2014 Toyota Highlander

LE FWD 4-Dr Sport Utility I4 auto trans

2014 toyota highlander Reviews and News

2014 Toyota Highlander  Front Three Quarters 1
This is the latest in our new series of short-take reviews, in which we concentrate on a car or truck with a powertrain or trim level not previously detailed. –Ed.
As the three-row crossover becomes America's de facto family car, the genre takes on an increasingly important role in an automaker's lineup. The newly redesigned 2014 Toyota Highlander, then, picked an opportune time to up its game. It may be largely carryover mechanically, but it looks and feels significantly upgraded.
Skiing road trip
Our all-wheel-drive test example featured the Highlander's mainstay powertrain, a 270-hp, 3.5-liter V-6, paired with a six-speed automatic. It returned an indicated 22 mpg on a four-hour trip to the Adirondacks that was about three-quarters highway and the rest two-lane roads. On the way home, with a bit more downhill, we managed 23 mpg. This engine makes adequate power, but won't inspire Walter Mitty fantasies.
The Highlander's ride was busy on less-than-perfect pavement, although the suspension soaks up potholes pretty well. Still, the 2014 Highlander is a more agreeable road-trip steed than its predecessor. It's fairly quiet and not hard to see out of (a backup camera is standard). It's also available with blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-departure warning and adaptive cruise control. The latter is useful but perhaps not quite aggressive enough for the New York State Thruway on the Friday of a holiday weekend.
The recalibrated steering now has some reassuring heft to it. In the last Highlander, it was rather overboosted and limp. The smooth, leather-wrapped wheel actually feels connected to something, which is novel for a Toyota.
Greater substance, space for people and stuff
The new Highlander is nearly three inches longer and has 13.5 additional cubic-feet of cargo space. The interior has been transformed, with padded surfaces and a stitched dash cover, and seatbelts for three in the third row. A padded, nearly full-width shelf under the dash is perfect for stashing cell phones and sunglasses and glows blue at night, the best use of ambient lighting we've seen yet.
The only negative in this well thought-out interior is that, in Limited models, the roomy middle row comes only with two captain's chairs, which eliminates the center seating position. You have to drop down a trim level to get the more versatile, three-passenger split-bench seat.
Did we say free upgrade? We did not
The new Highlander's greater size, substance, and niceness come at a price, however. My AWD Limited test car rang in at $44,793, although it was equipped with everything, including all the aforementioned high-tech features, plus navigation, heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and a panoramic sunroof. The price-leader Highlander LE has crept up just a bit, but the volume models -- the ones people actually buy -- are now between $890 and $1700 higher. You pay more, but you get more. That could be the theme of the 2014 Toyota Highlander.

2014 Toyota Highlander Limited V6 AWD with platinum package

Base price $44,450
As tested $44,793
Engine 3.5L V-6
Power 270 hp @ 6200 rpm
Torque 248 lb-ft @ 4700 rpm
Transmission 6-speed automatic
Drive 4-wheel
Cargo 82.6/42.0/13.6 cu ft (behind 1st/2nd/3rd row of seats)
Fuel economy 18/24/20 mpg (city/highway/combined)
2014 Toyota Highlander Limited Platinum Front Three Quarters View
Carmel, California -- Fifty-eight juice boxes can fit into the center console of the 2014 Toyota Highlander. If you filled every seat of the eight-passenger SUV, everyone could have seven drinks, with a couple left over. Would we try such an experiment? Of course not, but Toyota performed this juice-jamming exercise to underscore that the Highlander will remain true to its mission as a comfortable, versatile, and spacious family hauler.
“We set out to create a vehicle without compromise for young families,” says deputy chief engineer Takashi Goto.
He’s an expert in that field. During a three-year stint at Toyota’s technical center in Ann Arbor, Michigan, he used a Sienna minivan to chauffeur his wife, two sons, and their dog around town. It was also often filled with golfing and camping gear.
“This is how I know how important it is to have plenty of space,” Goto says.
Not everyone likes minivans, and that’s where the Highlander comes in, offering form and function for families on the go. Though wrapped in new sheetmetal, the most significant changes are inside the SUV. The Highlander is 2.75 inches longer and 0.6 inches wider than the last generation, which makes the cabin roomier. The seat placement has been adjusted to add slightly more leg and hip room in the first two rows. The biggest gain is in the third row, where 3.3 inches of additional hip space allow Toyota to wedge in another passenger. The 2014 Highlander seats eight, one more than in 2013. We maneuvered our five-foot, nine-inch frame back there, and the third row is indeed tolerable even for an adult, though for longer trips this row should be limited to younger children.
The expanded size also adds more room in the cargo hold, which now measures 13.8 cubic feet, about one-third more volume than previously. The cargo area is 6.1 inches longer, making for easier transport of things like strollers and golf clubs.
Up front, the dashboard has been considerably upgraded from the 2013 model’s, making the old one look dated, even cheap. The 2014 Highlander makes extensive use of soft-touch materials—which look and feel much more upscale—and it has a new three-spoke steering wheel and a classier, more informative gauge cluster. Toyota also added a clever little shelf below the dash, perfect for smartphones, loose change and keys.
The infotainment system is modestly improved. The basic touchscreen is 6.1 inches (as in 2013), and an eight-inch screen comes with the up-level trims. They are flanked by “capacitive touch” buttons, which are a nice blend between traditional switches and button-less touch spots like the ones on Cadillac’s CUE. Still, the Toyota interface sometimes requires multiple touches to get the system to do what you want; once you adjust, it’s easy to toggle through the screens for tasks like setting the navigation system. There are also plenty of old-fashioned, easy-to-use knobs for things like temperature control. All models are now equipped with a back-up camera, and a new generation Entune audio system has better voice recognition that Toyota claims can adapt to the way the driver speaks.
The new Highlander is big on communication, introducing a feature called Easy Speak, which projects the driver's voice from a microphone in front through the back speakers. Think about that: you can referee toddlers or teenagers without raising you voice. It works reasonably well, though on one occasion we did experience a bit of microphone reverb.
In keeping with the family-oriented nature of the SUV, Toyota added a range of safety options, including parking aids, blind-spot detection, a lane departure warning system with automatic high beam headlights, and a radar-based pre-collision detecting system.
“We like to call this technology for families’ sake,” says Bill Fay, Toyota vice president and general manager.
While the interior is indeed a place of change, Toyota redesigned the exterior as well, in a bid to attract more male customers. There is a new trapezoidal grille outlined and bisected in chrome. The front bumper is more prominent and protrudes more noticeably, and the headlights are elongated and more elegant. The sides are more attractive, with chiseled cuts low in the door panels, and the look is capped with new, bulging taillights.
All of these changes do make for a nicer, more premium-feeling SUV. Once behind the wheel, however, the 2014 Highlander feels much like its predecessor. It gets a new six-speed automatic (replacing the old five-speed), while the engines are carry-over; the 2.7-liter in-line four-cylinder, rated 185 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque and the 3.5-liter V-6, rated 270 hp and 248 lb-ft. The four-cylinder comes strictly with front-wheel drive, while the V-6 has an all-wheel drive option. The AWD unit is new to the Highlander (it debuted on the 2013 RAV4), and it is an on-demand system, replacing the previous full-time setup. There is also a hybrid model, which teams the V-6 engine with three generators powered by a nickel-metal hydride battery pack to produce 280 hp, while achieving a combined rating of 28 mpg.
We sampled all three models on the winding, twisty roads around Carmel, California. We selected a high-end XLE model for our first drive, which took place under clear, blue skies, perfect weather for a family vacation. Rather than use the center console for juice boxes, we drop a chicken, egg, and cheese breakfast burrito into the center console, and set off. We maneuver though Carmel out to the famous California Highway 1, and soon we’re cruising along the coast, the Pacific Ocean lapping to our right. Though the Highlander has respectable acceleration—which paid off when we had to cut into traffic in town—it’s most at home driving in a relaxed manner. It has the elevated road view of an SUV, while still maintaining the comfortable driving character of a car. That makes sense, since the Highlander was one of the original unibody SUVs, and the new generation uses a modified version of the Camry’s architecture. The rear suspension is new, with a double-wishbone configuration in place of the old multilink setup. It’s said to track better around corners, though only the most astute of test drivers could truly detect major differences. The Highlander maintains its composure even during the occasional aggressive turn or maneuver, and it conveys a buttoned-down sense of security at all times.
We had similar thoughts when driving the four-cylinder model, which provides ample power despite being charged with the task of propelling a beefy SUV. The four-cylinder didn’t even wheeze when we ascended into the hills around Carmel and Monterey, passing near Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. The chassis again impressed, and despite the challenging nature of the roads—more demanding than most family errands or vacations would require—the Highlander remained unfazed. A drive in the hybrid model cemented the Highlander’s image as a solid family product. Once again piloting up Highway 1, the hybrid motored along serenely, achieving about 30 mpg, according to the instantaneous reading from the dash. We even coasted along in all-electric mode once back inside the hotel compound, which is possible if you light-foot it under 20 mph.
The 2014 Highlander is a modest evolution, an enhancement or refinement of a product that already works well in the marketplace. Toyota hopes the changes result in a 10-percent sales increase next year, which is reasonable though the SUV market has never been more competitive. With a range of price points, starting at $30,075 for the base model and stretching up to the hybrid, (starting at $48,160), the Highlander faces off against the Nissan Pathfinder, Ford Explorer, Honda Pilot, Mazda CX-9, Chevrolet Traverse and Hyundai Santa Fe. After spending a full day driving the new Highlander, we can affirm it is competitive in this segment, and yes, it is absolutely family friendly—even more so than before—if that’s possible. The changes are not groundbreaking, but they’re enough to keep pace with the crowd and maintain sales momentum. That should be more than enough to satisfy Toyota executives and their loyal customers.

2014 Toyota Highlander

Base Price: $30,075
Powertrain
Engines: 2.7-liter DOHC 16-valve I-4; 3.5-liter DOHC 24-valve V-6
Power: 185 hp @ 5800 rpm; 270 hp @ 6200 rpm; 231 hp @ 5800 rpm (hybrid); 280 net hp
Torque: 184 lb-ft @ 4200 rpm; 248 lb-ft @ 4700 rpm; 215 lb-ft @ 4800 rpm (hybrid)
Transmission: 6-speed automatic/CVT (hybrid)
Drive: Front or all-wheel drive
Measurements
L x W x H: 191 in x 75.8 in x 68.1 in
Headroom: 40.7 in/39.9 in/35.9 in (without moonroof)
Legroom: 44.2 in/38.4 in/27.7 in
Cargo Capacity: 83.7 cu ft/42.3 cu ft/13.8 cu ft
Curb Weight: 4134 lbs (base); 4861 (hybrid)
EPA Rating (City/Highway): 20/25 mpg I-4, FWD; 19/25 mpg V-6, FWD; 18/24 mpg V-6, AWD; 27/28 mpg (hybrid)
2014 Honda Pilot IIHS During Crash
Even a year and a half after the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) introduced its small front overlap test, manufacturers continue to struggle in the stringent test. In the latest round of testing on midsize SUVs, all but three models tested failed to achieve even an “Acceptable” rating. The Toyota Highlander managed to eke out an “Acceptable” score, while only the Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain earned “Good” ratings. That meant only those three receive the Top Safety Pick+ designation.
2014 Toyota Highlander Front Three Quarters From Above
The Toyota Highlander is totally redesigned for 2014, and we now have pricing for the redone crossover following its official debut at the 2013 New York auto show earlier this year. The standard 2014 Toyota Highlander LE starts at $30,060 (including destination charges), and the 2014 Toyota Highlander Hybrid starts at $48,160 for the Limited model. These prices are up for all Highlander models compared with last year, with the increase ranging from $195 to $1700, depending on trim level, to reflect some features newly available on this redesigned three-row crossover.
2014 Toyota Highlander Front Three Quarters1
Along with the debut of its 2014 Highlander crossover, Toyota will be expanding production capability of its Princeton, Indiana plant with a $30 million investment and 200 new jobs.

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New 2014 Toyota Highlander Pricing

Fair Market Price what is this?
$26,673
Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price
$29,215
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Certified Pre-Owned 2014 Toyota Highlander Pricing

Certified Pre Owned Price
$29,700

Used 2014 Toyota Highlander Values / Pricing

Suggested Retail Price
$29,215

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2014 Toyota Highlander
2014 Toyota Highlander
LE FWD 4-Dr Sport Utility I4
20 MPG City | 25 MPG Hwy
Top Ranking Vehicles - MPG
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2014 Toyota Highlander
2014 Toyota Highlander
LE FWD 4-Dr Sport Utility I4
$29,215
Top Ranking Vehicles - Price
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2014 Toyota Highlander
2014 Toyota Highlander
LE FWD 4-Dr Sport Utility I4
185hp
Top Ranking Vehicles - Horsepower

2014 Toyota Highlander Specifications

Quick Glance:
Engine
2.7L I4Engine
Fuel economy City:
20 MPG
Fuel economy Highway:
25 MPG
Horsepower:
185 hp @ 5800rpm
Torque:
184 ft lb of torque @ 4200rpm
  • Air Conditioning
  • Power Windows
  • Power Locks
  • Power Seats (optional)
  • Steering Wheel Tilt
  • Cruise Control
  • Sunroof (optional)
  • ABS
  • Stabilizer Front
  • Stabilizer RearABS
  • Electronic Traction Control
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Locking Differential (optional)
  • Limited Slip Differential (optional)
  • Airbag Driver
  • Airbag Passenger
  • Airbag Side Front
  • Airbag Side Rear (optional)
  • Radio
  • CD Player
  • CD Changer (optional)
  • DVD (optional)
  • Navigation (optional)
Vehicle
36,000 miles / 36 months
Powertrain
60,000 miles / 60 months
Corrosion
Unlimited miles / 60 months
Roadside
25,000 miles / 24 months
Maintenance
25,000 miles / 24 months
Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:40
Component
SEAT BELTS:REAR
Summary
Toyota is recalling certain model year 2014 Highlander vehicles manufactured November 20, 2013, through January 18, 2014. The third row middle seat belt assembly might not have been properly secured to the vehicle floor anchorage during vehicle assembly. As such, these vehicles fail to conform to the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 210, "Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages."
Consequences
A seat belt that is not properly secured to its anchorage could increase the risk of injury to an occupant in the event of a crash.
Remedy
Toyota will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the third row middle seat belt anchor, and, if necessary, properly secure it to the vehicle floor anchorage, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in March 2014. Owners may contact Toyota at 1-800-331-4331.
Potential Units Affected
7,067
Notes
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing


Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:40
Component
SEATS:MID/REAR ASSEMBLY
Summary
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain model year 2014 Highlander vehicles manufactured April 23, 2014, through April 29, 2014. The affected vehicles may have a second row right-hand seat assembly that does not fully lock into the inboard seat track in the forward first, second and third adjusting positions. As such, these vehicles do not conform to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 207, "Seating Systems."
Consequences
If the seat does not fully lock into the inboard seat track, the seat could move, increasing the risk of injury to an occupant in the event of a crash.
Remedy
Toyota will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and, if necessary, replace the second row right-hand seat, free of charge. The recall began in July 2014. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-800-331-4331.
Potential Units Affected
231
Notes
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing


Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:40
Component
SEAT BELTS
Summary
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain model year 2014 Highlander and Highlander Hybrid vehicles. The affected vehicles may have improper software installed in the air bag electronic control unit (ECU) for the operation of the front passenger seat belt force limiter, and as a result, the force limiter may use the restraint setting designed for small occupants, such as those that weigh approximately 110 pounds, for all occupants regardless of their size. As such, some of these vehicles do not conform to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 208, "Occupant Crash Protection."
Consequences
In the event of a crash, a larger front passenger seat occupant may not be properly restrained and be at an increased risk of injury.
Remedy
Toyota will notify owners, and dealers will install a software update in the air bag electronic control unit, free of charge. The recall began on June 27, 2014. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-800-331-4331.
Potential Units Affected
48,840
Notes
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing


Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:40
Component
ELECTRICAL SYSTEM: SOFTWARE
Summary
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain model year 2014 Highlander and Highlander Hybrid vehicles. The affected vehicles may have improper software installed in the air bag electronic control unit (ECU) for the operation of the front passenger seat belt force limiter, and as a result, the force limiter may use the restraint setting designed for small occupants, such as those that weigh approximately 110 pounds, for all occupants regardless of their size. As such, some of these vehicles do not conform to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 208, "Occupant Crash Protection."
Consequences
In the event of a crash, a larger front passenger seat occupant may not be properly restrained and be at an increased risk of injury.
Remedy
Toyota will notify owners, and dealers will install a software update in the air bag electronic control unit, free of charge. The recall began on June 27, 2014. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-800-331-4331.
Potential Units Affected
48,840
Notes
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing


Recall Date
12-31-1969:21:35:40
Component
FUEL SYSTEM, GASOLINE:DELIVERY:HOSES, LINES/PIPING, AND FITTINGS
Summary
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain model year 2014 Toyota Avalon, Camry, Sienna, and Highlander and model year 2015 Lexus RX350 vehicles. Fuel may leak from the one of the fuel delivery pipes in the engine compartment.
Consequences
A fuel leak in the presence of an ignition source increases the risk of a fire.
Remedy
Toyota will notify owners, and dealers will replace any of the suspect fuel delivery pipes free of charge. The recall is expected to begin during November 2014. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-800-331-4331.
Potential Units Affected
20,000
Notes
Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing


NHTSA Rating Front Driver
Not Rated
NHTSA Rating Front Passenger
Not Rated
NHTSA Rating Front Side
Not Rated
NHTSA Rating Rear Side
Not Rated
NHTSA Rating Overall
Not Rated
NHTSA Rating Rollover
Not Rated
IIHS Front Moderate Overlap
Good
IIHS Overall Side Crash
Good
IIHS Best Pick
1
IIHS Rear Crash
Good
IIHS Roof Strength
Good
IIHS Front Small Overlap
Acceptable

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5-Year Total Cost to Own For The 2014 Toyota Highlander

Depreciation
37.2%
Loss in Value + Expenses
= 5 Year Cost to Own
Depreciation
$13,936
37.2%
Insurance
$5,940
15.9%
Fuel Cost
$11,067
29.5%
Financing
$3,295
8.8%
Maintenance
$2,130
5.7%
Repair Costs
$642
1.7%
State Fees
$455
1.2%
Five Year Cost of Ownership: $37,465 What's This?
Value Rating: Excellent