Last post on Nov 13, 2011 at 11:20 AM
You are in the Toyota Highlander Hybrid
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Highlander Hybrid, Hybrid Cars, SUV
#3060 of 4026 Re: Overall satisfaction anyone? [groovology]
May 22, 2006 (8:10 am)
I purchased a new 2003 Prius, ~42MPG at 2000 gallons, all city.
But if you look around at what Toyota/Lexus is doing currently with the hybrid synergy drive its pretty obvious that they have forsaken the FE issue in favor of appealing to the "boy-racer" down there in the id of many of us.
I'm not sure we can blame them, I have always said that I doubted that the Prius drive system could be upscaled to a heavier vehicle such as the HH or RXh insofar as fuel economy is concerned.
To be fair it does appear that the laws of physics and the EPA were operating against them. No Atkinson engine cycle due to the need to keep the catalyst up to optimum operating temperature.
An electric A/C motor does no good if you simultaneously need a hot water source to modulate the A/C air outlet temperature....
Personally I would love to see an LS series with the V6 GS series hybrid system, but given their current "boy-racer" mindset I guess that will never happen.
Right now it looks as if my next purchase will be the RDX. A really STELLAR AWD system and a highly economical I4 provided one can keep your foot out of the turbo.
#3061 of 4026 Re: Overall satisfaction anyone? [wwest]
May 22, 2006 (8:14 am)
No Atkinson engine cycle due to the need to keep the catalyst up to optimum operating temperature.
The Camry Hybrid uses just that. 2.4L 4cyl Atkinson cycle, 40 mpg city...No boy racer here. Around 190 hp...between the ICE 2.4L and the 3.5L V6
#3062 of 4026 Re: Overall satisfaction anyone? [groovology]
May 22, 2006 (9:35 am)
Overall, very satisfied.
Our HH gets >30 MPG in city driving at speed below 35-MPH on relatively flat road. This is easily achieved with a mix of full-electric only run followed by low-power gas engine run to recharge. On freeway, it gets anywhere from 22 to 28 depending on speed and terrain. We are conservative and relaxed drivers, not the youthful whipper-snapper zip-zip type. On average, 22-26 in the Winter with 24+ the norm; 26-29 in warmer (>55-F) weather with 28+ the norm.
I believe you pay for what you get in this case, so discussing the "Premium" thing is unhelpful. It is more important to focus on how it impacts your driving preference.
For those who want good gas-mileage but also want to just drive without thinking about gas-mileage, a smaller engine car, regardles of whether it is a hybrid and regardless of price, is almost always the best choice. Theoretically, a well designed smaller engine should use less gas even when it is working hard, so one can drive wihthout a care about MPG.
For those who are willing to learn and then vary driving styles accordingly, the HH offers great flexibiiy. It can get stellar in-town mileage with relaxed driving as mentioned ealier or it can rocket up a mountain freeway at posted speed carrying a full load. The driver decides when to use all or little of its power.
You do have to be careful about a small engine on a larger car. We have a 194-hp V6 3650-lb Sienna and when fully loaded, it cannot take mountain freeway at posted speed of 65-MPH. So forget passing slow lumbering 18-wheelers when there are other cars. If you hardly ever drive mountain freeways, this becomes unimportant.
#3064 of 4026 Re: Overall satisfaction anyone? [wwest]
May 22, 2006 (10:14 am)
This is likely accurate in that the hybrid Camry is the perfect uppper limit for this gen HSD. Decent V6 power with compact vehicle FE.
Now the next iterations of the Highlander and Sienna will be interesting. From a sales and volume perspective I'd love to see the same 2.4L + HSD in both vehicles, again getting decent V6 power but Corolla FE. Are the vehicle too heavy for that? Dunno. Is there a next Gen HSD under wraps for these two vehicles? Dunno.
I am fairly certain that there is something brewing in San Antonio on the next Tundra. Whether it's the HSD or something entirely different for Big Rigs? Dunno on that either.
#3065 of 4026 Re: Overall satisfaction anyone? [groovology]
May 22, 2006 (10:59 am)
If the circumstances were the same, I would still choose the HiHy. I needed more carrying room than a sedan offered. Toyota was able to offer me a better deal than I could get on the Mercury Mariner (my second choice). The Toyota deal was on the AWD, but I would have chosen the hybrid FWD if it was a better deal (I dont need AWD). Compared to the non hybrid FWD, I calculate it will be about a wash as far as cash flow goes given a cost of $3.00 for gas. Technology wise the hybrid is neat to have and drive (still a geek at heart). The Hybrid was also MUCH more pleasurable to drive based on my test drives. Fit and finish is exceptional, it is quiet and comfortable, and it should be ultra reliable. Given the size of the vehicle, I am more than satisfied with FE, given that I am getting 50% better city mileage than the car which it replaced (2002 SAAB Convertible). Granted it is not as sexy or fun, but thats the nature of the beast.
What would be a great improvement in the future would be to give the HiHy a more fuel efficient ICE. I don't need 268 HP. Give me enough HP to merge safely on an interstate and to safely pass on a two lane road and I would be happy. In my opinion about 200HP would fill the bill.
#3066 of 4026 Re: Overall satisfaction anyone? [kdhspyder]
May 22, 2006 (11:05 am)
... the same 2.4L + HSD in both vehicles, again getting decent V6 power but Corolla FE. Are the vehicle too heavy for that?...
Would love to see a 2.4L for the van. Real-life 30-MPG or better will be fantastic. If the '06 HH had a 2.4L HSD option, we would have bought that version. We were pleasantly surprised by the performance of the '06 HH but we would gladly trade that muscle for more mileage and the AT-PZEV rating.
...next Tundra. Whether it's the HSD or something entirely different for Big Rigs?...
If Toyota makes a true 4x4 "2-mode" HSD Tundra with a full bed, tows 5000-lbs, gets real-life average of 26-MPG (EPA 29 MPG), priced no more than the HH and gets SULEV II or AT-PZEV, we will trade or sell all our Chevy V8's and buy the Tundra.
Real-life full-size tough working trucks is where domestic companies still win for now. We looked at the GM "hybrid Wannabe" (engine shut-off only) last year and were just completely disgusted. GM is finally getting the message by working with Mercedes on a 2-mode now.
#3067 of 4026 Re: Overall satisfaction anyone? [cdptrap]
May 22, 2006 (11:16 am)
Literally there it something HUGE brewing in San Antonio. For certain there will be a 5.7L with 10,000 lb towing capacity and there will be a hybrid option at the same time and there will be diesel options soon thereafter and...