Ha ha, you beat me at posting this. I saw it earlier and meant to post it here, but had to go run some errands first.Great piece from Autoblog that answers some of the questions we've been asking here
There is Sequia in the US...So they decided the Highlander should be smaller than the competition, does that mean they have something bigger in the works? After all you will never have too many SUVs in the lineup these days...maybe this time they will finally take the Sequoia more seriously.
If the upcoming RX mid-cycle refresh isn't to my liking, I just may replace my first gen RX with this.Get to know Toyota's redesigned three-row crossover
It's not just for families
Typically, three-row crossovers are thought of as minivan replacements for families that don't want to admit they need a minivan. But this time around, Toyota says it wanted to design the Highlander to appeal to more than just families. Empty-nesters and young, active buyers are now included in the demographics Toyota plans to target. That's why the Highlander has dropped its utilitarian styling in favor of a sleeker, sportier look.
In addition to its new sheetmetal, the biggest news about the 2020 Highlander is that it's now built using Toyota's latest TNGA flexible architecture. So even though you wouldn't realize it at first glance, the Prius, C-HR, Corolla, RAV4, Camry, and Avalon are all built using the same architecture. The advantage of TNGA is that it reduces complexity, production costs, and most importantly, weight. The result is increased fuel efficiency, better handling, and improved ride quality.
The third-generation Highlander was already pretty big, but measured against competitors such as the Honda Pilot, it was actually a little small. For 2020, the Highlander has grown, adding 2.4 inches in overall length. Toyota says the added length benefits the cargo area, making the Highlander a more practical hauler for your stuff. And while it's not actually any taller than before, the new Highlander has gotten wider, which should make the cabin more comfortable for passengers.
Pick your powertrain
The 2020 Highlander will be offered with two engine options. The first is a 3.5-liter V-6 that's paired with an eight-speed automatic and carries over from the 2019 model. It's good for 295 hp and 263 lb-ft of torque. With the optional all-wheel-drive system equipped, Toyota says the V-6 should still deliver 21/27/23 mpg city/highway/combined. The second option is a hybrid powertrain that combines a 2.5-liter four-cylinder with an electric motor and a CVT to make 240 hp. At least initially, the hybrid will only be offered with front-wheel drive to reduce cost and maximize fuel efficiency.
If there's one thing the Toyota Highlander needed, it was a tech-feature makeover. For 2020, Toyota delivered. The Highlander finally offers support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and even though an 8.0-inch touchscreen is still standard, an optional 12.3-inch touchscreen is also available. There are also three USB ports up front, a digital rearview mirror, two USB ports in the second row, and plenty of optional comfort features such as heated second-row seats.
Even though most mainstream automakers offer advanced driver-assist and safety features on their vehicles these days, Toyota is one of the few that makes them standard. So as with the Corolla and RAV4, even if you buy a base-model Highlander, it will come with blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and adaptive cruise control with steering assist. Additional features such as a surround-view camera system are offered on higher trim levels.
It arrives the end of this year
Consumers will have to wait a little while to get their hands on a 2020 Highlander. Deliveries of the V-6 model should begin in December of this year, with the hybrid following a few months later in early 2020. Expect pricing to be announced closer to the Highlander's on-sale date.
Now we are waiting either Venza/Harrier type of mid sporty SUV or we are waiting for the next generation Sienna, either will be fine
How would you feel if the Venza successor or North American Harrier weren't a Toyota per se, but a rebadged Mazda in the vein of the North American Yaris? The initial and followup news releases on the upcoming Mazda Toyota Manufacturing U.S.A. assembly plant in Huntsville, Alabama cites a "Mazda crossover model that will be newly introduced to the North American market" starting in 2021.I wish we had a timeline for that. I will be car shopping at the end of the year, and this vehicle sounds appealing in theory.