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May 2017: Toyota Motor North America

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Toyota Motor North America Reports U.S. Sales for May 2017

  • Total TMNA, Toyota and Lexus divisions set May sales record light trucks
  • Toyota division SUVs up nearly 20 percent
  • Lexus NX sees new best-ever May, up 24.3 percent

PLANO, Texas, June 1, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) Inc., today reported its U.S. May 2017 sales of 218,248 units, a decrease of 0.5 percent from May 2016 on a volume basis. With one more selling day in May 2017 compared to May 2016, sales were down 4.5 percent on a daily selling rate (DSR) basis. 

Toyota division posted May 2017 sales of 192,847 units, up 0.1 percent on a volume basis, and down 3.9 percent on a DSR basis.   

"Although down from last year, the auto industry is still enjoying a solid year in 2017, with light trucks continuing to shine," said Jack Hollis, group vice president and general manager, Toyota division. "We continue to see the SUV segment leading the way, with a best-ever May for RAV4, Highlander, and overall light truck for the Toyota division, where inventory remains at healthy levels for our customers during the summer buying season. We are also thrilled at how well the market is accepting our newest model, the C-HR, with its first full month of sales in May, as our dealers have started to build some inventory. So far, we are seeing strong interest from a younger demographic for the C-HR, which is exciting."

Lexus posted sales of 25,401 vehicles in May 2017, down 4.8 percent on a volume basis, and down 8.6 percent on a DSR basis. 

"As we press further into 2017, Luxury Utility Vehicles continue to lead Lexus sales, with a best-ever May for the NX and our total LUV lineup," said Jeff Bracken, Lexus group vice president and general manager. "But continued interest in utility vehicles is not our only news—sales of the LC 500 and LC 500h kicked-off in May to a great start, exceeding our expectations and allowing our new LC owners to experience amazing." 

May 2017 Highlights:

  • Camry posts sales of 32,547 units
  • Total TMNA, Toyota, and Lexus divisions all post new May record for light truck sales
  • TMNA light trucks sales up 12.4 percent
  • Toyota division light truck up more than 13 percent
  • C-HR posts first full month of sales with 1,848 units
  • RAV4 sales rise nearly 19 percent; a best-ever May
  • Highlander up 22.5; a best-ever May
  • 4Runner up more than 6 percent
  • Tacoma up nearly 7 percent
  • Tundra up 9.6 percent
  • Lexus division LUV sales up 7.5 percent
  • NX sets new best-ever May, volume up 24.3 percent, and up 19.3 on DSR basis
  • LX up almost 38 percent on volume, and up 32.4 percent on a DSR basis

*Note:  Unless otherwise stated, all figures reflect unadjusted raw sales volume

TOYOTA  U.S. SALES SUMMARY

MAY 2017

 

-- CURRENT MONTH --

-- CALENDAR YEAR TO DATE --     

                 
 

2017

2016

DSR %

VOL %

2017

2016

DSR %

VOL %

TOTAL TOYOTA

218,248

219,339

-4.5

-0.5

952,785

999,545

-4.7

-4.7

TOTAL TOYOTA DIV

192,847

192,657

-3.9

0.1

843,423

873,760

-3.5

-3.5

TOTAL LEXUS

25,401

26,682

-8.6

-4.8

109,362

125,785

-13.1

-13.1

                 

YARIS IA (INCL SCI IA)

3,444

3,056

8.2

12.7

15,758

13,488

16.8

16.8

YARIS LIFTBACK

852

1,236

-33.8

-31.1

6,138

5,284

16.2

16.2

TOTAL YARIS

4,296

4,292

-3.9

0.1

21,896

18,772

16.6

16.6

iQ

0

1

-100

-100

0

5

-100

-100

xD

0

0

0

0

0

8

-100

-100

xB

0

135

-100

-100

0

2,553

-100

-100

tC

10

1,043

-99.1

-99

166

4,881

-96.6

-96.6

COROLLA IM (INCL SCI IM)

1,995

1,743

9.9

14.5

9,312

7,511

24

24

COROLLA SEDAN

30,942

34,872

-14.8

-11.3

136,164

151,243

-10

-10

TOTAL COROLLA

32,937

36,615

-13.6

-10

145,476

158,754

-8.4

-8.4

86 (INCL FR-S)

680

681

-4.1

-0.1

3,101

3,095

0.2

0.2

MIRAI

162

40

288.8

305

579

178

225.3

225.3

AVALON

2,872

3,779

-27

-24

14,215

20,013

-29

-29

PRIUS

10,022

12,517

-23.1

-19.9

46,364

56,378

-17.8

-17.8

CAMRY

32,547

36,916

-15.4

-11.8

147,434

167,200

-11.8

-11.8

TOTAL TOYOTA DIV. CAR

83,526

96,019

-16.5

-13

379,231

431,837

-12.2

-12.2

                 

CT

825

797

-0.6

3.5

3,311

3,730

-11.2

-11.2

IS

2,367

2,879

-21.1

-17.8

10,225

14,351

-28.8

-28.8

RC

517

823

-39.7

-37.2

2,600

4,505

-42.3

-42.3

ES

4,228

5,373

-24.5

-21.3

17,134

22,833

-25

-25

GS

615

1,111

-46.9

-44.6

2,907

6,101

-52.4

-52.4

LS

317

712

-57.3

-55.5

1,555

2,349

-33.8

-33.8

LC

419

0

0

0

419

0

0

0

LFA

0

0

0

0

0

5

-100

-100

TOTAL LEXUS CAR

9,288

11,695

-23.8

-20.6

38,151

53,874

-29.2

-29.2

TOTAL TOYOTA CAR

92,814

107,714

-17.3

-13.8

417,382

485,711

-14.1

-14.1

                 

SIENNA

10,434

11,485

-12.8

-9.2

46,696

56,809

-17.8

-17.8

C-HR

1,848

0

0

0

2,398

0

0

0

RAV4

38,356

32,261

14.1

18.9

150,646

138,535

8.7

8.7

FJ CRUISER

0

2

-100

-100

2

6

-66.7

-66.7

VENZA

0

31

-100

-100

11

503

-97.8

-97.8

HIGHLANDER

18,115

14,783

17.6

22.5

82,738

68,493

20.8

20.8

4RUNNER

11,014

10,352

2.1

6.4

53,098

46,058

15.3

15.3

SEQUOIA

964

1,126

-17.8

-14.4

5,349

5,303

0.9

0.9

LAND CRUISER

259

315

-21.1

-17.8

1,292

1,457

-11.3

-11.3

TOTAL TOYOTA DIV. SUV

70,556

58,870

15.1

19.9

295,534

260,355

13.5

13.5

                 

TACOMA

17,654

16,544

2.4

6.7

78,153

79,226

-1.4

-1.4

TUNDRA

10,677

9,739

5.2

9.6

43,809

45,533

-3.8

-3.8

TOTAL TOYOTA DIV. PICKUP

28,331

26,283

3.5

7.8

121,962

124,759

-2.2

-2.2

TOTAL TOYOTA DIV. TRUCK

109,321

96,638

8.6

13.1

464,192

441,923

5

5

                 

NX

5,009

4,031

19.3

24.3

21,426

19,221

11.5

11.5

RX

8,849

8,804

-3.5

0.5

38,329

41,367

-7.3

-7.3

GX

1,851

1,859

-4.4

-0.4

9,157

9,052

1.2

1.2

LX

404

293

32.4

37.9

2,299

2,271

1.2

1.2

TOTAL LEXUS TRUCK

16,113

14,987

3.2

7.5

71,211

71,911

-1

-1

TOTAL TOYOTA TRUCK

125,434

111,625

7.9

12.4

535,403

513,834

4.2

4.2

Selling Days

25

24

   

126

126

   

DSR = Daily Selling Rate

               
   

*NA Built Vehicles 

TOYOTA  U.S. SALES SUMMARY

 

MAY, 2017

 

-- CURRENT MONTH --

-- CALENDAR YEAR TO DATE --

                 
 

2017

2016

DSR %

VOL %

2017

2016

DSR %

VOL %

COROLLA

30,942

34,872

-14.8

-11.3

136,164

151,243

-10

-10

CAMRY

32,547

36,916

-15.4

-11.8

147,434

167,200

-11.8

-11.8

AVALON

2,872

3,779

-27

-24

14,215

20,013

-29

-29

YARIS IA (INCL SCI IA)

3,444

3,056

8.2

12.7

15,758

13,488

16.8

16.8

RAV4

17,580

17,641

-4.3

-0.3

70,483

77,173

-8.7

-8.7

VENZA

0

31

-100

-100

11

501

-97.8

-97.8

HIGHLANDER

18,115

14,783

17.6

22.5

82,738

68,493

20.8

20.8

SIENNA

10,434

11,485

-12.8

-9.2

46,696

56,809

-17.8

-17.8

SEQUOIA

964

1,126

-17.8

-14.4

5,349

5,303

0.9

0.9

TACOMA

17,654

16,544

2.4

6.7

78,153

79,226

-1.4

-1.4

TUNDRA

10,677

9,739

5.2

9.6

43,809

45,533

-3.8

-3.8

ES

3,335

3,532

-9.4

-5.6

12,864

11,906

8

8

RX

8,301

8,550

-6.8

-2.9

35,626

38,814

-8.2

-8.2

                 

TOTAL

156,865

162,054

-7.1

-3.2

689,300

735,702

-6.3

-6.3

N.A VEHICLES % OF TOTAL

71.9%

73.9%

   

72.3%

73.6%

   
                 

TOYOTA DIV. IMPORT CAR

13,721

17,396

-24.3

-21.1

65,660

79,893

-17.8

-17.8

LEXUS IMPORT CAR

5,953

8,163

-30

-27.1

25,287

41,968

-39.7

-39.7

TOYOTA DIV NA BUILT CARS

69,805

78,623

-14.8

-11.2

313,571

351,944

-10.9

-10.9

LEXUS NA BUILT CARS

3,335

3,532

-9.4

-5.6

12,864

11,906

8

8

TOTAL TOYOTA CARS

92,814

107,714

-17.3

-13.8

417,382

485,711

-14.1

-14.1

                 

TOYOTA DIV. IMPORT TRUCK

33,897

25,289

28.7

34

136,953

108,885

25.8

25.8

LEXUS IMPORT TRUCK

7,812

6,437

16.5

21.4

35,585

33,097

7.5

7.5

TOYOTA DIV NA BUILT TRUCK

75,424

71,349

1.5

5.7

327,239

333,038

-1.7

-1.7

LEXUS NA BUILT TRUCK

8,301

8,550

-6.8

-2.9

35,626

38,814

-8.2

-8.2

TOTAL TOYOTA TRUCK

125,434

111,625

7.9

12.4

535,403

513,834

4.2

4.2

                 

SELLING DAYS

25

24

   

126

126

   

DSR = DAILY SELLING RATE

               
                 
 

-- Current Month --

 

-- Calendar Year To Date --  

 

2017

2016

DSR %

 

2017

2016

DSR %

 

Toyota Prius Sedan

6,064

9,389

-38

 

27,635

39,944

-30.8

 

Toyota Prius V(only)

929

1,215

-26.6

 

4,474

6,185

-27.7

 

Toyota Prius C(only)

1,121

1,909

-43.6

 

6,182

10,218

-39.5

 

Toyota Prius PRIME(only)

1,908

4

45692

 

8,073

31

25942

 

Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

4,070

4,185

-6.6

 

17,061

15,527

9.9

 

 

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9 minutes ago, cp-the-nerd said:

It makes me nauseous seeing the Camry and Corolla selling over 30k every month while being near the bottom of their respective classes.

Same way some people buy only Ford or GM, others buy only Toyota.  Maybe because their previous two Toyota's while boring were bulletproof and they could care less if they don't handle well or have old engine.

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10 minutes ago, ykX said:

Same way some people buy only Ford or GM, others buy only Toyota.  Maybe because their previous two Toyota's while boring were bulletproof and they could care less if they don't handle well or have old engine.

Anywhere else in the world, the auto markets are heavily biased toward domestic brands. America should be no different. The sad thing is that even among Japanese brands, Toyota doesn't deserve the sales crown.

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Just now, cp-the-nerd said:

Anywhere else in the world, the auto markets are heavily biased toward domestic brands. America should be no different. The sad thing is that even among Japanese brands, Toyota doesn't deserve the sales crown.

Anywhere else in the world bias toward domestic brands created artificially by local governments taxing foreign automakers or subsidizing local ones.  US doesn't do that.  However, as a benefit most foreign automakers build their cars in US using US parts. In 2016 American-Made Index put Camry as number one, Accord as number two.  First US manufacturer car on that list is only in the six place with Chevy Traverse.

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50 minutes ago, cp-the-nerd said:

It makes me nauseous seeing the Camry and Corolla selling over 30k every month while being near the bottom of their respective classes.

Shows us how many Lemmings are out in Society as willing sheeple. 

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53 minutes ago, ykX said:

Anywhere else in the world bias toward domestic brands created artificially by local governments taxing foreign automakers or subsidizing local ones.  US doesn't do that.  However, as a benefit most foreign automakers build their cars in US using US parts. In 2016 American-Made Index put Camry as number one, Accord as number two.  First US manufacturer car on that list is only in the six place with Chevy Traverse.

The "American Made" index is a crock of sh*t. They don't take into account engineering and design as well as corporate headquarters location. When you factor in actual global economic benefits, the list of best cars to buy in the interest of America is DOMINATED by Ford and GM, with a fair amount of Chrysler as well.

Source:
http://kogodbusiness.com/reports/auto-index/

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1 minute ago, cp-the-nerd said:

The "American Made" index is a crock of sh*t. They don't take into account engineering and design as well as corporate headquarters location. When you factor in actual global economic benefits, the list of best cars to buy in the interest of America is DOMINATED by Ford and GM, with a fair amount of Chrysler as well.

Source:
http://kogodbusiness.com/reports/auto-index/

I agree that this is a better index to go by.  

So going by that index Camry is number eight, Accord is number five, Malibu is number four, Fusion is 39.  

So while top places are dominated by GM and Ford the most popular Toyota and Honda cars in top places as well.

 

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5 minutes ago, ykX said:

I agree that this is a better index to go by.  

So going by that index Camry is number eight, Accord is number five, Malibu is number four, Fusion is 39.  

So while top places are dominated by GM and Ford the most popular Toyota and Honda cars in top places as well.

 

The Accord is "#5" because they don't count ties as subsequent places. The Accord is behind 13 American cars:

Enclave
Traverse
Acadia
F150
Corvette
Equinox
Impala
Malibu
Malibu (prev. gen "classic")
Yukon
Escalade
Lacrosse
Tahoe/Suburban

And then the Camry is after, coincidentally, another 13 American cars. It's not close. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad automakers like Honda and Toyota create American jobs with their factories, I just have serious pet peeve about the "made in America" misnomer.

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Just now, cp-the-nerd said:

The Accord is "#5" because they don't count ties as subsequent places. The Accord is behind 13 American cars:

Enclave
Traverse
Acadia
F150
Corvette
Equinox
Impala
Malibu
Malibu (prev. gen "classic")
Yukon
Escalade
Lacrosse
Tahoe/Suburban

And then the Camry is after, coincidentally, another 13 American cars. It's not close. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad automakers like Honda and Toyota create American jobs with their factories, I just have serious pet peeve about the "made in America" misnomer.

Don't compare apples to oranges, I compared Accord,Camry to Malibu and Fusion.

 Also it is not 13 places, there are three cars in the first place with the same rating, eight cars in the fourth place with the same rating.  

The difference in rating between Malibu and Accord is 1.5% (82.5 vs 81).  If you gave an example might as well stick to it.

I also would like to add that if it would not be for the competition in the US market we would still be driving $h! boxes US automakers used to build not that long ago.

 

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4 minutes ago, ykX said:

Don't compare apples to oranges, I compared Accord,Camry to Malibu and Fusion.

 Also it is not 13 places, there are three cars in the first place with the same rating, eight cars in the fourth place with the same rating.  

The difference in rating between Malibu and Accord is 1.5% (82.5 vs 81).  If you gave an example might as well stick to it.

I also would like to add that if it would not be for the competition in the US market we would still be driving $h! boxes US automakers used to build not that long ago.

 

YOU started the "American Made" argument by pointing out Camry and Accord were number 1 and 2 overall with the first American car of any kind coming in at 6th. It's totally fair game for me to retort by pointing out how many American cars are actually better for the domestic economy.

And yes, I pointed out the tie system. Fact is, 13 cars are ahead of the Honda Accord in 4 grouped ties. Most scored lists would not call the Accord "5th place." If you tie someone for a gold medal in the olympics, the next place doesn't get silver, they get bronze. The Accord is 14th by normal metrics because 13 models scored better.

Now you want to say "yeah well, compare to midsize cars." Fine, both the current and previous gen Malibu are better for America.

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9 minutes ago, cp-the-nerd said:



Now you want to say "yeah well, compare to midsize cars." Fine, both the current and previous gen Malibu are better for America.

Yes, by a very low margin while Fusion is significantly worse then Camry and Accord going by the index which I admitted is better.

The whole argument started when you said that in other countries they tend to buy domestic cars more.  The situation is different due to government involvement and due to places of engineering and manufacturing.

Don't understand me wrong I am all for buying US made products, I am engineer and my livelihood depends on manufacturing and engineering staying in US, but Toyota and Honda invest a lot in the US and it is simply not fair to disregard that.

 

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14 minutes ago, ykX said:

Yes, by a very low margin while Fusion is significantly worse then Camry and Accord going by the index which I admitted is better.

The whole argument started when you said that in other countries they tend to buy domestic cars more.  The situation is different due to government involvement and due to places of engineering and manufacturing.

Don't understand me wrong I am all for buying US made products, I am engineer and my livelihood depends on manufacturing and engineering staying in US, but Toyota and Honda invest a lot in the US and it is simply not fair to disregard that.

 

Well neither of us have proof one way or another that foreign markets would naturally buy non-domestic brands in similar proportion to their own product. I would use the logic that people rooting for sports teams don't equally distribute among teams, they largely support local first, successful teams second, and the rest are down to random preferences. The D3 may have been "losers" for 20 years, but they've been a "winning team" for nearly the past decade.

And yes, the argument is about brands as a whole, so when domestics dominate the Kogod list, it's a relevant point. Camry and Accord are just smaller pieces of a bigger picture.

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The Camry is what ist is.  I never thought I would own one, but am now glad i did.  Is a barn burner?  Nope, the Bug does that just fine.  What is.....  Comfortable, roomy, excellent ride, feels m0ore solid at 85k miles than most domestics i have driven brand new.  , fuel mileage that puts the EPA ratings to shame (averaging mid 30s), and I have confidence in it, which is a rare thing for me.  On top of that, it is built right here in my home state and I know a number of people who work in the factory.  As for the fun to drive part, TNGA seems poised to make it one of the most engaging in the midsize arena. 

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On 6/1/2017 at 1:09 PM, cp-the-nerd said:

It makes me nauseous seeing the Camry and Corolla selling over 30k every month while being near the bottom of their respective classes.

Agreed...!

Supposedly the new 2018 Camry is better, but methinks it won't be as nice as a Malibu...

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      Toyota’s Fourth Generation SUV Redesigned from the Ground Up;
      Offers Best-in-Class MPG for Hybrid
        17 Percent Fuel Economy Improvement Over Current Gen Hybrid with Estimated 34 MPG Combined Bold, Chiseled New Design New TNGA-K Platform Enhances Driving Refinement Standard Android Auto™, Apple CarPlay®, SiriusXM®, Waze and Amazon Alexa Compatibility Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 Standard (TSS 2.0) Available with 7- or 8-Passenger Seating Choice of V6 or New-Generation Hybrid Powertrain New Available Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Driveline Disconnect and Multi Terrain Select Largest in segment 12.3” multimedia display April 17, 2019 NEW YORK (April 17, 2019) – Toyota is on a major roll with new SUVs, especially the next-generation three-row 2020 Highlander debuting at the New York International Auto Show. Arriving in Toyota dealerships in winter, the Highlander Gas model will arrive in December 2019 and the Highlander Hybrid will make its way to customers in February 2020.
       
      Just as the first RAV4 launched the compact crossover SUV segment 22 years ago, the original Highlander redefined the midsize family SUV when it arrived in 2001. At a time when most midsize SUVs were truck-based, the Highlander’s unibody structure with four-wheel independent suspension quickly became the template for a new segment of more comfortable and family-friendly SUVs. After adding a third row, the Highlander not only grew in size, but is also now the best-selling retail model in the segment since 2016.
       
      Now, the fourth-generation of this benchmark SUV brings a new level of bold, distinctive design to a foundation built on safety, comfort, quality, durability and reliability set by predecessors. The 2020 Highlander amplifies all qualities while taking on a dramatic new design direction that combines a powerful SUV presence with sophisticated detailing.
       
      The 2020 Highlander’s new sophisticated look, covers a new vehicle platform called Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA-K). This robust new foundation, shared with other Toyota models, enables even greater capability, comfort and safety than before.
       
      The fourth-generation Highlander offers the choice between a powerful V6 or new-generation hybrid powertrain, with the gas version offering a manufacturer-estimated 22 MPG combined fuel economy and the Hybrid offering an manufacturer-estimated 34 MPG combined fuel economy.
       
      Whether they’re young families or empty nesters exploring a new chapter in life, safety remains the top priority for Highlander customers.  Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 comes standard in all models in the 2020 Highlander. This comprehensive active safety system includes:
        Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD) Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA) Automatic High Beam (AHB) (New) Lane Tracing Assist (LTA) (New) Road Sign Assist (RSA) Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection offers automatic braking capability under certain circumstances should the driver not react in time in a system-detected emergency situation. Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Parking Support Braking and Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS) are available depending on the model grade.
       
      The 2020 Highlander delivers renowned Toyota value in a choice of five grades, starting with a new L grade, then layering amenities and technology in LE, XLE, Limited and the top-of line Platinum. (The Hybrid is offered on all but the L grade.)
       
      The 2020 Highlander offers cutting-edge entertainment and connectivity for all ages through its intuitive and versatile multimedia system, including a new 12.3-inch touchscreen display on the Platinum grade and 8-inch on the other models. The available new JBL Premium Sound System delivers a whopping 1,200 watts of power to turn any music source into a mobile concert.
       
      The midsize SUV segment has become fiercely competitive, and the 2020 Toyota Highlander is ready to take on all.
       
      The Strong, Athletic Type
      A sculpted new shape with chiseled lines gives the 2020 Highlander a more powerful stance, yet with a modern, sophisticated attitude. The 2020 Highlander remains a family-friendly SUV, now with capability for bigger family adventures.
       
      Setting off the new design, the L, LE and XLE grades feature a black front grille with silver trim, while the Limited and Platinum grades are distinguished by a black grille with chrome trim and chrome-plated lower rear fascia, premium projector headlamps and the Highlander’s first-ever 20-inch alloy wheels. The Platinum stands apart with silver painted front bumper and rear fascia and a unique 20-inch wheel.
       
      Accentuating the 2020 Highlander’s bold lines, the exterior color palette carries over three colors from 2019 (Blizzard Pearl ($395 option), Celestial Silver Metallic and Midnight Black Metallic) while adding five new ones: Magnetic Gray Metallic, Moon Dust (a striking blue premium paint), Ruby Flare Pearl (a daring red premium paint), Blueprint and Opulent Amber (a deep, luxurious brown).
       
      While Highlander’s new design will turn heads everywhere it goes, it’s also highly functional. Greater aerodynamic efficiency reduces wind noise while enhancing vehicle stability, and even the taillights and side mirror designs lend a hand.
       
      The fourth-generation Highlander is 2.36 inches (60mm) longer than before, all in the cargo area to add even greater cargo volume than before. The second row can be slid an extra 1.2-in. further up to increase distance between the second and third rows.
       
      The TNGA-K platform, which makes extensive use of high-strength steel, gives the Highlander a stiffer unibody structure than the previous model. Its inherent strength allows tuning for the front strut and rear multi-link suspension that enhances agility and a smaller turning circle while also providing a smoother and quieter ride than before.
       
       The presence of takumi is evident whenever the driver experiences the Highlander’s premium touch and feel in everyday driving. Throughout vehicle development, these highly trained master craftsmen focused on the finest technical details to ensure a higher level of operating smoothness in all driving conditions - especially at everyday speeds.
       
       
      Take It All with You
      Looking sporty does not come at the expense of practicality in the 2020 Highlander. The L and LE grades come standard with a second-row bench for seating for eight, while the XLE and Limited grades come standard with a Captain’s Chair second row with seating for seven and the option of a second-row bench for seating for eight. Finally, the Platinum grade will come standard with a Captain’s Chair second row with seating for seven. Either way, the large rear doors provide easy access, while versatile seat folding features make it easy to enter the third row. And, passengers in the third row stay comfortable thanks to standard three-zone climate control that ensures ample flow of warmed or cooled air.
       
      With all seat rows in use, Highlander offers 16.1 cu. ft. of carrying space behind the third row. Folding the 60/40 split fold-flat third-row seatbacks opens the space to 40.6 cu. ft., and then folding the second row increases that to 73.3 cu. ft. The versatile cargo area makes the most of its additional length with side surfaces and pockets shaped for maximum space usage.

      Power, Performance and Panache … with Efficiency
      Power and efficiency are a whole lot sexier when wrapped in Highlander’s striking design. The 2020 Highlander offers a choice between two advanced powertrains, a gas V6 or a new version of the Toyota Hybrid System.

      The 295-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 is the epitome of smoothness. Its Toyota-innovated D-4S Injection system combines direct fuel injection with port fuel injectors to optimize efficiency, power and emissions in all conditions. Dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (Dual VVT-i) likewise ensures ideal response and efficiency at all engine speeds.

      That translates into 295 horsepower and 263 lb.-ft. of torque, which further translates into exemplary everyday performance and generous towing capability. The Direct Shift 8-speed automatic transmission maximizes Highlander’s acceleration and highway merging capability while operating seamlessly and transparently.

      On V6 models, the available towing package enables a 5,000-pound towing capacity. The package includes a heavy-duty radiator with engine oil cooler and improved fan performance. Trailer Sway Control (TSC) uses the Vehicle Stability Control to help control unwanted trailer movement.
       
      Why use fuel when you don’t need to? The Highlander’s standard Stop and Start Engine System allows the engine to shut off when the vehicle comes to a complete stop, and then instantly restarts when the driver’s foot lifts from the brake pedal. This technology reduces fuel consumption and cuts emissions.


      Hybrid Aims Even Higher 
      Toyota made “hybrid” synonymous with high fuel efficiency more than 20 years ago. Later, Toyota introduced the first hybrid SUV in its class, the 2006 Highlander. Leave it to Toyota to again raise the bar for hybrid SUV functionality by making the 2020 model the most fuel-efficient Highlander Hybrid ever.

      The new-generation Toyota Hybrid System in the 2020 Highlander Hybrid combines a high-efficiency 2.5-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine with two electric motors in a system that’s more compact, and more efficient than before. The gas engine employs Variable Valve Timing-intelligent system by Electric motor (VVT-iE) on the intake camshaft, and VVT-i on the exhaust camshaft. A variable cooling system (electric water pump, electric thermostat) and a fully variable oil pump further improve engine efficiency.

      The bottom line is an eye opener for the efficiency-minded: 240 total system horsepower and an EPA-estimated 34 combined MPG. The latter is a 17-percent improvement over the previous-generation Highlander Hybrid’s 28 combined MPG. Yet, Highlander Hybrid still delivers the everyday acceleration, power and responsiveness that family buyers expect. In another Highlander first, the hybrid is now available in either 2WD or AWD, further expanding hybrid technology to a new group of buyers.

      The transaxle mounts the electric motors (MG1 and MG2) coaxially rather than in-line, and the resulting smaller and lighter package reduces frictional losses. The gas engine and MG2 work in concert to deliver dynamic performance, while both MG1 and MG2 charge the hybrid battery.

      To reduce the transaxle’s size and weight, the reduction gear is now a parallel shaft gear, rather than a planetary, and a new multi-function gear integrates the power-split planetary ring gear, parking gear, and counter-drive gear. New computer integration and a smaller, lighter power stack installed directly above the transaxle reduce energy transmission losses.

      The battery pack is small enough to be installed under the rear seats, so it does not take up any cargo or passenger space.  

      Seamless Everyday Performance
      The Highlander Hybrid delivers its exemplary fuel economy and performance without calling attention to its high-tech powertrain operation. Quite the contrary, like all Toyota Hybrid vehicles, it simply goes about its business in a transparent way. For example, the new system optimizes the level of electric motor assistance and gas engine speed without the engine running at high revs. Engine speed is synchronized with vehicle speed, yielding effortless and quiet acceleration.

      As on many modern vehicles, the Highlander Hybrid offers selectable NORMAL, ECO and SPORT driving modes that let the driver choose the vehicle’s performance personality. The bonus is the EV mode, which allows electric-only driving at low speeds for short distances.

      SPORT mode unlocks boost from the hybrid system for improved acceleration response. ECO mode gets maximum efficiency from the fuel and battery, while NORMAL mode is ideal for everyday driving.

      Special, easy-to-use hybrid tech adds an element of control and fun. Using a sequential shifting feature, the driver can “downshift” to increase the regenerative braking in steps, which fosters greater control when driving in hilly areas, for example.

      The 2020 Highlander Hybrid can also coach the driver to drive as economically as possible. For example, an accelerator guide function suggests an acceleration level to the driver according to the driving conditions, and a scoring function adds a measure of fun to eco driving.
       
      Features for More Efficiency
      Highlander Hybrid’s Predictive Efficient Drive (PED) analyzes the driver’s daily driving habits and upcoming road and traffic conditions to more efficiently charge and discharge the hybrid battery accordingly alongside actual driving.

      The more the vehicle is driven, the more data is accumulated, contributing to practical fuel efficiency. Many actual roads chosen to represent common usage scenarios, such as in urban congestion or on mountain roads, were driven on and analyzed to create control that feels natural to the driver when operating to enable more efficient driving.
       
      All-Wheel Drive Gets Smarter
      The 2020 Highlander gets a grip on any road with a choice of front-wheel drive or three different available all-wheel drive systems -- two for the V6 models and a unique AWD system for the Highlander Hybrid. For the Highlander Gas L, LE and XLE models, the optional AWD system can send up to 50 percent of available torque to the rear wheels to counter wheel slip when necessary.
       
      Sounding like something from a high-end sports car, Dynamic Torque Vectoring AWD with Drive Mode Select and Driveline Disconnect is available for the Highlander Limited and Platinum for even greater agility and capability. In addition to governing torque distribution between the front and rear wheels, this advanced system uses special couplings to actively manage torque distribution between the left and right rear wheels.
       
      Dynamic Torque Vectoring AWD doesn’t need wheel slippage before springing into action. Rather, a sophisticated AWD Integrated Management (AIM) manages Electric Power Steering (EPS), throttle control, transmission shift control and drive torque distribution to continually optimize handling.
       
      Using the Multi-Terrain Select control dial on the console, the driver can maximize traction when driving through inclement weather or road conditions. Mud & Sand mode works well for beach driving, while Rock & Dirt mode optimizes AWD traction for trails. The driver can monitor, in real time, torque allocation and slip control on the Multi-Information Display (MID).

      In addition, Highlander models include the following features for optimal on-road and off-road performance and safety:
        Hill Start Assist Control (HAC) Trailer Sway Control (TSC) Downhill Assist Control (DAC)  
      All-wheel drive is a great traction partner, but it’s not needed all the time, such as during steady highway cruising. In such situations, Rear Driveline Disconnect automatically disengages drive to the rear wheels and stops the propeller shaft’s rotation. As one might guess, that reduces the energy needed to propel the vehicle and therefore reduces fuel consumption. When AWD is needed, the system instantly re-engages, without the driver even noticing.
       

      Hybrid AWD
      As with the AWD system in the previous Highlander Hybrid, the 2020 model’s AWD employs a separate rear-mounted electric motor to power the rear wheels when needed. Like the hybrid powertrain itself, the AWD works seamlessly and transparently.
       
      The rear electric motor operates independently, with no mechanical connection between the transmission and the rear wheels. Preemptively distributing more driving force to the rear wheels, such as when accelerating, helps suppress front wheel slip during off-the-line starts. The system also enhances cornering agility by helping to reduce understeer. And, when venturing onto a trail, the increased rear-wheel torque helps move the Highlander Hybrid confidently over rough or slippery surfaces.
       
      A New Level of Comfort
      From the L grade to the top-of-line Platinum, the 2020 Highlander offers its plushest accommodations ever. Designers took inspiration from luxury crafted interiors to create a more premium ambience. Details include softer padded surfaces and a more tailored look with stitching that continues from the door trim to the instrument panel. The dash integrates the multimedia and HVAC controls in an elegant and functional way.
       
      The 2020 Highlander cabin offers improved functionality throughout, from a center console that offers available Qi wireless charging to plenty of storage spaces and USB charging ports. On Limited and Platinum grades, new ambient LED lighting sets a relaxing mood. Inset steering wheel controls are a modern luxury touch on all grades.
       
      Highlanders have long been renowned for a quiet ride, and with the high-strength TNGA platform, Toyota pushes the bar even higher. Sound-damping and soundproofing materials have been optimized throughout the vehicle, with the takumi approach focusing particularly on minimizing noise in the frequencies that interfere with conversation.
       
      The seating color palette enhances the sense of luxury permeating the 2020 Highlander. The L and LE grades offer comfortable woven cloth in Graphite or Black; the XLE offers embossed Softex®artificial leather trim in Harvest Beige, Graphite or Black, while the Limited offers those colors in perforated leather trim. The top-of-line Platinum grade, the most luxurious Highlander ever offered, exclusively features embossed, perforated leather trim in those three colors plus Glazed Caramel, a luxuriously delicious new brown.


      Multitalented Multimedia 
      However passengers listen to music and connect with their worlds, the 2020 Highlander is ready with the latest multimedia systems.  All grades come standard with Apple Car Play®, Android Auto™, Alexa In-Car compatibility, Waze, SiriusXM®, and Wi-Fi connectivity through AT&T.
       
      All Highlander models come equipped with Toyota Safety Connect with a one-year trial subscription.
       
      LE and above grades offer Service and Remote Connectivity. A move up to XLE or Limited grade offers available Dynamic Navigation. A move up to Platinum grade offers standard Dynamic Navigation and the 12.3-inch screen.
       
      The JBL® Premium Audio System is standard for Limited and Platinum grades and rocks music of all genres with 1,200 watts of power playing through 11 speakers in nine locations. Clari-Fi®technology breathes new life into compressed digital music formats, with the result like a mobile concert. The system will not, however, settle arguments over which music to play.
       
      Exceptional Toyota Value, Naturally 
      Toyota’s typical outstanding value is clearly evident in the Highlander L grade, where the standard equipment list includes features that one might expect in an upgraded model:
       
      L: Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 18-in. alloy wheels 3-zone automatic climate control 4.2-in. Multi-information Display (MID) in instrument panel 8-way power driver’s seat Auto up/down for all power windows Multimedia with 8-inch touchscreen display Front seat reading lights and cargo area light. LED headlamps and taillamps Privacy glass on rear side, quarter and liftgate windows Smart Key entry on front doors and back door  
      LE adds over L: Power liftgate Blind Spot Monitor Additional multimedia capability LED fog lamps Leather-trimmed steering wheel and shift knob  
      XLE adds over LE: 10-way power driver’s seat 2nd-row sun shades 4-way power front passenger seat 7-in. Multi-information display Auto dimming rear-view mirror with garage door opener Auto LED headlamps with Auto High Beam Plated interior door handle Heated front seats LED fog lamps Machined-face alloy wheels Captain’s Chairs second row (standard) Power tilt and slide moon roof Roof rails SofTex®-trimmed seats and door trim  
      Limited adds over XLE: 120V 2nd-row power outlet 20-in. Limited style alloy wheels Ambient interior lighting Cargo area cover Driver’s seat memory Hands-free power liftgate Heated and ventilated front seats “Highlander” puddle lamp Perforated leather trimmed seats in Beige, Gray or Black Metal door scuff plates Projector beam headlamp with chrome bezels and separate, stylized DRLs Wood interior trim JBL® Audio System as standard Embedded navigation system  
      Platinum adds over Limited: 12.3-in. Multimedia head unit 20-in Platinum style wheels Adaptive, self-leveling headlamps Additional leather seating color choice: Glazed Caramel Digital display rear view mirror Embossed, perforated leather trimmed seats Head-up display Heated 2nd-row seats Illuminated door scuff plates Panoramic moonroof Rain-sensing windshield wipers Birds eye camera  
      Safety at Its Core
      The new TNGA-K platform forms the foundation for exemplary collision protection in the 2020 Toyota Highlander, while a suite of standard driver-assist technologies is designed to help prevent collisions, or to mitigate their impacts.
       
      The 2020 Highlander is equipped with the second-generation of Toyota Safety Sense (TSS 2.0). Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) are standard on LE grade and above. Rear Cross Traffic Braking (RCTB) is available with clearance sonar on Limited and above.
       
      The standard backup camera features projected path. A Bird’s Eye View Camera with Perimeter Scan, available on Limited and standard on Platinum, provides a live rotating 360-degree view around the vehicle.
       
      The 2020 Highlander is equipped with eight airbags, including side-curtain airbags for all three rows. Toyota’s Star Safety System includes Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), and Smart Stop Technology (SST).
      View full article
    • By Drew Dowdell
      Toyota took the wraps off the all-new Toyota Highlander at the New York International Auto Show today.  This new fourth generation Highlander rides on Toyota's new TNGA-K platform.   
      Powering the Highlander will be a choice of a V6 with 295 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque with both direct and port injection, or a hybrid that is 17% more efficient than the outgoing model. The hybrid is a 2.5 liter 4-cylinder combined with two electric motors for a total system rating of 240 horsepower.  Preliminary estimates put the Highlander hybrid at 34 mpg combined fuel efficiency.   The new hybrid setup is lighter and more compact than before while the battery pack has been reduced in physical size and now sits below the rear seats so as not to reduce cargo room. 
      On the safety front, Toyota loaded the Highlander up.  Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 is standard.  This includes Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert are standard on LE grade and above. Rear Cross Traffic Braking is available with clearance sonar on Limited and above.
       
      The standard backup camera features projected path. A Bird’s Eye View Camera with Perimeter Scan, available on Limited and standard on Platinum, provides a live rotating 360-degree view around the vehicle.
       
      The 2020 Highlander is equipped with eight airbags, including side-curtain airbags for all three rows. Toyota’s Star Safety System includes Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control , Traction Control, Electronic Brake-force Distribution , Brake Assist , Anti-lock Braking System , and Smart Stop Technology (SST).
       
      More from Toyota on the Press Release on Page 2 
      World Premiere of All-New 2020 Highlander at New York International Auto Show
      Toyota’s Fourth Generation SUV Redesigned from the Ground Up;
      Offers Best-in-Class MPG for Hybrid
        17 Percent Fuel Economy Improvement Over Current Gen Hybrid with Estimated 34 MPG Combined Bold, Chiseled New Design New TNGA-K Platform Enhances Driving Refinement Standard Android Auto™, Apple CarPlay®, SiriusXM®, Waze and Amazon Alexa Compatibility Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 Standard (TSS 2.0) Available with 7- or 8-Passenger Seating Choice of V6 or New-Generation Hybrid Powertrain New Available Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Driveline Disconnect and Multi Terrain Select Largest in segment 12.3” multimedia display April 17, 2019 NEW YORK (April 17, 2019) – Toyota is on a major roll with new SUVs, especially the next-generation three-row 2020 Highlander debuting at the New York International Auto Show. Arriving in Toyota dealerships in winter, the Highlander Gas model will arrive in December 2019 and the Highlander Hybrid will make its way to customers in February 2020.
       
      Just as the first RAV4 launched the compact crossover SUV segment 22 years ago, the original Highlander redefined the midsize family SUV when it arrived in 2001. At a time when most midsize SUVs were truck-based, the Highlander’s unibody structure with four-wheel independent suspension quickly became the template for a new segment of more comfortable and family-friendly SUVs. After adding a third row, the Highlander not only grew in size, but is also now the best-selling retail model in the segment since 2016.
       
      Now, the fourth-generation of this benchmark SUV brings a new level of bold, distinctive design to a foundation built on safety, comfort, quality, durability and reliability set by predecessors. The 2020 Highlander amplifies all qualities while taking on a dramatic new design direction that combines a powerful SUV presence with sophisticated detailing.
       
      The 2020 Highlander’s new sophisticated look, covers a new vehicle platform called Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA-K). This robust new foundation, shared with other Toyota models, enables even greater capability, comfort and safety than before.
       
      The fourth-generation Highlander offers the choice between a powerful V6 or new-generation hybrid powertrain, with the gas version offering a manufacturer-estimated 22 MPG combined fuel economy and the Hybrid offering an manufacturer-estimated 34 MPG combined fuel economy.
       
      Whether they’re young families or empty nesters exploring a new chapter in life, safety remains the top priority for Highlander customers.  Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 comes standard in all models in the 2020 Highlander. This comprehensive active safety system includes:
        Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD) Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA) Automatic High Beam (AHB) (New) Lane Tracing Assist (LTA) (New) Road Sign Assist (RSA) Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection offers automatic braking capability under certain circumstances should the driver not react in time in a system-detected emergency situation. Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Parking Support Braking and Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS) are available depending on the model grade.
       
      The 2020 Highlander delivers renowned Toyota value in a choice of five grades, starting with a new L grade, then layering amenities and technology in LE, XLE, Limited and the top-of line Platinum. (The Hybrid is offered on all but the L grade.)
       
      The 2020 Highlander offers cutting-edge entertainment and connectivity for all ages through its intuitive and versatile multimedia system, including a new 12.3-inch touchscreen display on the Platinum grade and 8-inch on the other models. The available new JBL Premium Sound System delivers a whopping 1,200 watts of power to turn any music source into a mobile concert.
       
      The midsize SUV segment has become fiercely competitive, and the 2020 Toyota Highlander is ready to take on all.
       
      The Strong, Athletic Type
      A sculpted new shape with chiseled lines gives the 2020 Highlander a more powerful stance, yet with a modern, sophisticated attitude. The 2020 Highlander remains a family-friendly SUV, now with capability for bigger family adventures.
       
      Setting off the new design, the L, LE and XLE grades feature a black front grille with silver trim, while the Limited and Platinum grades are distinguished by a black grille with chrome trim and chrome-plated lower rear fascia, premium projector headlamps and the Highlander’s first-ever 20-inch alloy wheels. The Platinum stands apart with silver painted front bumper and rear fascia and a unique 20-inch wheel.
       
      Accentuating the 2020 Highlander’s bold lines, the exterior color palette carries over three colors from 2019 (Blizzard Pearl ($395 option), Celestial Silver Metallic and Midnight Black Metallic) while adding five new ones: Magnetic Gray Metallic, Moon Dust (a striking blue premium paint), Ruby Flare Pearl (a daring red premium paint), Blueprint and Opulent Amber (a deep, luxurious brown).
       
      While Highlander’s new design will turn heads everywhere it goes, it’s also highly functional. Greater aerodynamic efficiency reduces wind noise while enhancing vehicle stability, and even the taillights and side mirror designs lend a hand.
       
      The fourth-generation Highlander is 2.36 inches (60mm) longer than before, all in the cargo area to add even greater cargo volume than before. The second row can be slid an extra 1.2-in. further up to increase distance between the second and third rows.
       
      The TNGA-K platform, which makes extensive use of high-strength steel, gives the Highlander a stiffer unibody structure than the previous model. Its inherent strength allows tuning for the front strut and rear multi-link suspension that enhances agility and a smaller turning circle while also providing a smoother and quieter ride than before.
       
       The presence of takumi is evident whenever the driver experiences the Highlander’s premium touch and feel in everyday driving. Throughout vehicle development, these highly trained master craftsmen focused on the finest technical details to ensure a higher level of operating smoothness in all driving conditions - especially at everyday speeds.
       
       
      Take It All with You
      Looking sporty does not come at the expense of practicality in the 2020 Highlander. The L and LE grades come standard with a second-row bench for seating for eight, while the XLE and Limited grades come standard with a Captain’s Chair second row with seating for seven and the option of a second-row bench for seating for eight. Finally, the Platinum grade will come standard with a Captain’s Chair second row with seating for seven. Either way, the large rear doors provide easy access, while versatile seat folding features make it easy to enter the third row. And, passengers in the third row stay comfortable thanks to standard three-zone climate control that ensures ample flow of warmed or cooled air.
       
      With all seat rows in use, Highlander offers 16.1 cu. ft. of carrying space behind the third row. Folding the 60/40 split fold-flat third-row seatbacks opens the space to 40.6 cu. ft., and then folding the second row increases that to 73.3 cu. ft. The versatile cargo area makes the most of its additional length with side surfaces and pockets shaped for maximum space usage.

      Power, Performance and Panache … with Efficiency
      Power and efficiency are a whole lot sexier when wrapped in Highlander’s striking design. The 2020 Highlander offers a choice between two advanced powertrains, a gas V6 or a new version of the Toyota Hybrid System.

      The 295-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 is the epitome of smoothness. Its Toyota-innovated D-4S Injection system combines direct fuel injection with port fuel injectors to optimize efficiency, power and emissions in all conditions. Dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (Dual VVT-i) likewise ensures ideal response and efficiency at all engine speeds.

      That translates into 295 horsepower and 263 lb.-ft. of torque, which further translates into exemplary everyday performance and generous towing capability. The Direct Shift 8-speed automatic transmission maximizes Highlander’s acceleration and highway merging capability while operating seamlessly and transparently.

      On V6 models, the available towing package enables a 5,000-pound towing capacity. The package includes a heavy-duty radiator with engine oil cooler and improved fan performance. Trailer Sway Control (TSC) uses the Vehicle Stability Control to help control unwanted trailer movement.
       
      Why use fuel when you don’t need to? The Highlander’s standard Stop and Start Engine System allows the engine to shut off when the vehicle comes to a complete stop, and then instantly restarts when the driver’s foot lifts from the brake pedal. This technology reduces fuel consumption and cuts emissions.


      Hybrid Aims Even Higher 
      Toyota made “hybrid” synonymous with high fuel efficiency more than 20 years ago. Later, Toyota introduced the first hybrid SUV in its class, the 2006 Highlander. Leave it to Toyota to again raise the bar for hybrid SUV functionality by making the 2020 model the most fuel-efficient Highlander Hybrid ever.

      The new-generation Toyota Hybrid System in the 2020 Highlander Hybrid combines a high-efficiency 2.5-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine with two electric motors in a system that’s more compact, and more efficient than before. The gas engine employs Variable Valve Timing-intelligent system by Electric motor (VVT-iE) on the intake camshaft, and VVT-i on the exhaust camshaft. A variable cooling system (electric water pump, electric thermostat) and a fully variable oil pump further improve engine efficiency.

      The bottom line is an eye opener for the efficiency-minded: 240 total system horsepower and an EPA-estimated 34 combined MPG. The latter is a 17-percent improvement over the previous-generation Highlander Hybrid’s 28 combined MPG. Yet, Highlander Hybrid still delivers the everyday acceleration, power and responsiveness that family buyers expect. In another Highlander first, the hybrid is now available in either 2WD or AWD, further expanding hybrid technology to a new group of buyers.

      The transaxle mounts the electric motors (MG1 and MG2) coaxially rather than in-line, and the resulting smaller and lighter package reduces frictional losses. The gas engine and MG2 work in concert to deliver dynamic performance, while both MG1 and MG2 charge the hybrid battery.

      To reduce the transaxle’s size and weight, the reduction gear is now a parallel shaft gear, rather than a planetary, and a new multi-function gear integrates the power-split planetary ring gear, parking gear, and counter-drive gear. New computer integration and a smaller, lighter power stack installed directly above the transaxle reduce energy transmission losses.

      The battery pack is small enough to be installed under the rear seats, so it does not take up any cargo or passenger space.  

      Seamless Everyday Performance
      The Highlander Hybrid delivers its exemplary fuel economy and performance without calling attention to its high-tech powertrain operation. Quite the contrary, like all Toyota Hybrid vehicles, it simply goes about its business in a transparent way. For example, the new system optimizes the level of electric motor assistance and gas engine speed without the engine running at high revs. Engine speed is synchronized with vehicle speed, yielding effortless and quiet acceleration.

      As on many modern vehicles, the Highlander Hybrid offers selectable NORMAL, ECO and SPORT driving modes that let the driver choose the vehicle’s performance personality. The bonus is the EV mode, which allows electric-only driving at low speeds for short distances.

      SPORT mode unlocks boost from the hybrid system for improved acceleration response. ECO mode gets maximum efficiency from the fuel and battery, while NORMAL mode is ideal for everyday driving.

      Special, easy-to-use hybrid tech adds an element of control and fun. Using a sequential shifting feature, the driver can “downshift” to increase the regenerative braking in steps, which fosters greater control when driving in hilly areas, for example.

      The 2020 Highlander Hybrid can also coach the driver to drive as economically as possible. For example, an accelerator guide function suggests an acceleration level to the driver according to the driving conditions, and a scoring function adds a measure of fun to eco driving.
       
      Features for More Efficiency
      Highlander Hybrid’s Predictive Efficient Drive (PED) analyzes the driver’s daily driving habits and upcoming road and traffic conditions to more efficiently charge and discharge the hybrid battery accordingly alongside actual driving.

      The more the vehicle is driven, the more data is accumulated, contributing to practical fuel efficiency. Many actual roads chosen to represent common usage scenarios, such as in urban congestion or on mountain roads, were driven on and analyzed to create control that feels natural to the driver when operating to enable more efficient driving.
       
      All-Wheel Drive Gets Smarter
      The 2020 Highlander gets a grip on any road with a choice of front-wheel drive or three different available all-wheel drive systems -- two for the V6 models and a unique AWD system for the Highlander Hybrid. For the Highlander Gas L, LE and XLE models, the optional AWD system can send up to 50 percent of available torque to the rear wheels to counter wheel slip when necessary.
       
      Sounding like something from a high-end sports car, Dynamic Torque Vectoring AWD with Drive Mode Select and Driveline Disconnect is available for the Highlander Limited and Platinum for even greater agility and capability. In addition to governing torque distribution between the front and rear wheels, this advanced system uses special couplings to actively manage torque distribution between the left and right rear wheels.
       
      Dynamic Torque Vectoring AWD doesn’t need wheel slippage before springing into action. Rather, a sophisticated AWD Integrated Management (AIM) manages Electric Power Steering (EPS), throttle control, transmission shift control and drive torque distribution to continually optimize handling.
       
      Using the Multi-Terrain Select control dial on the console, the driver can maximize traction when driving through inclement weather or road conditions. Mud & Sand mode works well for beach driving, while Rock & Dirt mode optimizes AWD traction for trails. The driver can monitor, in real time, torque allocation and slip control on the Multi-Information Display (MID).

      In addition, Highlander models include the following features for optimal on-road and off-road performance and safety:
        Hill Start Assist Control (HAC) Trailer Sway Control (TSC) Downhill Assist Control (DAC)  
      All-wheel drive is a great traction partner, but it’s not needed all the time, such as during steady highway cruising. In such situations, Rear Driveline Disconnect automatically disengages drive to the rear wheels and stops the propeller shaft’s rotation. As one might guess, that reduces the energy needed to propel the vehicle and therefore reduces fuel consumption. When AWD is needed, the system instantly re-engages, without the driver even noticing.
       

      Hybrid AWD
      As with the AWD system in the previous Highlander Hybrid, the 2020 model’s AWD employs a separate rear-mounted electric motor to power the rear wheels when needed. Like the hybrid powertrain itself, the AWD works seamlessly and transparently.
       
      The rear electric motor operates independently, with no mechanical connection between the transmission and the rear wheels. Preemptively distributing more driving force to the rear wheels, such as when accelerating, helps suppress front wheel slip during off-the-line starts. The system also enhances cornering agility by helping to reduce understeer. And, when venturing onto a trail, the increased rear-wheel torque helps move the Highlander Hybrid confidently over rough or slippery surfaces.
       
      A New Level of Comfort
      From the L grade to the top-of-line Platinum, the 2020 Highlander offers its plushest accommodations ever. Designers took inspiration from luxury crafted interiors to create a more premium ambience. Details include softer padded surfaces and a more tailored look with stitching that continues from the door trim to the instrument panel. The dash integrates the multimedia and HVAC controls in an elegant and functional way.
       
      The 2020 Highlander cabin offers improved functionality throughout, from a center console that offers available Qi wireless charging to plenty of storage spaces and USB charging ports. On Limited and Platinum grades, new ambient LED lighting sets a relaxing mood. Inset steering wheel controls are a modern luxury touch on all grades.
       
      Highlanders have long been renowned for a quiet ride, and with the high-strength TNGA platform, Toyota pushes the bar even higher. Sound-damping and soundproofing materials have been optimized throughout the vehicle, with the takumi approach focusing particularly on minimizing noise in the frequencies that interfere with conversation.
       
      The seating color palette enhances the sense of luxury permeating the 2020 Highlander. The L and LE grades offer comfortable woven cloth in Graphite or Black; the XLE offers embossed Softex®artificial leather trim in Harvest Beige, Graphite or Black, while the Limited offers those colors in perforated leather trim. The top-of-line Platinum grade, the most luxurious Highlander ever offered, exclusively features embossed, perforated leather trim in those three colors plus Glazed Caramel, a luxuriously delicious new brown.


      Multitalented Multimedia 
      However passengers listen to music and connect with their worlds, the 2020 Highlander is ready with the latest multimedia systems.  All grades come standard with Apple Car Play®, Android Auto™, Alexa In-Car compatibility, Waze, SiriusXM®, and Wi-Fi connectivity through AT&T.
       
      All Highlander models come equipped with Toyota Safety Connect with a one-year trial subscription.
       
      LE and above grades offer Service and Remote Connectivity. A move up to XLE or Limited grade offers available Dynamic Navigation. A move up to Platinum grade offers standard Dynamic Navigation and the 12.3-inch screen.
       
      The JBL® Premium Audio System is standard for Limited and Platinum grades and rocks music of all genres with 1,200 watts of power playing through 11 speakers in nine locations. Clari-Fi®technology breathes new life into compressed digital music formats, with the result like a mobile concert. The system will not, however, settle arguments over which music to play.
       
      Exceptional Toyota Value, Naturally 
      Toyota’s typical outstanding value is clearly evident in the Highlander L grade, where the standard equipment list includes features that one might expect in an upgraded model:
       
      L: Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 18-in. alloy wheels 3-zone automatic climate control 4.2-in. Multi-information Display (MID) in instrument panel 8-way power driver’s seat Auto up/down for all power windows Multimedia with 8-inch touchscreen display Front seat reading lights and cargo area light. LED headlamps and taillamps Privacy glass on rear side, quarter and liftgate windows Smart Key entry on front doors and back door  
      LE adds over L: Power liftgate Blind Spot Monitor Additional multimedia capability LED fog lamps Leather-trimmed steering wheel and shift knob  
      XLE adds over LE: 10-way power driver’s seat 2nd-row sun shades 4-way power front passenger seat 7-in. Multi-information display Auto dimming rear-view mirror with garage door opener Auto LED headlamps with Auto High Beam Plated interior door handle Heated front seats LED fog lamps Machined-face alloy wheels Captain’s Chairs second row (standard) Power tilt and slide moon roof Roof rails SofTex®-trimmed seats and door trim  
      Limited adds over XLE: 120V 2nd-row power outlet 20-in. Limited style alloy wheels Ambient interior lighting Cargo area cover Driver’s seat memory Hands-free power liftgate Heated and ventilated front seats “Highlander” puddle lamp Perforated leather trimmed seats in Beige, Gray or Black Metal door scuff plates Projector beam headlamp with chrome bezels and separate, stylized DRLs Wood interior trim JBL® Audio System as standard Embedded navigation system  
      Platinum adds over Limited: 12.3-in. Multimedia head unit 20-in Platinum style wheels Adaptive, self-leveling headlamps Additional leather seating color choice: Glazed Caramel Digital display rear view mirror Embossed, perforated leather trimmed seats Head-up display Heated 2nd-row seats Illuminated door scuff plates Panoramic moonroof Rain-sensing windshield wipers Birds eye camera  
      Safety at Its Core
      The new TNGA-K platform forms the foundation for exemplary collision protection in the 2020 Toyota Highlander, while a suite of standard driver-assist technologies is designed to help prevent collisions, or to mitigate their impacts.
       
      The 2020 Highlander is equipped with the second-generation of Toyota Safety Sense (TSS 2.0). Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) are standard on LE grade and above. Rear Cross Traffic Braking (RCTB) is available with clearance sonar on Limited and above.
       
      The standard backup camera features projected path. A Bird’s Eye View Camera with Perimeter Scan, available on Limited and standard on Platinum, provides a live rotating 360-degree view around the vehicle.
       
      The 2020 Highlander is equipped with eight airbags, including side-curtain airbags for all three rows. Toyota’s Star Safety System includes Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), and Smart Stop Technology (SST).
    • By Drew Dowdell
      According to an article in Automotive News, Toyota plans to move the Tundra and Tacoma to a shared platform, internally called "F1".  The platform is to be used globally and will require a bit of modularity.  The platform is said to be nearing completion and the next Tundra could be debuting for the 2021 model year. 
      The Tacoma will likely join later as it was redesigned in 2015 and given a refresh for 2020 at the Chicago Auto Show along with a bunch of other TRD models like the Sequoia TRD Pro. 
      For US consumption, all Tundras and most Tacomas are built at the company's San Antonio, Texas plant. Moving to a single platform would make things easier and cheaper on Toyota.   But what of the other SUVs built on the same platforms?   The Sequoia is largely based on the Tundra and the 4Runner is related (distantly) to the Tacoma.  Those vehicles would likely be refreshed right behind the trucks.  In any case, Toyota is planning on putting some electrification into the new platform. 

      View full article
    • By Drew Dowdell
      According to an article in Automotive News, Toyota plans to move the Tundra and Tacoma to a shared platform, internally called "F1".  The platform is to be used globally and will require a bit of modularity.  The platform is said to be nearing completion and the next Tundra could be debuting for the 2021 model year. 
      The Tacoma will likely join later as it was redesigned in 2015 and given a refresh for 2020 at the Chicago Auto Show along with a bunch of other TRD models like the Sequoia TRD Pro. 
      For US consumption, all Tundras and most Tacomas are built at the company's San Antonio, Texas plant. Moving to a single platform would make things easier and cheaper on Toyota.   But what of the other SUVs built on the same platforms?   The Sequoia is largely based on the Tundra and the 4Runner is related (distantly) to the Tacoma.  Those vehicles would likely be refreshed right behind the trucks.  In any case, Toyota is planning on putting some electrification into the new platform. 
    • By Drew Dowdell
      The Society of Automotive Engineers has announced today that they are joining with Ford, General Motors, and Toyota to form the Automatic Vehicle Safety Consortium (AVSC), a group that will work together to test the deployment and development of Level 4 and Level 5 automated vehicles. 
      The AVSC will provide a safety framework for the advancement of the technology in a safe and responsible manner. The group will use the expertise of its current members to establish a set of guiding principles for safety. 
      GM, Ford, and Toyota already have autonomous vehicle development well underway.  GM is producing driverless Chevrolet Bolt EVs as part of a development and testing program via its GM Cruise unit. 

      View full article
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