Best Bet
  • (5.0) 6 reviews
  • Inventory Prices: $12,487–$28,727
  • Body Style: Sport Utility
  • Combined MPG: 28
  • Engine: 231-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 (gas hybrid)
  • Drivetrain: All-wheel Drive
  • Seats: 7
2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid

Our Take on the Latest Model 2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid

What We Don't Like

  • Mushy brakes
  • Lackluster handling
  • Inconsistent cabin materials
  • Cramped third row

Notable Features

  • Updated exterior
  • New rear climate controls
  • New split-folding third row
  • FWD or AWD, four-cylinder or V-6
  • Available Highlander Hybrid with stronger drivetrain

2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Reviews

Vehicle Overview

The Toyota Highlander gets a number of visual changes, some new interior features and reshuffled equipment packages for 2011. Offered in front- and all-wheel drive, the Highlander crossover comes with a four-cylinder or V-6 engine. Competitors include the Chevrolet Traverse, Ford Flex and Honda Pilot.

The Highlander Hybrid, meanwhile, gets a stronger gas-electric drivetrain and additional visual changes to differentiate it from the non-hybrid model.
(Skip to details on the: Highlander Hybrid)

Exterior

Toyota says the hood, lights and fenders have been restyled for 2011. Chrome accents adorn the rocker panels, and base and SE trims have new 17-inch alloy wheels. The Highlander SE adds fog lights, a glass hatch that opens separately from the liftgate, and black roof rails. The Highlander Limited adds 19-inch wheels and silver roof rails.

At 188.4 inches long, the Highlander is one of the smaller three-row crossovers on the market. Its turning circle, 38.7 feet, is on the narrower side of its class.

Interior
Little has changed inside, but a third-row seat  is now standard, and it folds into the floor in a 50/50 split rather than last year's single piece. The second-row bench features a removable center seat that stows in a compartment below the front-seat center console. Without it, the second row converts into two captain's chairs with a center aisle or a center console (also removable). Both seats can recline and adjust forward and back, and the passenger-side seat has a walk-in feature for easier third-row access.

Fold all the seats down, and the Highlander's 95.4 cubic feet of maximum cargo volume is class-competitive. With the second and third rows up, however, there's just 10.3 cubic feet of cargo volume — small for this league.

New for 2011 are standard air-conditioning controls for rear passengers; last year's Highlander had air vents but no separate rear controls. Other standard features include cruise control and a CD stereo with an auxiliary MP3 jack. The SE adds leather upholstery, heated front seats, power driver's seat, moonroof, backup camera, USB/iPod stereo integration and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls. Limited models add a keyless access system with push-button start, three-zone automatic climate control, faux wood trim and a power passenger seat. Many features included on higher trims are optional on lower ones; other standalone options include a navigation system and an upgraded JBL stereo.


Under the Hood
Standard on the base and SE trims is a 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 187 horsepower and 186 pounds-feet of torque. It works with a six-speed automatic transmission. A 3.5-liter V-6 is available on the base and SE; it makes 270 hp and 248 pounds-feet of torque, and it teams with a five-speed automatic. The V-6 is standard on the Highlander Limited.

Four-cylinder models come only in front-wheel drive, but V-6 models offer front- or all-wheel drive. Maximum towing capacity with the four-cylinder is 3,500 pounds; with the V-6, it increases to 5,000 pounds.


Safety
Seven airbags, including rollover-sensing curtain airbags for all three rows, are standard. So are active head restraints, an electronic stability system and all-disc antilock brakes.

Highlander Hybrid
A 3.5-liter V-6 replaces last year's 3.3-liter V-6 to underpin the 2011 Highlander Hybrid's drivetrain. With the help of an electric motor, the Highlander Hybrid makes a combined 280 hp. Equipped with standard all-wheel drive, the hybrid uses an additional electric motor to power its rear wheels, rather than the usual driveshaft coupling in most all-wheel-drive vehicles. The Highlander Hybrid can cruise at low speeds on electric power only. Like before, a dashboard "EV" button allows drivers to maximize the threshold for electric-only propulsion, given a sufficient battery charge.

An electrically variable automatic transmission is standard. A gauge display alerts drivers to which sources of power — the gasoline engine, electric motors or a combination of both — the Highlander Hybrid is using, as well as its battery charge and overall gas mileage. The Highlander Hybrid is EPA-rated at 28/28 mpg city/highway, much better than even the four-cylinder, front-wheel-drive Highlander's 20/25 mpg.

The Highlander Hybrid gets styling updates similar to the non-hybrid Highlander, but several additional changes — a unique grille and bumper, plus new vertical fog lights — aim to differentiate the two. The headlights and taillights are tinted blue as well. Trim levels include the base and Limited, with equipment similar to the regular Highlander. Back to top

Consumer Reviews

(5.0)

Average based on 6 reviews

Write a Review

Limited Edition Hybrid. Fantastic to Drive

by Ambitt from Atlanta, ga on June 11, 2017

I have had this car for 6 years. Never a problem. Love having a hybrid. 22 mpg city and 25 hwy. Great for large SUV. 7 Seats. Lots of room with seats down. Really responsive to drive handling wise, an... Read Full Review

Read All Consumer Reviews

2 Trims Available

Photo of undefined
Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid trim comparison will help you decide.

2011 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports

IIHS Ratings

Based on Toyota Highlander Hybrid Base V6

Head Restraints and Seats
G
Moderate overlap front
G
Roof Strength
G
Side
G

IIHS Ratings

Based on Toyota Highlander Hybrid Base V6

G Good
A Acceptable
M Marginal
P Poor

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
G
Overall Rear
G
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
G

Moderate overlap front

Chest
G
Head/Neck
A
Left Leg/Foot
G
Overall Front
G
Restraints
G
Right Leg/Foot
G
Structure/safety cage
G

Other

Roof Strength
G

Side

Driver Head Protection
G
Driver Head and Neck
G
Driver Pelvis/Leg
G
Driver Torso
G
Overall Side
G
Rear Passenger Head Protection
G
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
G
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
G
Rear Passenger Torso
G
Structure/safety cage
G
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers. IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests. IIHS also evaluates seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts.

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Toyota Highlander Hybrid Base V6

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Toyota Highlander Hybrid Base V6

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating
Driver's
Passenger's
Front Seat
Rear Seat
Side Barrier
Side Pole
Side Pole Barrier combined (Front)
Side Pole Barrier combined (Rear)
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Recalls

There is currently 1 recall for this car.


Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $3,900 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage

Bumper-to-Bumper

36mo/36,000mi

Powertrain

60mo/60,000mi

Roadside Assistance Coverage

24mo/25,000mi

Free Scheduled Maintenance

24mo/25,000mi

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained

Bumper-to-Bumper

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

Powertrain

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years