Toyota Highlander 2023: Is Toyota Redesigning the Highlander for 2023? – The Toyota Highlander has been the best-selling three-row midsize SUV for the last six years, and the company plans to maintain its dominance in the market by introducing some new features for the 2023 model year. This includes a new engine with a turbocharger as well as new amenities across the board for all of the trim levels. Find out when the 2023 Toyota Highlander will be released, the pricing, the specifications, and the new features it will include.

Toyota Highlander 2023 Exterior
Toyota Highlander 2023 Exterior

Toyota Highlander 2023 Interior

The latest generation of the Highlander has a highly stylized appearance that has an angry face and sharp wrinkles, but the inside is a little more subdued. We are unable to provide accurate forecasts on the path that Toyota may go with a redesign, but it is possible that the company may take some design cues from its off-road-inspired vehicles, such as the RAV4 and the Sequoia.

Toyota Highlander 2023 Interior Design
Toyota Highlander 2023 Interior Design

Toyota Highlander 2023 Specs

The gas-powered engine The 2023 Toyota Highlander has a brand-new inline-four engine that is 2.4 liters and turbocharged. It is mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox, and as a result, it is capable of producing 265 horsepower and 309 lb-ft of torque.

The 3.5-liter V-6 engine that was formerly included in the 2022 Highlander has been replaced with a turbocharged engine. In comparison to the V-6 engine, the turbocharged engine produces 46 pound-feet more torque, although having 30 less horsepower than the V-6 engine. According to Toyota’s estimates, the new turbocharged engine will have the same expected fuel efficiency as the V-6, which is 24 miles per gallon combined.

Toyota Highlander 2023
Toyota Highlander 2023

Toyota Highlander 2023 Release Date and Price

The basic L front-wheel-drive (FWD) variant of the 2022 Toyota Highlander has a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $35,205. The base price for the LE model is $37,405. The base price of the XLE model is $40,405, while the more athletic XSE trim starts at $42,000. Both the Limited model, which begins at $44,360 and the Platinum model, which starts at $47,560, are part of the higher-end trim packages.

Is Toyota Redesigning the Highlander for 2023?

The gas-powered Highlander models will get a significant upgrade in 2023 in the form of a new engine that is more efficient, has a greater maximum torque output, and is turbocharged. The 2.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine produces 265 horsepower and 309 pound-feet of torque. It achieves its ultra-smooth performance thanks to the use of balancing shafts.

Equally as crucial, the fuel economy of this higher-torque engine is the same as that of the V6, with the manufacturer estimating a total output of 24 miles per gallon. The new engine, which is standard across all gas grades, is also more ecologically friendly. When compared to the previous V6 engine, it has more than a 50 percent reduction in NOx and NMOG emissions as well as an improvement in CO2 emissions. Moreover, the new engine is more fuel-efficient.

The new Highlander turbo variants can tow up to 5,000 pounds and come standard with Trailer Sway Control (TSC), a feature that works in conjunction with the Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) to assist prevent undesirable movement from the trailer being towed. The standard Stop and Start Engine System enables the engine to turn off when the vehicle comes to a full stop and promptly restarts when the driver removes their foot from the brake pedal. This helps to minimize the amount of fuel that is used and the number of pollutants that are produced.

2023 Highlander Updates

In addition to the other improvements that have been made to the Highlander, Toyota is putting an emphasis on the SUV’s value for the model year 2023. The Highlander provides the buyers with the bigger and more varied multimedia displays that they want. In addition to the JBL® Premium Audio System that has been carried over from the 2022 model year and has 11 speakers, the Limited and Platinum grades now come standard with two Multi-Information Display (MID) displays that are 12.3 inches in size. The fact that information may now fill the whole 12.3-inch, glare-reducing optically bonded screen is a feature that consumers will find quite useful. The previous 7-inch TFT screen has been replaced in both classes by a second new 12.3″ Full Digital Instrument Cluster screen. This panel now has four alternative visual modes for a more customized experience, including Casual, Smart, Tough, and Sporty modes. As a result, these premium Highlander grades now provide the largest screen space compared to the Highlander models of the previous generation.

Even while the XLE and XSE grades come standard with an 8-inch screen, the 12.3-inch center touch screen will be an available option for those trim levels as well. The 7-inch TFT gauge cluster screen is still used for these two classes. Because of the increased utility it provides, the previous 4.2-inch TFT has been replaced on the L and LE grades with this same 7-inch TFT. Additionally, the 12.3-inch touchscreen that was formerly an optional extra is now included as standard in the Hybrid Bronze Edition.

For the 2023 model year, the Limited and Platinum grades (both gas and hybrid) will now come standard with power-folding outside mirrors, which are a great aid when going into and out of residential garages. This feature adds both convenience and value to the vehicle. In addition, the front-seat occupants of the 2023 Highlander will now benefit from an enhanced version of the optional wireless charging capability. In an attempt to make the Qi-compatible charger more accessible, Toyota relocated it from its previous placement in the center console box to a more practical location on the shelf of the instrument panel.

A hands-free power liftgate is available on the Limited and Platinum trim levels for your convenience. The liftgate may be opened or closed with a simple kick of the foot beneath the bumper. In the spirit of the proverbial frosting on the cake, the exterior of the 2023 Highlander now comes in an attractive new available color called Cypress. Additionally, the interiors of the Harvest Beige and Glazed Caramel models now have Black as the accent color instead of Noble Brown.

The Hybrid Bronze Edition and the XSE are the Style Machines

Those interested in a revved-up style in the very practical and comfortable Highlander will find it in two attractive alternatives for the year 2023, one for hybrid powertrains and one for gas-powered engines. The Highlander Hybrid Bronze Edition was introduced in the previous year, and its design immediately drew attention. The Bronze Edition is available in Cement, Wind Chill Pearl, or Midnight Black Metallic for the exterior, and it incorporates bronze-colored highlights, beginning with 18-inch bronze wheels. Cement is specific to the Bronze Edition. Wind Chill Pearl and Midnight Black Metallic are also available.

The arrangement of the Captain’s Chair makes the seats, which are upholstered in SofTex® and have fabric inserts and bronze-colored stitching, seem to be something out of a concept vehicle. This image is heightened by the fact that the seats are influenced by mid-century contemporary design. The designer style is finished off with illuminated bronze door sills, distinctive floor and cargo mats embroidered with a special bronze-stitched emblem, and bronze-illuminated cargo mats. The Bronze Edition is further improved by the inclusion of several technological amenities, such as two internal 120V/1,500-watt outlets, a hands-free power liftgate, and rain-detecting wipers, to mention just a few.

When it comes to the gasoline engine, the Highlander XSE may be had with either front-wheel drive or the more advanced Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive. In 2023, the XSE will be equipped with exclusive all-black wheels that measure 20 inches in diameter and are encased in all-season tires measuring 235/55R20. The XSE has been outfitted with a tuned electric power steering system in addition to a specifically tuned suspension that has high-rate springs, a rear stabilizer bar, and low-friction shock absorbers. Together, these components contribute to the XSE’s particularly sporty feel.

The front fascia, grille, lower spoiler, and headlights all have unique design elements that are specific to the XSE trim. The chiseled lines of the Highlander XSE are given an even more aggressive emphasis by the one-of-a-kind rocker panels. The subdued cool factor is dialed up thanks to the addition of black roof rails, mirror caps, and window moldings, and it is topped off with a dual exhaust tip.

The inside of the Highlander XSE has black seats upholstered in SofTex® with fabric inserts. Ambient lighting and a carbon-fiber type finish on the instrument panel provide a more sporty tone. There is no extra charge for the distinctive two-tone interior that is finished in red and black leather and has an instrument panel that is embroidered in red.

Inside, There Is a Plethora of Flexibility

The Highlander L and LE grades both have a second-row bench as standard equipment, which allows for a total of eight seats; the XLE and Limited grades, on the other hand, have a second-row captain’s chair as standard equipment, which only has seven seats available. In the XLE Gas, XLE Hybrid, and Limited Gas trim levels, customers have the option of selecting a bench seat for the second row.

Seating for seven passengers is standard on the Hybrid Bronze Edition, XSE, Limited, and Platinum grades. The second row of these seats are configured as captain’s chairs. The third row can be readily accessed by passengers thanks to the adaptable seat folding features and the large rear doors that give simple access. Everyone on board will have access to a sufficient quantity of air that has been adequately heated or cooled, thanks to the standard three-zone climate control.

Additionally, there is a large amount of room available for transporting items. There is a total of 16.0 cubic feet of room available behind the third row of seats in the Highlander when all seat rows are occupied. The area can be expanded to 48.4 cubic feet by folding the seatbacks of the 60/40 split fold-flat third-row seats, and then it can be increased to 84.3 cubic feet by folding the second row. The adaptable cargo compartment makes full use of the increased length by including side surfaces and pockets that are designed to make the most of the available room.

Multidimensional and Multimedia

The Connected Technologies team located in Texas at Toyota is responsible for designing and engineering both the basic 8-inch and optional 12.3-inch displays included in the Toyota Audio Multimedia system found in the Highlander. Drivers of Highlanders will be prepared for anything owing to a plethora of newly available connection and convenience features, including the capability to get updates “over the air,” or OTA. Touch and voice activation controls provide the user with a variety of natural ways to engage with the system. Intelligent Assistant, Cloud Navigation, and Destination Assist are all services that are accessible to both drivers and passengers thanks to the Connected Service Drive Connect that is now available. With Intelligent Assistant, you may wake up the system with simple words like “Hey Toyota” to provide voice-activated instructions to search for directions, discover Points of Interest (POI), modify music settings, alter the temperature in the cabin, and do many other things. Cloud Navigation is a solution for onboard navigation that is now accessible. It makes use of the cloud to download the most recent available map, traffic, and route information. Google Points-of-Interest data is what powers the POI search feature, which ensures that consumers always have the most up-to-date search capabilities possible. Access to live agent support, available around the clock, is another perk of signing up for the Destination Assist service.

The new Toyota Audio Multimedia system supports wireless Apple CarPlay® and Android AutoTM compatibility in addition to a dual Bluetooth® phone connection. Apple CarPlay® is also compatible with the system. A Wi-Fi Connect subscription is available for the Highlander, which turns the vehicle into an AT&T Hotspot and provides additional connection options. This subscription allows for up to five devices to connect to the internet through 4G. Wi-Fi Connect enables the new Integrated Streaming feature, which gives users the ability to link their separate Apple Music® and Amazon Music subscriptions to the vehicle for onboard control. This is an addition to the already robust offering of audio playback capability with HD Radio®, USB data, and a 3-month trial subscription to SiriusXM® Platinum Plan.

The Highlander is available with a JBL® Premium Audio system that boasts 1,200 watts of power and plays through 11 speakers in nine different locations to create a mobile concert out of any music genre. For those who are looking for an enhanced audio experience, the Highlander is an excellent option. In addition, thanks to the use of Clari-Fi® technology, the system is able to revitalize compressed digital music formats, therefore improving the quality of the listening experience. This system is optional on the Limited and Platinum grades, but it comes pre-installed on the XSE model.

Each Highlander comes included with a plethora of extra Connected Services that are at your disposal. An Emergency Assistance Button (SOS), 24/7 Enhanced Roadside Assistance, Automatic Collision Notification, Stolen Vehicle Locator, and Collision Assistance are all included as part of the Safety Connect package, which comes with a one-year trial of the service. A three-year trial of Service Connect provides drivers with the option to get Vehicle Health Reports, Maintenance Alerts, and reminders.

The Toyota app enables customers to maintain a connection to their Highlander by providing a free trial of the Remote Connect service for a period of one year. This service is standard on Highlander L grades and optional on all other Highlander grades. Users have the ability to turn on the headlights, lock and unlock the doors, and start the car remotely. Users are also able to monitor the status of their vehicles, get messages about upcoming reminders, and set alerts for guest drivers.

The Highlander has five USB ports within the cabin so that it can accommodate any and all of your requirements for charging electronic devices. There is one USB Type-A port and two USB Type-C ports positioned at the bottom of the central stack on the front of the device. There are two USB Type-C ports positioned at the bottom back of the center console, specifically for passengers seated in the second row.

All-Wheel Drive

The front-wheel-drive (FWD) and all-wheel drive (AWD) systems are both available for the 2023 Highlander turbo versions, giving drivers the ability to choose the driving mode that best suits their needs. When required, the optional all-wheel-drive system in the Highlander Gas L, LE, and XLE versions may transmit up to fifty percent of the vehicle’s available power to the rear wheels in order to assist in preventing wheel slide.

Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Drive Mode Select and Driveline Disconnect comes standard on the Highlander XSE, Limited, and Platinum turbo variants. This technology was designed with a performance focus in mind. This cutting-edge system not only governs the distribution of torque between the front and rear wheels, but it also uses unique couplings to actively manage the distribution of torque between the left and right rear wheels. This allows it to do more than just govern the distribution of torque between the front and rear wheels.

While AWD is not required, such as when traveling steadily at a constant speed on the highway, the Rear Driveline Disconnect feature automatically disengages the drive to the back wheels and stops the spinning of the propeller shaft. This helps to minimize the amount of gasoline that is used. When all-wheel drive is required to manage the conditions of the road, the system automatically re-engages.

The Dynamic Torque Vectoring all-wheel-drive system does not only respond when wheels slide. Instead, a sophisticated All-Wheel Drive Integrated Management (AWD-IM) system handles the Electric Power Steering (EPS), throttle control, gearbox shift management, and drive torque distribution in order to constantly assist in optimizing handling.

The driver is able to get the highest possible level of traction regardless of the terrain by using the Multi-Terrain Select-control dial located on the center console. Mud and Sand mode is recommended for driving on sandy beaches, while Rock and Dirt mode is best for optimizing AWD traction on dirt tracks. On the Multi-Information Display, the driver has the ability to keep track of torque allocation as well as slip control in real-time (MID).