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Toyota Highlander

cytomancytoman Posts: 9
What do you think about this new SUV from toyota?
It is suppose to be bigger than the 4runner but
priced between the rav4 and 4runner. Would it have
a third seat? The Acura MDx has a third seat.Any


  • cytomancytoman Posts: 9
    Toyota Highlander Mid-Size Car-Based SUV Premiers At 2000 New York Auto Show

    April. 19, 2000 - New York - The world premier of the 2001 Toyota Highlander car-based, sport utility vehicle (SUV) took place today at a press conference held at the New York Auto Show.

    "The thinking behind Highlander is simple," said Don Esmond, Toyota Division group vice president and general manager. "With more and more new buyers entering the segment from passenger cars, it makes sense to diversify our mid-size SUV offerings into two distinctly different products. Sometimes you feel like a truck, sometimes you don't. For buyers seeking the real-deal in traditional mid-size performance, with a bias toward multi-use, we have 4Runner. For buyers demanding the image and versatility of an SUV, but who prioritize car-like ride and handling, we will have Highlander."

    Highlander will ride on a platform that is similar to the popular Camry sedan, but engineered for increased ground clearance, ride height, suspension travel and off-road durability. Its overall length, width and wheelbase dimensions will be larger than 4Runner. It will also have a slight edge in interior leg and head room.

    Highlander will be available in both two- and full-time four-wheel drive, powered by either a four-cylinder or 220-horsepower V6 engine, matched to a four-speed automatic transmission. Both engines will carry LEV, low emission vehicle, certification. The V6 4x4 configuration is expected to be the predominant seller. Highlander will be offered in a single, well-equipped grade level. Options will include an upscale Limited Package.

    Highlander will have a sales target of more than 50,000 in calendar year 2001, with an annual sales volume of approximately 72,000 units.

    When it arrives in about a year, Highlander will become the fifth member of Toyota's comprehensive line-up of SUVs. With Highlander and RAV4, Toyota will be the first automotive division to market two car-based SUVs.

    "The 2001 Highlander is an important new product and a key strategic element in Toyota's plan to take a leadership role in the North American light truck arena," said Esmond. "It is the product we needed to round out one of the broadest, most comprehensive lineup of sport utility vehicles offered by any first-tier manufacturer in America."

    Taken from Toyota's Web Page. All credits belong to them.
  • ladyblueladyblue Posts: 326
    Please do not reprint articles or text on this board, as that may very well be copywrite infringement. If you could just refer everyone to the article in question, or provide a link if applicable, that would be appreciated. Simply providing attribution is not enough.

    Community Leader/SUV Conference
  • yachtieyachtie Posts: 29
    Does anyone know which 4 cyl engine Toyota will use in the Highlander. Will it be from the Camry or somewhere else? Also anticipated hp.
  • bphdbphd Posts: 9
    I went to the NYC autoshow on Saturday and saw the Highlander up close. IT was very impressive. There is no third seat but there was substantial room in the cargo area that could easily fit lots of stuff.

    They claim that the fully loaded SUV will be substantially less than a fully loaded 4runner. Does anyone know what the cost of a fully loaded 4runner is?

    Anyway, I was very impressed. It had a much more refined and sophisticated look than the new escape and tribute, while still looking small enough and agile.

    I can't wait to see how this unfolds...

  • cytomancytoman Posts: 9
    thousand for the limited. I too am excited about the Highlander. I just wish it had a third seat but who knows, maybe in a year or two a third seat would be an option. The Acura MDX seems to be a good deal for that option. Did any of the people in the autoshow say what the horsepower of the optional 4cyl. would be?
  • bphdbphd Posts: 9

    I just checked edmunds and it ranged from 32K-invoice to 35 MSRP... Are you talking canadian$$$?

    Anyway, if Toyota's pricing model is going to w`ork, they need to be somewhere between the RAV4 and the 4runner...I would think that it would come in fully loaded at about 30-32K...

    any thoughts?

  • porknbeansporknbeans Posts: 464
    This seems like an absolutely reasonable response to me. I would even go so far as to say that if the pricing falls like you just described I'll be knocking on the door of the dealer when they roll them off of the delivery truck. But with manufacturers setting sales records all over the place there is no incentive for them to keep the prices in the 30-32K area. Unfortunately I would have a tendency to believe that they are going to be more 35K.

    Grand High Poobah
    The Fraternal Order of Procrastinators
  • bphdbphd Posts: 9

    I would agree, in the first year folks will probably paying MSRP plus something. Remember what happened witht he VW Beetle....

    I am currently leasing a Solara which will be due back to the dealer by 2002. I am hoping I can leverage that fact for a reasonable priced Highlander. If not, I would have to look pretty hard at the Escape, which fully loaded, would run around 25K.

    Also, I am a bit leary of buying any car in its first year of manufacturing...

    Finally, while at the car show, I got a single page document on the Highlander. It has a form to send back in to let the folks at Toyota know that I am interested. Hopefully, I will get some more info in the upcoming months.

  • porknbeansporknbeans Posts: 464
    I was unable to get to NY (living in the Midwest) but would be interested to hear what Toyota has to say about the vehicle. There are only a couple of vehicles that I wouldn't be afraid of buying on their first year of production and Toyota is one of them. They seem to have the production nightmares that plague some other manufacturers solved. I called the 1 800 number for Toyota three times asking if I could get on the mailing list for the Highlander. I finally got the last operator I talked to, to write down my name and address but don't know if it will go any further.

    Grand High Poobah
    The Fraternal Order of Procrastinators
  • bphdbphd Posts: 9

    I have the address for the Highlander SIG at home. I will post it later on this afternoon. In addition, I can e-mail you the scanned in one page brochure if you want.

    Let me know,
    [email protected]
  • cytomancytoman Posts: 9
    is now available. I just saw my dealer today and he handed me some one page flyer. The High is a five seater. It would be available in FWD and AWD in both 2.4l 4-cyl and 3.0l V6. I just wonder what the ground clearance and HP is on this thing.
  • cytomancytoman Posts: 9
    HP on the 2.4L 4-cyl?
  • agt_cooperagt_cooper Posts: 202
    I've seen 220 published as the HP rating on the 3.0 V-6. No info. on the 4.
  • porknbeansporknbeans Posts: 464
    I can't imagine hauling 5 people with their gear and running an AC in the Summer or the Defroster in the Winter with a 4cyl. Even if it is a 2.4L I'd have to think that it would only be 150-170hp but more importantly is what would its torque be. As Americans we always want to know the horsepower but what we really want to know is the torque.

    Grand High Poobah
    The Fraternal Order of Procrastinators
  • agt_cooperagt_cooper Posts: 202
    Couldn't agree with you more on torque being important, especially when you get into heavier vehicles. Torque is what gets you going, and the more an engine can produce early in the rpm range, the quicker the vehicle will feel. Also, you'll put less wear and tear on the engine since you won't need to rev it so high.

    My rule of thumb on a "truck-like" engine is that it should produce a higher torque number than horsepower. If it doesn't do that, it is not well suited to a heavy vehicle application, IMHO!
  • tilertiler Posts: 15
    Cracks me up.Pork-n-torque,I about died laughing when I read that. The Highlander sounds like a nice truck. Can't wait to see one on the lot.
  • cytomancytoman Posts: 9
    Does anybody know what the ground clearance is on the Highlander? Those of you who saw it in the Auto show please shed some light on this. I wonder how it compares to the 01 Montero and the 01 Acura MD-X. All this waiting for more details is driving me nuts!
  • cytomancytoman Posts: 9
    came today. Nothing much that you can not find in their flyer of the High.

    Thanks for the info LennieS. Do you think you could beat Heartland Toyota on a deal on the High when she comes out? Any news when the High is really coming out? Folks at Heartland tell me July. Sounds like hype to me....comments?
  • wocaowocao Posts: 2
  • wocaowocao Posts: 2
  • carleton1carleton1 Posts: 560
    And it looks like a very appealing vehicle for
    people like my wife and I who like the higher seating of an SUV without the gas guzzling 4WD. Is the lever in the console in the middle below the dash for 4WD?
  • md2002md2002 Posts: 142
    In the world market, the RAV4 is aimed to continue against the Escape/Tribute, while the Highlander fits more between the Escape/Tribute and Explorer. Size and power being more higher end.

    I have seen it posted by Toyota Salespeople on these boards that the Highlander is for the ON ROAD crowd who want a car like NO REAL OFF ROADING vs the 4RUNNER that is aimed at the OFF ROAD ADVENTURE side. In 2002 when they intro the 4th Generation 4RUNNER I am sure we will see upgrades to make it keep up with the PF, though
    0-60 in x.x seconds is for sports cars and the current 4RUNNER is no slouch. A quick $33 part will help alot. A new air filter from Amsoil. See or read about it on Gadgets page @

    Highlander will fit the nitch it is designed for.
  • inkyinky Posts: 370
    Does no one else think this thing is Toyota ugly?
    Looks like a 60's station wagon. A poor man's Lexus RX 300--I think not.
  • sense70sense70 Posts: 8
    I love the RX, but the dealer around here want $41K for it. and they are all fully loaded, therefore you can't find one that you really want to pay for.

    In the case of Highlander, I guess the 4 cyl one should cost about $25K for a 2WD, and a 6 cyl 4WD should be around $30K (Base). a Highlander Vs. RX should be around the same ratio of Camry V6 vs ES 300.

    Does any one know when are the highlander suppose to be out? Next Spring/Summer or later this year?

    About the Look, I agree it is far short of the RX looking, but who know what would happen when they finally arrive! afterall, Camry is not a good looking car either, but still it is the No. 1 seller.
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    We were told to expect them in "early 2001" which I would guess means February.
  • gpoltgpolt Posts: 113
    I viewed the Highlander at the NY Auto show. Whereas the new RAV4 is very stylish from the front, the Highlander appears more like an overgrown Subaru Forester with a few styling cues from the Land Cruiser. Shift column is a la RX300 (meaning it comes out of the dash). Show car certainly was not as pretty as an RX300 in terms of paint, shape or interior materials. Because the rear pillar is more vertical than that of the Lexus, it should have more storage room. One of the car magazines reports that the wheelbase and length are both several inches longer than that of the RX300. Representatives at the auto show stated that a comparably equipped Highlander should run about $5,000 less than the Lexus. If one considers build quality. dealership experience, shorter warranty and reduced re-sale value, that differnetial quickly loses its allure. Perhaps a fwd v-6 could be a sleeper. Will have to wait and $ee. Reps at show also said the car will be out in February. The 4 cylander will be the next generation Camry engine with VVT putting out approxinately 150hp. I've yet to see torque numbers. Having driven a Solara 4 cylander auto, I would imagine the Highlander to be anemic with the 4 cyl, and I doubt that the awd will be offered with anything but the V6 (assumed to be the RX300 / Avalon VVT technology). I too was anxiously awaiting the arrival of this car/suv, but if it arrives with non-descript looks and almost Lexus pricing, other choices (i.e. used or off-lease RX300) may become more appealing.
  • sense70sense70 Posts: 8
    Thanks for the update, gpolt.

    I agree with that if it is for $5,000, I would go for a Lexus. but from the Camry vs ES pricing, that is almost impossible. Plus, since it is so hard to find one RX without leather seat, and all the "good stuff", a 4WD RX become a $41,000 SUV like the Benz M. If the highlander ( V6, 4WD, Auto) cost $28K, that will make it simlar pricing to the Pathfinder.

    When would the Camry be equipped with the VVTi Engine? for the 2002 model?
  • jhaubnerjhaubner Posts: 6
    Thanks for the detailed info on the Highlander. Why wouldn't the the build quality and paint be as good as the RX300? I came close to buying the RX300, but was annoyed with having to buy all of the extras. Additionally the Lexus dealer is 150 miles from my home. So I anxiously await the arrival of the Highlander. Is there any chance that it would be sooner than February? Has Toyota had any official press information on the Highlander?
  • gpoltgpolt Posts: 113
    Let me preface my comments by saying that I don't have inside info, just what I read. Nevertheless, in response to your questions:

    1) I recall speaking with Toyota National Cust Service and they said that all of their vehicles' engines will have VVT by model year 2002, so we can assume that the re-styled 2002 Camry will have the base 4 cyl appearing in the new Highlander.

    2) I am disappointed in that the 3.0 V6 VVT currently in the Lexus, Avalon and upcoming Highlander will not appear in the 2001 Camry or Solara. Those buyers will have to wait until fall.

    3) Pricing: being that a new decked out Avalon XLS stickers for 33,000, sadly, how can one expect an AWD vehicle with similar mechanicals to cost any less?

    4) An expert in auto paints/body work has told me that Toyota and Lexus use identical paint and paint application techniques. And I admit that a Toyota in WHite Pearl (extra cost) looks similar to an SC 400 in that color. Nevertheless, the quality of Toyota leathers and cloth and their stitching, in my view, seem inferior.

    5) From all of my contacts and sources, February appears to be the release date.

    6) Toyota has released a one page official statement. Nothing more revealing.

    7) Occasional viewer of this cite _ CLIFFY - may be able to shed some light. Of all sales people I've encountered (in person or via the web), he appears the most sincere.

    8) For those interested and who can wait, Saturn (remember them?) should offer a similarly sized vehicle (not certain if they will offer AWD) for the 2002 model year. Saturn just signed an agreement with Honda to purchase 3.o V6/transmission combinations for an upcoming vehicle, ostensibly this new cross-over vehicle. The marriage of plastic door panels, Saturn's reputation for reliability and customer service, and the Accord's fabulous V6 should make for a wonderful automobile (and No, I don't work for GM either!, though I probably could turn that company around!).
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    Thanks for the compliment. I try.

    Your observations and information match everything I have heard but I do want to comment on your opinions of the paint and interior of the Lexus versus Toyota. We have the same paint processes and even the same exact colors but there is one difference. I believe that the Lexus brand undergoes one extra layer of paint. The diamond white Avalon you referenced actually gets this extra application which is why it costs more.

    As to the interior, I don't know about the stitching but I do know that the leather itself is identical in grade. They are both "grade 10" which I am told is the top grade available to car manufacturers. When the '97 Camry came out, Toyota made a big deal to the salesmen about this and told us that even Jaguar uses a grade 7 and Lincoln uses something like a grade 5.
  • inkyinky Posts: 370
    I think the $5,000 less than RX stated was off the cuff maybe not real true. Toyota version will cost (my prediction) $25,000 for basic v-6 and front drive and all power and cruise. Very Loaded up Front drive $30,000 and 4 x 4 roof and very RX like around $35,000.
    The HUGE difference is that you do not have to buy the $1k cd changer, the 2k leather the 1k sunroof. So the highlander will be a poor man's RX and I plan to seek one out.
  • gpoltgpolt Posts: 113
    For $35,000 I think I'll buy an Acura MD-X.
  • inkyinky Posts: 370
    A dealer told me April release? Sounds late.
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    We have our brochures for the 2001 Siennas and tundras and on the back is a picture of the Highlander with a note that it will be available in February. It will probably be April before there are enough to actually get your hands on one that is not sold. It could take longer than that even.
  • If I want to get one when they come out (hopefully February), when will dealers be accepting orders? And does that mean that I would have to order sight unseen?
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    It all depends on the dealer. If somebody wanted to place an order now and gave me a $500 deposit (refundable), I'd take it. That does mean sight unseen buying and paying MSRP but if somebody twisted my arm, I'd do it.
  • deerlake7deerlake7 Posts: 176
    I saw a Toyota press release on the incorporation of new side air bag and/or curtain technology in all of their 2001 vehicles. They lumpped bags and curtains together when they specifically pointed out the new technology being incorporated into the '01 Sienna, Sequoia, Highlander and LS 430. Do you know if side impact curtains will be in, or available on the Highlander???? THANKS!
  • Please explain what'curtain technology' is.
  • deerlake7deerlake7 Posts: 176
    Side air curtains are essentially air bags that drop from the top of the window/roof area, down over the window to protect your head and torso. Mercedes and BMW had them first, with Volvo following. 2001 Passats will also have them. Theoretically, it can offer not only additional side protection, but Ford is using it in their 2002 Explorer (due out in January) to offer additional protection in the event of a rollover. The technology trick is to make sure they inflate and deflate at the proper speeds to accomplish the job and not cause more injury than they prevent.
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    I have no idea if the Highlander will have this. I can tell you that the 2001 Sienna does not have them (at least not as standard equipment). I have the first of those on my lot and there are no extra safety features. They may be optional but I haven't seen one yet.
  • alexpalexp Posts: 70
    What is new in the Toyota Sienna 2001, vs. Sienna 1998?
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    I know this is off topic but I'll go over the list anyway:

    -new 210 HP engine (up from 194 by using variable
    valve timing)
    -available VSC
    -available dual power doors and heated seats
    -climate control in the XLE
    -sliding rear seat
    -new sunglass holder
    -home link in the XLE
    -new colors
    -new front and rear lights
    -fog lights in the XLE
    -new wheel covers on the LE and CE
    -deleted 4 door CE
    -JBL stereo
    -I'm sure there are a couple fo other things I missed.
  • lawrenlawren Posts: 15
    My brother has new 4Runner SR5. He paid around $30,000 after knocking off $4,500 from MSRP. Yes this includes some options. He got a good price but no, it was NOT below the invoice. I I'm looking the price of Highlander indicating it's between 4Runner and RAV4, yet it is listed at $35,000. I see TV commercials about RX300 starting at $31,500. It sound like about $10,000 too expensive. Unless they are jacking up the price on 4Runner. Doesn't RX300 or the MDX sounds better at a smiliar price?
  • Does anybody know any more info on the High?
  • The price of an RX300 is more like 41,000(MSRP) and most selling for 2-3 thousand less than that. The MDX price is yet to be announced other than it will be in the 'mid to upper 30's' (according to a press release).
  • I live in Florida and a Toyota salesman told me they expect the Highlander to arrive in mid to late October of this year.
  • is this suv just a land cruiser with body redesign or is it somethig else?
  • Every other report on the national level has the arrival date as February 2001.
  • Definitely not based on Land Cruiser.

  • Salesman I spoke with handed me the Highlander one-pager and told me it would replace the RAV4(wrong.) I believe the 01 RAV4 will be out this Fall. Perhaps that is where the confusion is coming from. Every thing written I have seen points to Spring 01 for the Highlander.

    My 2 cents rationalize/wish a mid-$30 T&L price for v6 fwd. There are so many offerings near this category: I quickly came up with 8 $25-35k family suv's that I could live with. 2-3 yo mercedes, lexus will be in the hunt also by spring. Toyota are always nice(own T100), but public may be yawning by the time Highlander gets here. Hope so, I want one.
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