NEW YORK – Forget Lexus, this is Toyota Highlander fans, because that's when the New York International Auto Show goes on sale.
The Three-row Highlander is built on Toyota's newest vehicle architecture, which is shared with its top-selling Rav4 and Camry.
The 2020 model is over two inches longer than Honda Pilot.
The Highlander wants to be offered with seating for either seven or eight V6 engine or hybrid powertrain.
The 3.5-liter V6 is rated at 295 hp and comes with an 8-speed automatic transmission. It can tow up to 5,000 pounds and is available with all-wheel-drive system that can improve handling through a torque-vectoring function that shifts from side to side in turns, and has several drive modes optimized for a variety of surfaces mud and sand.
There's a hybrid model that will follow next February, and it's very different than the outgoing one. The powertrain combines a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with a pair of motors mounted coaxially within the transaxle.
According to Toyota, front-wheel-drive models are expected to get an EPA combined rating of 34 mpg which is up from 29 mpg for the current Highlander Hybrid. Toyota's Safety Sense 2.0 package of semi-autonomous driver aids is standard sonar assist are optional.
The interior has been upgraded with more soft-touch surfaces, and the top of the line Platinum trim features a 1,200-watt 11-speaker audio system, 360-degree camera and 12.3-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system equipped with Apple CarPlay, Android Car and WiFi hotspot.
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