Toyota is moving to offer all of its most popular models as high-power hybrids for 2021 and beyond. The current Highlander has a 243-hp hybrid engine option. With all-wheel drive, the Highlander has an EPA-estimated Combined rating of 35 MPG. Its annual fuel cost over 15,000 miles of use is about $1,000 per year. By contrast, Honda’s most efficient Pilot offers shoppers an engine with 280 hp, but a fuel economy of just 22 MPG combined. Its annual fuel cost is $1,600.
Over ten years, that equates to a $6,000 fuel savings for the Highlander by comparison to the Pilot. Over 15 year, the fuel savings is $9,000, and should the vehicle last 20 years, its fuel savings would be $12,000. And bear in mind, those are at today’s very low fuel prices.
And money isn’t the only thing that the Highlander saves. Over 20 years, it will consume 4,704 fewer gallons of gasoline. The environmental impact of that fuel savings is significant. The EPA scores the Highlander Hybrid a 7 on its 10-point smog scale with 10 being the best score. The Pilot earns just a 3. Over 20 years, the Pilot emits 20 tons more CO2 than the Highlander Hybrid.
One last comment on the Highlander Hybrid’s value by comparison to this worthy peer. Like all Toyota's the first two years of maintenance are included in the price.
If you are shopping for a new family vehicle this year, consider a money, fuel and environment-saving Toyota Hybrid.
Data and charts courtesy of www.FuelEconomy.gov.
John Goreham is a long-time New England Motor Press Association member and recovering engineer. Following his engineering program, John also completed a marketing program at Northeastern University and worked with automotive component manufacturers. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American newspapers and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin