The 2019 Toyota Highlander, with three rows and room for as many as eight, operates in the crowded mid-size crossover SUV segment. Although it offers a four-cylinder engine, we recommend the V6 that delivers more power and better fuel economy.
What's New for 2019
The 2019 Toyota Highlander continues as a carryover for the new year and receives no major enhancements.
Choosing Your Toyota Highlander
Toyota is beginning a rapid transformation with its SUV lineup, focusing primarily on expanding current models with more hybrid powerplants. For 2019, Toyota offers the Highlander in six trims: LE, LE Plus, XLE, SE, Limited, and Limited Platinum. The Highlander seats seven with comfort or eight children. Storage space is less than stellar for a mid-size SUV, measuring 13.8 cubic feet. When you fold down the third row, storage space increases to 42.3 cubic feet.
The Highlander features two engine options. The base is a 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine that generates 185 horsepower and a nearly identical 184 pound-feet of torque that's only available on the base LE trim. The four-cylinder is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and can only be configured with front-wheel drive. It returns an EPA-estimated 20 miles per gallon in the city, 24 mpg on the highway, and 22 combined.
Every other trim is powered by a 3.5-liter V6, which makes 295 hp and 263 lb-ft of torque, paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The EPA rates this powerplant at 21/27/23 mpg (city/highway/combined) with FWD, while all-wheel drive is available for $1,460. Consumers can opt for this engine in the base LE for an additional $2,050.
The 2019 Toyota Highlander is a great option for consumers looking to enter the SUV segment without spending a ton of money on upscale enhancements. The limited amount of package upgrades simplifies the configuration process. For the money, the XLE is arguably the best bang for the buck.