Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid

2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid
List price


  • Real-world gas mileage in the 20s, terrific acceleration, smooth ride, comfortable cabin with simple controls and solid materials.


  • Extra weight results in so-so handling, engine can be noisy, poor access to third-row seat.

Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid for Sale

Toyota Highlander Hybrid 2006 Limited 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
100,402 miles
Used 2006
Toyota Highlander Hybrid
Est.Loan: $184/mo
Fair Deal!
Fair Deal!
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Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is an excellent family SUV that accommodates the needs of most SUV buyers while delivering the benefits of hybrid technology.

vehicle overview

Hybrids are certainly not new -- the first Honda Insights and Toyota Priuses rolled into dealerships over five years ago. But the 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is the one that will put the term "hybrid" on the lips of average Americans. As revolutionary as cars like the Insight were, many people need more than two or even five seats. And that's where the Highlander comes in.

As the first seven-passenger hybrid vehicle Toyota's alternative-powered SUV is revolutionary in its own quiet kind of way. Automakers have finally figured out that the key to mass hybrid sales is not necessarily stellar fuel economy. Given the price premium paid for most hybrids, vehicles like the Lexus RX 400h and Honda Accord Hybrid offer more luxury features and extra power. And the Toyota Highlander is no different. The "conserving resources" aspect of the Highlander Hybrid intentionally plays second banana to more important features like extra power and standard third-row seating.

Does the Toyota Highlander Hybrid get better fuel economy than your average V6-powered SUV? Sure, it's rated 31 mpg/27 mpg highway. But it's the added snap of 268 hp that really get this Highlander recognized. The gas-electric Highlander also offers a few extra touches such as standard LED taillights and unique 17-inch wheels. Foglights, a rear roof spoiler and a JBL stereo are options. The Limited version is even more luxurious, as it's loaded up with every possible feature save for an optional DVD-based navigation system. But with that touchscreen nav system, you'll also have the added entertainment of a power flow chart and fuel economy meter like that found in the Prius.

Front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive versions are available, though the Toyota Highlander Hybrid is intended for pavement duty. Toyota calls the all-wheel-drive system 4WD-i. It is an on-demand system that improves traction on wet and dry pavement and is capable of regenerating power from all four wheels. The system is unique in that it uses a rear-mounted motor/generator to power the rear wheels when wheel slip is detected in the front. The 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is remarkable in that it doesn't force you to make uncomfortable compromises to stand up for the planet. Thanks, in part, to its conservative styling and simple, comfortable interior, this hybrid should make the move into the high-tech age painless for the typical family car buyer.

trim levels & features

The Toyota Highlander Hybrid is offered in base and Limited trim levels. The base model is nicely equipped with seven-passenger seating, cloth upholstery, a power driver seat, ABS, stability control, a six-speaker CD stereo and 17-inch alloy wheels. The lone option package for the base model includes a sunroof, an upgraded JBL stereo with a CD changer and foglights. The Limited comes with all of the above, as well as leather upholstery, wood grain interior trim, automatic climate control and a power front-passenger seat. A navigation system is the only option on the Limited.

2006 Highlights

New for 2006, the hybrid version of the Highlander pairs a gasoline-powered V6 with electric motors to improve fuel economy and acceleration.

performance & mpg

To make the hybrid version, Toyota started with the 3.3-liter V6 in the standard Highlander, recalibrated it for duty in a hybrid and installed two electric motors. One of the motors is responsible for starting the gas engine and recharging the 288-volt battery pack. The other teams up with the V6 to drive the front wheels via a continuously variable transmission. All-wheel-drive models get a third motor that can juice the rear wheels when extra power or traction is needed; Toyota calls this setup 4WD-i. The gas-electric power plant makes a combined 268 horsepower. Fuel economy is 33 mpg city/28 mpg highway on front-drive (2WD) models and 31/27 on all-wheel-drive models. Towing capacity is 3,500 pounds.


Front-seat side airbags and first- and second-row head curtain airbags are standard on all Toyota Highlander Hybrid models. Also standard are four-wheel antilock disc brakes, ABS with BrakeAssist and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, traction control, stability control. These safety systems are part of Toyota's new integrated safety system that coordinates all the vehicle's safety features to assure maximum accident avoidance capability and protection should an accident occur.


The standard Toyota Highlander has a light and somewhat "tossable" nature but the added weight of the hybrid version gives it a more cumbersome feel around tight turns. It's still easy to maneuver in the city, though, and as smooth as they come on the highway. Acceleration is excellent at any speed, thanks to the electric motor assist.


The interior of the Toyota Highlander Hybrid is essentially identical to that of the gasoline-only version. A thoughtful cabin design puts all the controls and storage areas within easy reach. Comfortable seating in the first and second rows and a total of 10 cupholders make the Highlander Hybrid a natural for family transportation. The second-row seat's lack of a flip-and-fold mechanism makes the third row tougher to access than most, but this is still the only hybrid that seats seven.

Top consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid.

Inverter Problems
drew1961, 6/22/2011
This car has very expensive inverter problems. Cost to repair Hybrid inverter system as of June 21, 2011 $9325.00 + Tax Toyota does not fix this and have a class action suit against them at this time. If you are going green this green will be coming out of your billfold. The 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Vehicle (Highlander HV) was Toyota’s first generation of gasoline-electric hybrid versions of the Highlander sold in the U.S. A central component of the Highlander HV is the electrical inverter assembly, which changes the DC current from the vehicles battery into AC current that powers the vehicle’s motor. The defective inverter assemblies cause the vehicles to suddenly lose engine power while the vehicles is being driven.
Hybrid system breakdown!
keepwarmnow, 11/19/2010
Great experience until 100,000 miles. All check ups done at dealership.100,000 miles warranty expires soon after car won't start.I bought a Toyota because they are meant to last.Took car to dealership and they announced it would be 8700 dollars to fix. The hybrid system does not work! CODES POAA6&526-614 and Warrantied only to 100,000 miles. I am at 119,000. I was told the labor on the part is minimal it is the part that is so expensive. I was shocked and then looked on the internet to find that others have found themselves in the same position.When I went to pick up the car at Toyota they charged me $250.00 for the diagnostic test and tried to sell me another Toyota. HA!!
Heck of a First Car -- Will Post 1yr Review as Well
sovereign, 5/31/2011
As the title suggests, this is my first car. Purchased at 43k miles from a dealer. Having driven only my parents' cars until now, those being minivans (Odyssey, Villager) and sedans (Impala), a small SUV is certainly different. That "hybrid" and "luxury features" are not mutually-exclusive (nor do they require a premium nameplate) is a good thing. The "hybrid premium" also shrinks to almost nothing (by Edmunds estimates for similarly-equipped vehicles quoted at dealer retail). 2006 Limited 4x4 loaded minus DVD: $20,923. 2006 Limited 4x4 Hybrid loaded minus DVD: $21,445. That's $523, so one would need to save 125 gallons of gas in mileage vs. nonhybrid. Such savings is easy.
2006 with 92000 miles
topwilson, 1/2/2011
Bought the car with 89000 miles on it, and was wary about the battery life, but it charges up fine and runs great. You need to be careful about your focus when driving, staring at fuel economy display is riveting! The limited is equiped nicely, and the interior is layed out well. Irritating the passenger cant use the maps feature while driving. Storage is a problem relative to the seating if you are on a long trip. Took the wife and four kids to DC over Christmas, and had to invest in a car top carrier. All things considered, trip went well, and averaged aroune 23 even with the car carrier messing with aerodynamics. I would buy this car again, fun to pass up all the gas stations!!
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Features & Specs

27 city / 25 hwy
Seats 7
Continuously variable-speed automatic
268 hp @ 5600 rpm
27 city / 25 hwy
Seats 7
Continuously variable-speed automatic
268 hp @ 5600 rpm
28 city / 25 hwy
Seats 7
Continuously variable-speed automatic
268 hp @ 5600 rpm
28 city / 25 hwy
Seats 7
Continuously variable-speed automatic
268 hp @ 5600 rpm
See all Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid features & specs


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid
More About This Model

The Toyota Highlander Hybrid is the car that will make hybrids as common as a GE lightbulb.

Sure, the Honda Civic Hybrid and the Toyota Prius have furthered the "no plugs please" hybrid cause to the point where they are somewhat commonplace in locales like California and New York. But the Highlander will put hybrid technology into the hands of Joe and Jane Average who simply don't have the luxury of putting high-minded ideals before daily practicality.

This alternative Highlander is the first seven-passenger hybrid vehicle. Its inoffensive exterior styling, seating for seven and available four-wheel drive make it a no-brainer when shopping for a kinder, gentler SUV.

Toyota has built the Highlander so that the "conserving resources" aspect intentionally plays second banana to more important features like extra power and family-friendly reconfigurable seating. Does the Hybrid Highlander get better fuel economy than your average V6-powered SUV? Sure, it gets about 30 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving.

But a stint behind the wheel reveals that no one will be struck dumb by the engine's fuel-sipping ways and most will be immediately impressed with its 268 horsepower. By comparison that's nearly 40 more ponies than a standard V6-powered Highlander. "Ah ha!" you're saying, "Now I might be willing to spend the extra money on a hybrid." We agree.

The Hybrid Highlander's acceleration is indeed impressive. The instant response of the electric motors moves the midsize SUV forward with sports carlike authority. The hybrid power plant works in a seamless manner, but there is a noticeable amount of engine noise at higher rpm. It's not intrusive, but more than we would expect from a Toyota.

We have enjoyed the light and somewhat "tossable" nature of previous Highlanders. By contrast, the hybrid version feels a little heavy and cumbersome around tight turns. It's obvious Toyota engineers tried to compensate for the added weight of the hybrid system with a stiffer suspension, but all the engineering work is detectable from the driver seat.

The Highlander Hybrid is offered in two- or four-wheel-drive variants. But don't think of the four-wheel-drive version as a serious rock crawler. Even Toyota says this hybrid SUV is no off-road vehicle. It's more accurate to think of the Highlander Hybrid as an all-wheel-drive wagon. Toyota calls the system 4WDi. It is an on-demand system that improves traction on wet and dry pavement and is capable of regenerating power from all four wheels. The system is unique in that it uses a rear-mounted motor/generator that is activated when wheel slip is detected.

There are only two trim levels of the Highlander Hybrid — standard and Limited. The standard model offers options like foglights, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, JBL stereo and a rear spoiler. A touchscreen DVD navigation system is an option only on the Limited version and when so equipped, you'll be treated to a power-flow screen similar to the Prius.

Other hybrid-only features include an extra opening in the front bumper to allow for more cooling, LED taillights and brake lights that last longer and use less power. There's also a chrome license plate frame (we swear, they specifically mentioned this) and unique 17-inch alloy wheels. Still, don't go shopping for a Highlander Hybrid if style is your main goal — the difference between the normal Highlander and the hybrid version is kinda like the difference between Vanilla and French Vanilla ice cream.

We could go on and on about all the advanced technology used in the new Toyota Highlander Hybrid but really, too much shop talk about kilowatts, jigawatts, planetary gears and oil-cooled magnets runs contrary to this car's simple intent. Plus, that kind of information is like learning how to multiply fractions in 8th period math class on a warm Friday in April; none of it will stick.

This car is all about putting planet-saving, fuel-sipping technology in a useful and affordable package. On that count, the Highlander Hybrid is successful. Thanks, in part, to its unremarkable styling and interior versatility, this hybrid could move the family car and the average car buyer well into the 21st century as painlessly as possible.

Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Overview

The Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is offered in the following submodels: . Available styles include Limited 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), 4dr SUV AWD (3.3L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), Limited 4dr SUV (3.3L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), and 4dr SUV (3.3L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT).

What's a good price on a Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid?

Price comparisons for Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid trim styles:

  • The Used 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited is priced between $8,995 and$8,995 with odometer readings between 100402 and100402 miles.

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