Toyota Highlander vs. Toyota Grand Highlander: A Comparison for Ottawa ResidentsSep 14th, 2023
Toyota Highlander vs. Toyota Grand Highlander: A Comparative Look for Ottawa Residents
In the captivating and diverse landscapes of Ottawa, residents require vehicles that can conquer a wide range of terrains while delivering comfort and adaptability for their daily lives. Toyota’s SUV lineup has been a favorite among Ottawans for its blend of dependability, performance, and cutting-edge technology. Now, with the introduction of the 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander alongside the well-established Toyota Highlander, Ottawa residents have an expanded array of options to match their preferences and requirements.
Toyota Highlander vs. Toyota Grand Highlander: A Comprehensive Comparison
The first thing that captures your attention is the distinctive exterior design of these two models. The Grand Highlander stands out with its larger dimensions, featuring a taller, wider, and longer profile compared to the standard Highlander. Its bold and angular design, with a more upright stance, sets it apart from the sleek and modern styling of the Highlander.
What are the dimensions of the 2023 Highlander? The dimensions of the 2023 Highlander are as follows:
Length: 495.1 Centimeters
Width: 193.0 Centimeters
Height: 173.0 Centimeters
What are the dimensions of the 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander? The dimensions of the 2023 Grand Highlander are as follows:
Length: 511.0 Centimeters
Width: 199.0 Centimeters
Height: 178.1 Centimeters
Interior Comfort and Space:
Interior comfort is of great importance, especially during extended drives in and around Ottawa. The Grand Highlander takes the lead by offering an additional ten centimeters of wheelbase, resulting in more legroom, headroom, and shoulder space in the third row. Notably, third-row passengers can enjoy the convenience of a USB-C port, a feature not found in the regular Highlander. Furthermore, the Grand Highlander provides ventilated captain’s chairs for the second row, enhancing comfort and climate control.
In the Highlander’s third row, passengers have 91.8 centimeters of headroom and 71.1 centimeters of legroom. In comparison, the Grand Highlander offers even more spacious dimensions with 94.5 centimeters of headroom and 85.1 centimeters of legroom. Impressively, the Grand Highlander’s third-row space nearly matches that of the full-size Toyota Sequoia.
When it comes to cargo space, the Grand Highlander truly excels. With an additional 12.7 cubic decimeters behind the third row and 39.6 cubic decimeters more with the rear rows folded, it provides the flexibility needed for all your adventures in and around Ottawa.
With the third row up, the Grand Highlander offers 582.4 liters of cargo capacity, whereas the Highlander provides 408.3 liters. Moreover, when both the second and third rows are folded down, the Grand Highlander reaches an impressive 2,760 liters of cargo space, surpassing the Highlander’s 2,388 liters.
It’s worth noting that the Toyota Sienna offers even more cargo space than either crossover model.
Technology and Safety:
Both the Grand Highlander and Highlander models, following Toyota’s trend, come equipped with a range of advanced driver assistance and active safety features through the Toyota Safety Sense (TSS) suite. This includes valuable functionalities like adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, front automatic emergency braking, and automatic high-beams.
However, a closer examination reveals a distinction: the Highlander is equipped with TSS 2.5+, while the Grand Highlander boasts TSS 3.0. This translates to enhanced safety measures in the newer SUV. Notably, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert, which are optional in the Highlander, come standard in the Grand Highlander. Additionally, the Grand Highlander introduces Toyota’s innovative Proactive Driving Assist, facilitating automated speed control based on the dynamic interplay of traffic and road conditions ahead.
While the Highlander’s interior offers comfort and a well-appointed setup, the Grand Highlander elevates the tech even further.
The Highlander features a 20.3 cm (8.0-inch) infotainment touchscreen and a 17.8 cm (7.0-inch) gauge cluster display as standard. In contrast, higher-tier trims enjoy a more expansive 31.2 cm (12.3-inch) touchscreen and gauge display.
On the other hand, each Grand Highlander boasts a generous 31.2 cm (12.3-inch) touchscreen across all trims, while the larger digital gauge display is reserved for the upper trim levels.
Both models integrate Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and with the larger screen, wireless connectivity is seamlessly achieved. In terms of connectivity, the Grand Highlander takes the lead, offering seven USB ports compared to the Highlander’s five.
Notably, the Grand Highlander exclusively features USB ports in the third row. Furthermore, wireless charging, optional in the Highlander, is a standard feature in the Grand Highlander. Both models can be equipped with an optional 11-speaker JBL premium audio system for enhanced audio.
A notable difference is the Grand Highlander’s unique capability: transforming into a gaming console, a feature that the Highlander lacks. This remarkable addition sets the Grand Highlander apart, offering an entertainment dimension that the Highlander can’t match.
Powertrains and Performance:
The Grand Highlander offers a range of powertrain options to cater to diverse preferences. The standout is the Hybrid Max configuration, which combines a turbocharged 2.4-liter inline-four engine with two electric motors, resulting in a combined output of 362 horsepower and 542 Newton-meters of torque. This not only provides ample power but also a maximum towing capacity of 2268 kilograms, matching that of the regular Highlander.
While the Grand Highlander’s powertrain lineup includes the familiar 2.4-liter inline-four engine and a hybrid setup shared with the standard Highlander, its Hybrid Max option adds a new level of performance, making it an ideal choice for those who require more power for their journeys in and around Ottawa.
Highlander Hybrid Powertrain:
At the core of the Toyota Highlander Hybrid is a 2.5-liter inline-four engine, complemented by two electric motors, generating a combined output of 182 kilowatts and 237 Newton-meters of torque. The hybrid system seamlessly pairs with a CVT automatic transmission, providing a smooth and efficient driving experience. The Highlander Hybrid offers the flexibility of front-wheel drive (FWD) as standard and all-wheel drive (AWD) as an optional enhancement. Emphasizing efficiency, this powertrain achieves commendable fuel economy, with estimated ratings of 6.7-6.5 liters per 100 kilometers in the city and 7.0-6.7 liters per 100 kilometers on the highway. During acceleration testing, the Highlander Hybrid showcased its capabilities with a 0-60 mph time of 8.4 seconds.
Grand Highlander’s Hybrid Powertrains:
As Toyota expands its hybrid offerings, the Grand Highlander takes the spotlight with not one, but two distinct hybrid powertrains. The first, similar to the Highlander’s system, features a 2.5-liter hybrid setup paired with an electric motor. This configuration delivers a harmonious blend of power and efficiency, creating an output similar to the Highlander at 182 kilowatts. The Grand Highlander’s hybrid variant features AWD as standard.
However, what truly ignites excitement is the Grand Highlander’s introduction of the Hybrid Max powertrain, a performance-driven system inspired by the Toyota Crown. This hybrid marvel combines a turbocharged 2.4-liter inline-four engine with an electric motor, further amplified by a separate electric motor on the rear axle. The outcome is a commanding 268 kilowatts and an impressive 542 Newton-meters of torque. With such potent power, AWD becomes an integral part of this configuration. While the Grand Highlander’s hybrid fuel efficiency might not match that of its sibling, its acceleration capabilities are sure to turn heads. Toyota estimates a thrilling 0-60 mph acceleration time of just 6.3 seconds.
The fuel efficiency of the standard Highlander’s 2.4-liter engine translates to approximately 21-22 MPG in the city and 28-29 MPG on the highway. In comparison, the Grand Highlander achieves around 20-21 MPG in the city and 26-28 MPG on the highway, slightly lower due to the additional weight of the new model—an outcome that aligns with expectations. This pattern also extends to the basic Hybrid models, as the increased weight of the Grand Highlander affects the efficiency of its hybrid system.
However, what may catch your attention is the contrast between the top offerings of the Highlander and the Grand Highlander, disregarding their weight differences. In the case of the current Highlander, its Hybrid model attains an EPA-rated combined fuel economy of up to 36 MPG. Upon considering the Grand Highlander Hybrid MAX model, the combined average is projected to be around 27 MPG. This shift in efficiency demonstrates an intriguing trade-off: in exchange for gaining an impressive 119 additional horsepower, there is a reduction of approximately nine miles per gallon in fuel economy.
Trim Levels And Price:
While the Grand Highlander often surpasses the Highlander in various aspects, there’s one area where it falls slightly short: the number of available trim levels. The 2024 Grand Highlander lineup starts with the XLE trim, with the option to upgrade to Limited and Platinum trims. In contrast, the Highlander offers a broader range, encompassing L, LE, XSE, XLE, Limited, and Platinum trims.
It’s worth noting that the Grand Highlander’s starting price can’t quite compete with the Highlander L, which begins at approximately $38,000. The Grand Highlander starts at around $44,500 and can climb up to nearly $60,000 for the range-topping Hybrid Max configuration. Despite the higher cost, the Grand Highlander’s advanced features and capabilities could well make up for the price difference.
Time To Make The Choice With Bank Street Toyota: Toyota Highlander Or The Toyota Grand Highlander
For Ottawa residents seeking an SUV that perfectly aligns with their active lifestyles, both the Toyota Highlander and the Toyota Grand Highlander have their merits. The Highlander offers a blend of comfort, reliability, and efficiency, making it a practical choice for urban commutes and weekend getaways. On the other hand, the Grand Highlander’s larger size, enhanced third-row comfort, and more powerful engine options make it a compelling choice for those who prioritize space and performance.
Whether you’re navigating through Ottawa’s urban streets or exploring the scenic beauty of the surrounding areas, these Toyota SUVs offer a range of features that cater to the unique demands of life in the Ottawa region. With the Toyota Highlander and Grand Highlander in the lineup, Ottawa residents have two outstanding options to explore the region’s landscapes in comfort and style.
Schedule a test drive today and experience the difference for yourself. You can view all available models at Bank Street Toyota.