Zip Code: 20149

2019 Toyota Highlander: Preview, Pricing, Release Date

, Automotive Editor - August 09, 2018
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Model Preview

Back in 2014, the current-generation Highlander rushed onto the scene with a slightly longer body and more aggressive styling. But since then, things have remained relatively quiet, save for a few tweaks here and there. We expect this lack of change to carry into the 2019 Highlander.

As a carryover model, we do not expect much in terms of exterior updates. That said, the Highlander’s looks are still fairly modern and shouldn’t pose any issues. Although we don’t expect any big changes, we could see a few small tweaks, like an updated list of color options and possibly a few new wheel options.

The interior will also remain largely unchanged from 2018. And if there are any changes, expect them to be subtle, like updated infotainment hardware, additional sound-deadening materials, or new upholstery colors or materials. We think it's highly likely that the Highlander will gain enhanced connectivity options.

First, we expect the Highlander to gain support for Apple CarPlay, something the brand has already rolled out in the new Avalon and already plans to expand to the 2019 Camry & Sienna. Second, order guides show those vehicles will also begin supporting Amazon Alexa.

Toyota Highlander

The Amazon integration relies on having the Toyota+Alexa app, which Toyota says is available on Android phones running version 5.0 and higher. The company expects to begin supporting Apple iPhones sometime in early 2019. Stay tuned for possible updates.

The powertrain department is an area in which we expect not a single change. We expect the base engine to remain a 2.7-liter four-cylinder with 185 horsepower and 187 pound-feet of torque. The midrange engine will be a 3.5-liter V6 with 295 hp and 263 lb-ft of torque.

At the top of the range, the Highlander Hybrid combines the 3.5-liter V6 with an electric motor to produce 306 hp. With the engines remaining the same, we also expect the transmissions to carry over. If this proves true, the four-pot will mate with a six-speed automatic, while V6 versions pair with eight-speed units.

Safety is an area where most Toyota models excel, and the Highlander is no exception. The 2018 model not only aced all IIHS crash tests, but it also comes standard with all the safety goodies to make it an IIHS Top Safety Pick, including automatic emergency braking. Other standard safety equipment includes adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, automatic high beams, and forward collision warning.

Pricing & Release Date

We expect the 2019 Toyota Highlander to go on sale this fall.

Official pricing is due to be released in August. We expect no major changes from the current MSRP range of $32,025 to $49,275 (destination fees included).

When it comes to deals, offers on the current Highlander tend to be few and far between. Although we've seen a handful of rebates so far this year, deep discounts tend to be rare.

What we generally find is that the Highlander ranks well when it comes to leases due to its relatively high residual values when compared to similar vehicles in the midsize segment.

Competitors include the Honda Pilot, Ford Explorer, and Chevrolet Traverse.

Learn about the current Highlander on sale now »


Pictured: 2018 Highlander

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