2007 Toyota Highlander SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2007 Toyota Highlander SUV

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Toyota Highlander Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.4 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 155 hp @ 5700 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 19/25 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2007 Toyota Highlander

  • With its fuel-efficient engine lineup, full complement of safety features and easygoing demeanor, the midsize Highlander has always been a solid choice for those who need SUV utility without unnecessary bulk. However, with several new crossovers entering the market this year, it's a good idea to explore your options before making a decision.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Rides and handles like a Camry, smooth V6 engine or fuel-efficient four-cylinder, all major safety features standard.

  • Cons

    Poor access to optional third-row seat, bland personality, not as good a value as it once was.

  • What's New for 2007

    Front-seat side airbags and two-row side curtain airbags are standard on the 2007 Toyota Highlander. Toyota's midsize crossover SUV also gets revised headlights this year.

Full 2007 Toyota Highlander Review

What's New for 2007

Front-seat side airbags and two-row side curtain airbags are standard on the 2007 Toyota Highlander. Toyota's midsize crossover SUV also gets revised headlights this year.


Representing the seventh year of the model cycle, the 2007 Toyota Highlander is the oldest midsize crossover SUV on the market. Like most Toyotas, though, it was well designed from the start and has aged gracefully over the years. Key strengths include a comfortable ride, easy maneuverability in tight spaces, above-average gas mileage and a high-quality interior with ample room in the first and second rows. Toyota added a third-row seat in 2004 to keep up with newer rivals, but it's more of an afterthought than it is functional and buyers who need seven-passenger capacity will be better served by one of the Highlander's competitors. For families of four, though, the Toyota Highlander remains an acceptable choice, especially considering its many standard safety features and strong crash-test ratings.

Based on the 1997-2001 Camry platform, the Highlander immediately won over consumers with its refined driving dynamics. At a time when most SUVs in this price range were still built on truck platforms and were unwieldy to drive, Toyota gave buyers the equivalent of a tall station wagon with optional all-wheel drive and a choice of a frugal four-cylinder or a smooth V6 engine. Make no mistake: The Toyota Highlander has never been a particularly stylish or sporty vehicle. Rather, it's a highly practical and economical vehicle for buyers whose lives are consumed by children, commutes and grocery store runs.

The problem is that the Highlander's useful packaging has been copied many times over, and many peers are now doing it better. Perhaps the stiffest competition comes from Toyota's own RAV4, which is now almost as big as the Highlander and offers just as much headroom and legroom. In addition, the less expensive RAV handles better and can be equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 that's more powerful and fuel-efficient than the Highlander's 3.3-liter V6. Other competitors you'll want to consider include the Ford Edge; Honda Pilot; Hyundai Santa Fe; Mazda CX-7 and CX-9; Mitsubishi Outlander and Endeavor; Nissan Murano and the Buick Enclave/GMC Acadia/Saturn Outlook triplets. All of these vehicles have their merits, but the well-rounded Pilot, Santa Fe and CX-9 are our top choices in this group. If you still want to purchase a 2007 Toyota Highlander, we won't stand in your way, but we would encourage you to test-drive a few other crossover SUVs before doing so.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

A car-based midsize SUV, the 2007 Toyota Highlander comes in three trim levels: base, Sport and Limited. The base models are decently equipped with items like 16-inch steel wheels, air-conditioning, a six-speaker CD stereo, full power accessories and keyless entry. The Highlander Sport spices things up with 17-inch alloy wheels, a sport-tuned suspension (4WD models only), foglights, a color-keyed grille, chrome exterior trim, a power driver seat and a leather-wrapped steering wheel (with audio controls). The top-of-the-line Toyota Highlander Limited features automatic headlights, heated outside mirrors, a windshield wiper de-icer, a fold-flat third-row seat, automatic climate control, an upgraded eight-speaker JBL sound system and wood-grain interior trim.

Popular options for the Highlander include leather upholstery, a sunroof, an in-dash CD changer, a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, a tow package and, on the Limited only, a navigation system. The third-row seat is optional on base and Sport models.

Powertrains and Performance

There are two engine choices on the 2007 Toyota Highlander. Base models come standard with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder rated for 155 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque. Optional on base Highlanders and standard on the Sport and Limited is a 3.3-liter V6 good for 215 hp and 222 lb-ft of torque. A four-speed automatic transmission is standard on four-cylinder models, while V6 Highlanders upgrade to a five-speed automatic. Buyers can get front-wheel drive (2WD) or all-wheel drive (AWD) with either engine. Fuel economy ratings range from 22 mpg city/28 mpg highway on 2WD four-cylinder models to 18/24 on AWD V6 Highlanders. Tow ratings are on the light side, the maximum being 3,500 pounds on a properly equipped V6 model.


All 2007 Toyota Highlanders come with antilock disc brakes (with brake assist), stability control, front-seat side airbags and side curtain airbags for the first and second rows. A tire-pressure warning system and whiplash-reducing front head restraints are also included. In NHTSA crash testing, the Highlander scored five stars (out of a possible five) for frontal-impact protection. In side-impact tests, it again received five stars for both front and rear passengers. In frontal-offset crash testing administered by the IIHS, the Toyota earned a "Good" rating (the best possible).

Interior Design and Special Features

The Highlander's passenger accommodations are reasonably spacious, but newer competitors offer more room in the second row. Ordering the third-row bench allows the Toyota to seat two additional passengers, preferably small ones, for a total capacity of seven. Unfortunately, the second-row seat's lack of a flip-and-fold mechanism makes for poor access to the third row and limits the seven-passenger Highlander's appeal for carpooling. When it's time to haul groceries, the third-row seat folds flat into the floor (without requiring removal of the headrests), opening up 39.7 cubic feet of cargo space. Drop the 60/40-split second-row seats and there are 80.6 cubes to go around.

Driving Impressions

A fully independent suspension delivers a solid combination of comfort and control, although even in Sport trim, the Highlander favors ride quality over handling. One advantage the Highlander has over many of the newer midsize crossover SUVs is a lower curb weight, which gives it a more nimble feel than some of them. The base four-cylinder engine provides adequate power for those who travel light, but most 2007 Toyota Highlander buyers will prefer the V6, which provides smooth, capable acceleration in all situations.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Basics work

by on
Vehicle: 2007 Toyota Highlander 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 4A)

Bought my 2007 Hylander new and currently have been putting 20,000 miles a year. Total maintenance has consisted of 2 sets of tires, a battery and an alternator. Alternator went at 100,000 miles. Used synthetic motor oil from first change - change the oil 3 times a year with filter. Driving - front end is very light - does not do well with snow, ice or heavy rain - but just have to slow down and take lack of traction into account. 6 years into the vehicle - 120,000 miles - hoping to get 4 more years!!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Reliable s.u.v.

by on
Vehicle: 2007 Toyota Highlander 4dr SUV (3.3L 6cyl 5A)

This vehicle has been reliable ever since. Ever since, I purchased it brand new, there has been no major issue. I had the battery replaced with the one from Sam's club. The front and rear brakes was replaced with O.E. pads. The transmission was done with new filter, new gasket, and O.E. Toyota Type 4 fluids. Also four new tires were done. The oil is changed at every 5,000 miles.

2 of 9 people found this review helpful

This is a great car!

by on
Vehicle: 2007 Toyota Highlander 4dr SUV AWD w/3rd Row (3.3L 6cyl 5A)

Wasn't the first choice for us but we like it a lot now. I was set on getting a Rav4 and then considered the Subaru Forester but though I'd stick with Toyota. Because of limited choices here, we started looking for a Rav4 with 4WD and V6 which is hard to find without being over used. We found a Lexus RX330 and thought this might be it but then later going back we found out it was sold. I had researched the inventory they with had and saw they had a highlander that met our criteria. We looked at it and test drove it and found that we really liked it. So far it been driving well and we plan on using it for 200,000 miles

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

M next car will be

by on
Vehicle: 2007 Toyota Highlander 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl 5A)

I got my Highlander pre- owned/certified and drove it 40.000 in 1.5 year. It gives about 24-25 MPG. This is my first Toyota. I used to own only American cars but none of them lasted more than 100.000. LOVE this car. Itís comfortable drive, super reliable. I have over 65.000 miles on this car and she sounds like new. I love the space, I love I have a small sailboat and I can put it on top and howl it to the beach, I love it has a hatchback (not a swing out back-door as Rav4). What I donít love: The radio. Its cheap. The interior fabric is cheap/poor quality. The arm supports are short. I barely can rest my elbow & I am normal height. The car's outside its thin.

Way too much road noise!

by on
Vehicle: 2007 Toyota Highlander Limited 4dr SUV w/3rd Row (3.3L 6cyl 5A)

Purchased new in Aug 2007 after selling my Avalon. Does the job, and its lack of "flashiness" is fine with me. But the road noise - ugh!! My father-in-law's 2004 Highlander is super quiet. So now I wonder if this noise issue is unique to my vehicle or all '07s. Upgraded to Bridgestone tires but didn't help with the noise. Music and conversation has to be at very loud levels to hear. Plan on asking dealership about it.

Decent, good vehicle - no

by on
Vehicle: 2007 Toyota Highlander Limited 4dr SUV AWD w/3rd Row (3.3L 6cyl 5A)

Our Highlander is very comfortable and functional, but we don't drive much. The transmission seems ill-suited to puttering around the city; it always seems like it wants us to accelerate more abruptly. Plenty of cargo room for longer hauls with kids. We've had one loose speaker since purchase that I've been too lazy to fix.

Talk About The 2007 Highlander

2007 Toyota Highlander Discussions See all Started By

I have a 2007 Highlander that I purchased new. I now have 52,000 miles on it, with absolutely no problems, until now. When I turn left or right and accelerate - -it stalls for 1 second after making...

I have a new 2007 Highlander Hybrid and I am not sure how to find the trailer wiring harness. I have looked everywhere. I have the AWD Limited with Towing Prep. Anybody have any ideas what I need to g...

I have a 2006 v6 AWD Highlander. 4551 miles. I will have it one year in February 2007. Today when I started car (twice) the 'Maint Req' light on the dashboard flashed 6 times then went out. It does no...

Gas Mileage


  • 19
  • cty
  • 25
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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