About Toyota Highlander
The Toyota Highlander is based on the same platform as the Camry. In Japan and Australia, the name cannot be used because of the Hyundai brand, so Toyota calls it Toyota Kluger in those markets. The name comes from the German term Klug. It means clever or smart. The Highlander shares a platform with the Lexus RX series. Available in five- and seven-seat models, the Toyota Highlander has become one of the company's best-selling cars in many markets around the world. It is available with front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive as standard. There are three trim levels for the American Toyota Highlander. When the model was launched, base and limited availability models were offered, with a Sport model introduced in March 2006. It exceeds Japanese government requirements for compact cars in terms of engine size and exterior dimensions in Japan. Therefore, the annual tax is higher.
Japanese and Australian models of the Toyota Highlander had a center console integrated into the instrument cluster. The North American model did not originally have an integrated center console. The integrated center console was available on all U.S. and Canadian Highlander Limited models in 2001. However, a smaller, non-integrated center console was available as an option on early Toyota Highlander models. Those models did not have an integrated center console. In 2006, only V6 all-wheel drive was available on the 2005 Highlander sold in Canada. Hybrid models were offered with partial all-wheel drive. The company calls it all-wheel drive. The rear wheels are driven by a separate electric motor. This system is designed for driving on snow and ice. And it can overheat the rear electric motor in off-road conditions.
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The Highlander was originally a traditional non-hybrid SUV with an internal combustion engine. However, Toyota later introduced a hybrid version. The Kluger Hybrid uses the company's Hybrid Synergy Drive technology and a 3MZ FE V6 engine. It is available with FWD or AWD. The hybrid car was introduced at the 2004 North American International Auto Show. It was offered to the public in July 2005 as a 2006 model. The power steering pump, water pump, and air conditioning compressor were replaced with electric ones. A modified alternator was used in the hybrid system. The 2008 Highlander's sole power source was a 2GR-FE V6 engine mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. Production of the four-cylinder model ceased. But it was resumed in 2009. The 3.5-liter engine is more powerful than the previous V6. Larger dimensions and better sound insulation have increased curb weight by almost 500 kg. Fuel consumption has improved slightly.
Initially, the XU40 was manufactured exclusively at Toyota Motors' Kyushu Miyata plant. It began production for all world markets in May 2007. In China, production for domestic sales began on May 25, 2009, at GAC Toyota's Nansha plant in Guangzhou, Guangdong province. Beginning with the 2011 model year, Toyota plans to manufacture the Highlander for the North American market in Blue Springs, Mississippi. Non-hybrid engines remain unchanged for 2011, although the SE version will now have a four-cylinder engine. It was previously only available in the base model. All trim levels now have more standard features. The updated model was also sold in Russia between 2010 and 2013. The hybrid car is equipped with the Toyota Hybrid Synergy Drive system. It allows it to use electric power only over short distances and at low speeds. Compared to the previous hybrid version, the weight and price have been improved.