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2004 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

4dr 4-Cyl (Natl)

Starting at | Starting at 22 MPG City - 27 MPG Highway

2004 Toyota Highlander for Sale

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  • Average Retail is not available
  • $24,080 original MSRP
Printable Version

2004 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

Printable Version

2004 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover


2004 Toyota Highlander

Source: MSN Autos

It didn't take long for the Toyota Highlander to win the hearts of consumers, especially women, when it debuted in the 2001 model year.

Based on a Camry platform and patterned after the successful Lexus RX 300, the Highlander crossover offered a non-truckish ride and quiet, five-passenger interior compared with truck-based SUVs. Its fuel economy was better, too, and soon, the Highlander became Toyota's top-selling SUV as well as the best-selling car-based SUV in the midsize market.

Now, midway through its model cycle, the Highlander gets a number of improvements for 2004 that are sure to expand its appeal.

More seats for kids
More families are likely to be drawn to the Highlander, now that it offers a third-row seat for the first time.

The seat is designed to hold two people for a total passenger count of seven.

Toyota didn't lengthen or restyle the Highlander to fit in this new seat. There were only some changes in the floorpan and suspension, and the spare tire had to be moved from inside the Highlander to outside under the cargo area.

Small adults and children are best suited for the Highlander's third row. At 5 feet 4, I found my knees were close to the second-row seatback as I sat there—legroom is 30.2 inches—and headroom of 36.3 inches can feel confining.

The larger Honda Pilot has 38.9 inches of headroom in its third row, but the same 30.2 inches of third-row legroom. The Pilot's back seat is set up to accommodate three people.

When not needed, the Highlander's third row seat folds flat into the floor to allow for increased cargo space.

More V6 power
Other big news is the Highlander's new V6, which is expected to be in 80 percent of the models sold.

It has 3.3 liters of displacement, instead of last year's 3.0 liters. It's also used in Toyota's 2004 Sienna minivan and 2004 Solara coupe.

Mated to a new, 5-speed automatic transmission, this engine delivers power easily, not in some crazy, uncontrolled way but in a steady, confident fashion that helps a driver move into traffic easily.

Horsepower is 230 in the new engine and compares with 220 horses in the former Highlander V6. Torque is up to 242 lb-ft at 3600 rpm vs. 222 at 4400 rpm last year.

The engine improvements were needed, since major competitors, such as the Honda Pilot and Nissan Murano have more power. Specifically, the Murano's V6 provides 245 horses and 246 lb-ft of torque at 4400 rpm while the Pilot's V6 generates 240 horsepower and 242 lb-ft of torque at 4500 rpm.

Still, fuel economy in the Highlander with V6 is improved a bit over last year's model. The rated highway mileage for a V6, two-wheel-drive Highlander now is 25 miles a gallon, up from 23 last year. In a four-wheel-drive, V6-powered Highlander, highway fuel economy is up to 24 mpg in 2004 compared with 22 mpg in a 2003 Highlander.

The 2004 Highlander's base, 2.4-liter four cylinder also gets a bit more power, going from 155 horses a year ago to 160 and from 163 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm to 165 lb-ft at 4000 rpm. Fuel economy ratings are increased only in the four-wheel-drive Highlander with four cylinder.

More refined ride
Highlander's appeal has always revolved around its car-like ride, maneuverable size, elevated ride height and easy entry. Indeed, the Highlander already had a pretty quiet, jostle-free ride that set it apart from SUVs that use truck-based platforms.

New refinements to the 2004 Highlander's suspension, such as revised bushings, stiffer anti-roll bars and new asymmetrical coil springs, make the vehicle even smoother riding.

In the test vehicle, for example, the ride was so free from bothers and jolts, I scarcely noticed when we passed over manhole covers on the streets. Even recently patched areas of pavement brought only mild vibrations inside.

The power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering has a mainstream feel, and the view out of the Highlander is quite good. I sat up enough that I could see over and around cars, but large SUVs and trucks blocked my view.

Other 2004 changes
Styling is updated front and rear, but the changes are so mild, most consumers aren't likely to notice.

For example, the grille up front is a bit bolder, and taillights in back contain a clear section. But the overall look remains plain.

Inside, Toyota officials sought to give the Highlander a richer look than before. There's a new, satin metallic finish across the dashboard and new colors.

Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with traction control is standard for the first time on all Highlanders.

Designed to electronically reduce engine power and, if necessary, also brake an appropriate wheel when the system detects a potential skid, VSC adds to the safety of the Highlander.

Also new for 2004: Optional side airbags for front-seat passengers include curtain airbags that provide head protection for first- and second-row passengers. The curtain bags do not, however, extend to passengers in the new third-row seat.

The Highlander has never been a bargain basement kind of SUV, and it doesn't get any cheaper in 2004.

At introduction, the base manufacturer's suggested retail price for a four-cylinder model with two-wheel drive was just over $24,000, up from $23,880 for the 2003 model.

A V6-powered, 2004 Highlander with four-wheel drive starts at more than $27,000, and a top-of-the-line 2004 Highlander Limited with such options as leather-trimmed seats, moonroof, and floor and cargo mats can reach a lofty MSRP of around $34,000.

Printable Version

2004 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

Safety Ratings help

What do the Safety Ratings mean?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) performs independent crash testing of new vehicles and then assigns them a score based on their performance. The overall crash test rating is based on how a vehicle performs in the following tests:

Driver Crash Grade:

Measures the chance of a serious injury to a crash test dummy that is placed in a driver's seat and driven into a fixed barrier at 35 MPH. A five-star rating means there is 10 percent or less chance of injury.

Passenger Crash Grade:

Similar to the driver crash grade, only now the focus is on the passenger.

Rollover Resistance:

Simulates an emergency lane change to measure the likelihood of a vehicle rolling over. A five-star rating means there is 10 percent or less risk of rollover.

Side Impact Crash Test - Front:

Focuses on the front side of a vehicle. It simulates crashes that can occur in intersections by striking a 3,015-pound weight against the side of a vehicle at 38.5 MPH. A five-star rating means there is 5 percent or less chance of injury.

Side Impact Crash Test - Rear:

Similar to the front side impact test only now the focus is on the rear passenger.

Driver Crash Grade

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Passenger Crash Grade

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Side Impact Crash Test - Front

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Side Impact Crash Test - Rear

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Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction

4-Wheel ABS Std
4-Wheel Disc Brakes Std
Traction/Stability Control Std
Tire Pressure Monitoring System Std

Passenger Restraint

Driver Air Bag Std
Passenger Air Bag Std
Side Air Bag Opt
Side Head Air Bag Opt
Rear Head side Air Bag Opt
Child Safety Locks Std

Road Visibility

Daytime Running Lights Opt
Fog Lamps Opt
Electrochromic Rearview Mirror Opt
Intermittent Wipers Std
Variable Inter. Wipers Std


Alarm Opt
Anti-theft System Opt
Printable Version

2004 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

Original Warranty  help
Original Warranty
An original warranty is the warranty associated with a vehicle when it is brand new. In addition to the original warranty, select items, like tires, are typically covered by respective manufacturers. Also, an act of Federal law sometimes provides protection for certain components, like emissions equipment.
The original warranty is often broken down into multiple sections, including:
Basic Warranty:
Typically covers everything except for parts that wear out through normal use of the vehicle. Examples of non-covered items are brake pads, wiper blades and filters.
Drivetrain Warranty:
This warranty covers items the basic warranty does not protect. Wear and tear items such as hoses will not be covered, but key items like the engine, transmission, drive axles and driveshaft often will be.
Roadside Assistance:
The level of service differs greatly with this warranty, but many manufacturers offer a toll-free number that helps provide assistance in case you run out of gas, get a flat tire or lock your keys in the car.
Corrosion Warranty:
This warranty focuses on protecting you from holes caused by rust or corrosion in your vehicle's sheet metal.
Please check the owner's manual, visit a local dealership or look at the manufacturer's website to learn more about the specifics of the warranties that apply to a vehicle.

Basic 3 Years/36,000 Miles
Drivetrain 5 Years/60,000 Miles
Corrosion 5 Years/Unlimited Miles

Toyota Certified Pre-Owned Warranty  help
Certified Pre-Owned Warranty
To be eligible for Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) status, vehicles generally must be recent models with relatively low mileage. CPO vehicles must also pass a detailed inspection, outlined by the manufacturer, which is measured by the number of inspected points.
Warranty coverage can vary from one manufacturer to the next. While most certified pre-owned programs transfer and extend the existing new car warranty terms, others offer a warranty that simply represents an additional year and mileage value. Always check with the manufacturer for the specific warranties they offer.
Common features and benefits of Certified Pre-Owned warranties include:
Age/Mileage Eligibility
To even be considered for certification, a car must be a recent model year and have limited mileage. The exact requirements are established by individual manufacturers.
Lease Term Certified
Some manufacturers offer certified pre-owned cars for lease. The length of the lease is often shorter than a new car lease, but it will cost you less.
Point Inspection
These inspections entail a comprehensive vehicle test to ensure that all parts are in excellent working order. The point inspection list is simply a numbered list of exactly what parts of the car are examined. While many inspections range from a 70- to 150-point checklist, most are very similar and are performed using strict guidelines. Ask your local dealer about specific details.
Return/Exchange Program
Some manufacturers offer a very limited return or exchange period. Find out if you will get the sales tax and licensing/registration fees back should you return or exchange the car.
Roadside Assistance
Most certified pre-owned programs offer free roadside service in case your car breaks down while still under warranty.
Special Financing
Reduced-rate loans are available through many certified pre-owned programs. Manufacturer-backed inspections and warranties help eliminate the risks involved with buying pre-owned, so buyers who qualify can take advantage of the great offers.
Transferable Warranty
When a new car warranty transfers with the certification of the car and remains eligible for the next owner, it is known as a transferable warranty. Once the original transferable warranty expires, an extended warranty takes effect.
Warranty Deductible
This is the amount for which you are responsible when repair work is performed under the warranty. Some manufacturers require a deductible while others don't, so always ask.

12-month/12,000-mile Comprehensive Warranty*
7-year/100,000-mile Limited Powertrain Warranty**
1-year of Roadside Assistance***
160-Point Quality Assurance Inspection
CARFAX® Vehicle History Report"****

Certified customers are eligible for standard new car financing rates*****

*Whichever comes first from date of Toyota Certified Used Vehicle purchase. The Comprehensive Warranty covers any repair or replacement of components which fail under normal use due to defect in materials or workmanship. (Program not available in Puerto Rico and Hawaii.)

**Whichever comes first from original date of first use when sold as new. See your Toyota Certified Used Vehicles dealer for warranty details. Program not available in Puerto Rico and Hawaii. For AL, FL, GA, NC & SC, warranty coverage differs in the following ways: 7-year or 100,000-mile Toyota Certified Limited Powertrain Warranty coverage begins on January 1st of the vehicle's model year and zero (0) odometer miles and expires at the earlier of seven years or 100,000 odometer miles.

***From date of Toyota Certified Used Vehicle purchase. Covers most services, including flat tires, lockout service, jump starts, fuel delivery up to 3 gallons and towing for mechanical breakdown or collision recovery to the nearest Toyota dealership. Services provided exclude any parts required. Coverage not available in Mexico. See Certified Warranty Supplement for warranty details.

****Beginning December 1, 2005 CARFAX® Vehicle History Reports" are a required part of every Toyota Certified Used Vehicle. See your local dealer for details.

*****Rates mentioned are for standard new car rates, and do not include new car specials or subvented rates. Not all buyers will qualify. Financing available through Toyota Financial Services for qualified buyers only.
Age/Mileage Eligibility 7 years / 85,000
Lease Term Certified Yes
Point Inspection All TCUV vehicles must pass a comprehensive checklist that includes a 160-point inspection. This way you can rest assured that your pre-owned Toyota is in perfect condition. To see full inspection list visit http://www.toyotacertified.com/inspection.html
Return/Exchange Program No
Roadside Assistance 1-year of Roadside Assistance from date of TCUV purchase.
Transferrable Warranty Yes
Warranty Deductible $50

Learn more about certified pre-owned vehicles

Printable Version

2004 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

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