Last post on Oct 27, 2013 at 4:38 PM
You are in the Toyota Highlander
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Highlander, Toyota, SUV
#990 of 2954 more on HH
Jul 24, 2007 (11:27 am)
I think that's it's somewhat laughable that someone who is looking at Pilot, MDX or Highlander is going to go flocking to Acadia or the other two variants that GM is offering.
GM has a bit of an image problem with marginal reliability on their other mid-size SUVs of recent years like the Envoy. Reliability on Yukon, etc, is slightly better but nothing to brag about. Many will buy a Toyota who plan on buying and driving it for 7-10 years vs. leasing it for 3.
As far as HH goes, Toyota's hybrid technology is the best "stop gap" measure for fuel economy in larger vehicles until flex and biodiesel come into their own which will probably take another 5-10 years. Lithium Iion batteries coming (hopefully) for the next Prius could boost fuel economy a further 10-20% which is no laughing matter from a car that is already getting better than 40 mpg around town and a midsize SUV that gets 26.
As far as the hybrid being 'worth it' from a purely financial look at things there are few scenarios where it makes sense if you will own the vehicle for five years or less or put less than 15K miles a year on it. The person who the HH makes the most sense for is the person who will put 12-15K miles a year on the car and keep it for 7-10 years (or longer).
Gas is $3 but it won't be a shocker if it stabilizes at $4. I also think it's optimistic to think that in mixed driving the new ICE Highlander will get 20mpg... probably more like 18mpg.
So let's look at this by the numbers.
EPA gives the 2007 HH an annual fuel cost at 15K miles and $3.05 a gallon of $1761 per year.
EPA gives the 2008 ICE Highlander an annual fuel cost of $2406 a year with the same numbers.
at $600 a year in fuel savings (lets round down) then at about 7.5 yrs you break even on the $4500 premium price of the HH (assuming it is that much).
But now lets say that gas goes up to a $4 gallon average price over the next several years.
All of a sudden the fuel costs jump to a whopping $3157 for the ICE per year (15K miles / 19mpg * $4.0) and they increase to $2307 for the hybrid version (15K miles / 26 mpg * 4.0).
Now with an added fuel cost of $800 a year the HH pays for it's premium price after just 5.625 years and every year after that it's putting money back into your pocket.
At $5 and up it just gets plain silly.
So it all comes down to how confident you are that gas prices will stay at or around $3/gallon for the next few years.
#991 of 2954 Re: Toyota seems to be missing the mark lately [pablox]
Jul 24, 2007 (11:45 am)
How many people really use roof racks? Honda had a better idea on the Crv. Roof rack is available as an option. Now everybody can be happy.
#992 of 2954 The market has shown
Jul 24, 2007 (11:49 am)
If gas prices stay between $2.75 and 2.99, the sky will not fall, and people will actually take responsibility for the vehicles they buy, and the gas they use. It's not pick-up trucks all around anymore. Makers have to spend more to get people to buy the same amount of pick-up trucks.
Someone is profiting on higher gas prices, and they, along with the very unstable situation in the Middle East, will not produce more available gas for us. We have shown we'll pay up to $3 without slitting our wrists, so the $1.75 days are over.
#993 of 2954 Re: more on HH [jmpage2]
Jul 24, 2007 (12:26 pm)
Everybody talks like it's either hybrid or diesel. The two can work together (look at Fedex's hybrid delivery vans). Also, with the way China and India are going, even if we go to biodiesel or some other renewable fuel, we'll still have problems with demand. Finally, growing crops for fuel use isn't without problems.
#994 of 2954 Re: The market has shown [drfill]
Jul 24, 2007 (12:34 pm)
Actually my local dealer told me that when gas dipped back into the $2.50-$2.75 range last year sales of the HH dropped off. As soon as the prices went back up over $3 demand surged again.
Same for the Prius.
If anything this tells me that buyers are extremely sensitive to gas prices but seem to think that if gas will stay under $3 a gallon they are more than happy to buy something that will cost them $500 or more extra a year to fill.
#995 of 2954 Having been on the lot
Jul 24, 2007 (12:40 pm)
That's what I meant to say. Toyota's and Hondas sales skyrocket when gas went over $3 in April/May. When the price dropped in June, traffic definitely slowed down.
My point was that the market has shown that they will tolerate gas prices up to $3. Once over that, radical changes in buying habits occur, and generally hurt the domestics, in particular.
It would be in the Big 3's, and the US governments, best interest to stabilize gas prices under $3, for the sake of the economy and the domestic's well-being.
#996 of 2954 Re: Toyota seems to be missing the mark lately [blufz1]
Jul 24, 2007 (12:45 pm)
Honda had a better idea on the Crv. Roof rack is available as an option.
If the worse thing about the RAV4 and Highlander is that Toyota includes a roof rack (which is optional, by the way, on the Highlander base model), then that's a pretty big compliment.
#997 of 2954 Impression of '08 Highlander LTD
Jul 24, 2007 (12:49 pm)
Was not blown away. The exterior is quite bland, and not sure why there is no HID option. My biggest complaint is the horribly cheap ceiling material used even in the limited. It's like a piece of fuzzy cardboard. My wifes Nissan Altima has higher quality materials in the cabin. Another oddity was the flat, boring appeal of the leather upholstry, it just looked like a chair from a nursing home. The ride is nice, however, and acceleration was quite good. I think that the biggest insult was the dealer was trying to sell ALL of the one's on his lot for $750 over MSRP!! I'd have to say he is smoking dope..........These trucks are barely worth invoice price, but when you are looking at dropping close to $42k on a LTD Highlander w/nav, your looking at Lexus pricing now, not Toyota. If you can't get the dealer to sell it for close to invoice, I'd say get an Acadia, Enclave, or Pilot.......Toyota has become quite arrogant.
#998 of 2954 Re: Impression of '08 Highlander LTD [flipwilson]
Jul 24, 2007 (12:55 pm)
Toyota has become quite arrogant.
No. Your dealer is quite arrogrant. But, supply and demand will do that. I'm very confident that prices will stabalize very soon given that the CUV field is pretty competitive and the Highlander is a volume product for Toyota.
I agree with you on the headliner. My 4Runner has a similar fuzzy material. Even the Lexus RX uses some sub-par fuzz. I thought the headliner in a Pontiac Montana SV6 I rented was much nicer than what Toyota uses, but that was the only thing that looked like it was of decent quality.
HIDs would be a nice to have (along with LED tails), but they aren't dealbreakers for me. Bluetooth, the rear-view camera, and the smart key are much more important to me.
#999 of 2954 Re: Toyota seems to be missing the mark lately [qs933]
Jul 24, 2007 (2:18 pm)
What about the swinging cattle gate of a rear door? Even most cattle gates don't have a 40 pound spare mounted. Other than those things and the,cheaper than Honda,feel of everything it's a nice ride if you get the V6.