Grand Highlander vs. Highlander: Toyota Family SUVs Compared
“There can only be one,” claims the 1980s cult classic film, Highlander. But according to Toyota, there can actually be two. With the new 2024 Grand Highlander debut last month, Toyota introduced a larger companion to its popular Highlander family SUV. While the two share attributes like styling cues and seating capacities, the Highlander and Grand Highlander have differences far beyond size.
Here’s how these Toyota family SUVs are different from each other.
How much bigger is the Grand Highlander than the Highlander?
The Highlander nameplate has occupied Toyota’s midsize SUV slot for decades. Its three-row configuration and flexible interior have made it popular for families wary of minivan life. And unlike the full-size Sequoia that sits on a truck frame, the Highlander’s car-based architecture has endeared it to drivers who prioritize a smooth ride.
But now the Highlander isn’t alone as Toyota’s three-row crossover offering. The OEM has upped its ante with the new 2024 Grand Highlander — an even larger crossover between the Highlander and Sequoia in Toyota’s SUV lineup.
Both models offer three rows of seating. But the Grand Highlander offers some additional heft. According to Autoblog, it is six inches longer and two inches taller than the Highlander. Those dimensions produce extra cargo capacity, with the Grand Highlander offering 13.2 cubic feet more total capacity than its counterpart. The family hauler will have 97.5 cubic feet of cargo space with its rear seats folded down.
Styling Differentiates Toyota’s SUVs
Rather than just lengthen an existing model, Toyota took the opportunity to give the Grand Highlander its own style. The Grand Highlander has a sharper and more aggressive overall look than the Highlander. As Autoblog points out, the larger model’s front end even has styling tie-ins to the rugged Toyota 4Runner. The more familiar Highlander has curvier, softer features by contrast.
While these styling differences are numerous, their merit depends on the eye of the beholder.
More power available in Grand Highlander than in Highlander
The 2024 Grand Highlander offers more available power than the smaller SUV. The Highlander offers a choice between a standard 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and a 2.5-liter hybrid system. Autoblog reports that the Grand Highlander will get even more, inheriting an available Hybrid Max powertrain from the Lexus RX500h. This powertrain adds two electric motors to the 2.4-liter hybrid unit to produce 362 horsepower and a 5,000-pound tow rating.
Autoblog indicates that the Grand Highlander may offer the same two base engines as the Highlander — but Toyota has not confirmed these details.
When will the 2024 Grand Highlander be available?
Autoblog’s report states that the 2024 Grand Highlander will be available to purchase sometime in 2024, with more details announced this summer. Toyota has not released information on fuel efficiency, torque numbers, pricing, etc. In the meantime, we can look out for the release of the 2024 Highlander — and whether drivers can expect it to draw any inspiration from its big brother.