Is the 2021 Toyota Highlander a Better Deal Than the 2022 Toyota Highlander?

The Toyota Highlander is a favorite SUV and has been for a long time. It’s a three-row midsize SUV with excellent safety ratings, updated technology, and plenty of versatility. If you’re considering buying a Highlander, you may be torn between a new one vs. a used one. While the 2023 model isn’t out yet, the 2021 Toyota Highlander vs. 2022 Toyota Highlander may be one of the biggest decisions you have to make regarding this SUV. Here’s whether you should buy a new or used Highlander.

A silver 2022 Toyota Highlander driving on the highway.
2022 Toyota Highlander | Toyota

How much does the 2021 Toyota Highlander vs. 2022 Toyota Highlander cost?

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The 2022 Toyota Highlander price starts at $36,420 for the base model L. ou’ll get a 3.5-liter V6 engine that makes 295 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque matched to an eight-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel-drive, though you can upgrade to all-wheel-drive. It comes with 18-inch wheels, LED lights, and heated mirrors. It also has keyless entry and ignition, an 8-inch infotainment system, and a six-speaker sound system. In addition, the Highlander is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and has a WiFi hot spot.

According to Edmunds, a 2021 Toyota Highlander price starts at $35,085. This comes with the same 3.5-liter V6 engine that makes 295 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque as in the 2022 Highlander. It’s also matched to an eight-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel-drive, though you can upgrade to all-wheel-drive.

Both the 2021 and 2022 Toyota Highlander are Top Safety Pick+ winners

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The 2022 Toyota Highlander and the 2021 Toyota Highlander both win the highest award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). This is the Top Safety Pick+ and it’s only given to the safest vehicles with the best crash test ratings, safety system scores, and headlights. On top of that, they’re both loaded with safety features.

To win a Top Safety Pick+ award, a vehicle must have good crash test ratings in all major categories. It also has to have superior or advanced safety systems and acceptable or good headlights standard on all models.  

Both Highlanders have Toyota’s important safety features

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If you’re looking for a super safe Toyota Highlander, you can’t go wrong with either the 2022 or the 2021 Toyota Highlander. Both of them are loaded with Toyota’s suite of safety features known as Safety Sense in the 2021 model and Safety Sense 2.5+ in the 2022 model.

Both of these safety systems include the same safety features. They each have frontal collision mitigation, which will warn you of a potential collision. In some cases, it will also apply brakes. Safety Sense and Safety Sense 2.5+ also include adaptive cruise control, which keeps a safe distance between your SUV and the one in front of you. Both models also have automatic high beams, a lane keeping system, and a traffic sign reader.

The decision between the 2021 Toyota Highlander vs. 2022 Toyota Highlander is a tough one. Both of these SUVs are similarly priced and equipped. While it used to be true that used SUVs were almost always cheaper than new, a shortage of new vehicles has driven up the price of used vehicles. The best Toyota Highlander may be the most affordable model that you can find.

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