The Toyota Highlander Hybrid borrows technology from the Prius, using a variation of that successful model’s Hybrid Synergy Drive powertrain. For this newest application of Hybrid Synergy Drive, the battery is larger and the electric motor spins twice as fast, developing twice the power. Combined with a 230-horsepower, 3.3-liter V6 gasoline engine, the Hybrid Synergy Drive system in the 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is good for a net total of 268 horsepower. Toyota boasts that the new Highlander Hybrid delivers the performance of a V8, outrunning the gasoline V6 version of the standard Highlander in some performance tests. But will it save you money at the pump? Given the added cost, plus dealer mark-up, that’s unlikely. But you sure can feel good about the Highlander Hybrid’s SULEV emissions rating.
Photos courtesy of the manufacturers and Erik Hanson