Skip to main content

Used 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum SUV Review

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum SUV.

Most helpful consumer reviews

4 out of 5 stars
If you prefer a comfortable ride
Limited Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
The Toyota Highlander expert reviews are spot on. The car is quiet and comfortable. However I am and old grandpa and drive like one my kids say ... slow, steady and easy going. I drive 65 mph on the freeways and the posted speed limits in town. I do not, 'Jack rabbit start' only to race to the next stop sign/red light to slam on my brakes. I get an typical 25 mpg per tank full of gasoline. I do regular servicing. The 2017 caught my attention with increased hosepower, better fuel economy and better safety features (I really like the 360 dregree camera view). UPDATE: 12/8/2017 I really like this SUV. It is a quiet and comfortable ride. Plenty of cargo space for my service dog with 2nd row seats up for up to 3 passengers, with the dog. I have been getting 22-24 mpg with the A/C, or heater on, and 25-27 with both off. This is roughly 50-50 city-highway. The electric motor truly takes a gentle foot to stay engaged, and really is quite limited in being engaged ... maybe a mile if lucky. Learning to use it does add to the fuel economy. The ECO function is suppose to improve fuel economy in town with start ups. I used it the first 2500 miles and did not use it the last 2500 miles. I notice no difference in fuel economy and it is essentially the same type of mileage. I notice a little more acceleration with the 2017 over the 2016, but it might be more to the slight noise increase I can hear. The hybrid is spunky on acceleration if you need it. For me, a disabled veteran, the biggest plus has been the sensors and safety features. There are 4 levels to the robotic car industry, where level 4 is fully computer managed automobile. The 2017 Highlander is level 2. It has lane monitoring and automatic correction. I have only used the auto correction feature a few times. It does take having lane lines on both sides, but it has worked for me. I'm not sure I'm ready to close my eye though. The sensor alert when I drift over a lane line is useful to me though. Since I am blind in my left eye, the safety sensors really help. I get alerts not only if autos are on my left side, but at intersections if people are in the cross walk. The alert also works for people walking behind, or on the side of my SUV. A nice safety feature in parking lots for sure. Everything has worked nicely and I have no complaints about the Toyota Highlander Hybrid at the time. Update 6/2018 I'm liking this SUV more and more all the time. It takes time to learn and develop the muscle responses to best use the hybrid system. I can now effectively use the ECO and EV systems to improve my gasoline mpg. I can pretty much count on 25 mpg all around combined average (24 in Winter with heat/air, 26 in Summer with no heat/air). The camera views are a blessing for close spaces and parking. I now have 9200 miles on the vehicle, and consider it the best drive I ever bought. Update: 12/2018 I still give this SUV an A+. I get great fuel economy for a 5,000 pound SUV. I count on averaging 25 mpg, getting as low as 22 mpg with A/C, or heater on and lots of stop and go traffic,or 30 mpg with steady highway driving. (note: I am a moderate driver, driving the posted speed limit and no quick starts and sudden stops ... easy does it) The ride remains smooth, quiet and easy. The camera views are still A+, as well as the Dynamic Cruise Control. Absolutely no regrets buying this Toyota Hybrid SUV. Current mileage is 13,000, and I just had the 18 month maintenance service. Everything A+. The dealer has been great with the service. I still give this SUV A+ rating. I only have 17,000 miles on it, and reviews say I can expect 300,000 if I maintain the vehicle. There have been zero problems and the 25,000 service plane provided has been easy to use. Nothing shows serious wear, and the ride remains smooth and quiet. Update 6/13/2020 With the pandemic I have put only 260 miles on this SUV in the last 4 months. Current mileage is 19,410. Being retired has its pluses and minuses. No regrets on buying this SUV, as it is quiet, comfortable ride that is very economical (minimum servicing, fuel efficient). From what I read about Toyota reliability, my kids might be able to pass this SUV on to their kids. Update: 12/17/2020 I have learned a negative about this hybrid. With the pandemic 90% of my driving is local city driving. Lots of drive a block, stop ... drive a block, stop type driving. Very little highway driving. The result has been very low fuel economy ... like 8, 9 mpg. I did do one 100 mile trip and return. Once again I got great mpg on it, like 28 mpg. However for basically city/local driving the SUV hybrid for a big SUV does not seem to me to be the ticket. Update: 6/20/2021 23,000 miles Still no regrets buying this SUV. I have had no problwms needing service. All my problems have been resolved by reading the service manuals. I have followed the manual reccomendations for servicing, borh time and component. This hybrid canget 300,000 miles if cared for.
3 out of 5 stars
Great MPG and Comfortable, but Overpriced
J. Buchman,10/01/2017
Limited Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Before purchasing my 2017 Highlander Hybrid Platinum, I owned the RAV4 I am very familiar with Toyota's Hybrid SUVs. I moved up to the Highlander because I wanted/needed a larger vehicle to accommodate my family. In sum...while this is a very efficient and comfortable SUV, it falls short in some very important categories. First, the positives: Obviously, as you'd expect from a Toyota Hybrid, this SUV gets phenomenal gas mileage for a 5,000 pound automobile. If I drive slowly in "Eco" mode (Eco mode adjusts throttle mapping to give the driver more control over acceleration), I can achieve 34 mpg. If I drive "normally" (re: not slowly), I get around 31 mpg. Other positives: The seats, both front and rear, are very comfortable. Seat heaters and seat ventilation works well. The second row has heated captains chairs, separated by a cup holder. The climate control system works well, including the ability to adjust temperature in the rear of the vehicle. I was disappointed that the Highlander Hybrid does not come with LED headlights or fog lights, but nevertheless, the lights do a nice job of illuminating the road at night...and, having "auto-brights" is a nice feature (auto high beams will turn off automatically when it senses a car approaching in front of you). There is ample storage space in the rear of the vehicle (if you fold down the 3rd row). Cruise control works well...and the Nav system, while antiquated, is accurate and easy to use. Acceleration is pretty good for a hybrid, but, as is typical of all CVT transmissions, when you accelerate, the engine revs like it's about to explode. The AWD system (the rear wheels are driven by an independent electric motor that kicks in when the front wheels sense slippage) does a good job adding traction in light snow, but is not designed to handle off-road driving. OK, now the negatives: The car generally handles the road like it's sitting on bicycle wheels. There is noticeable roll when turning into corners, the electric steering has no feel for the road whatsoever, and the regenerative braking system is sloppy at higher speeds. To say this car is "not sporty" is an understatement. It is simply incapable of performing well if driven in any sort of spirited manner. The JBL sound system is astonishingly poor. After just a couple of months of owning the car, the subwoofer and one of the front tweeters blew out (and I do not push the volume when I listen to music). That's simply unacceptable for a car in this price range. Ultimately, I believe the Highlander's overall performance and refinement is simply below average for an SUV in its price range. In my opinion, there are other SUVs available, for the same price, which offer significantly better road performance, more sophisticated AWD systems, and higher quality/more modern interior design.
3 out of 5 stars
Limited Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
It would’ve been a deal breaker had I known that Toyota doesn’t provide loaner cars when warranty work is being done. A $50,000 car should get a loaner. Never again. This is my 4th Toyota and my 2nd highlander hybrid. They are a very nice vehicle, however after about 9 months my brakes or suspension started making a noise. I’ve had it in for specific service over six times and had to beg for a loaner car, which I eventually got. The problem still exists and it is almost June, 7 months later! So if u don’t mind spending $50,000 and get so-so service with no courtesy car, then do it. I’ve always trusted Toyota but their customer service rules are lacking.
1 out of 5 stars
WOW!...... Well, it's all gone to hell now
Limited Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Very well built, get the platinum edition! I wish it had a remote start system, larger gas tank, and a true automatic rain sensing wipers. Update: 6/26/17 Starting in mid-January I have issues with a fuse that keeps tripping, (5 times, so far) lift gate does not always work as it should. Error messages being display on the screen for no legitimate reason, like sunroof open when in fact it is closed, hands on the steering wheel when in fact they are, etc. This vehicle has been in the shop for over 30 days over the course of 6 months of ownership. The dealer was helpful at first, now it has turned in a somewhat adversarial situation. Toyota HAS NOT been very helpful in resolving these issue and has turned into an adversarial situation. Undate; 12/25/17 Back in late September 2017 I traded out of this mess, it cost me thousands. I felt I had no choice Toyota would not take it back or swap it out. In the first 6 months it spent about 51 days in the shop, and to continue going back to the dealer every other week or so get’s to the point of insanity! After speaking with my attorney about going through the lemon law I was told without a doubt you qualify for the program, but with that same doubt you would NOT prevail. Toyota corporate was well aware the I would not prevail hence the the stone wall. On the surface Toyota sounds and looks like a great consumer friendly company. In my case the fought me all the way.

Edmunds Summary Review of the 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum SUV

Pros & Cons

  • Impressive fuel economy for a three-row crossover
  • Just-right size for many families
  • Added peace of mind from standard accident-avoidance tech
  • Quiet and compliant ride
  • Price premium unlikely to be made up with gas savings
  • Third-row seat isn't as roomy as those of many competitors
  • Touchscreen and other controls may require an extra-long reach

Which Highlander Hybrid does Edmunds recommend?

Frankly, you should only buy the 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid instead of its conventionally powered sibling because of environmental concerns. It's extremely unlikely that you'll be able to pay back the Hybrid's price premium through gas savings alone. Having said that, the XLE trim level is likely where you'll want to start, as we think most people will appreciate its extra helping of equipment, including a power liftgate, power front seats, and its leather seating and steering wheel.

Full Edmunds Review: 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid SUV

What’s new

For 2017, the current-generation Toyota Highlander Hybrid receives its first significant update. Its gasoline engine is more powerful and efficient, and the exterior styling has a fresh look to it. There are also a couple of new, more affordable trim levels this year. Finally, the Toyota Safety Sense suite of accident avoidance features is now standard equipment.

Vehicle overview

Are you hoping to get high fuel economy from a three-row crossover SUV? You can't do much better than the 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid. It gets close to 30 mpg while still providing the high levels of comfort and utility that the regular Highlander is known for. It's a bit expensive, but worth it.

Much like the regular Highlander, the hybrid version boasts a just-right size that isn't too cumbersome to drive yet still manages a competitive amount of passenger and cargo space. For 2017, the Highlander Hybrid's appeal grows due to the addition of entry trim levels — last year you could only get the priciest trims. That opens it up to more people, but it's still quite pricey. When new, a basic Hybrid LE costs thousands more than the equivalent non-hybrid Highlander. Considering you'd likely save only a few hundred bucks every year on gas, that math really doesn't add up. But if you simply like the idea of cutting your carbon footprint but need a family-friendly vehicle, the Highlander Hybrid is a great way to go.

2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid models

The 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is a large three-row SUV that comes standard with eight- or seven-passenger capacities, depending on trim level. Those include LE, XLE, Limited and Limited Platinum trim levels. The LE isn't exactly a stripper model, but the XLE has enough universally desired extras that you'll likely want to pay extra for them. The Limited and Limited Platinum slather on luxury content but in the process receive luxury brand-like price tags.

Every Highlander Hybrid comes standard with a 3.5-liter V6 engine paired with three electric motors. Total system output is 306 horsepower, and all-wheel drive is standard.

Starting things off is the LE, which has 18-inch wheels, a windshield wiper de-icer, forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane departure intervention, adaptive cruise control, keyless entry and ignition, a rearview camera, tri-zone automatic climate control, a height-adjustable driver seat, Bluetooth, a 6.1-inch touchscreen and a six-speaker sound system.

Our favorite is the XLE. You get the LE's equipment plus a sunroof, a height-adjustable power liftgate, a flip-up rear window, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert systems, heated power front seats, leather upholstery. second-row sunshades, upgraded interior materials, an 8.1-inch touchscreen, satellite and HD radio, and a navigation system.

If you want more, there's the Limited with 19-inch wheels, LED running lights, rear parking sensors, ventilated front seats, driver-seat memory functions, second-row captain's chairs and a 12-speaker JBL sound system. At the top of the range is the Limited Platinum with a panoramic sunroof, automatic wipers, front parking sensors, a 360-degree parking camera system and a heated steering wheel.

The XLE and Limited can be equipped with a rear entertainment system.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions, although trim levels share many aspects. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the 2014 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited (3.5L V6 hybrid | CVT | AWD).  NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current Highlander has received some revisions, including a new V6 engine, additional feature content and new, less expensive trim levels. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's Highlander.


The Highlander Hybrid has a competent hybrid powertrain, proficient brakes and intuitive, albeit numb, steering. Additionally, good highway manners, acceptable towing capability and decent off-road credentials make it appealing.


Lexus-lite. The Highlander's seats, ride comfort and utterly silent atmosphere are nearly as good as those found in SUVs by corporate cousin Lexus.


This is a very competitive segment, and although the Highlander Hybrid is quite good in each of these areas, it also doesn't have a clear advantage over more recently redesigned competitors.


Overall cargo capacity is average for this segment, which means that most families should have abundant room. Small item storage is very good.


The Highlander's standard suite of accident avoidance tech is a big reason to consider this family crossover, especially if you don't have the money for a range-topping model. Infotainment tech is pleasantly easy to use.

Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid in Virginia is:

$71.58 per month*