The Toyota Highlander scores high for its refinement, quiet interior, ride comfort, power, fuel economy, and flexible and roomy second-row seat. It's one of our top-scoring three-row SUVs, but it is not without its drawbacks. The third-row seat is tight. And while the handling is secure, it's not very agile.
Alerts
There are 2 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit,
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS and ESC standard. Side and head protection air bags standard from 2007. Forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking available from 2014, standard from 2017.
Road Test

The Toyota Highlander scores high for its refinement, quiet interior, ride comfort, power, fuel economy, and flexible and roomy second-row seat. It's one of our top-scoring three-row SUVs, but it is not without its drawbacks. The third-row seat is tight. And while the handling is secure, it's not very agile.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear, 2 third
Drive Wheels
AWD , Front
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
4-door SUV
Transmissions Available
  • 6-speed Automatic
  • 5-speed Automatic
  • CVT
Engines Available
  • 2.7-liter 4 (187 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 (270 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 hybrid (280 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2012 Toyota Highlander owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"Radiator leaked at the seam and had to be replaced"

Anonymous, CO (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Significant water appeared in the front floor areas and back seat (right) floor area. Carpets were soaked through and due to car being parked for a month with the windows closed, mold grew over the seats, seatbelts and carpet. This has happened a couple of times and carpet now needs to be replaced and the leak found and fixed"

Anonymous, CT (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Rear liftgate was replaced due to recall and water leaked into the cabin after its replacement"

Anonymous, WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"drain tube in moonroof replaced by dealership"

Anonymous, VA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"SEAL LEAKING"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Windshield seal came loose"

Shawn P., CO (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Window on driver side had bolt back out and drop window. Had to take it to a shop to dismantle door and fix window"

Anonymous, WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The driver's door has a bit of air noise"

Anonymous, MI (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"seemed to have problems with air vents and seals in the airvents"

Anonymous, MD (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Door needs to close about another 1/8. sounds like the door wiggles in the frame"

Anonymous, MO (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Squeaks or rattles

"ceiling handle and headliner above drivers side"

Brad W., WI (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"SQUEAK IN HYDRAULIC OPERATION OF 5TH DOOR"

D C., BC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"the driver door squeaks a lot when opening and the lift of the rear tailgate is making some funny squeaking sounds, like it is starting to have problems opening"

Anonymous, GA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The center front dash including radio and vents is very noisy with squeaks"

Anonymous, CO (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"The trim surrounding the stereo makes a lot of noise"

Richard N., OR (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Sunglass holder won't stay up. Sunvisor vibrates. Rear auto hatch opener failed"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Dash and door trim squeak over bumps"

Anonymous, MN (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Power lift gate produces loud squeak on opening and closing. Responds briefly to lubing the strut plunger, but just for a day or so"

Anonymous, TN (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Air vent louvers rattle"

Ira P., TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"There is an annoying rattle present in the dash during cold weather"

Alex S., GA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"steering wheel squeaks periodically"

George J., OR (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Dashboard has a small intermittent rattle"

Charles G., MI (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Interior plastics regularly loosen, causing noise, rattling, not awful but annoying for a car that's not that old"

Anonymous, TN (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Seat belt connection clicks frequently. Has been replaced, but still clicks"

Anonymous, IA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Two times where rattling / squeaking occurred at highway speeds"

Doyle L., PA (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"There is a constant noise when coming to a stop in the drivers side rear tire area. We have brought it to the dealer on multiple occasions with no resolution"

Anonymous, MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Loud rattle behind dash board on passenger side when the outside temp is below 45F"

Anonymous, VA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"This is a very nice car and a pleasure to drive except that it has multiple dash and interior rattles"

Robert C., OK (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Seal around drivers sound door flutters/squeaks when driving. Driver and passenger windows rattle when partially lowered"

Anonymous, MD (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"the air vents seemed to have problems"

Anonymous, MD (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Vibration from areas of sun roof and a rear side air vent"

Anonymous, MS (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Unsure)

"Dash squeaks/ rattles, pillars squeak/rattle, center stack squeak/rattle"

Anonymous, MO (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"plastic parts of dash, doors, center console...always seems to be some level of rattling, squeaking driving down the road. Just turn up the radio, don't hear it as much"

Anonymous, WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"Front windshield squeaks during cold weather at moderate to highway speeds"

Shawn P., VA (2012 Toyota Highlander Unsure 3.5-L V6)
Wind noise

"The wind noise in the rear right seat is loud enough it is hard to hear conversations in the car"

John P., NC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Noise from the exterior seems excessive for this expensive of a car"

Anonymous, TN (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Loud wind noise when driving above 50 mph"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The seal on the driver's side door does not seal tight at the top, thus allows wind noise. If I pull the door towards me while driving it quiets the noise. Dealer tried to fix once, and didn't help much"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"SEALS"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"All of the trim pieces on the roof have come off continually and every time I go through a car wash"

Ronald O., MO (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"rubber on roof keeps coming off; poor design"

Anonymous, CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"Rubber roof rack runner came loose and flew off while driving. Other trim is loose and vibrates causing extra drive noise"

Todd T., FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"roof rack failed to hold rubber strips"

Richard H., CT (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"defective rain drip trim molding on roof came loose had to be replaced"

Robert M., MA (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Pass. side roof rail molding repeatedly comes off. Started when car was still under warranty. Toyota failed to fix it"

Anonymous, MD (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"The mud guards are not very well secured to the body. Cannot easliy remove snow/ice from them"

R C., ME (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"do not have racks on roof. the filler for the channels was losse ,dealer had to cement them down"

Anonymous, NE (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"The rubber trim on the roof under the roof rack continues to come loose"

Anonymous, NM (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"fake chrome weathering and pitting"

Anonymous, CO (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Paint pits on the front of car from road debris too easliy"

Bob B., AZ (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Totally poor paint/finish on the vehicle. Scratches most easily. Has faded paint look prematurely. Really makes the veihicle chinsy looking"

R C., ME (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Bad spotting/discoloration on all silver-plastic body trim pieces. Has been happening for years due to chemicals used in snowmelt in Denver"

Mike F., CO (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The paint is chipping off around the doors and under the lift back door by the license plate"

Roberta M., NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"After loading the back are with clothes to donate, the body inside trim around the back door has dislocated"

Debra M., FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Rust

"Spots of rust on back gate appear. No damage or scratches seemed to have caused that"

Kevin L., IL (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"The hatchback door started to rust and is not covered by warranty. We had a hatchback door rust problem with our 2003 Highlander in a different spot"

Anonymous, MN (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Car experiences rail dust from semi metallic brakes. The rail dust becomes imbedded in the paint causing the car to rust. Toyota will not warranty this problem! I had to pay to have this repaired"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The aluminum wheels are becoming corroded and the clear coat is coming off"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Sport 3.5-L V6)

"Rust has appeared near the license plate"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander)

"The tailgate had a small spot of rust. Toyota repainted the entire tailgate saying they experienced the same problem on other Highlanders. I am completely satisfied"

Anonymous, MN (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"There has been a corrosion problem with this car since the first 7000 miles! In addition to the wheels which have replaced (at 7000 mi) and failed a second time (at 14000 mi), the rear badge on the tailgate corroded where it made contact with the pa"

John M., NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"There is rust forming on the tail gate just above the symbol"

Anonymous, AB (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"Many spots of surface rust on the hatch - was replaced under warranty"

Richard D., MB (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"For a fairly new car the paint has chipped in unusual places and rusted in places like under the window in the back that flips up. Not on the cars exterior under the window where the hinge is"

Roberta M., NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"Spot of rust on the hatch door close to the latching/locking mechanism. Dealer touched up with paint"

Anonymous, IL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Backup or other camera/sensors

"The info screen is way too small, the guidelines in backup camera mode are difficult to see and if there is bright sunlight it is very difficult to see what is happening on the screen"

Anonymous, ID (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"The screen is impossible to read in daylight, it is fine at night,when lit. I have literally almost had accidents trying to figure out what radio station I am on, It has always been this way. Dealer says there is nothing they can do"

Anonymous, MD (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"The screen froze on my navigation"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited Unsure)

"Unable to adjust temp settings - HVAC screen disappears without notice"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Display screen goes blank

"Radio/GPS unit froze. Needed update and restart. Didn't end up costing too much more just a nuisance"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"display completely unpredictable - will not hold preset temp and goes blank if fan speed changed"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"auxilary port broke after only a couple years"

Anonymous, WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Doesn't sync often. Can't control music from dash, only from iphone. This may be an iphone problem"

Anonymous, OH (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"Pairing of music system with smartphone via bluetooth is non-intuitive and unreliable"

Anonymous, CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)
In-dash navigation system (GPS)

"Hard to see in daylight, too low on the dash, not an intuitive interface"

Doug B., BC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"System sends us in the wrong direction and when we change destination it often will not update. I have had it back to the dealer and even sent a letter to Toyota. They have not been able to correct this problem"

Bernard S., CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"The computer chip failed for the on-screen navigation system, and was replaced under warranty"

Anonymous, CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"GPS system is very difficult to use, not a friendly item. Had I know about this it would not have been installed at the time of purchase"

George W., WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"It stopped working"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited Unsure)

"Multiple issues over the past 2 years with the clock not being able to be set and the navigation system not working at all"

James H., CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Radio

"Sometimes when you start the car the xm radio sound is distorted. To fix it I have to shut the car off and then start it again"

Doug B., BC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Volume button doesn't work properly, cannot control"

Anonymous, WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Sat radio doesn't work sometimes when you start car. Turn off car and back on it is ok"

Anonymous, WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"The lights and display on the radio go dark at random times. The music will still play, but none of the controls work. After a minute or 2 it comes back on"

Todd J., NJ (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"The radio would cut out every 3 minutes. This occurred when using the radio, CD player or aux iPod player"

Anonymous, CO (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Rear entertainment system (e.g., DVD player, rear screen)

"The remote stopped working first, then the headphones, and finally the DVD player. It was part of a $1,000 package and now it's a worthless bump on the ceiling"

John P., NC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"DVD Player started making a loud noise with disks inserted and did not play (also damaged disks). Noise disappeared after 2-3 week and has intermittently reappeared. Dealer is baffled"

George G., CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
CD player

"cd got stuck and the WHOLE system had to be replaced. It took several weeks to resolve the problem"

John K., IL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"I had problems with the voice paring "blue tooth" when trying to make a phone call. The system was unable to recognize or understand what I was saying at times. Not user friendly and I refuse to use it"

Marvin B., MI (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Voice control commands

"Bluetooth not working for outgoing or incoming calls. Static on both ends"

Anonymous, NC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Shocks or struts

"Front strut(s) leaking. After considerable complaining Toyota replaced one leaking strut"

Anonymous, IA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"See comments about springs"

Dennis W., FL (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"banging noise over bumps"

Michael W., ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"Noise coming from front passenger side indication. replacement necessary. Cost $500"

Anonymous, LA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Steering linkage (includes rack and pinion)

"Steering shaft"

Anonymous, PA (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Excessive play in the steering wheel. Can't remember the part that was replaced. Believe it was the shaft"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Steering shaft assembly makes clunking sound when turning at low speed. Dealer states the steering shaft is failing, but it's out of warranty. They state it is not a safety hazard to drive"

David K., IN (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"In the steering column"

Anonymous, OK (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Intermediate steering shaft wore out prematurely. $700 repair. Toyota advisor knew what was wrong right away as this is apparently a common failure"

Anonymous, MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Sport 3.5-L V6)

"Steering column had to be replaced"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Steering intermediate shaft failed at 37,000 miles resulting in a clunking noise heard and felt when turning the steering wheel"

Anonymous, AZ (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Toyota replaced the steering shaft and extended warrenty coverage to reimverse for the cost. Only had 46000 miles when it went out"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Tire wear is uneven

"Uneven tire wear on vehicle was a sign that part of steering and suspension needed to be replaced. Other sections had been replaced last year. Total costs were well over $7000CDN"

Stephan P., ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Sport 3.5-L V6)
Wheel bearings

"2 separate wheel bearings have gone over the life of the vehicle (only 5 yrs). One in the last 12 months"

Stephan P., ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Sport 3.5-L V6)

"Recognized sound because other side rear wheel bearings were replaced within first 3 months of ownership"

Anonymous, MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"noisy bearing. Replaced under warranty"

Maksim E., MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Left front wheel bearing went out at 30,000 miles"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Bushings

"WORN FRONT END BUSHINGS. DEALER ID'D AN FIXED UNDER WARRANTY"

Anonymous, MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)
Power steering leaks

"Noticed small oil drops in driveway. Took it in to dealership, And they discovered the power steering and water pump were both leaking. They replaced both and recharged the air conditioner. Everything seems to be ok now"

Anonymous, NV (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Springs or torsion bars

"Rear struts and springs do not properly support the tongue weight of a 5000lb. Trailer, even though the vehicle has the heavy duty towing pkg. Toyota has no fix for this. No air shocks in after market. A rubber bumper exists to place in the coil sp"

Dennis W., FL (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Tailgate, hatch or trunk

"the lift mechanism for the tailgate broke. separated from the liftgate. it does operate manually"

Anonymous, PA (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Tailgate hydraulic arms and motor had to be replaced. Cost was over $1000.00"

Harry S., AZ (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Remote control and push button control no longer work on the rear hatch door. Hinge and rear air strut are torqued a bit. Door will not open all the way up in cold weather. Only solution according to the dealer is to replace the door. Bad design"

Stephen L., TN (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The strut used to open the tailgate became detached and the entire tailgate had to be replace. It was a design flaw. Toyota charged me $500 and they paid $1400"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Both hydraulic lifts failed so rear liftgate would not stay up. Replaced under warranty"

Todd T., FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Automatic closer broke; trim around closing mechanism broke"

Anonymous, OR (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Tailgate would not close properly. A design defect that Toyota did not disclose until confronted by me. They agreed to fix it .Cost about 5,000 at no cost to me .My problem is that they did not tell about this defect"

Richard D., OR (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"rear tailgate stop working and had to be replaced with new sensors"

Anonymous, WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Hatch broke upon automated closing"

Anonymous, PA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Struts for glass hatch were seized, probably due to non use by previous owner...replace struts and everything is fine now"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The upper glass hatch did not open. Dealership said the rods on the side were rusty and replaced them. They said it's a known issue... Fortunately, replacement came under warranty/courtesy"

Anonymous, MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The hatch on the back wouldn't completely close. Had to pay about $350 to fix it, and lately it is STILL not completely closing!"

Anonymous, UT (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)
Doors or sliding doors

"window switch"

Anonymous, GA (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"Back hatch would not close correctly. Toyota replaced motor and closing mechanism"

Mitzi B., IL (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)
Heated or cooled seat controls

"The seats are made of substandard perforated leather that cannot be cleaned. The leather is thin and does not clean. Dirt just fills in the holes of the leather. The heat works fine. The leather looks like crap. My jeans have worn holes in the leathe"

Debra M., FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Mirrors

"seal failure on right side exterior mirror"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Windows

"tailgate window hinge broke would not open window properly"

Robert M., MA (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Driver side window don't open completely anymore. It seems something is broken in the mechanism"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Keyless entry

"I have had the door actuator go out twice on the drivers door and once on both of the passenger doors. $500 per door to repair and twice on one door. Toyota refused to help"

Ronald O., MO (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"All four power locks had to be replaced within the last year. They would not work with the keyless entry or with the switch on the door. Each one cost about $500 to replace at a local mechanic's shop. They would have been more expensive if I had gone to the dealer"

Anonymous, AL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"Car door would not lock or unlock, consistently. I had to remove the key hidden in my key pad and unlock/lock manually"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The doors all locked without me locking them. Then I couldn't get in except on drivers side. Sometimes I go to lock door with button on door and it won't lock"

Royce R., CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Keyless quit working part time. Installed new battery, Did not help. Made an appointment with service dept. All the serviceman did was take the battery out, rubbed it on both sides and reinstalled the battery. So far it's working, after one week"

Anonymous, GA (2012 Toyota Highlander Unsure 3.5-L V6)

"This is the key that is carried in the pocket and allows the car to start when you enter it. The battery, which is supposed to last a life time, died earlier this year and had to be replaced"

James M., KY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 2.7-L 4 Cyl)
Warning lights

"the "snow" traction control became stuck in the "on" position after our dog stepped on it. was unable to fix myself so pulled the cover off and now the control is workable"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"Fog light on driver's side blew twice within a couple of months"

Anonymous, MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Interior lights

"The cargo light does not come on when the tailgate glass is opened. This also stops the sensor from detecting that the glass is open during driving"

Anonymous, QC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Tire pressure monitor

"checked air pressure but light stays on"

Anonymous, WV (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Antilock system (ABS)

"Spring 2016 noticed a chatter when braking while turning a corner. This seemed to be coming from the right rear. Checked by local independent Toyota mechanic plus dealer without correct diagnosis ans advice to do new FRONT pads and rotors. Five months later seven warning lights and messages went off indicating "brake malfunction" and "ABS not working". The computer correctly diagnosed a cracked ABS ring and right rear axle was replaced under warranty (after a brisk argument). All is well now"

Anonymous, NS (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Caliper seized on the rear passenger side. Everything had to be replaced"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Sport 3.5-L V6)

"caliper stuck and burned up brakes and rotor"

Anonymous, WV (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)
Master cylinder

"Master brake cylinder had to be replaced at a cost of $550.00 parts and labor. Mileage at that time was 63500"

Harry S., AZ (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)
Premature brake wear

"Problem discovered by dealer as they were changing a tire"

Glenn T., LA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Had to replace pads and rotor on one front wheel only"

David L., NS (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Rear pads only lasted 12000 miles and rotors were replaced at 50000"

Mike B., WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)
Rotors

"Not a failure. Had brake system completely done (break pads, rotors, service calipers) for the first time at approx. 60K miles"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Rotors were turned during a brake job but had to be replaced with new rotors because of severe pulsing"

Mike C., CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Normal routine brake wear

"Break change"

Janet A., MD (2012 Toyota Highlander Unsure 3.5-L V6)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Differential

"oil leak in the front of the motor"

Henry H., FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Whining noise"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"A gear "whine" from the front differential developed after about 10,000 miles. Toyota immediately replaced it under warranty, no hassle. All is well now"

Anonymous, CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)
Driveshaft or axle

"A recall of the drive system which was replaced at no charge"

George W., WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)
Driveline vibration

"This is the worst vehicle I have ever owned I have purchased many new Volvo's & Ford's. I have never had to take any of them back to a dealer for a problem. This Toyota is bad. The transmission is bad & the dealer has not been able to fix it. It"

Anonymous, ME (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)
Electrical failure

"Hybrid Inverter failed, leaving car stranded in Rochester. Would not run until replaced. Under warrantee, otherwise cost ~ $9,000"

Paul M., NJ (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"Battery shorted internally disabling vehicle. Tow required"

Frank M., NC (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
CV joint

"the CV joint began clunking around 29000 miles. covered by warranty"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

A/C compressor

"Had to replace it"

Anonymous, MD (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)
Blower (fan) motor

"The blower went out and it was covered by our extended warranty"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"needed to be replaced after it started to make funny noises and not work properly"

Deborah C., WA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Noisy - foreign objects easily trapped in blower assembly"

Anonymous, ON (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)
Automatic climate control

"Rear of vehicle heater did not work. Dealer replaced the rear heater heater core"

Bob B., AZ (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Electrical failure

"Air condition turns on off by itself at random"

E E., NV (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"The AC turned off multiple times while driving. I took it in and they don't know why since it does not have an error code"

Royce R., CA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)
Heater system

"I live in a cold climate. During the winter I can have the vehicle in "regular" (non-economy) mode, with the heater on full, and the interior gets slightly warm, but never gets so warm that I need to turn the fan/temp down"

Robert F., ND (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Transmission rebuild or replacement

"the transmission was whining when we test drove the car and the dealer replaced it prior to us purchasing the vehicle as it was still under the powertrain warranty"

Phillip L., ME (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Driving cross country and heard a noise--metal on metal sound. Issue was with transmission and it had to be totally replace. Car at 42000 at the time"

Thomas C., MN (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"The drive shaft had to be replaced, twice"

Anonymous, AB (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)

"Whine coming from drivetrain"

Don C., TN (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Toyota replaced it under warranty"

Anonymous, UT (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"rodent damage to EVAP system. suspect it might be due to soy based plastics"

Anonymous, CT (2012 Toyota Highlander SE 3.5-L V6)

"Engine check light turns on and off"

E E., NV (2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited 3.5-L V6 hybrid)
Fuel pump

"Fuel pump failed at 205000 miles"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Oil leaks

"had a seal leak, which cost $20 for part and ended up being about $2300 in labor because they had to pull the engine, Had a similar issue with 2006 toyota tundra"

Anonymous, GA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

"had a warranty repair of major leaks"

Charley M., ID (2012 Toyota Highlander Base 3.5-L V6)

"Power steering and water pump were both leaking. We thought that was terrible for a car with such low mileage"

Anonymous, NV (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Rough shifting

"First gear is very "touch" from stop"

Anonymous, AZ (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Loose/rattling heat shield

"Came loose after mounts rotted away"

Robert D., MA (2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 3.5-L V6)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

Change Vehicle