Used 2005 Toyota Highlander SUV Consumer Reviews - 197 Car Reviews | Edmunds

Consumer Reviews

2005 Toyota Highlander SUV

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197 Total Reviews

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In love after all these years.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By shasta4
on

Vehicle

2005 Toyota Highlander SUV AWD 4dr SUV w/3rd Row (3.3L 6cyl 5A)


Review

135K miles.
Bought 8/04.
Most options, 3rd row. V6, 3.3, AWD.
I've had big 3, BMW (3), Volvo (2), Jag V12 sedan, Audi and this is the best of them all in terms of overall satisfaction.
I can find small design grips like the vague sunroof switch, tight 3 row seat, but very little problems and outstanding reliability.
Orig. Bridgestones 50K.
Rear brakes 60K.
Front brakes 130K ! All lamps except highs original.
High beams 120K.
Tow a 2,000 lb travel trailer cross 3,000 miles averaging 20.5mpg. Mileage town 18, highway 23.
No leaks, amazing tranny, great power, tows trailer beautifully (after easy lift).
One problem.
At 50K rear bushing worn.
Probably do to trailer towing.


Best Features

Paint finish near perfect even though in CA sun, never in garage. Transmission is amazing. Some hunting for gear when applying then letting off of power. But less hunting than any other car I have driven. Winter package with wiper and defrost works well and was very inexpensive. AWD is amazing. Lived in Ohio and No. CA and traction is beyond belief with standard tires. Never stuck. Have plowed thru 6-8". Traction system is smarter than any driver. When in trouble just stand on the gas and the computer starts chirping, the power level adjusts, the car climbs out of trouble, amazing. Better then friends Jeep in anything other than off road. Cannot get the thing to squirrel around.


Worst Features

Rear bushing assembly that carries the wheel seems to be weak. Both have failed. One at replaced at 50K the other at 90K, but not replaced, just rattles on very rough roads. Should be tougher. I suspects this is the result of towing with a too heavy tongue weight. 50K bushing replacement fine after 80K more miles, so I thing the easy lift hitch took the strain off the rear. Otherwise the handing is near BMW standard. I have felt the tire noise is too great for a quality car. The orig. Bridgestones OK but Michellins are noisy, although I get about 50K miles. Wish front passenger seat was lower or adjusted like power driver's. I am tall with bad back so I always use comfy drivers.


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Highlander Bad
2 of 7 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By DK
on

Vehicle

2005 Toyota Highlander SUV Fwd 4dr SUV w/3rd Row (3.3L 6cyl 5A)


Review

I bought this car based on Consumer Reports ratings. So far, the temp thermostat had to be replaced, I also had a wheel bearing replaced, and now I am told that a sequential humming is probably the differential - very costly. The car is herky-jerky and the interior leather looks more like vinyl. This is my last Toyota. DK


Best Features

This car is way over rated.


Worst Features

Toyota needs to step up its quality.


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2005 Toyota Highlander Fwd 4dr SUV (2.4L
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By WarrenG
on

Vehicle

2005 Toyota Highlander SUV Fwd 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 4A)


Review

I bought this new in 2005 and now have 65k trouble-free miles on it. After 3 Explorers, it has been very nice not to have to meet on a regular basis with the service writer for a change. 4-cyl is strong enough and gives 20 mpg around town, 25 hwy. Only problem was with original Toyo tires - at 29k they looked great but couldn't keep the vehicle on the road in FL summer rains. New Michelin LTs solved that problem. Only costs have been oil changes, filter changes, and a new battery. Very satisfied.


Best Features

Design and reliability


Worst Features

Nix the original Toyo tires.


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Reliability Problems
2 of 8 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Jim
on

Vehicle

2005 Toyota Highlander SUV Fwd 4dr SUV w/3rd Row (3.3L 6cyl 5A)


Review

Bought new; since then 3 windshields, 3 sets of rear and 2 sets of front brakes, 3 transmission transfer cases, and both sets of rear wheel bearings. Everything except the engine seems to be under specified. The Toyota dealer tells me to sell it as it was made on 'Monday'! My '97 Avalon required only $40 worth of unscheduled maintenance at 130K miles. What's happened to Toyota quality?


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Highlander - perfect reliability 5 years
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Dave - Kansas city
on

Vehicle

2005 Toyota Highlander SUV Fwd 4dr SUV w/3rd Row (3.3L 6cyl 5A)


Review

I bought this Highlander brand new, and it has performed absolutely perfectly for 5+ years. I replaced a headlight last year, otherwise perfect. Very comfortable to drive, quiet on the highway, zero build defects, the V6 is adequate if not a neck-snapper, but with very good fuel economy (27 on the highway, 21 around town). The styling is a bit bland, but as an engineer I appreciate how well it is built. I have owned several Hondas and Toyotas, and both have been exteremly good. But when I replace this Highlander, I certainly drive a new Highlander first.


Best Features

Build quality is very high, plenty of room to haul things like my telescopes and huge model airplanes. Great milage, very comfortable seats and controls. Quiet on the highway. And did I mention a perfect maintenance record?


Worst Features

The newer (2010) Highlanders have improved the styling substantially. But it is still not fancy.


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