We already wrote about Lexus TX as one of the future projects. The Japanese company will use the platform to build a non-premium version of the SUV, called the 2023 Toyota Grand Highlander. The vehicle will be a three-row variation of the base SUV. It takes the position between the regular Highlander and Sequoia. Toyota made room for production by removing the Land Cruiser from the lineup in the US. However, with two new vehicles in the squad, the Japanese company will look at the expansion of its plants. For now, the new arrivals are going to be built in Indiana.
The logo it wears can unveil a few things about the 2023 Toyota Grand Highlander. First, it will be based on the standard SUV, one of the most popular models in the mid-size segment. Also, the Highlander is the class-leading vehicle when it comes to the fuel economy. The ’Grand’ prefix indicates that the upcoming model is going to be larger. Experts believe that Toyota is just separating a two-row SUV from the three-row version.
Under the hood of the Grand Highlander will be the same units we find on the regular SUV. Since the new vehicle is larger, it will be heavier and it leads to higher fuel consumption. But, engineers will do everything to reduce this cost and keep the new SUV above 30 mpg if you pick a hybrid configuration.
2023 Toyota Grand Highlander vs Highlander
Since those two are sharing the name, it is easy to make a conclusion that 2023 Toyota Grand Highlander is just a larger version of the popular SUV. Since the company is not sharing too many details, it is correct when it comes to the size. But, according to sources, the upcoming model will have more in common with the Lexus TX.
Yes, the Grand Highlander will be larger than Highlander. It is a three-row SUV, while Toyota is moving the regular model to the two-row realm. Venza is already there, but it is significantly smaller. The new SUV will also borrow some of the configurations from its sibling. Some experts think the Grand Highlander is about to use only the hybrid engine. Enthusiasts want to see the Highlander Prime – a PHEV system with enhanced power outputs.
Specs, Hybrid and Plug-In Configurations
Again, the easiest way to predict the engine lineup of the 2023 Toyota Grand Highlander is to look at the specs sheet of the base Highlander. It says – a 2.5-liter four-banger with 245 hp. For a three-row SUV, this is underachieving output. But, the gas mileage on the two-row edition is impressive. No other mid-size SUV can do it better than this hybrid setup. The upcoming seven-seater won’t reach 35 mpg, but everything above 30 is great.
The base unit is still an old 3.5-liter V6. It produces more power, but also consumes more fuel. That is why many experts believe that only hybrid configurations will be available for the 2023 Grand Highlander. Anyway, the vehicle needs to offer some kind of a choice under the bonnet.
Another hybrid version is in the mix. The Lexus RX introduced a new version, called RX500h. The sporty setup comes with a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-banger and delivers 370 hp. Also, we can read that the Lexus TX is about to use this system for the TX 500h and TX 550h+ models. So, the setup might be reserved for the premium branch and not Toyota vehicles.
2023 Toyota Grand Highlander Prime PHEV
The main question, not only about the 2023 Toyota Grand Highlander, is if the mid-size SUV is getting the Prime package. Well, the company made stunning results in the compact crossover class. Rav4 is delivering 300 hp and returning 38 mpg. Plus, it can go by using just an electric battery. This kind of setup is suitable for any other vehicle.
And this particular plug-in hybrid configuration can fit the 2023 Toyota Grand Highlander lineup as well. It fixes one of the downsides – an underwhelming power output. Also, it will cement the place of the Highlander as the most efficient SUV in the class. On the other hand, do not expect the same mileage and range as for the Rav4, a way smaller and lighter vehicle. We can repeat – anything above 30 mpg is a superb output.
2023 Toyota Grand Highlander Release Date
According to multiple sources, the 2023 Toyota Grand Highlander will show up soon and the company will start building it in the first half of next year. Anyway, the time is running out, and we still don’t have an official statement with all the details about the three-row SUV. Well, the Japanese company always has a dozen of projects and concepts. Sometimes it is hard to catch up. But, when the Grand Highlander becomes official, the production won’t take too long to start. Just see how quickly everything happened with the I-Force engine and the new Lexus LX600.