2012 Toyota Highlander Consumer Review: Great SUV BUT Some Very Annoyi

2012 Toyota Highlander SUV - Consumer Review

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20 of 20 people found this review helpful
Great SUV BUT Some Very Annoying Design Features
By srflifecoach on


2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 5A)


Bought LTD AWD fully loaded except for tow package. Wonderful ride, fun to drive. Compared Honda Pilot but it's ride was more truck-like and driver seat didn't raise up high enough for spouse to see over dash "hump" on Pilot. But wondering what Toyota engineers were thinking?? Rain/water drip down on passenger seats when doors open (no drip edge). Bumper step/protector strip doesn't thus you get scratches on edges. Can't program GPS system while moving (not even passenger). Sirius radio reception terrible and doesn't show as much of the song/title/info as my $30 cheapie add-on in my other car. Love 2-yr free routine maintenance & 8-year/100,000mile/$0 ded extended warranty I bought.

Best Features

Great, comfortable front seats. "No ignition key" system nice but takes getting used to. Power rear lift gate a PLUS. BIG fairly square rear opening allows for loading a LOT of cargo (we don't use the 3rd row seating) -- better than most (Pilot had best rear opening/storage). Rides better than most passenger cars. Separate buttons to open/close moon roof. Visors have sliding extensions. Good storage in door panels/decent sized glove compartment. Gas mileage 25 on highway, 20 around town after 15,000 miles. Wide side/rear windows for fewer blind spots. Free Toyota Care towed car in when battery died less than 6 months after purchase (very fast, competent service). Backup camera.

Worst Features

DO NOT BUY JBL NAV/CD/Sirius upgrade!! VERY expensive ($2,000+). Despite JBL label, sound is unimpressive. Satellite radio reception unreliable/cuts out frequently (poor design). Also satellite stations/info display truncated so pretty useless. MOST CD's will NOT display titles/tracks as well (1 in 20 for us) - just reads "no data" -- very annoying for a unit this expensive. Cannot view cd/radio/sat info and see GPS/NAV at same time (many cars have a split screen option). Cannot program GPS/NAV while in motion (not even passenger!) and routings can be "funky." Save the $$ on this NAV/CD/Radio/SAT option!! Rear backup camera display has no "lines" that give any sense of distances.
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