Toyota is playing it safe in terms of design and the 2017 model year brings only a refreshed radiator grille and redesigned headlights for the Highlander. A new SE top trim level gets 19-inch wheels, sports suspension, and dark finish for the grille and headlapms.
Probably the biggest news for the model is the addition of a newly-developed eight-speed automatic gearbox that replaces the previous six-speed transmission. The new mechanism will be offered for a 3.5-liter V6 petrol naturally aspirated engine that the manufacturer says is also new. Power and fuel consumption numbers are yet to be announced.
The 2017 Highlander will also be available with the base 2.7-liter inline-four engine that is paired with a 6-speed auto. As before, there’s also the Highlander Hybrid with two new trim levels expanding the portfolio to a total of four grades.
As one would expect, the SUV features a variety of safety and assistant systems, such as automatic braking, lane-departure warnings, auto high-beams, and adaptive cruise control that all come as standard.
The refreshed Highlander will continue to be produced in Toyota’s Indiana factory with sales starting in the fall of 2016.