10th Sep 2006, 21:20

In reading some of these comments I was reminded of a good friend who received a new Toyota Highlander as a Christmas gift from her wealthy uncle two years ago. After a week she called him up and BEGGED him to let her trade it for something else!! It was that bad.

12th Sep 2006, 14:33

The Highlander is basically a Camry with an SUV body. It has the same terribly underpowered engine as Camry, and is front drive. It can't be considered a real SUV in that regard, as trailer towing and off-road driving are not its forte at all. The larger rear-drive SUV's are the only choice for real "Sport Utility" driving. Front drives are basically kiddy-carriers. We test drove a Highlander and found it to be poorly made and very underpowered. We opted for a larger, more reliable American made rear drive SUV. It handles any terrain or load condition without breathing hard or falling apart.

17th Sep 2006, 16:00

In test driving the Highlander, we were so scared by the erratic braking (jerking violently to one side on braking) that we immediately turned around and took it back to the lot. We were also very disappointed with the power (very slow) and poor quality interior. We bought another brand.

3rd Oct 2006, 15:52

In test driving SUV's we tried a number of models from Japan and US makers. We ruled out even looking at Honda because of all the bad stuff we had heard about their transmission problems. The Highlander was a major disappointment in terms of power, ride, and handling. In all, I think the US builds the best SUV's by far. It's hard to beat a rear-drive, smooth riding GM or Ford SUV.

9th Oct 2006, 20:36

The Camry is, even with the V-6, a car with very uninspired performance. Even Car and Driver rated the V-6 Camry dead last in a comparison of the Accord, Ford Fusion and Hyundai Sonata, and noted that it has basically become the official car of the AARP crowd. It, like the Corolla, has pretty much become a car that is identified with the elderly. It is dependable, but boring and slow in comparison to all the competitors, both foreign and domestic. As for the hybrid, if one tries to achieve any sort of performance at all, the fuel mileage drops to the same dismal level as a conventional V-8 powered car, and the highly toxic and very expensive battery packs that must be replaced every couple of years make it much more expensive to own in the long run than a conventional- engined car.

As for the Highlander, it is an incredibly slow and poor handling vehicle with poor interior quality and questionable reliability. Having driven a number of both foreign and domestic SUV's, including the Highlander V-6, I'd have to rank the Highlander dead last in just about every category. There again, for an elderly person it might be a good choice, but to one looking for spirited performance and good handling it falls terribly short. Having never owned one I can't speak on the reliability of it, but judging from the number of problems our friends have encountered with their Camrys I'd suspect there would be a number of problem areas.

13th Oct 2006, 22:53

We often encounter a lot of elderly people driving the Camry. Most older people drive way under the speed limit and accelerate very slowly, so they don't need a lot of power. I think for most people that drive the Camry the 4 cylinder would do just as well as the 6. I think the American made 4 cylinder cars are much faster, but there again, older people don't need all that speed.

14th Oct 2006, 18:43

Even the "new" Camry is still a pretty dull and boring attempt at keeping up with the competition. Stealing a grille from the Mazda 6 and uglying up the rear of it really doesn't do much to help it compete in the younger market. Toyota has lost its appeal to most people under 60.

15th Oct 2006, 22:31

The Camry will indeed "smoke half the cars on the road"...provided the "half" are all Chevy Aveos and Hyundai Accents.

17th Dec 2006, 10:35

If these cars are so bad (unsafe), then why do I see so many of them on the road, just on my walking route alone, I have encountered over 8 Highlanders in driveways and another 6 that pass by me. I see plenty of them on highways, shopping malls etc. I don't understand why if these cars are so unsafe that hundreds of people would own them. Personally, I would purchase any foreign made product than those giant, expensive moneypits coming out of Detroit (Found on Road Dead, Chevy, and Dodge).

17th Dec 2006, 12:32

You see so many of them on the road because people want a glorified mini-van that they can pretend is an SUV, and because they have bought into the Toyota advertising hype. You have to hand it to their marketing people for promoting the myth of Toyota perfection, although the cars remain boring and utilitarian with all the charm of a toaster. For the person who is incensed about the Hemi Dodge Magnum--you probably didn't realize that the variable displacement hemi engine gets 17 city/25 highway MPG. That isn't really very different from your much touted Highlander, now is it? Except the Magnum has three times the power and twice the cargo capacity.

17th Dec 2006, 15:06

There are many good American cars out there and we've had no trouble with ours. You've just bought into the 'Toyota's are better-just because" hype.

20th Dec 2006, 14:31

Why than is Ford and GM on the edge of bankruptcy if it's all hype? Don't tell me it's because their marketing people aren't going their job. Those of you who are bashing Toyota are either: In denial about the state of the American auto industry; Towing the FORD OR CHEVY company line; or just a person getting a riot of causing an argument in a public forum. Let me tell you folks about my experience with the beleaguered auto maker: Ford. I had nothing, but problems with FORD'S "flagship" the 1999 TAURUS (the alleged best-selling family car in America's auto history, lol). It was by far the worst car I've ever owned!!! Even with routine maintenance, all I had was constant transmission troubles, head gasket problems and brake troubles. The car was a total moneypit, period! Now I get it, when people say the Taurus is the flagship of American automakers... just look at their stock price and their decreased market share. I have now purchased a 2003 Toyota RAV4 and I love it, no problems here, yes the suspension is stiff, but all I want is a dependable, reliable vehicle. So far, it has!

20th Dec 2006, 20:51

Funny I had 3 different Tauruses as company cars covering 4 states, later Crown Vics and they all have been great. Starting a vehicle many times a day and driving a min. 200 miles a day gives a pretty good picture. I never had the issues you mentioned and I would freely mention any as they have belonged to a company not myself. If anything however a company vehicle is more maintained as it imperative to be on time where you have daily appts.

21st Dec 2006, 05:58

Harley Davidson is another American success story. Only a few sort years ago you heard similiar comments... look at them now.