Image credits: © Toyota.

2007 Toyota Highlander

Toyota Highlander Gets New Safety System For 2007

The Toyota Highlander gains standard driver and front passenger seat-mounted side airbags and two-row curtain side airbags wîth a rollover sensor for 2007. These features were already standard on Highlander Hybrid and optional on other models. The 2007 Highlander is distinguished by redesigned headlights.

The Highlander is available in two-row and three-row models (not available on four-cylinder four-wheel drive model) wîth a choice between four-cylinder, V6 and Hybrid models, each available wîth either front-wheel drive or four-wheel drive wîth intelligence (4WD-i). Highlander is the only SÚV in its §egmènt to offer a hybrid-powered model.

The Highlander (including Highlander Hybrid) was named Highest Ranked Multi Activity Vehicle (MAV) in the 2006 J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality StudySM. The study measures problems per 100 vehicles in the first 90 days of ownership. Highlander is one of six sport-utility model lines offered by Toyota, and all are equipped wîth the STAR SAFETY SYSTEM™ that employs an array of advanced dynamic handling technology to help provide vehicle control.

Highlander combines a roomy and comfortable cabin wîth generous cargo space and versatility. Cargo volume behind the second-row seat measures 39.7 cubic feet, which more than doubles to 80.6 cubic feet of space wîth the standard 60/40 split second-row seat folded flat.

New Sport Model
The newly introduced Highlander Sport adds numerous refined exterior enhancements including unique color-keyed grille wîth chrome insert, chrome door handles, chrome rear license plate garnish, color-keyed mudguards, fog lamps, chrome exhaust tip, and 17-inch five-spoke aluminum alloy wheels wîth a high polish finish. Standard interior features include chrome door handles, tilt leather-wrapped §teering wheel wîth audio controls, leather-trimmed shift knob wîth chrome stalk, and eight-way power driver's seat and 3-in-1 AM/FM/Cassette/CD wîth six speakers and in-glass antenna. All Highlander Sport models are powered by an impressive 215 horsepower V6 engine.

Vital Stats
Engine : 2.4 L., 4-cylinder
Power: 155 hp
Torque: 162 ft-lbs

Engine : 3.3 L., 6-cylinder
Power: 215 hp
Torque: 222 ft-lbs

4-speed Automatic
A standard sport tuned suspension (4WD models only) also enhances vehicle handling without impacting its legendary ride comfort. The Highlander Sport is also available wîth third-row seating.

Comfortable, Easy to Drive and Versatile
Highlander is based on a unibody platform wîth four-wheel independent suspension for a smooth, quiet ride comparable to premium sedan. (concept carz) The higher ride height provides a commanding view of the road, while a tight 37.4-foot turning circle makes Highlander easy to maneuver. Sixteen-inch aluminum alloy wheels wîth a high-gloss finish are available on the standard grade model. Standard 17-inch aluminum wheels on the Hybrid and the Limited models add to the refined appearance and also enhance handling response. Standard 17-inch aluminum wheels wîth high-polish finish on the Sport models add to the sporty appearance.

All Highlander models include standard roof rails wîth crossbars, a remote keyless entry system, a rear cargo area cover and 12-volt accessory power outlet. Attention to real-world vehicle usage is shown in thoughtful touches such as multiple interior storage compartments, an illuminated entry system and a full-size spare tire located under the vehicle to help maximize interior cargo room.

Two or three rows
New for 2007 is the availability of a two-row, five-passenger capacity model for hybrid models. This configuration, that is already available on the gasoline model, allows the hybrid customers the additional choice for maximize cargo capacity.

Highlander models wîth a third-row seat can accommodate two additional passengers, for a total of seven. The third-row seat offers 30.2 inches of legroom, plus a four-step reclining feature. The seat can be easily folded flat without removing the headrests. Models wîth third-row seating include standard rear privacy glass, a rear heater system, and additional cupholders. 'Walk-in' steps and a second-row sliding seat make it easy to enter and exit the third-row seat.

Second-row passengers on models wîth third row seating are assured of comfort thanks to 36.4 inches of legroom and a seven-step reclining feature that offers 14 degrees of total recline. The seats can also slide forward nearly five inches. In addition, when there are only two second-row passengers, there is a fold-down center armrest featuring two adjustable cupholders.

An optional rear-seat DVD entertainment system plays DVD movies and audio CDs and can also be connected to video game players for second- and third-row occupants. A rear seat audio system, two wireless headphones, a 115-volt AC power outlet and RCA input jacks are included in the DVD entertainment system.

Three Types of Power, Including Hybrid
The Highlander's standard 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine produces 155 horsepower, and the available 3.3-liter V6 produces 215 horsepower and 222 lb.-ft. of torque. The 2WD four-cylinder Highlander returns EPA estimated city and highway fuel mileage ratings comparable to some smaller SÚVs -- 22/28 mpg.

Teamed to a five-speed automatic transmission wîth 'snow mode' throttle-control start, the V6 yields strong acceleration and passing performance. The Highlander V6 also delivers admirable fuel efficiency, wîth EPA city/highway fuel economy estimated ratings of 19/25 mpg wîth 2WD and 18/24 mpg wîth 4WD.

An electronic throttle control system provides highly precise engine response, and the Active Control Engine Mount helps to reduce vibrations when idling.

The Hybrid Synergy Drive powertrain in Highlander Hybrid combines a modified 3.3-liter V6 engine wîth a high-torque electric drive motor-generator to produce 268 peak combined horsepower along wîth outstanding fuel economy ratings. The 2007 model adds an average miles-per-gallon display in the instrument panel.

Four-cylinder and V6 Highlander models are available wîth a four-wheel drive system that distributes engine power 50:50 front-to-rear, wîth four-wheel traction control (TRAC) controlling potential slippage at any wheel. Highlander Hybrid is also available in front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive wîth intelligence (4WD-i)models. The Hybrid model uniquely employs an electric four-wheel-drive system wîth intelligence (4WD-i), which uses a separate, rear-mounted electric motor to drive the rear wheels as needed.

STAR SAFETY SYSTEM Provides Optimal Dynamic Control
The standard STAR SAFETY SYSTEM™ includes Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and traction control (TRAC), an anti-lock brake system (ABS) wîth Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist. Highlander Hybrid employs the advanced Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) system that integrates all of the vehicle's dynamic control systems and can operate proactively rather than simply reactively.

Four-channel, four-sensor ABS helps to preserve §teering control by preventing the wheels from locking during severe braking conditions, while EBD distributes proper brake force between the front and rear wheels according to driving conditions. Brake Assist is designed to determine if the driver is attempting emergency braking and, if the driver has not stepped firmly enough on the brake pedal to engage the ABS, the system supplements the applied braking power until pedal pressure is released.

VSC in four-cylinder and V6 models helps maintain direction during cornering by manipulating engine torque and individual wheel-braking influence when it detects tire slippage. The system's integrated TRAC feature helps reduce tire slippage during acceleration.

Family Safety
Highlander provides an impressive array of passive safety, including three-point seatbelts and headrests for all seating positions. The front seats are designed to help reduce the possibility of whiplash-type injuries, and the front seatbelts include pretensioners and force limiters. The second-row seat incorporates height-adjustable headrests, and models equipped wîth the third-row seat include these, as well.

The driver and passenger advanced front airbags inflate according to collision severity. A front seat passenger sensor is designed to determine if there is a person in the seat as well as the person's weight category to determine whether the airbag should inflate, and the correct inflation power. Front-seat-mounted side airbags plus first- and second-row side curtain airbags wîth a rollover sensor are newly standard for 2007.

The second-row seat is equipped wîth a Child Restraint LATCH System (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) that provides top tether anchors for all three seating positions and lower anchors for outboard seating positions. The tire pressure monitor system alerts the driver wîth an indicator light if there is a significant loss of pressure in any tire.

Highlander Hybrid Combines Impressive Performance and Economy
The Highlander Hybrid is the most powerful model in the line, and also the most fuel-efficient. The Highlander Hybrid wîth 4WDi can accelerate from zero-to-60 mph in 7.4 seconds and yet delivers the best EPA estimated fuel economy ratings in the mid-size SÚV §egmènt – 32 mpg city/27 mpg highway for the 4x2 model (29 mpg combined rating) and 31 mpg city/27 mpg highway (29 mpg combined rating) for the models wîth 4WD-i. Highlander Hybrid is rated as a Super Últra Low Emissions Vehicle (SÚLEV). Adhering to one of the 's most stringent emissions ratings, SÚLEV-rated vehicles emit 80 percent fewer smog-forming emissions than conventionally powered SÚVs.

Hybrid Technology
The Highlander Hybrid is a 'full' hybrid, which means it is capable of operating in electric-only or gas engine-only mode, as well as a mode that combines the power of the gas engine and electric motor. A 288-volt DC Nickel metal hydride (Ni-MH) battery pack fits neatly under the second row seat. The battery's power is directed through a 'boost converter' that raises voltage to 650V DC. An inverter changes this to 650V AC, providing its elevated power to a front-mounted 123-kW electric motor that turns as high as 12,500 RPM.

There are two motor-generators in the 4x2 models and three in the 4WD-i models. Referred to as MG1, MG2 and MGR (rear electric motor in 4WD-i), each has a specific function and each does double duty as both drive motor and generator (although MG1 is a starter and provides no motive force).

The engine-driven generator (MG1) and rear electric motor (MGR) can charge the battery pack, which powers other electric motors as needed. Power from the gas engine and front electric-drive motor (MG2) is distributed to the drive wheels via a planetary gear-type continuously variable transmission, which eliminates individual gear ratios. The 4WD-i system employs a separate 50-kW electric motor (MGR) at the rear that provides up to 96 lb.-ft. of additional drive torque as required, depending on driving conditions.

The permanent-magnet front electric drive motor (MG2) produces peak torque from 0-1,500 RPM, giving the Highlander Hybrid powerful and instantaneous response that will be especially felt and appreciated in low- and mid-speed performance and in merging and passing maneuvers. In addition to its motor-generator duties, the crucial MG1 adds two functions: one as a starter motor for the gas engine; and two, by regulating the amount of electrical power it generates (which varies its RPM), MG1 controls the output speed of the
transaxle through the planetary gear set – without clutches or viscous couplings. This key element of the Toyota hybrid powertrain is also the reason why Highlander Hybrid eliminates the gear changes that can typically be felt even from the most refined modern automatic transmissions.

The power §teering pump, water pump, and air conditioner compressor are electrically powered rather than engine-belt-driven to reduce noise and optimize fuel consumption. These are necessary, because the gas engine often shuts down – a fuel-saving benefit of the hybrid system – especially when the vehicle is stopped or driven slowly through traffic.

A regenerative braking system further boosts system efficiency. When the vehicle is coasting or the brakes are applied, the electric motors function as generators, capturing kinetic energy that would normally be lost as heat through the brakes and transforming it into useable electricity to recharge the batteries.

Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Control (VDIM)
In the Highlander Hybrid, VDIM constantly calculates vehicle motion based on signals from a yaw rate and deceleration sensor, wheel speed sensors and §teering angle sensor. Úsing these inputs, VDIM controls all of the vehicle's dynamic handling systems and can employ them collectively and seamlessly, allowing it to quickly detect the onset of a loss of vehicle control and help correct it. The ability to operate in such a proactive manner means that corrections to vehicle attitude are typically quicker, more accurate and subtler than wîth other stability and traction control systems.

A vital component of VDIM is the Electronically Controlled Braking system (ECB), which translates brake pedal stroke and pressure to generate the precise amount of combined electric regeneration and hydraulic pressure needed to match driving conditions. Únder guidance from VDIM, such precise brake control at individual wheels allows more optimized operation of the vehicle's dynamic handling systems that employ the brakes: ABS, Brake Assist, VSC and TRAC.

VDIM interfaces wîth the hybrid system, allowing it to adjust vehicle power when needed, as well as wîth an Electronic Power Steering system (EPS) to optimize §teering assist for each situation. A DC motor and gear reduction system built into the §teering gear housing provide §teering assist.

The Toyota Value Standard
Standard equipment for all Highlanders include air conditioning wîth a cabin air filter; ÚV-reduction glass; power windows and door locks; cruise control; tilt §teering wheel; front variable intermittent windshield wipers; rear window electric defogger and intermittent window wiper, and a deluxe 3-in-1 AM/FM/ETR cassette/CD sound system wîth six speakers. Highlander Hybrid adds an eight-way power driver's seat wîth power lumbar adjustment, a HomeLink® universal remote control system, and rear privacy glass.

An available leather-trimmed §teering wheel and shifter handle add to the refined look, and the §teering wheel features controls for the audio system when ordered in conjunction wîth one of the JBL premium audio options (on Limited models only). The easy-to-use §teering wheel controls allow the driver to select system mode, radio stations or CD tracks, and to adjust volume.

Highlander Limited models add more standard amenities, including an automatic climate control system wîth outside temperature gauge; a four-way power passenger seat; the leather-trimmed §teering wheel wîth audio controls; a JBL premium 3-in-1 audio system wîth eight speakers; heated exterior mirrors; anti-theft system wîth engine immobilizer; burled maple wood-grain style interior trim, and a leather-trimmed shift handle wîth chrome stalk.

Additional features on Limited models include fog lights, door scuff plates and an auto-dimming mirror wîth integrated electronic compass. A leather-trim seat package and heated front seats are also available (available on Highlander Hybrid Limited). Limited models can be equipped wîth an optional navigation system offering high-speed processing and integrated wîth a JBL premium audio system wîth a six-disc CD changer.

The four-cylinder Highlander can tow a 1,500-pound trailer, or up to 3,000 pounds wîth the available towing prep package. The V6 models provide a standard 2,000-pound towing capacity, which is increased to 3,500 pounds wîth the available towing prep package. The Hybrid model includes the towing prep package and 3,500-lb. tow capacity as standard.

Colors available for Highlander include Super White, Millennium Silver, Sonora Gold Pearl, Salsa Red pearl, Oasis Green Pearl, Bluestone Metallic, Indigo Ink Pearl, and Black. Exterior colors are matched wîth Ivory and Ash interior colors in fabric or leather-trim.

Toyota's 36-month/36,000-mile basic new-vehicle limited warranty applies to all components other than normal wear and maintenance items. Additional 60-month warranties cover the powertrain for 60 months/60,000 miles and corrosion perforation for 60 months wîth no mileage limitation. The Highlander Hybrid's components, including the HV battery, battery control module, hybrid control module and inverter wîth converter, are covered for eight years/100,000 miles. In addition, 24-hour roadside assistance is provided to all Highlander Hybrid owners for 36-months/36,000 miles.

Source - Toyota
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