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Toyota Announces Pricing for 2008 Highlander

For the 2008 model year, Toyota will introduce a redesigned and all-new Toyota Highlander. The crossover SUV is now currently in its second generation. The Highlander was first introduced into the global auto market in 2001. In connection with the upcoming release of the all-new Highlander, Toyota recently announced the pricing for the different trim levels of the crossover SUV.

The Highlander will be offered in three variants according to Toyota - these are the Base, Sport, and the Limited variants. While these three grades of the Highlander sport the same powerplant, the difference in the number of features and drive settings causes the disparity in price.

According Toyota, the Highlander Base will have a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $27,300 for the two-wheel drive version. The price for this year's Base model reflects an increase of 1.9 percent or $510 as compared to its predecessor. The Highlander Base is available with an all-wheel drive configuration and the price of which will start at $28,750. This is also 2 percent or $560 more than the previous generation Highlander Base 4x4 variant.

For the Highlander Sport, Toyota announced that pricing will start at $29,950 for the two-wheel drive version. That price is 3.4 percent or $985 more than the price of the previous Highlander Sport 4x2. For the all-wheel drive version of the Highlander Sport, Toyota announced that it will come with a price tag starting at $31,400. Similar to other variants of the Highlander, it also shows an increase in price by 3.2 percent or $965.

The top-of-the-line Highlander Limited with a two-wheel drive configuration will be sold starting at $32,700. That price is $1,890 or 6.1 percent more than the previous Highlander. The said variant shows the highest increase in price. The all-wheel drive version of the Highlander Limited will have a starting price of $34,250. That is an increase of 6 percent or $1,940.

According to Toyota, the Highlander Hybrid will be released into the North American auto market by late September and the pricing will be announced before the launch of the hybrid Highlander.

While differing in prices, the different grades and variants of the Highlander shares a common powerplant. The engine that will be sued by the 2008 Highlander is a 3.5-liter V6 engine with independent variable valve timing for better fuel efficiency. The engine can produce as much as 270 horsepower. With that amount of power generated, a highly efficient EBC brake pad can provide good and reliable stopping power. That power output is 55 hp more than the previous engine used in the Highlander. That would explain the increase in prices.

As for the safety of Highlander users, Toyota provided it with the anti-lock brake system, traction control, electronic brake force distribution, brake assist, vehicle stability control and electronic power steering. These systems complement each other to provide safety to occupants of the 2008 Highlander.

The new Highlander uses an automobile platform derived from what the Camry and the Avalon currently uses. With this change, the new Highlander is four inches longer than the 2007 Highlander. It is also three inch wider than its predecessor and has an inch advantage in ground clearance. It also has a longer wheelbase than the previous Highlander with a difference of three inches.

About The Author Anthony Fontanelle is a 35-year-old automotive.buff who grew up in the Windy City. He does freelance work for an automotive magazine when he is not busy customizing cars in his shop.
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