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Toyota Highlander Hybrid



  • peatnickpeatnick Posts: 26
    Sloan Toyota Philly Area
    Used Internet Sales Dept.
    Only Option =Pkge 2
    Sticker $39.5K
    Invoice Price $35.3K
    Cash Rebate $1.5K
    6% Tax on $33.8K
    About $150 title and licence
    $36K out the door
    Actually putting money where mouth is on envirnment = priceless :D
  • stevegoldstevegold Posts: 185
    The difference must be the NAV system and the rest of package #3.
  • peatnickpeatnick Posts: 26
    Correct, no NAV (could never get the hang of those anyway) but did get the floor mats and cargo net along with the sunroof, leather etc in pkg3
  • stevegoldstevegold Posts: 185
    How do you like the car? We still have our Subaru so have hardly driven the Highlander. We're giving the Subaru to our grandson in Chicago and will start using the HH when we return. His mother also has a HH (2006).
  • peatnickpeatnick Posts: 26

    The car rides very nice, I almost bought one 2 years ago, but it was still selling at MSRP then. My dad and uncle both have the Prius, they can't stop raving about it, but my wife says we still need a "big" car since we have 3 kids under 12 years old...
  • cashuangcashuang Posts: 2
    Can you post the steps to normalize the sunroof here? I have checked my owner's manual, but did not see any mentioning of such thing. Maybe TOYOTA removes the section from 2006 owner's manual. Thanks!
  • cdptrapcdptrap Posts: 485
    Hi, to "normalize" the 2006 HH sunroof do the following:

    1. Turn your key so there is power. No need to turn on engine though.

    2. Push the moon roof button to the "TILT-UP" position and hold the button in that position until the roof has completely cycled through tilt up, down, slide open and slide close. Then you can release the button.

    3. On ours, when I first push to tilt-up, roof will tilt open but then nothing will happen. I must continue to hold the button in the tilt-up position for 30+ seconds, then the normalization kicks in. The manual says nothing about this long wait. And when we first got the car, we did not have to wait that long.

    Good luck. THe instruction is in our 2006 manual, pg. 46. It has no big title, just a bried paragraph.
  • cashuangcashuang Posts: 2
    Thanks much! It works like a charm! Now I can finally know when it is fully closed.

    The 2006 manual I have got did not have this section. And pg.46 is the instructions about folding down second seats. Wonder why there is such difference.

    Toyota must be out of their mind to sell a car that does not operate as the owner manual says.
  • haymistahaymista Posts: 12
    I know the 08 is going to be a re-design, but will it be worth the extra money? Is the Hybrid technology different?
  • stevegoldstevegold Posts: 185
    Doesn't do anything on the 2007 and nothing in the manual about normalization.
  • haymistahaymista Posts: 12
    I've read where the 2008 will have a litium battery. Can anyone explain how this battery differs from the 2007? I've read where they expect the 08 HH to get the same mileage even though it is 500 pounds heavier due to the increased interior size, but I can't decide if I should take advantage of the rebates and get a 2007. The 2008s are sure to be more expensive plus there is usually less room to haggle on a new model.
  • jmpage2jmpage2 Posts: 268
    Lets get back to the topic and not keep derailing this thread with discussions about braking/etc.

    I'm interested in when we can get an early price sheet on the 2008 model.

    I'm also interested in if the deep LCD lit gauges shown in photos from the 2008 "sport" model that have been popping up around the net will also be in the hybrid as well.

    I have been considering an Acura MDX for my wife but with rising fuel prices I am strongly considering the 2008 HH.
  • joe540cijoe540ci Posts: 17
    Which would you buy if the price was close?
  • cdptrapcdptrap Posts: 485
    It all depends on what you are looking for. Price will be close but MPG is significantly different as I understand it. I would also check out reliability and general fit and finish if I am going to pay all that cash for a GM car.

    The 2008 HH is supposedly getting the same MPG as the 2006, 2007 HH. Using the 2008 new EPA computation, that will put it generally 20% lower than the 2007 old-EPA computation MPG. That means the HH 4WDi Ltd model may get something like 22 HWY/ 25 City or 24 Combined. I am getting 26-28 MPG depending on where and how I drive. SO I expect the 2008 to get about the same real life, between 24-28 MPG.

    Car and Driver "claims" the Tahoe is reported to be around 20 MPG in real world driving. You have to decide if the difference of 20 MPG vs 24 MPG or 26 MPG is significant.

    The Tahoe can tow 6000-lbs while the 2008 HH can tow 5000-lbs.

    As for sophistication of the drive system and safety features, you will have to research what the Tahoe offers. The HH has the VDIM drive-by-wire system which I have really grown to love after having to negotiate mountain roads in the Mt. Shasta (Northern CA - north of Redding) area over the past two years. The 2008 will have the same system or improved. Handling for such a heavy and tall car is really impressive and this is *not* a BMW.

    Will the Tahoe run on full-electric as the 2008 HH will? We all know the current Saturn Vue is really a "mimld" hybrid that cannot run on electric only. The 2008 HH can run on electric for the first mile if there is enough charge. In our '06 HH, we can run on electric only for miles on flat road using certain techniques. I expect the '08 HH to do the same. Can Tahoe do this?

    The HH runs its accessories on electric so I can have the A/C blasting at a full stop with the gas engine off but still able to drive off when the light is green. This saves gas. Can the Tahoe do the same?

    I would check out the fit and finish too. The HH comes like a luxury car and drives like one. Will the Tahoe offer the same given that the price is comparable?

    There is also issue of reliability. Has GM improve its quality so that everything, from the smallest clip to the transmission simply works? Or will things rattle and creak and come loose after 5000, 10000 or 20000 miles?

    Also want to check the emission rating. Getting a hybrid to save gas is one thing but if you are really into reducing emission, then get a car that runs clean. The 2008 HH is currently assumed to be SULEV II (CA). There is a rumor that Toyota may try to get it certified at a PZEV but I doubt it. What will the GM Tahoe be rated?

    I have nothing against GM and hope it can finally come out with something that makes sense but I would be really weary and would hold GM to as high a standard as Toyota.

    Good luck in your research.
  • ljmiiiljmiii Posts: 7
    I think that if you are deciding between buying a 2007 vs 2008 HiHy the big decision items are:

    1 - The 2007 will be more quick and nimble (500lbs less with the same drivetrain)

    2 - You can carry people taller than 5' 0" in the 3rd row seat of the 2008

    3 - You can likely get a better deal on a 2007 sitting on the lot
  • desertfox1desertfox1 Posts: 80
    What is "normalize"?
  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 569
    Normalization is a procedure one goes through to have the sunroof open and close correctly. This should be done by the dealer before delivery, but is often not done. If you have to replace your battery the roof will have to be normalized as well.
  • mmccloskeymmccloskey Posts: 168

    I have a few questions regarding the battery level indicator (below the speedo) for those who have had their HH's for a while. When I first got the car (4/6/07) the battery level was at 6 and would briefly go to 7. As time and miles have gone by, I notice the battery level is usually 6 and will drop to 4 or 5 while driving depending on various factors. I always try to drive with a light foot to conserve fuel and keep the battery level up. Is 6 considered an average/normal level and is there any way I can get it charged up to 7 or 8? I was a bit concerned that the battery would drop to a level that might prevent the car from operating but the 'system' seems to know when to kick in the ICE to ramp up the battery.

    Overall I am quite pleased with my 2007 HH Limited w/Nav. It sure is nice to get over 29mpg and ride in such comfort and room. I made a good choice on a great vehicle. As nice as this car is, I can't imagine how much better the 2008 will be, especially being so much heavier. With all that projected extra weight, it certainly won't have the spirited acceleration that the 2007 HH's have.

    Thanks for any comments or input regarding battery level.

    Regards -

    M. J. McCloskey
  • joe540cijoe540ci Posts: 17
    I have a 06 highlander and I want to tow more than I can now. I have always been a CHEVY MAN but I am a toyota man too.I think reliability is the biggest question I have. Toyota reliability is a no brainer, chevy has not been the best lately. Oh what too do???
  • desertfox1desertfox1 Posts: 80
    What if the battery dies, and needs recharging?
  • cdptrapcdptrap Posts: 485
    Don't know how the 2007 model works, Toyota probably put in something more intelligent so the sun roof just works.

    In the 2006, if the little battery dies, at least the Idle Speed Learning memory gets flushed and the car will run the gas engine longer until it relearns everything. During this time, your gas mileage will suffer. The dealership knows how to do this for you to shorten the relearning process. As for the sun roof, I don't know what will happen, but it is likely that it will have to be reinitialized again.

    Not a big deal once we know how to do it.
  • cdptrapcdptrap Posts: 485
    We have the '06, so take this with a large grain of salt.

    Our '06 has no numbers, only bars to indicate charge level. It is common to see 6 bars most of the time during normal flat land driving. The charge controller will run the ICE (gas engine) as needed to charge the batteries. The lowest it will go is 2 bars and then the ICE runs and runs to get it back up to 4 bars.

    There are road conditions that will charge it up to full 8 bars. There are also some techniques that we use to make it get a fuller charge. Such as longer coast at higher speed to get regenerative braking or using the "B" mode or using the brakes to dip the power needle into the blue region.

    We notice that 6 bars is good at helping the gas engine along to get high mileage. 8 bars is even better but only on certain roads that allow us to get up to 8 bars.

    Getting 29-MPG in your '07 is fantastic. I have not been able to get past 28-MPG too often in our '06. May be I am carrying too much gear in the trunk. We are always loaded up with tools, equipment and water.

    Happy Hybriding!
  • mmccloskeymmccloskey Posts: 168
    Thanks so much for your info. The readout in my '07 doesn't have actual #'s, but I can tell that each bar equates to a particular level. Most of my driving is rural/highway with about 10% city when I need to go there. I try to watch which mode is active and do my best to keep the ICE icon from displaying. I am quite pleased with my mileage so far. My best has been 29.8mpg and the worst has been 26.4. Even though the car calculates average mpg, I figure mine manually with each fillup. Of course it's very tempting to nail the go pedal on occasion since this baby can really move out but it does affect overall mpg as you may know!

    Best regards -

    M. J. McCloskey
  • joe540cijoe540ci Posts: 17
    Does anyone know when the new Highlander will be available ???
  • jmpage2jmpage2 Posts: 268
    The 2008 was originally supposed to show up in July but the last word is that the internal combustion engine unit is now going to be arriving at dealer showrooms in August. Don't expect the 2008 hybrid to show up until September at the earliest.

    If the hybrid is as big of a hit as toyota thinks it's going to be it's going to be a long waiting list to get one and they won't be discounting from sticker.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Yes the first ICE's will arrive in July but the bulk of them will begin arriving in August. The very first ones are probably just beginning to ship from the factory.

    The Hybrid versions will be along about 60 days later.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,080
    I keep seeing reference to a 4 cylinder HH. The Toyota website says the 2008 HH is a 3.3L V6. Isn't that the same as the current HH?
    With an additional 500LBs what do you suppose the mileage will drop to?
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    I had hoped for a 4c ultra efficient HH but that seems to be for another vehicle ( Prius Utility Vehicle? ). From the press release it appears that the effective horsepower and fuel economy of the new 2008 HH are unchanged even with the 500# of additional weight and larger dimensions. Nice trick if they can do it.
  • cdptrapcdptrap Posts: 485
    The release says the horsepwer is 270-hp, not much more than the current 268-hp. Very good to see there is no horse-power race with GM or Honda or BMW.

    This one can drive the first mile at low speed on electric-only before turning on the gas engine. Right there will save us about 0.1 to 0.3 MPG over our '06. It is also able to tow 5000-lbs, so they must have hardened its body and tweaked the software and use better batteries (?). With the "smaller" horsepower, may be it can get similar mileage to the '06 and '07. We just have to see.

    If the MPG number they post is done with the 2008 method, this will be a significant increase, it could do better than the '06 and '07. if it is done with current EPA standards, then nothing has changed. It is unclear in the news release.

    Wait and see.......
  • kim19kim19 Posts: 2
    The main difference I see is in the way the interior space is used. The second row console can be removed (and replaced), so that you can have a second row bench seat, or two non-removable captain chairs, and a pass through to the third row. Also, the third row folds down, so when you don't need it, you have extra space in the back. For me this is important because I have kids with car seats, and as you know, you can't always fit three car seats across a bench (depends on the car seat), and if you have a baby and need to get inside, well, the bench is impractical. Also, it is easier to load three kids into two rows with a pass through than a bench. They don't have to wait outside the car while the other ones get into their seat; the one in the back gets in first, and the other two follow immediately.

    The Dodge Durango Hybrid has captain chairs and a third row, but the gas mileage is not as good. The Chrysler Aspen 2008 Hybrid Hemi will also have bucket seat options for the second row, but I doubt that the gas mileage will be as good as the Highlander.

    A lot of people, who have the "07 want MP3 player access, and Bluetooth technology. If you don't need the third row, you may want to look at the Saturn Vue Green Line Hybrid; you can get it all decked out, and still pay less less than the Highlander. The main draw back is that their '07 SUV isn't 4WD.

    Others to look at: Chevy Tahoe Hybrid 2008; Jeep Liberty Diesel; Mazda Tribute Hybrid; Lexus RX 400H

    Toyota should be looking at how to make the Highlander their, AWD, hybrid, family vehicle--sort of like the Sienna, but with AWD capabilities, so that those of us who live in the mountains and need an AWD SUV, but also need to put three young children in car seats have space and power with good gas mileage.
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