2023 Toyota Highlander: 6 Things You Really Need to Know

Does the 2023 Toyota Highlander offer anything to make it better than the 2022 version? This three-row midsize brings upgrades for the comfort, technology, and power to be better than before. The Highlander is one of the top-selling vehicles in the Toyota lineup. Does the Highlander SUV follow along the same path as some of the other new Toyota models? Let’s find out.

1. The 2023 Toyota Highlander has a cleaner and leaner engine

2023 Toyota Highlander new turbo engine
2023 Toyota Highlander | Toyota

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Toyota gives the new Highlander a 2.4-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine which is brand new. This engine gives you 265 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque, which means you’ll have more torque than what you found in the outgoing V6 model.

Choose either FWD or AWD for the Highlander and feel the smoothness of the 8-speed automatic transmission. You’ll enjoy towing of up to 5,000 pounds along with Trailer Sway Control for the upgraded Toyota SUV.

The fuel mileage rating for this new powertrain is a combined 25 mpg, and this three-row midsize SUV shows a 50% reduction in harmful emissions compared to the outgoing V6 engine.

2. The same hybrid powertrain carried over for the 2023 version of this Toyota SUV

If you want a hybrid SUV, the 2023 Toyota Highlander Hybrid offers a proven powertrain for you. This system gives you a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine and a pair of electric motors. The hybrid model is set up with AWD and delivers 243 horsepower for the drive.

The hybrid version of this Toyota SUV gives you an electric-only driving mode, up to 36 mpg combined, and a tow rating of 3,500 pounds.

Hybrid versions of the Highlander also feature:

  • Dynamic Torque Vectoring
  • Drive Mode Select
  • Driveline Disconnect

The AWD system can send up to 50% of the available torque to the rear wheels, providing the grip desired during your drive.

3. The 2023 Toyota Highlander brings upgraded technology across all trim levels

A blue 2023 Toyota Highlander Hybrid midsize hybrid SUV is parked.
The 2023 Toyota Highlander Hybrid | Toyota

Starting at the top and working our way down, we see a larger 12.3-inch screen for the Platinum and Limited trims. These models also feature a 12.3-inch digital instrument display. You’ll find four different graphic modes for the gauge cluster, which are:

  • Sporty
  • Tough
  • Smart
  • Casual

These top trims of the Highlander also feature power-folding side mirrors, a hands-free power liftgate, a d a new 360-degree camera system.

Turning to the XLE and XSE models, the infotainment and instrument screens are 8-inches in size, with the larger 12.3-inch screens offered as an option. The XSE models ride on 20-inch black wheels and offer a new Cypress Green as an optional color.

The L and LE models of the Highlander SUV give you a 7-inch instrument cluster. If you want to upgrade the sound system, an 11-speaker/1,200-watt JBL system is available.

4. You’ll find ample cargo room in this midsize Toyota SUV

The 2023 Highlander has 16 cubic feet of rear cargo space behind the third row, increasing to 48 cubic feet with the rearmost row folded. Fold both the second and third rows, and open up 84 cubic feet of usable cargo space.

5. What safety features will you find in the 2023 Toyota Highlander?

A gray 2023 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is parked indoors.
The Toyota Highlander Hybrid | Toyota

Several features are meant to keep you safe as part of the latest version of the Toyota Safety Sense package. Some of these are:

  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Automatic high beams
  • Automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection

Move up to the LE trim or higher, and you add:

  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Rear cross-traffic alerts

6. What is the price range for this midsize Toyota SUV?

The 2023 Toyota Highlander L with FWD begins at $37,755, with the Platinum trim with AWD costing $52,560.

Is the 2023 Toyota Highlander a good choice?

A red Toyota Highlander Hybrid is driving on the road.
The Toyota Highlander Hybrid | Toyota

If you’re looking for a midsize SUV with a proven track record of excellence and reliability, the Highlander fits what you desire. This vehicle has been trusted by many families since arriving in the market several years ago. When you want an SUV with a V6 engine in this class, you might need to see what the Kia Telluride or Hyundai Palisade offer.

Next, check out a comparison of two Chevy electric SUVs, or watch the 2023 Toyota Highlander video below:

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