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2014 Toyota Highlander Takes the Hybrid Road to New Heights in L.A.

2014 Toyota Highlander Takes the Hybrid Road to New Heights in L.A.

By Philly Murtha, November 27, 2013
Earlier this year, Toyota showed off the newest generation of its Highlander midsize crossover (CUV) at the New York International Auto Show. This month, the Japanese automaker unveiled the crossover's more fuel-efficient Highlander Hybrid version at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. The new Highlander Hybrid will reach dealer showrooms in February of next year with a starting MSRP of $48,160 (including $860 destination fee).

The third-generation Highlander Hybrid, which seats 7 passengers in 3 rows, has the same new exterior design and features as the conventionally powered Highlander, which has a starting MSRP of less than $33,000 (including destination charge). Both the gasoline-powered and hybrid Highlanders are 3 inches longer and 1/2-inch wider than the 2013 models.

The on-demand all-wheel drive (AWD) Highlander Hybrid model's Hybrid Synergy Drive system pairs a 3.5-liter V-6 gasoline engine with a high-torque electric drive motor-generator for additional power and fuel efficiency. The Hybrid version also receives enhancements to its suspension for better ride and handling performance, and optimized electric power steering.

Like its gasoline-powered counterpart, the 2014 Highlander Hybrid offers a premium interior with numerous comfort, convenience and technology features. Some of the changes in the 2014 Highlander Hybrid model include:
A newly-designed 4.2-inch color LCD driver information display that monitors energy usage for maximum efficiency.
Perforated leather-trim seats; leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knobs; second-row captain's chairs.
Rear cargo area behind the third row has 34% more storage space than the previous model.
Premium JBL audio and navigation systems.

Additional features available as options include: radar cruise control; automatic high-beam headlamps; moonroof; heated steering wheel; and a Blu-Ray rear entertainment system.

Standard safety systems in the new Highlander Hybrid and its gasoline-powered counterpart include: 8 air bags; a special system that features traction control and electronic brake assist; ABS; and Toyota's Smart Stop technology, which is designed to prevent the vehicle from accelerating while the brake pedal is depressed. Also standard on the 2014 Highlander are a rearview camera and hill-start assist. Other new safety features that are available as options include: rear parking sonar, a blind-spot monitor, lane-departure alert; and a pre-collision warning system.

Additional Research:

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