Overall a very good SUV. It's a Toyota, so their quality is good.
I found the transmission very responsive depending on the mode you select. Its 6 cylinder will of course shift gears more often than say a 4 cylinder. But we also enjoy 27-29 mpg in mixed city/hwy driving.
The 3 driving modes are very nice to tailor the "get up and go" experience.
The Eco mode gives smoother (more gradual) acceleration, giving a bit more of a luxury response. The Normal mode is nicely responsive. If you moderately press the gas, it responds with "Yes sir!".
And if you have it in Sport mode when you punch the gas, it responds with "Already done it!
The AWD on the snowy and icy roads of Colorado is fantastic.
Both acceleration and braking are impressively responsive even on poor roads.
The overall interior space (incl cargo) is a bit bigger than the typical small SUV.
Those inches can really help.
The 2013 model made improvements in a quieter ride on the highways.
The exterior paint and clear coat is not very resilient. It scratches easily, even after waxing it.
Include a night time test drive to judge the headlight "line" for yourself. I don't find it a problem, but try it
I did find its horsepower limit with a family of 4, a fully loaded cargo area, plus a rooftop carrier, driving Texas hill-country highways at 80mph, with a strong crosswind, going uphill. This condition challenged the horsepower, causing it to downshift quite a bit and run ~5700rpm to keep up with 80mph. It red-lines ~6200rpm. This indicated a 6 cylinder would be better.
They didn't put lights on all the dashboard/console buttons. This is frustrating and bad oversight.
As the author of this article, I am correcting a typo in the "Review" section.
It should read:
Overall a very good SUV. It's a Toyota, so their quality is good. I found the transmission very responsive depending on the mode you select. Its 6 SPEED transmission will of course shift gears more often than say a 4 SPEED transmission. But we also enjoy 27-29 mpg in mixed city/hwy driving.
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