Toyota's 2014 Highlander SUV gets a truckish redesign
The new 2014 Toyota Highlander's new design features a front end that, no doubt, draws a lot of inspiration from the automaker's line of trucks.
The trapezoidal grill that leads the 2014 Highlander is similar in design to the intakes on the front of Toyota's Tundra and Tacoma trucks and the Sequoia SUV.
The SUV's profile, however, reminds me of a taller, longer version of the Toyota Venza.
Not much has changed beneath the Highlander's sheetmetal. It's offered with the same four-cylinder and V-6 engine options as the previous model and is still available in front- and all-wheel drive configurations.
A redesigned double-wishbone suspension on the rear axle eliminates the need for strut towers and frees up valuable interior volume.
Despite the increased interior space for cargo and passengers, the Highlander's overall length has only been increased about 3 inches.
We're told that the Highlander's chassis is now more rigid than before and its steering is more responsive.
The ability to customizable the rear hatch's opening height should keep owners of garages or carports from banging the power lift-gate on a low ceiling.
Dynamic Torque Control
The all-wheel drive model boasts a new feature called Dynamic Torque Control, which can send up to 50% of available power to the rear axle on demand.
The cabin makes increased use of soft touch materials on the dashboard and touch points. Toyota's display audio system is a standard feature.
A rearview camera is also standard for this new model.
It's not pictured here, but an 8-inch version of Toyota's Entune infotainment system is also available for users who want navigation and app integration.
Toyota's Highlander Hybrid (not pictured) will also make an appearance in the next generation.
Expect the redesigned 2014 Toyota Highlander to reach dealerships in early 2014.