Toyota confirmed the existence of the new Grand Highlander SUV, which it plans to fully reveal at the Chicago Auto Show on February 8.
Notably, the Grand Highlander is wearing the same Hybrid Max badge as the top-spec Crown sedan, which suggests a 340-horsepower setup.
It looks like Toyota wants to join in on the excitement surrounding enlarged versions of SUVs like the Grand Cherokee L and Grand Wagoneer L by making its own super-sized version of the Highlander called . . . you guessed it, the Grand Highlander. While the current Highlander boasts impressive fuel economy in hybrid form, it can't compete with the third-row space of competitors including the Kia Telluride, Volkswagen Atlas, and Chevy Traverse. Toyota describes the Grand Highlander as "the ultimate road-trip vehicle," implying increased legroom and cargo space. The first teaser shot of the new three-row SUV gives us a glimpse at what the rear will look like.
We're particularly excited about the Hybrid Max badge, which indicates the Grand Highlander Platinum will receive the same potent powertrain as the top-spec Crown sedan. In that car, the hybrid setup with a turbocharged 2.4-liter inline-four gas engine produces a combined 340 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. Toyota didn't give any information about the Grand Highlander's available powertrains, but it's likely the standard 265-horsepower turbo-four from the base Highlander will carry over to this new model as well.
We managed to pull back some of the shadows layered over the photo to expose a bit more of the car. The increased visibility shows similar squared-off styling to the current Highlander, but also includes a pair of round exhaust tips not found on the standard version. The taillights take on a "C" shape, and a new light bar spans the spoiler.
We don't have any other info on pricing or when we'll actually start seeing the Grand Highlander on the road, but we do know that Toyota is planning to do a full reveal of the SUV at the Chicago Auto Show on February 8.
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