2008 Toyota Highlander Hybrid 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
I'm an extremely experience & picky SUV driver, I've spent over 2 months test driving several SUVs in the market which includes BMW X5, BMW X6, Land Rover LR3, Mercedes M-Class, and Porsche Cayenne. Yes, they are nice and fast, but nothing blow me away like Highlander Hybrid, it amazed me by its unconventional and futuristic technology with Synergy drive, VDIM, and CVT. European/American SUVs in the market attract the buyer by putting a bigger engine, bigger disk brakes to achieve better speed and cornering, but none of them put as much work as Toyota on engineering such clean and environmentally friendly vehicle. I am getting 29 MPG with my Highlander Hybrid in mix city/highway.
Highlander Hybrid's interior is about 1/3 less noise than BMW X5 and Porsche Cayenne. The second generation Synergy drive is really a technological marvel, it's so refined. VDIM definitely beats BMW's DSC; I've seen several videos on the web, it outperforms BMW X5 when racing on wet/ice surface.
The mechanical part of this vehicle is extremely competent. The exterior design is muscular, but not as attractive or sporty as some of the Europeans. But it has great futuristic looks which I really love. The interior gives very airy feeling for both passengers and drivers which is a big plus.