Parkers overall rating: 4.1 out of 5 4.1

Miles per pound (mpp) Miles per pound (mpp)

Hybrid petrol engines 6.8 - 6.9 mpp
Low figures relate to the least economical version; high to the most economical. Based on WLTP combined fuel economy for versions of this car made since September 2017 only, and typical current fuel or electricity costs.

Fuel economy

Hybrid petrol engines 39.2 - 39.8 mpg
  • Highlander’s hybrid engine is very efficient
  • Diesel-like fuel economy and low CO2
  • No plug-in, but does it matter?

Running costs for the Toyota Highlander should prove impressively low by the standards of the large SUV class, but a slightly deeper dive than usual is required to figure out why.

It’s true that, without a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) model in the range, Toyota can’t claim anything like the 100.9mpg Volvo can for its XC90 T8 (when tested on the WLTP cycle). However, numbers like these are often only achievable with short journeys and regular charging stops. Toyota reckons buyers of large SUVs like the Highlander want a vehicle that’s also efficient on longer journeys.

To that end, fuel economy from its single self-charging hybrid powertrain ranges from 39.2 to 39.7mpg – and during a long, mixed test route we bested that with over 41mpg showing on the trip computer.

That’s a highly impressive figure and one that’s comparable to a lot of diesel SUVs. However, unlike a modern diesel, the Highlander doesn’t require a long warmup period or regular substantial journeys to clear out its emissions systems – it’ll provide strong economy on short runs just as well as it does longer ones.

CO2 emissions range from 160-163g/km, meaning the Highlander attracts a low first year VED bill and even lower company car tax. Those figures are on a par with the Kia Sorento Hybrid, which starts at 158g/km – however, once you apply a similar level of specification, the Kia’s CO2 is higher.

Reliability

  • Should prove bulletproof
  • Toyota’s reputation precedes it…
  • And the Highlander’s been reliable in other markets already

Few surprises here – Toyota cars are some of the most reliable vehicles you can buy, and its hybrids are legendary for their longevity. Just look at the number of Prius taxis clocking up mega miles in cities around the world…

While there’s not yet any data on the Highlander’s past in the UK – remember, this is the first time it’s been available in Western Europe – its reputation in the USA in particular is of a very solid and reliable vehicle.

Like all Toyotas, it’s backed up with a five-year, 100,000 mile warranty, and Toyota dealers are known for providing excellent, fuss-free service.

Ongoing running costs

Road tax (12 months) £480
Insurance group 40
How much is it to insure?