2018 Toyota Highlander Exterior

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The 2018 Toyota Highlander offers outstanding style and technology both inside and out. See interior & exterior photos. 2018 Toyota Highlander New features complemented by a lower starting price and streamlined packages. The mid-size 2018 Toyota Highlander offers a complete lineup with a wide variety of finishes and features, two conventional engines.

Probably nothing more than a new color choice or two, following a pretty thorough model-year 2017 freshening. The updates, which included tweaked styling and powertrain upgrades, helped spark an 11 percent jump in sales. They also and positioned this three-row midsize crossover to coast with little additional change until its next full redesign, slated for model-year 2020. That leaves the ’18 Highlander a fine choice in a reliable SUV with seating for up to eight and standard driver aids – including autonomous emergency braking — that earn it top safety ratings.

2018 Toyota Highlander Overview and Price

Why should I wait for the 2018?

Little reason to, really. It’ll be a virtual rerun of the ’17, but it’ll almost certainly cost more. Dimensions and styling won’t change. Powertrains will repeat a selection of gas-only four- and six-cylinder engines and a gas-electric hybrid, which is the most fuel-efficient vehicle in the class. Expect a reprised lineup beginning with the rental-fleet-oriented four-cylinder Base model and ascending through V-6-powered, value-priced LE and LE Plus trims; volume-selling XLE; sporty SE; upscale Limited; and flagship Limited Platinum. The Base model will again be confined to front-wheel drive and the SE to all-wheel drive (AWD). The others will offer a choice of front- or all-wheel drive. Look for the hybrid to return in LE, XLE, Limited, and Limited Platinum form, all with AWD.

A caveat to our statement about waiting for the ’18 Highlander involves an addition to Toyota’s premium Lexus brand. For model-year 2018, the Lexus RX crossover, which is essentially an upscale version of the Highlander, will offer a variant with a third seating row. So if you like Highlander’s ability to carry seven passengers but crave more luxury and prestige, wait for the ’18 Lexus/Toyota lineups to compare these three-row crossover cousins.

Should I buy a 2017 model instead?

Yes, if you’re unexcited about detail changes Toyota might make to the ’18. Buying a ’17 would help you duck inevitable model-year price escalation. And it would get you a crossover that’s the ’18 Highlander’s visual and mechanical duplicate. Updates that came on line with the ’17 include sharper styling front and rear and more standard safety features. A more advanced V-6 and a new transmission furnished additional power and better fuel economy. Addition of the SE model brought marginally sharper handling. And the Hybrid became much more attainable thanks to addition of lower-priced LE and XLE trims. These were the most extensive changes to this popular midsize crossover since model-year 2014, when it was last fully redesigned.

2018 Toyota Highlander Release Date

Rent but don’t buy the underpowered Base model. The V-6 that’s standard on the other gas-only Highlanders delivers more than adequate performance, even if its fuel economy is still midpack. The Hybrid furnishes surprising acceleration and terrific mileage. AWD is standard on the Hybrid and recommended on gas V-6s unless you live where it doesn’t snow. Highlander emphasizes ride comfort over sporty handling, and that should hold for the ’18. The SE’s tauter suspension marginally enhances road manners, but most buyers will probably choose it more for its unique styling details. Top safety ratings and Toyota reliability are selling points for all Highlanders. So is resale value, and the percentage of it you’ll sacrifice by purchasing a ’17 instead of an ’18 will be negligible within just a few years.

20 Photos of the 2018 Toyota Highlander Exterior

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