Two years ago when we were buying a new car, we looked at the Toyota Highlander and ended up passing on it—mainly because the 3rd row was designed more as an after thought than as part of the vehicle. It was as if someone said, “Hey we need a 3rd row, so let's slap a bench in here with a little padding, call it a 3rd-row seat, and call it a day.” I loved everything else about the vehicle, but the 3rd row seat was a deal breaker for us. When your 8- and 10-year-old kids complain it's uncomfortable, you have to reconsider.
If the 2016 Toyota Highlander Limited Platinum Edition V6 AWD had been around, it would have been the SUV we bought. We test drove the 2016 Toyota Highlander as a media loan for a week and I didn't want to give it back. It could have been my new ride, if only I was in the market for a new car again. My kids loved it, too. The 3rd-row has been redesigned, and it is an excellent 3rd row seat for comfort and space. Adults and kids can ride back there comfortably. BOOM!
Everything about the 2016 Toyota Highlander Limited Platinum Edition screams luxury without the luxury price tag. It handles well, gets great gas mileage for its class, and is sleek and sexy inside and out. I love how quiet the ride is with the acoustic-type glass used for the windshield to keep the noise out.
Features I didn't know I needed? Heated steering wheel. It's so nice on a chilly winter day. Portland is warm enough I don't always wear gloves even when I should. When I lived in the Northeast, I never left home without gloves in the winter. Thank you steering wheel warmer to saving my hands from the cold.
Heated and ventilated seats for the win. I loved my heated seats and ventilated seats are something that will be a must on my next black leather interior car purchase. I love great console space, too. That is always a great selling point for me. Places for phones, chargers, purse, wallet, coffee, etc.
As a parent, safety ratings are important. All 4- and 5-star safety ratings means I know if I do get in a crash, we're in a vehicle that will hold up to impact. The safety and convenience features that are included in the car are ample., including 8 airbags, back-up camera and sonar, blind spot monitor and rear cross traffic alert, enhanced vehicle stability control, traction control, brake assist and smart stop technology, and electric brake-force distribution.
For sounds, the 2016 Toyota Highlander Limited Platinum Edition was loaded with the Etune Premium sound system featuring JBL Audio. You also can't go wrong with an 8-inch touch screen navigation and app suite. The panoramic moonroof was pretty sweet, too.
Sticker price of the model I drove was $45,590, included the Driver Technology Package and cargo mats/floor liners.