A major redesign delivers a new 2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid that is more fuel-efficient and powerful than ever. Major cosmetic changes also help make the updated green machine a more distinctive and upscale hybrid option. Keep reading to learn about all the changes and new features available on the 2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid.
2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Styling
The most obvious changes to the new Highlander come in the exterior design. The front and rear ends have both been remolded to give the vehicle a more crisp, upscale silhouette. Unique updates made exclusively to hybrid models also serve to distinguish the vehicle from its gasoline counterpart. A distinctive front grille, bumper design, vertically stacked fog lamps and color-keyed rockers with chrome accents all help eco-conscious drivers stand out from the pack.
2011 Toyota Highlander
Last year's 3.3-liter V-6 engine gets swapped for a more powerful 3.5-liter V-6. Combined with the electric motor, the vehicle now produces a total of 280 horsepower. This is quite an improvement over last year's 208 ponies under the hood. As with the previous model, four-wheel drive is standard on all models.
Despite the power improvements, the new hybrid manages to improve on gas mileage. New EPA ratings come in at 28 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. In comparison, last year's model produced an estimated 27 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. A new ECON drive mode combines with a Hybrid System Indicator in the instrument panel to assist drivers in maximizing fuel savings.
Toyota is also particularly proud of the new suspension system found on the Highlander. A four-wheel independent suspension, courtesy of MacPherson struts, promises to deliver a buttery smooth ride.
Review full 2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid specifications.
2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid
Prices and Features
Toyota has gone the extra mile to make the Highlander an even more family-friendly vehicle by boosting the amount of standard and available features. Perhaps the most notable change is the choice to make third-row seating a standard feature. Front passengers will enjoy new default amenities such as leather-trimmed front seats, heated front seats, leather-trimmed steering wheel and eight-way power driver's seat. Rear passengers receive extra pampering in the form of a moonroof and manual rear climate control. Daytime running headlights and an engine immobilizer with security alarm are also now standard.
Unfortunately, all these new standard features result in a higher base price tag for the new model. Initial asking price now comes in at $27,390 (compared to last year's $25,855).
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2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Safety
The 2011 Highlander Hybrid returns with seven airbags (including driver's knee airbag), stability control, traction control, brake assist, electronic brakeforce distribution, anti-lock brakes and front active headrests. A specialized Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) system helps maximize handling, traction and braking to anticipate and minimize the potential for wheel spin and skidding.
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