We replaced a Ford Explorer with the new Highlander Hybrid - we wanted something with similar space, with a better ride and that got better gas mileage. Overall, we are very pleased with this vehicle. The front and back seats have a lot of space. Love the instrumentation that shows when you are using gas vs battery. The keyless proximity entry is great, keys can remain in your purse or pocket. We have been a little disappointed with the gas mileage but it is better than what we were getting. We seem to average about 24 mpg. We got 25 driving the highway to Florida and 23 on the way back and almost 30mpg while on the island. Oh, and the ride is fantastic and it has very good acceleration.
I purchased a 2008 Toyota Highlander Limited Hybrid in March of 2011 after a great deal of research and analysis. The vehicle had 95% of what I was looking for. Three options not on the vehicle were roof rack, sun roof, and navigation system. These turned out to be items I do not miss. Exterior is a pearl white with nice lines. Interior is grey. Lots of interior room. Separate AC control for back seat. There is 3rd row seating which should be used for those under 5'2", and only when necessary. The front seating is spacious and very adjustable. If this is your first hybrid, then you will need to sit in the vehicle and review the operator�s manual. A lot of information to intake, and data in the screen and on the dash. Most of the controls are intuitive. Some are not. For instance, on the shift lever between the seats are the normal letters: P, R, N, D. Then there is B. B is for breaking which drives energy to the battery. If you don't have the navigation system, you will have a screen in the top center of the dash which has a lot of data, and ties to the camera in the rear of the car. It is activated when the car is in reverse. So, review the manual. The engine is very interesting. Very quiet when on battery. You can walk away from the vehicle and not know you left it running. The mileage is listed as 29 city and 25 highway. Yes, that is correct. City mileage will depend highly upon your driving habits. Rabbiting and sudden stops will dramatically reduce your mileage as the battery will have little chance to employ. I drove the vehicle on one tank of gas for 70 miles interstate, 70 miles state highway, and 180 miles state roads on one tank of gas averaging 29.4 miles a gallon driving to pick a son up from college and bring him and his belongings home, impressive. In the town I live, I average more in the area of 22 - 24 miles a gallon. Acceleration is good and will get you up and on the Interstate from an on ramp. Breaking is good and will provide stopping in a panic stop. This vehicle is an energy efficient SUV with great fuel mileage for such a large SUV. Nice inside and spacious. Very well laid out. Excellent upscale family vehicle.
I'm a hospice nurse. This vehicle not only provides great gas mileage but with the all wheel drive i dont have to worry about snow like I did in my car. Rides smooth and comfortable seats