As a family hauler, the 2015 Toyota Highlander Hybrid offers seating for up to 8 passengers and at the same time is able to deliver a solid 28 mpg on the highway thanks to its hybrid powerplant that teams a 3.5-liter V6 with two electric motors to put out a combined 280 horsepower and 215 lb ft of torque. As a result of its recent redesign and Toyota's traditional high resale value, the 2015 Highlander is delivers the lowest 5-year Cost-to-Own number in the hybrid crossover SUV category.
The redesign has given the 2015 Highlander distinctive looks, and the hybrid version, which sits atop the lineup, offers a long list of standard equipment including 3-row seating, a rearview camera, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, day/night rearview mirror, and three 12-volt auxiliary power outlets (two up front and one in the second row), and a 6.1-inch touch-screen display with Toyota's Entune audio system, Bluetooth and voice recognition.
Other features available include lane-departure warning, dynamic radar cruise control and automatic high beams. Heated second-row captain's chairs are available - although you lose the 8-passenger capacity in the bargain - plus a panoramic moonroof, heated steering wheel and a rear-seat Blu-ray and DVD entertainment system. There are also features like Driver Easy Speak, which helps amplify the driver's voice so rear-seat passengers can hear better and 3-zone automatic climate control.
The 2015 Toyota Highlander is a safe choice, for all the right reasons. Comfortable, accommodating and feature-packed, with a low 5-year CTO, the Highlander's a tough act to follow.