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2008 Toyota Highlander



  • ronnronn Posts: 398
    I am not the person you wrote back, but I had a wind whistle noise with mine as well, and it is the passenger outside mirror. It is where it is molded together.
  • motor2motor2 Posts: 3
    Have a 07 highlander limited hybrid, getting 26.8 mpg in mostly city driving thus far. Not bad I would say for a suv it's size. Don't have a sunroof :(
    Happy with the ride I would say (07 had the weird engine off/on effect at low speed...only time you can 'feel' it turn on). It is somewhat big enough, drive alone most times but it is nice to have space to put things in it when I want.

    Drove the 08 gas model, figure the hybrid cost that much more then the 07 model did so ruling that out as an option.

    Sort of like the larger size for the front seat drivers of the 08 model, at first I did not like the looks of the 08 models but now I do. Have the 'small' 3rd row seat on the 07 though not sure it is worth it (for me needs) to have the 3rd on an 08 model.

    So having said all of that what are your thoughts on the 08 gas model please:
    1. larger space inside for driver is nice though then again my 07 is 'small' enough to allow it very very easy to move around, park. could the 08 larger space inside make me feel it will be more to handle 'out' so far a parking/turning/etc?
    It did feel like a larger vechicle on the test drive though nice power

    2. would it be a mistake to forgo the 3rd row seating even though I really do not have a need for it now nor, I would think, in the future?
    Guess it would help on resale value to have it but did see the sport model without it does have a small cubbie under the floor to store stuff in. Then again that type of storeage space...not sure just how much it ever would be used really.

    3. rear a/c...not sure if the 2 row only models offer headliner a/c or just between the front seats rear a/c. Do owners of, I assume, the 3rd model enjoy the 'above head' a/c for 2nd and 3rd row seats?

    4. any must have options? I can live without nav, have a garmine portable unit, backup camera would be nice but think you need nav for that option. saw one with a sensor backup feature...not sure how useful that would be.

    thanks for any input and if you feel I would be 'nuts' to go from a 07 hihy to the 08 gas model feel free to advise on that point as well :)

    they are offering a .00184 money factor this month for 3yr (2,465 residual enhancement) or a 4y lease with $4,4140 residual enhancement so figured I would look into this option. currently I have a fixed rate 3.9/60 month on my 07 model.
  • Since you already have an 07, not sure if it makes sense to go to a newer car that soon, unless you are going to keep it and a new Highlander is an additional car.
    For myself, I feel that the new Highlanders were a big improvement over the older models. For a modest increase in size, they feel much roomier, and the new V-6 engine is ultra smooth and powerful. Gas mileage appears to be about equal to the older one, even with more power and weight.
    As to the seating..........I would be inclined to keep the 3rd row (and it will be hard to find one without it). There will be some additional storage room under, but I would guess for re-sale more people would want it. The nice thing is, when you are not using it, it does fold flat, so is not in the way. I purchased a "loaded" Limited, but I like many of the added features that others here want no part of: sunroof, heated seats, powerlift gate, navigation & bluetooth phone, and DVD entertainment system(for the grandchildren!). I also wanted the auto A/C system, both front and rear, and it works extremely well.
    Most of us on this forum love our new Highlanders...the way they drive, the "right size" (many of the competition are a full 10-12" longer), the pretty good mileage (I am getting a real world average of 18.8 after 4,000 miles, with a mix of city and hiway, and about 24 on freeway cruising), the very nice fit and finish of all detailing. I find it is very comfortable to drive, the seats are great, and controls close at hand. The second row seats have incredible leg room, and adjust front and back, and recline. The split second seat bothers some, but we will seldom ever put three adults there......3 kids can easily fit in there, and the removable insert actually works better than you would son uses it for his three daughters aged 7, 8, and 9 all the time. For 2 adults, the separate captains chairs seating with arm rest and consol works very well.
    Some here have complained about wind noise in their cars, but I have not had any experience with fact, I have not had anything to address since I bought mine in is running perfectly and is very quiet. It loves to cruise at 75-80 mph and seems to get it's best mileage at that speed. I have had 2 older Land Cruisers, and a Sequoia, and was ready for a smaller, more nimble, but still roomy car, that also got quite a bit better mileage...........the new Highlander is it, and I have not regretted buying it one bit....good luck!!
  • toyohh08toyohh08 Posts: 3
    hi there, any updates about the wind noise/whistle? what did the dealer say? solution? thanks!
  • I am seriously considering buying an '08 Highlander. Looking at these forums (which, by the way, are just great!), it appears that the navigation system is crippled and does not allow one to enter any commands while the vehicle is in motion. Could anyone comment on which specific features are disabled and whether there is an option to use voice commands to operate the nav system while driving?
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    I find the Navi very user friendly. NO you cannot manually enter commands on the screen while the wheels are moving but you can do it when stopped. Using the voice commands is a snap.

    Zoom IN / OUT
    'I'm hungry'
    Chinese Restaurants
    Suspend Guidance
    ..Enter Destination

    These and more can all be done on the fly. The EMERGENCY options on the touch screen are always active.

    If you go to test one either ask for someone who knows what the NAVI is about or take it yourself and play with it. Most sales people are threatened by it because even the thought of owning such a vehicle is so far beyond their horizon that they have no idea what a Navi does and why/how one might use it. Then there's the fear of technology too.
  • The reply already posted is quite right.....there are many commands that can be "voiced in" while driving, such as searching for something like a restaurant or gas station. But you cannot manually enter an address for example, and I think the reason is for liability and ultimately safety. I can just imagine someone driving, and trying to enter info on the screen....worse then using a cell phone! I believe most, if not all, new cars will have the same limitations. There used to be some sort of override codes you could enter to defeat these, but it appears that has been noticed and stopped.
    Others have commented on why you should never buy a built-in nav system...they prefer the portable units, but I find that a personal observation. With the Highlander nav, you get a nice, large screen, that also doubles as the rear view camera screen...something I really like and use all the time, and of course, it is nice and clean and built-in and there are no wires, etc.
    It takes a little while to master the different commands, but I enjoy mine, and would do it again if given a choice. I would also highly recomment the Blue Tooth phone really well and is very convenient, and also uses the large screen for access.
  • Thank you! As long as I can operate the basic functions of the nav system by voice while driving I don't mind the lack of a manual option. As a side note, I use voice dialing in my cell phone a LOT but it still remains somewhat of a hit-or-miss phenomenon. Perhaps it's because the software is trained to recognize an American accent (which I don't possess!). I would assume that a vehicle's electronics would be more sophisticated than a cell phone's and may deliver better recognition of a wide variety of voices. What has your experience been?
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Ahh but while you cannot manually enter the destination you can 'voice' it in while moving. Essentially I find very little use for the touch screen manual entries. Talking to it is easier, IMO.
  • My only voice recognition experience I have had is with the Blue Tooth on the Highlander. Once in a great while it will not properly recognize a name I have given it.....I just simply reject what it shows and say it again. I do think you need to speak clearly and in a decent volume, but not sure how it handles foreign accents.....maybe someone else has had experience or knowledge of that.........good you can see, there is a lot of help and Highlander experience on this site!!
  • Thanks fellas! I think I'll buy a Highlander after all! Now to start sending emails to all those dealers....
  • Before you get too far with trying to pair it, be absolutely sure that your phone is compatible with the Highlander Bluetooth..........When I bought my car and a new phone, I was warned by the dealer to carefully check the list of compatible phones....he said some won't work with that system. Their are lists that show compatibility, so I would check that first..............
  • slh54slh54 Posts: 6
    It doesn't appear your phone will pair with the Highlander Bluetooth. I have a Samsung SPH-M300, a phone I basically got for free. Nothing too fancy about it! Check the Letstalk website for phones available from your provider that will pair then see if the provider will swap one out for one that is able to be paired. It is worth it for the convenience of the hands-free system.
  • gymnbatgymnbat Posts: 9
    Some mileage updates...Now with just over 6000 miles on the vehicle...Highway trip about 80 miles
    I kept the speed at 65 mph cruise control and watched the mileage on my AWD limited stabilize at right around 25 mpg. Not bad..Very sensitive to hills.....At 70 mph + I end up at about 20-21 mpg.(past trips) I am very happy with the vehicle. As to the last post dealing with the letstalk website I found that website less than accurate. Check with your cell service provider... verizon;s website seemed to be more accurate on which phones work but I can not vouch for all the phones listed.
  • mtairyordgemtairyordge Posts: 144
    Where can you get a list of the voice commands that can be entered?
  • I just spied a HL Sport on a dealer lot with a factory-installed hitch! It's showing on the sticker as code DH, sticker price $659. Includes the receiver hitch and the harness plug. I loaded pics over on if anyone wants to see.

    I sure wish they'd had this when I got my HL in September.
  • texasestexases Posts: 7,762
    Is it possible to get a Limited with Nav but without the sunroof? My wife loves the Nav, but I don't want the sunroof.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Your delivery packet with the new vehicle should have come with a small thin booklet which is the Cliff Notes to the thicker Navi Manual. On the inside of the back cover are some of the available commands. Other commands like the smile-inducing 'I'm Hungry' are just Easter Eggs. You have to search and find them all.

    When I'm showing a new vehicle with the Navi in it I play around with it before even driving off. The 'I'm Hungry' command and 'Go Home' gets everyone's attention and from that time onward they're looking for ways to own it. Giving it my old work address in Lower Manhattan while on the fly 600 mi away in SE VA opens eyes too.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    At this time in its first year probably not. Also all of these are built in Japan so what's on the ship is what the dealers get. When production moves to Tupelo then dealers will be able to 'FRS' just about anything reasonable.
  • texasestexases Posts: 7,762
    "When production moves to Tupelo then dealers will be able to 'FRS' just about anything reasonable."
    OK - when's the switch?
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The plant has been under construction now for 6 months or so thus I'd estimate that full production begins in 12-18 months. The new Corolla plant in Ontario starts up this Fall so I'd guess that that Highlander plant starts up the following Fall.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706

    Mississippian's building Toyotas....


    Lots of new good paying jobs for more migrant workers, with good/decent work ethic, from Mexico...
  • techdudetechdude Posts: 87
    I got off the phone with a dealer and he let me know that the power lift gate is not an option on the Sport trim in the north east. I would have to go up to the Limited to get that option. He said its an option specific to only certain parts of the country. I guess Toyota thinks we're all giants up here. Anyone in the north east have this option installed on the Sport, or is this dealership blowing smoke?

  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    stupid unnecessary hate-filled comment that should be deleted
  • nimrod99nimrod99 Posts: 343
    I haven't figured out how to locate a particular restaurant - for example "Burger King" along the route guidance.
    All the nav does is find nearest fast food.
    Even stopped, it doesn't allow one to find a POI along the "route" or near "destination"

    I sure do miss my Garmin Street Pilot.
  • idnas71idnas71 Posts: 4
    Hello... I hope this posts in the 2008 Highlander forum. That was my intention, anyway.

    I guess this is really nitpicky, but I can't seem to locate the invoice prices for these two optional items on the 2008 Highlander (Sport, AWD). I have found them for every other option besides these two. (Wheel locks - $81 MSRP; and Carpet/Cargo Mats - $275 MSRP). Just trying to get all my numbers together for the best negotiations.

    The local dealership currently has a special of 10% off all 2008's on the lot, which seems like a great deal. But it still comes out to right about 3% over invoice. I figure I might be able to do just a little bit better if I have all the information to present.

    Thanks for the help! :shades: (Love these car smilies!)

    Edited to add: Would it be a fair argument that if I wasn't trading a car in for the dealership to mess with that they should give me an even better deal for the no-hassle factor?

    And a question about leasing. There seems to be good deals on leasing a Highlander for the month of April. However, I do not qualify for the very best rate with my 653 credit score. Is it fair to say that if you don't qualify for the very best lease rate (.00082), that looking at purchasing the car through a conventional loan is the smarter thing to do? It's a difference of about $60 per month between the best lease rate available and the one I am able to get (.00137). I plan to also ask about how the residual amount will change, but I haven't done that yet.

    I do think I might actually keep this car in the end, at least a lot longer than I usually keep cars (3 years). But my budget is limited and the best monthly payment is probably the way I will go. It just makes me wonder if I should try to just purchase the car rather than lease, especially since I don't qualify for the best lease rate.

    Thanks for any opinions or advice!
  • texasestexases Posts: 7,762
    If they're offering 10% off, there's more room, for sure. Offer invoice, leave, and see if they call.
  • idnas71idnas71 Posts: 4
    Hello, Texases... thank you for your input.

    What is the advantage to a dealership to only get paid exactly what they paid for the car? Is it an allocation thing, as in the more they sell the more they get allocated?
  • lucky_777lucky_777 Posts: 205
    Don't be fooled with 10% off, it is just a sales gimmick. Find out what the invoice is for a model and options you want and send e-mails to all Toyota dealers in 50 mile radius, see where you can find best deal. Don't be afraid to start a bidding war between them. As far as wheel locks, I picked up a set of Toyota OEM locks on ebay for $20 and you can find after market locks for even less. Even if you buy a car at invoice dealer still makes enough money in form of dealer's hold back and other manufacturer's initiatives.

    PS. I think all 2008 HL come with floor mats and invoice on those around $180 for 3 row seating
  • idnas71idnas71 Posts: 4
    Thanks, Lucky777. I don't really care to have the wheel locks, but they are listed on the car I like and I am just trying to find out their invoice price so I have all the numbers in front of me. The carpet mats are also included, and I do think they would be nice to have, but I just figured they probably cost less than the listed $275. I do have all the numbers for everything else. And the car is d@mn near perfect for the features I want, except that it has a moonroof, which I was willing to forgo. But I will enjoy it occasionally, so why not go with it.

    When I figured up the tally with all the other options and the 10% off, it came to just at 3% over invoice (if my math was correct).

    I live in a somewhat small town and there are really only two dealerships nearby. I did let them both know that I am shopping their competitor, though.

    Thanks for your time,
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