is a great all-rounder that provides comfort and luxury with power and utility. It displays a good balance absorbent ride, responsive handling, and generous interior space.