2019 Toyota Highlander Review, Release Date, Price
The 2019 Toyota Highlander remains the best option for families looking for a safe and comfortable 8-passenger crossover SUV, but one that isn’t boring and has modern features. This year the Highlander is once again ready to face competitors such as the Chevrolet Traverse, Honda Pilot and Nissan Pathfinder. To achieve this, the Highlander offers an array of standards driver-safety assists including adaptive cruise control, pre-collision warning and braking and lane-departure warning. And while its infotainment system lacks Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, they are up-to-date in every other aspect.
Only minor styling revisions for 2019
The 2019 Toyota Highlander LE uses a 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine making 185 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. Mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive, it gets 22 combined miles per gallon. The 3.5-liter V6 with direct injection makes 295 hp and 263 lb-ft of torque. It pairs with an eight-speed automatic and standard on all other trims and optional on the LE. All-wheel drive (AWD) is an option on all Highlander V6 models.
- 185 horsepower @ 5,800 rpm
- 184 lb-ft of torque @ 4,200 rpm
- EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/24 mpg
- 295 horsepower @ 6,600 rpm
- 263 lb-ft of torque @ 4,700 rpm
- Zero to 60 mph: 7.0 sec
- Zero to 100 mph: 18.4 sec
- Standing 1/4-mile: 15.6 sec @ 93 mph
- EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/27 mpg (FWD), 20/26 mpg (AWD)
Standard & Optional Equipment
The 2019 Toyota Highlander lineup includes LE, LE Plus, XLE, SE, Limited and Limited Platinum models.
The base LE starts with 18-inch alloy wheels, heated mirrors, a windshield wiper de-icer, rear privacy glass, a rearview camera, rear air conditioning, a height-adjustable driver’s seat, a sliding and reclining 60/40-split second-row seat, a reclining 60/40-split third-row seat, a 6.1-inch touchscreen, five USB ports, Bluetooth, a six-speaker sound system with a CD player and Toyota Safety Sense that includes automatic high beams, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, and forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking.
The LE Plus adds the V6 engine, a height-adjustable power liftgate, a flip-up rear window, foglights, tri-zone automatic climate control, upgraded upholstery and trim, a power-adjustable driver’s seat, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert systems, a high-resolution 8-inch touchscreen, satellite and HD radio, and a variety of smartphone-connection apps.
The XLE adds a sunroof, roof rails, keyless entry and ignition, an upgraded instrument panel, leather upholstery, heated front seats, a power-adjustable passenger seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, second-row window sunshades, a 110-volt power outlet, a navigation system, and Driver Easy Speak, which carries the driver’s voice through the rear speakers to distant passengers.
The 2019 Toyota Highlander SE is similar to the XLE but with a sport theme, larger 19-inch wheels, LED running lights, and sportier suspension tuning and styling elements.
The Limited build on the XLE but also adds LED running lights, different 19-inch wheels, rear parking sensors, a rear cargo cover, heated and ventilated front seats, driver-seat memory settings, second-row captain’s chairs, and a 12-speaker JBL audio system. The Limited Platinum adds a panoramic sunroof, automatic wipers, a surround-view parking camera system, front parking sensors, Safety Connect emergency communications, a heated steering wheel, and heated second-row seats.
The 2019 Toyota Highlander cabin is refined and quiet, with acoustic glass and floor insulation. Almost luxurious. The dashboard is flat and rich. The lines and textures mostly mix well, although they can get busy, which makes the cabin feel less calm than it might. The instrument panel has a light touch of truck in it, in the SE model, which goes away as soon as the premium touchscreen comes. Bless those big knobs on the climate control. And big gauges. And no less than five USB ports, and many cubbies, plus an opening storage box on the dash.
The Highlander long wheelbase allows good room inside, but that’s not quite long enough for an adult-sized third row. Most models have a sliding second-row bench that splits 60/40 and seats three, to make eight passengers; but the Limiteds offer captain’s chairs, or seven passengers.
The front seats are good, but only the Limited model gets power adjustment; it’s an option with the others. Another option is cooled seats, if you don’t mind feeling hardware through the seat. The so-counted three-seat third row is very small, with little headroom or legroom, kids only. However it is possible for two adults to reach the seats and fit into them. But the third row folds flat, so if you don’t need the space for children, there’s 42.3 cubic feet behind the second row; and with that row folded it’s 83.7 behind the front row, enough room for bunk beds.
The optional sunroof takes up headroom, but you can recline the second row and look up at the sky.
The 2019 Toyota Highlander Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP):
- LE: $32,375
- LE Plus: $37,305
- XLE: $40,265
- SE: $41,485
- Limited: $43,475
- Limited Platinum: $46,595