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2016 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Overview

John Diether
Automotive Editor - April 6, 2016

The eco-conscious version of Toyota's popular three-row crossover, the Highlander Hybrid gives you class-leading efficiency without any loss in performance. As good as that sounds, your passengers will likely be more impressed by its high level of luxury.

What's New for 2016

The Highlander Hybrid continues essentially unchanged.

Choosing Your Toyota Highlander Hybrid

The Highlander Hybrid is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine and three electric motors fed by a battery pack. Total output is a robust 280 horsepower, 10 more than the gas-only V6 used on the standard model. More important is the Hybrid's 28 mpg in combined city and highway driving. We can't think of another three-row crossover that's more efficient. Every Hybrid comes equipped with all-wheel drive and a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT).

The only compromise you have to make is in towing capacity. The Hybrid can pull up to 3,500 pounds, whereas the gas model handles up to 5,000 pounds.

The interior features second-row captain's chairs and a full-width third row, which means seven passengers can come aboard. With everything folded, you have 83.2 cubic feet of space at your disposal.

The Highland Hybrid dispenses with the gas model's first three trim levels, so it's available in upscale Limited and Platinum trims only:


Carries a leather interior with heated and ventilated front seats, driver memory functions, ambient LED lighting, and a 12-speaker JBL sound system. You also get a sunroof, blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and rear parking sensors. On the outside are LED running lights and 19-inch wheels. The available Driver Technology package offers high-tech safety features like adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, lane departure warning, and front collision mitigation with automatic braking. A rear video entertainment system is the only major option.


Comes standard with everything that's available on the Limited, plus a panoramic sunroof, a heated steering wheel, and a heated second row.

CarsDirect Tip

The Highlander Hybrid does seem expensive compared to the gasoline version. However, when you take into account the Hybrid's standard all-wheel drive and avalanche of equipment, it's premium is reasonable in our view.

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