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2009 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

FWD 4dr L4 Base (Natl)

Starting at | Starting at 18 MPG City - 24 MPG Highway

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  • $25,705 original MSRP
Printable Version

2009 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

Benefits of Driving a 2009 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

The 2009 Toyota Highlander offers seating for seven and is surprisingly versatile, with properly equipped versions able to tow up to 5,000 pounds. The base model is a strong value, while the Sport and Limited can be loaded to the gills with luxury features. Also, the Highlander offers a very robust list of standard safety features, including a total of seven air bags.

What's new for 2009?

Following a major redesign in 2008, the 2009 Highlander sees few changes. A new base-level 2-wheel-drive 4-cylinder model joins the lineup, featuring a 187-horsepower 2.7-liter engine that gets an estimated 20 mpg city and 27 mpg highway and is rated as an Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle by the EPA. Two-row seating is standard in the base model, with third-row seating and an upgraded stereo optional.

Model Strengths

  • Roomy, versatile interior
  • seating for seven
  • surprising acceleration
  • confident ride
  • available hybrid and 4-cylinder models
  • towing ability.

Model Review

Toyota's 2009 Highlander is available in base, Sport and Limited models. A 2.7L 187-horsepower 4-cylinder is now standard on the base model, but a 3.5L V6 engine making 270 horsepower and 248 lb-ft of torque is optional on the base model and standard on the Sport and Limited. There's also a Highlander Hybrid model, offered in base or Limited trims, that pairs a 3.3L V6 engine with an electric motor and generator system to make 270 horsepower together. The Hybrid now has an EV mode, for driving short distances at low speed on electric power only, and there's also an ECON mode that limits acceleration to conserve energy. The new 4-cylinder model is paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission, while V6 versions get a 5-speed automatic. The base model comes only in 2-wheel drive when equipped with the 4-cylinder, while V6 models are available in either 2-wheel or 4-wheel drive. The V6 can be equipped to tow 5,000 pounds, while the 4-cylinder can pull 3,500.

Printable Version

2009 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

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2009 Toyota Highlander

Source: Carlist.com

Case in point: the 2009 Toyota Highlander. First launched for model year 2001, the Highlander started as a midsize SUV that would be more refined and car-like, rather than truck-like. Toyota was on to something, because crossovers, as they are now known, have soared in popularity in the years since. The Highlander was redesigned last year, and now shares a platform with the Avalon full-size sedan.

That resulted in the Highlander growing in length by 3.8 inches, in width by 3.3 inches and in height by 2.8 inches. Its wheelbase is 2.9 inches longer. On the interior, there is an added 41 cubic feet of space. Highlander has packed on 300 pounds in vehicle weight.

The engine is a powerful yet smooth 3.5-liter V-6, also found in the Camry and Avalon. It makes 270 horsepower and 248 pounds-feet of torque. The horsepower is up 55 from that of the previous model's 3.3-liter V-6. The RAV4 and Sequoia, two other Toyota SUVs, have also gotten larger in recent redesigns.

The RAV4, remade in 2006, is now nearly as big as the older version Highlander. The Highlander's fuel economy ratings are 18 mpg city, 24 highway, which is an improvement over the previous version's V-6 numbers of 17 and 23. The Highlander also is available as a hybrid , with that model having a smaller V-6 engine and an electric motor and posting numbers of 27 city, 25 highway.

That model starts at more than $32,000, which might make it hard to justify, financially anyway, surpassing the traditional model. Standard features on the Highlander include five-speed automatic transmission, electronic power steering, side-curtain air bags for all three rows of seats, a driver's side knee air bag and larger alloy wheels. The safety features, besides the airbags, include a more-rigid cabin design that allows for better absorption of crash energy, and new active head restraints.

The Highlander's electronic stability control, brakes and steering also were improved, Toyota said. The Highlander's exterior styling was changed to make it more SUV-like, rather than looking so much like a big station wagon. Toyota says the Highlander's typical buyers are couples, empty-nesters and busy families, and that this version should draw younger and more-affluent customers than the last model.

Toyota thinks that some new features will be appealing to more buyers, such as the second-row seat that can be converted from a bench configuration to bucket seats so that you can walk through to the rear. When you take out that section, you can put it in a floor compartment under the front console. The Highlander has three trim levels: base, Sport and Limited. All-wheel drive is optional on all three.

Our tester was a base model with a V-6 engine, which starts at around $27,600. Five-passenger models, with no third row of seats, are available in the base and Sport trim levels.

Printable Version

2009 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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Rollover Resistance
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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
Traction/Stability Control Std
Tire Pressure Monitoring System Std

Passenger Restraint

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

Road Visibility

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

Accident Prevention

Handsfree Wireless Opt

Security

Alarm Opt
Anti-theft System Opt
Printable Version

2009 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.

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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 ReportTM****

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 ReportsTM 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

2009 Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Crossover

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