How Reliable Is the Toyota Highlander?

The Toyota Highlander is one of the most popular SUVs on the road. It’s one of Toyota’s top sellers this year, despite not changing much since the latest generation was introduced in 2019. But does its popularity, its seven-seaters size, and overall comfort make the Totoya Highlander a reliable SUV worth buying?

How does J.D. Power determine its reliability ratings?

The best Toyota SUVs for highway fuel economy
The Toyota Highlander SUV in silver | Toyota

J.D. Power rates vehicles on a 100-point score based on thousands of opinions from verified owners. It measures the levels of defects, malfunctions, and design flaws that owners report. It doesn’t stop at just the powertrain, but rates the infotainment system and other parts of a vehicle. However, J.D. Power isn’t the only publication that tests reliability. Consumer Reports tests vehicles, too, and asks its members to report serious problems they’ve had.  

What the 2022 Highlander’s reliability ratings mean

A silver 2022 Toyota Highlander driving down a winding road. The Highlander rates above average for reliability.
2022 Toyota Highlander | Toyota

When you’re looking for a reliable SUV, it’s hard to find one that gets higher rankings. The Toyota Highlander is one of Toyota’s most reliable vehicles, and that’s saying a lot. The Highlander earns a “great” rating from J.D. Power. That’s one below J.D. Power’s “best” ranking, but it means that the SUV has fewer problems than most SUVs. Consumer Reports, too, lauds the Highlander’s reliability, despite the one recall from Toyota. The Highlander is also a great SUV for teen drivers.

What do owners say?

Owners appreciate the high quality interior of the Highlander
The 2022 Highlander Platinum interior | Toyota

At J.D. Power, owners appreciate the Highlander’s high-quality materials. And, indeed, the Highlander, even in the base model, has nice cloth seats and high-quality dash materials. Owners also liked the sound of the motor, and at the same time the quietness of the cabin. However, the smallish third row was not just hard to get into but not super comfy. Those owners’ issues could be addressed with the highly-anticipated 2023 Grand Highlander, which is expected to be slightly longer.

What was new for 2022

The Toyota Highlander reliability ranks high, and it has a spacious interior.
The rear seats fold flat in the Toyota Highlander | Toyota

In 2022, Toyota’s Safety Sense is now standard. Toyota’s suite of safety tools includes active safety systems such as automatic braking in certain circumstances. The L is the base version and it starts at $35,205. The Highlander Hybrid Platinum is the most expensive at $50,960. The mid-level XLE model is super popular for offering a lot

The Highlander started as the Toyota version of the Lexus RX as a 2001 model. It was a revolutionary at the time because, unlike the 4Runner and other SUVs at the time, it was a unibody SUV that was designed for on-road comfort, despite having a four-wheel drive option. Toyota released the second generation as a 2009 model. The third generation launched in 2019. The Highlander can also be ordered as a hybrid that includes all-wheel drive.

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