The 2024 Toyota Highlander: Which Trim Fits You?

Can you believe that the Highlander has been around for more than 20 years now? Since its debut in 2001, it has evolved over four generations and secured its position as one of the bestselling three-row SUVs. After undergoing its most recent refresh for the 2023 model year, this family favorite returns with a few additional changes for 2024. It remains available with turbo and hybrid I-4 powertrain options, and in multiple configurations. Let's dive into the features and equipment on each 2024 Toyota Highlander trim level.

 

2024 Toyota Highlander LE Trim

With the discontinuation of last year’s L model, the LE is now the new entry-level Highlander. This model offers an eight-passenger seating arrangement, three-zone automatic climate control, and one-touch up/down windows. The Highlander LE features cloth seating upholstery and a power-adjustable driver's seat. The cabin includes 14 cupholders and five USB ports. The infotainment touchscreen measures 8.0 inches, with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as standard. Additionally, there's a 7.0-inch gauge display in front of the driver and a six-speaker audio setup. LED fog lights and heated side mirrors enhance the exterior.

 

All 2024 Highlander models, including the LE trim, earn IIHS Top Safety Pick and NHTSA five-star overall safety ratings, aided by the Toyota Safety Sense 2.5+ suite, which includes front automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, and adaptive cruise control. The Highlander LE comes with a 265-hp 2.4-liter turbocharged inline-four engine, with FWD standard and AWD optional. It starts at about $41,000, with the hybrid powertrain available for an additional $1,500, which is a valuable investment.

 

Highlander Hybrid LE and XLE trim levels are available with a $1,000 blacked-out Nightshade Edition package. Both are offered in Nightshade-specific Cement, Wind Chill Pearl, Midnight Black Metallic, and Ruby Flare Pearl exterior paint colors. They also receive black 18-inch wheels, grille trim, mirror caps, door handles, rear badging, rear spoiler, and shark fin antenna. Black fabric-covered seats are found in the Hybrid LE Nightshade, while the XLE features two-tone faux-leather seats with embossed inserts and silver stitching, along with standard black exterior roof rails.

 

2024 Toyota Highlander XLE Trim

Opting for the XLE trim adds a touch of luxury to the Highlander. This grade includes a hands-free power-operated rear liftgate and second-row captain’s chairs, providing a seven-passenger seating arrangement, with an eight-passenger configuration as an option. The seating upholstery switches to SofTex leatherette, with both front seats heated and power adjustable.

 

An auto-dimming rearview mirror and second-row sunshades are standard at this grade. Technology enhancements include a wireless charging pad. A moonroof with a sunshade and silver-painted roof rails are added to the exterior. The Highlander XLE starts at under $44,000, with the hybrid option starting around $45,500.

 

2024 Toyota Highlander XSE Trim

The XSE trim brings sporty exterior styling and a slightly sportier chassis tune. The front and rear bumpers are restyled with details like a mesh grille and twin-tip exhaust. Wheels are upgraded to 20 inches. Inside, this seven-seater can be equipped with red leather seating upholstery to complement the carbon-fiber-style trim bits. Other interior features match the XLE trim, with the addition of ambient interior lighting. The Highlander XSE has a stiffer suspension and firmer steering to improve handling, but in testing, it felt similar to other Highlander models. The Hybrid powertrain is not available on the XSE trim. The XSE trim costs approximately $1,500 more than the XLE trim, but the aesthetic upgrades may not justify the price increase for everyone.

 

2024 Toyota Highlander Limited Trim

The Limited trim adds a host of amenities, available with seven or eight seats. Power-folding side mirrors with puddle lamps and high-output LED fog lights are added up front. Chrome wheels are upgraded to 20 inches. Both the standard gauge cluster and infotainment interface screens increase to 12.3 inches. The first- and second-row seats are trimmed in leather, with the front seats heated and ventilated, and the driver’s seat gaining memory function. An overhead console microphone allows the driver to project their voice to the rear speakers.

 

The Limited trim includes a 120-volt outlet between the front seats, and built-in navigation is available. This extensive list of features comes with a $6,800 increase over the LE trim (and $4,000 over XLE), with prices starting just below $48,000.

 

2024 Toyota Highlander Platinum Trim

The top-of-the-line Platinum trim offers tech upgrades like a head-up display and digital rearview mirror. A 360-degree camera system helps with parking. The second row has heated captain's chairs and a panoramic moonroof. The interior features exclusive caramel-colored leather. Unique 20-inch wheels, extended chrome trim, and curve-adaptive, auto-leveling LED headlights distinguish the exterior. The Platinum trim starts at just over $51,000, approximately $3,400 more than the Limited model, making it quite pricey for a Highlander.

 

Which 2024 Toyota Highlander Model Is Best?

Our top pick of the 2024 Highlander range is the Hybrid Limited. It offers the hybrid powertrain, which we prefer for this SUV. The larger cabin screens, side mirrors that automatically tilt down in reverse, and cargo area cover are practical enhancements. LED strip daytime running lights, durable silver finish roof rails, and front doorsill metal scuff plates add a touch of style. The 2024 Highlander Hybrid Limited strikes a perfect balance between style and family-friendly features.

June 20, 2024
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