Toyota Reveals the Stretched Grand Highlander UPDATED

Chris Teague
by Chris Teague

The Toyota Highlander has long offered three rows of seating and is a formidable family hauler that stands up to the toughest competition in its segment in the areas where it counts most. Even so, three-row SUVs often lack a comfortable “way-back” seat, and even when they do, cargo space is usually seriously compromised. Toyota aims to fix that with the 2024 Grand Highlander, which it says offers an adult-sized third-row seat. 

The Grand Highlander is available with three powertrain options, including the turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder from the standard SUV, a 2.5-liter hybrid option, and a brand-new Hybrid Max powertrain with 362 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. Toyota says the Max makes the Grand Highlander its most powerful midsize SUV yet and notes a 0-60 mph time of 6.3 seconds.

Ed. note -- We now have some images from last night's event. They are sprinkled throughout this post.

Some stretched SUVs look awkward with the added real estate, but Toyota managed to extend the Highlander without giving it the bubble-butt look that the Land Rover Defender 130 gained with its extra interior space. The Grand Highlander comes with 20-inch wheels, and the Hybrid Max powertrain is available with a dual exhaust system.

Faux-wood trim and soft-touch materials cover the dash, and the front seats get independent armrests that remain usable when the center console is open. The Limited and Platinum trims add leather upholstery with power seat adjustments, and models with the Hybrid Max powertrain get Ultrasuede. Beyond having actually usable third-row seats, the SUV offers 98 cubic feet of cargo space with the seats folded down, and can still hold larger items with the third row upright.

Tech includes a standard 12.3-inch infotainment display with Toyota’s new and oh-so-much-better interface. Over-the-air updates are now standard, and the system features cloud navigation and app services. The new system runs wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, SiriusXM radio, and Google points-of-interest search. A JBL 11-speaker audio system is available.

Toyota said pricing and release date details would be available closer to the Grand Highlander’s release date this summer. It will be built at the automaker’s facility in Princeton, Indiana.

[Images: Toyota, © 2023 Tim Healey/TTAC]

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Chris Teague
Chris Teague

Chris grew up in, under, and around cars, but took the long way around to becoming an automotive writer. After a career in technology consulting and a trip through business school, Chris began writing about the automotive industry as a way to reconnect with his passion and get behind the wheel of a new car every week. He focuses on taking complex industry stories and making them digestible by any reader. Just don’t expect him to stay away from high-mileage Porsches.

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