Last post on Jan 08, 2012 at 6:49 PM
You are in the Toyota Highlander Hybrid
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Highlander Hybrid, Fuel Efficiency (MPG), SUV
#389 of 447 Toyota HH 2006 FWD, VDIM initial test, works great @15-20 MPH
Jan 18, 2007 (9:55 am)
Test date: January 17, 2006
Location: Parking lot just east of the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota, USA
Vehicle: 2006 Toyota Hybrid Highlander with 22, 500 miles, front wheel drive only
I was able to "test the Toyota Highlander Hybrid vehicle dynamic integrated management (VDIM) on Wednesday evening, January 17 at an ice and snow covered, unused parking lot just east of the Mall of America. There were even the orange cones in the lot. I think these cones are used when parking new cars in these lots.
VDIM worked fine at 15 to 20 MPH with a few inches of snow on a paved lot. I had the standard Toyota M+S tires with 22,500 miles. When VDIM is working, the traction control light comes on along with a ding ding ding sound. Steering became difficult during one steering maneuver around the orange cones. This is a known feature of VDIM.
I do not know how VDIM compares to the VSC or the vehicle stability control found in Toyota Highlanders.
Next step: As the lakes are finally frozen thick enough this winter to support cars and there is only a few inches of snow on the lakes (it has been unusually warm in Minnesota this year), I may try a higher speed test on a nearby shallow lake. I would like to feel how the VDIM works at 50 MPH.
I accidentally rolled and totaled a 1998 Chevy Blazer on Minnesota state highway 61 near Schroeder, Minnesota on Sunday, November 26, 2006 (at highway 61 mile marker 72 just across from Satellite Inn & Cabins to be exact). I really want to know how this Toyota HH would handle in similar conditions.
#390 of 447 Re: Toyota HH 2006 FWD, VDIM initial test, works great @15-20 MPH [sebemismnusa]
Jan 18, 2007 (6:12 pm)
PLEASE do tell us when you got on the lake. Be careful though, we want you back in one piece . This is exciting!
The hard steering is normal VDIM behavior. It will try to favor one side over the other by making it hard to steer. This is most obvious on highway when I want to change lane and accelerate at the same time. If I simply turn hard (to LEFT) and press down the accelerator, nothing happens, the VSC (or VDIM) will hold off power until the steering angle is much less. The steering also becomes very heavy to the side that has the potential to cause a roll-over. Steering is easy and power returns quickly when I steer the other way (to the RIGHT) down the lane.
So, unlike gas-engine car, I have to press down gentler but continuously if I want to switch lane and take off. It is a nice safety feature once I got used to it. The car has so much power, gentler accelerator work still gets it moving real quick.
Are you bringing along the shed, stove, drill, reel and rod ????
#391 of 447 Re: Feathering Re: techniques explained [cdptrap]
Mar 27, 2007 (4:41 pm)
Thanks! I just got my 07 HH and was driving the same way I drove my old 04 Highlander. I was getting 19 mpg in the city. I tried the Pulse, Feather, Glide technique as you have excellently described and now I can get 32-34 mpg in the city. This is driving without AC in 70 degree weather on relatively flat roads with light traffic between 0 and 40 mph.
#392 of 447 Re: Feathering Re: techniques explained [pnrjr]
Mar 28, 2007 (12:43 pm)
Hi! pnrjr, very glad you found that useful. Gosh, that was a long time ago.
Proper credit must go to "Gazguzler" who first posted the "needle in the stripes region" technique here. The word "Feather" was coined by Khdspyder who posted the technique here too.
I simply took all that and put them into an organized note. Should have given them due credit in that note.
#393 of 447 New Highlander Hybrid Owners
Mar 29, 2007 (11:07 am)
Hello fellow HH owners:
We are about to pick up a new Highlander Hybrid LImited 4wd-i vehicle. We've browes the various CarSpace forums for hints on how to drive/maintain the vehicle.
Does anyone out there have some do's and don'ts for the first few hundred miles? If so, you might want to reply directly to our e-mail address to get info to us ASAP:
Thanks in advance. We are excited about this car!
Don and Linda
#394 of 447 Performance in mountain conditions
Jun 12, 2007 (7:30 pm)
We currently have a Subaru Outback and use it for skiing and snow conditions. We are looking at purchasing a toyota highland hybid and need to know if anyone has experienced how the car handles in bad weather, snow and ice conditions. And especially how it compares to the superior handling of the Subaru.
#395 of 447 Re: Performance in mountain conditions [lucy10]
Jun 12, 2007 (7:45 pm)
We just traded a 2002 3.0 LL Bean Outback for a 2007 Hybrid Highlander Ltd. Both are fine. I preferred the Outback, my wife prefers the HH. I'm not sure but I think the Outback got better mileage and I think the HH is too big. My car is a 2004 Prius but when the snow falls, we us one of the 4WDs.
#396 of 447 Re: Performance in mountain conditions [lucy10]
Jun 12, 2007 (8:37 pm)
Canadian Driver put snow tires on a 2006 Highlander Hybrid and drove it in their Traction Test. The following link leads to article.
Popular Mechanics did an emergency avoidance test and published the video but I cannot find the link anymore. Anyway, the HH handled amazlingly well in the slalom.
When we researched a new car in 2005, the final choices were indeed the Outback against the HH. My wife wanted the HH and that was that. So far though, no regrets. On plowed road, on 4-6 inch snow, with real snow tires, the HH has been wonderful. I have not encountered iced-over condition as Canadian Driver did so no experience there.
Note Toyota says to NOT put chains on the HH. if you look under the rear wheel well, at least in the 2006 version, the coil spring has extremely tight clearance with the tire. So chains will not work in the rear tires. We opted for four snow tires in the winter and that has worked very well. There are chains (Sppike SPyder) that attach only to the outside half of the tires but they cost an arm and a leg. We bought a set just in case. Have not really had to use it yet.
The HH is also competent on dry dirt road conditions *EXCEPT* when conditions warrant a real-life 4x4. I will not repeat our dirt road experience here.
If you decide to go for the HH, make sure the tires are truck tires or tougher SUV tires. Our 2006 came with cheap Goodyear minivan tires, horribly squishy and soft and even Goodyear rated it as mediocre in snow condition. Couldn't believe Toyota would go so cheap.
A four season tire worth considering is the Nokian SUV WR which has the snow-flake designation. I believe it is the only 4-season that has the snow-flake badging.
#397 of 447 Re: Performance in mountain conditions [cdptrap]
Jun 13, 2007 (3:36 pm)
Could not agree more - I put the Nokians on before delivery, and they have been outstanding. I live in the mtns of western NC, and they have never let me down, plus I've put 20k in less than a year with negligible wear. Good choice!!
#398 of 447 Re: Performance in mountain conditions [lucy10]
Jun 20, 2007 (1:23 pm)
Last December I traded in my '97 Outback with 120,000 miles for a 4WD Toyota HH (I need the extra room to haul stuff). I love both cars but these are the differences: I get better mileage in the HiHy (25 vs 22)although the Subaru was 10 years old. The HiHy has kick-ass power. My little 4 cyl Subaru would work really hard when fully loaded to make it quickly to highway speed. The HiHy--no problem.
BUT, I think the Subaru is better in the snow and ice. There something about having the rear wheels driven by an electric motor that just can't compare to a regular drive train working them. Plus the Toyota has the VSC which prevents the wheels from spinning by shutting the motor off when it detects it. One time last winter during an ice storm I attempted to go up my driveway (it has an incline) and when the wheels started to spin a little, it just shut the motor off and there I was, slowly sliding backwards. I backed up and gunned it and made it into the garage but it did weird me out a little. By the way, I haven't used snow tires, just the Firestones that came with it, you may do better with different tires. But all in all, I thought the HiHy was OK in the snow.