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Traded up using my 2009 Ford Escape Hybrid logo 6/14/2016 mykecusa

I really liked the Ford and was disappointed they did not continue the hybrid line. The Highlander is bigger, which I find more comfortable. It is higher off the ground which gives me better visibility. Since it is bigger and heavier, it does not get the fuel economy I got with the Ford. With the Ford I could rely upon 32 mpg in the Spring and Fall, and 29 mpg in the Winter and Summer. Thus far I am getting a solid 27-28 mpg (Spring/Summer) with the Highlander on mixe city/highway driving without air-conditioning, or heating. Is 4-5 mpg less in order to have twice the cargo capacity worth it ? I think it is,There is so much more to learn and understand about the Highlander Hybride over the Escape Hybrid. The Owners manual is at least 3 times as thick. I like how quiet the Highlander is compared to the Escape (6 cylinder vs 4 cylinder engine might have something to do with that). I like the visibility of the Highlander over the Escape (the 19" wheels on the Highlander vs the 16" wheels on the Escape might account for that).I have a service dog that goes where I go. When my girl friend and her dog and me with my dog need to go someplace the Highlander will earn its price, for the Highlander is after all a 'Family oriented vehicle'. One I think hard to beat.A big point in many professional writeups is the low (relative) price of gasoline does not justify the $6,000 cost increase in the hybrid. I bought the Escape when gasoline went up to $4 a gallon. I expect one day it will be back there. In the mean time I like the lower emissions put out by the hybrid ... just my version of being a 'Tree hugger'.6 month update:I still give this Toyota Highlander Hybrid an A+ rating, but then I am a very conservative driver. Unfortunately the fuel economy is not there when doing lots of city driving, with stop and go being the normal. Under these conditions 22 mpg I consider amazing for this hybrid. On the all highway cruise at 60-65 mph I get a typical 33-34 mpg. The average usually is running about 25 mpg. I do not complain about this and think it pretty good for a 5,000 pound vehicle, though 27-28 mpg would be better. It seems to definitely depend upon how I drive the Highlander. I do not know what mpg I would get from a non-hybrid Highlander, but I suspect it would be less than the EPA rating and less than I am getting with the hybrid version. I am happy with my choice even though it might never pay for itself.The vehicle still is a quiet, comfortable ride. I have no complaints about any feature of the vehicle. It has plenty of room for my needs and I find it not short on acceleration when needed. I have no regrets in this purchase, except maybe with the dealership chosen.I drove the 2016 Highlander Hybrid for a year. My opinion is it is quiet and comfortable. I got what I consider very good fuel economy for a 5,000 pound vehicle. I was never at a loss for cargo space and I have a large service dog that always goes with me. The only negative I had was the result of my being a disabled veteran, blind in one eye. While the back up camera was great tool, the front and sides were the weak spot. I did not like taking my power mobility due the that problem. I solved the problem by trading in the 2016 Highlander Hybrid Planium for a 2017 Highlander Hybrid Platinum. The added cameras were the major reason. This was an impulse purchase based upon my being at the dealership for servicing. As I said I am sold on the Toyota Highlander, then I am a very conservative driver. The camera additions were a great hook, and have turned out every bit as wonderful for my ease, and safe operation of my vehicle and have no regrets for the change to the 2017 Highlander. The improved horsepower and fuel economy seemed like frosting on the cake, and I wait to have that show up as a positive. Those two features certainly are not diminished, but I have yet to notice any noticable improvement. I like that the engine shuts off at traffic stops and conserves fuel (less emissions ... I am still a tree hugger). I age with most professional reviews with gasoline at $3 or below the hybrid will take a long time to break even with, but if you choose to do your best with the environment and still drive a gasoline engine vehicle it does not matter the pay back time.Bottom line, I think the Toyota Highlander Hybrid is a terrific vehicle if you are concerned about the environment, need a family vehicle with cargo space, like a quiet comfortable ride, and are not in the habit of driving 75, or more mph, jack rabbit starts to race to the next light and quick stop, just to repeat (fuel economy and starting up really suck for me, it is the cruising on the highway where the fuel economy shines (I can get 35-45 mpg at those times)). This is still the best vehicle for my driving needs.

Average Rating : 4


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