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Old 12-30-2015, 10:36 PM   #61
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Steve, we are getting the XLE AWD V6. The only options now are AWD or 2WD and living in Wisconsin, AWD is much more practical for us. It is expensive, but luckily the dealer is giving us a lot more trade in than I ever expected to be getting for our 2008 Tacoma. The Hybrid is only available with 3500# max towing so we couldn't go with that for the possible 21' in our future.

Having driven a 40HP VW bug and a 1965 Ford Econoline van up and down mountain passes in my younger days I'm quite content in the right hand lane(s). I'll still be a lot faster than semi's and the trailers bigger than my house being pulled by monstrous duelies!

And as conservative as Toyota is, there is no way they are going to rate a vehicle at 5000# if that vehicle in not totally capable of towing 5000#. The way we travel, I expect our real weight of the 21 will be fairly close to 4000# or less: making it at least 20% less than the Highlander's rating.
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Old 12-30-2015, 11:56 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve R View Post
Am particularly interested in whether you will go with 2WD, AWD, or 4WD.
I'm not sure what difference you're expecting, since "AWD" and "4WD" don't really mean anything different. At one point Toyota put "AWD" badges on Siennas and "4WD" badges on Highlanders... and those two models used exactly the same system.

There are two AWD/4WD systems available in the current Highlander - but one that goes with the conventional powertrain (engine and transmission), and a different one that goes with the hybrid (Synergy Hybrid Drive), so there is no choice for the buyer (once you've chosen hybrid or not). I'm sure there has never been any other choice of AWD/4WD systems in the Highlander, although the system used has changed over the years and generations.
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Old 12-30-2015, 11:58 PM   #63
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With my F150 I have the choice of 2WD, AWD, or 4WD.
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Old 12-31-2015, 12:11 AM   #64
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Okay, thinking about this...

If anyone is considering used Highlanders (which is kind of the point of a topic about buying an "old" tow vehicle), you can choose which AWD/4WD system you get, by selecting the year:
  • up to 2013: centre differential (so equal driving torque to all wheels all the time, until traction control applies individual wheel brakes as required to control wheelspin) [this system is also used by early Siennas and RAV4s]
  • 2014 to current: clutch to rear (so driving torque to only front wheels until controller decides rear drive is needed, then varying amount of torque to rear wheels) [this system is also used by current Siennas and RAV4s]
There are both AWD, and both 4WD. I like the idea of the earlier system better, but good control logic can make the later system (which is the popular approach taken by most manufacturers now) work very well.
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Old 12-31-2015, 12:55 AM   #65
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Yes, trucks and SUVs sharing platforms with trucks usually have more choice of systems, and when a manufacturer offers two 4WD systems they may use "AWD" and "4WD" to refer to specific choices within their range. Or if they're Jeep, they call them (among all their models)
  • Rock-Trac 4WD
  • Command-Trac 4WD
  • Quadra-Drive II 4WD
  • Quadra-Trac I 4WD
  • Quadra-Trac II 4WD
  • Quadra-Trac SRT
  • Freedom Drive I 4WD
  • Freedom Drive II 4WD
  • Active Drive I 4WD
  • Active Drive II 4WD
  • Active Drive Lock 4WD
  • Active Drive 4WD
  • Active Drive Low 4WD

... and despite the fact that none are called AWD, several are exactly what most people mean by AWD and not like traditional 4WD. Don't expect any clear and obvious naming conventions in this stuff!

One of the F-150 systems mentioned in magazine articles has a centre differential so when it is in the mode that uses the diff, it is what some other manufacturers have called (since long before Ford sold it) Permanent 4WD. I can't find a system with a centre differential in Ford's material, so I suspect a confused magazine writer.

The Ford Canada F-150 Features page doesn't mention the availability of two systems, and describes only the popular-in-trucks system: part-time, with shift-on-the-fly capability; that's not what most people mean by AWD, because it can't stay engaged on normal road surfaces. The 2015 F-150 Owner's Manual describes the usual part-time system, plus "2-Speed Automatic 4WD vehicles" which have a "4A" mode...
Quote:
This system includes an electronically
controlled transfer case with a high
capacity clutch. The system is interactive
with the road, continually monitoring and
adjusting torque delivery to the front and
rear wheels to optimize traction.
In other words, it's a rear-wheel-drive with a computer-controlled clutch to drive the other two, just as is common on AWD cars (some of which - such as the current Highlander - are front-wheel-drive plus a clutch to drive the rear, while others are rear-wheel-drive plus a clutch to drive the front). So...
  • an F-150 with a knob labelled "2H, 4H, 4L" is the base part-time 4WD version
  • an F-150 with a knob labelled "2H, 4A, 4H, 4L" is the version with an additional full-time 4WD mode

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
With my F150 I have the choice of 2WD, AWD, or 4WD.
Jim, by that do you mean the 2H, 4A, and 4H/4L modes, respectively?
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Old 12-31-2015, 01:31 AM   #66
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Actually with the Highlander buying the 2wd model (lowest price one) and just getting the "convenience package--you get the heated seats and a bunch of other "nice" things--living where we do and not going off road we will save a few $$ and just get the 2wd model---Doug priced one out yesterday and wants the extra lumbar support with the convenience package, they all have 5,000 pound towing capacity.

That is our plan for a year from now...I just hope that they don't decide to raise their prices any more than what they are for 2017...

We are going away for a month in September and it is a four month wait to get a 2wd from the factory--so might as well wait and get exactly what we want---hopefully the last car we'll buy for a long time...

And darn the used ones that have quite a few miles only save a few thousand...I know you pay PDI etc with new....but
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Old 12-31-2015, 02:53 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by amirie View Post
Actually with the Highlander buying the 2wd model (lowest price one) and just getting the "convenience package--you get the heated seats and a bunch of other "nice" things--living where we do and not going off road we will save a few $$ and just get the 2wd model---Doug priced one out yesterday and wants the extra lumbar support with the convenience package, they all have 5,000 pound towing capacity.

That is our plan for a year from now...I just hope that they don't decide to raise their prices any more than what they are for 2017...

We are going away for a month in September and it is a four month wait to get a 2wd from the factory--so might as well wait and get exactly what we want---hopefully the last car we'll buy for a long time...

And darn the used ones that have quite a few miles only save a few thousand...I know you pay PDI etc with new....but
Amirie, I bought the 2007 Highlander Limited for $17,350 plus tax and license which brought it to $19,100. Plenty of money for a 9 year old vehicle. I bought it from a Toyota dealer at Kelly Blue Book. It's very clean, very nice condition, with 64,400 miles. My significant other and I both bought new cars in 2014 (Prius and Accord), and then we got the bug to get this trailer. I don't mind spending the kids inheritance but I want to do it at a more moderate pace, thus the decision to get this used tow vehicle which we're very excited about.
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Old 12-31-2015, 08:53 AM   #68
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Amrie - for us, at least in our area, there are no packages available on the Highlanders, it's pretty much just choose a model level and add any accessories you want. I'm ticked off that Toyota only puts a 4 pin tow plug on when you get the hitch package. The dealer is charging me $300 to install the brake controller and run the extra wiring.

Steve, I think you found a very good deal based on used prices around here for one with that low mileage. My 2008 Tacoma has about 46,000 on it and the KBB trade in value the dealer agreed on is nearly $19,000. Pretty amazing to me for a vehicle I bought in the fall of 2007 for about $27,000.( KBB says that Tacomas have the highest resale value % of any vehicle) The high prices of used Toyota is what first caused me to buy new. I'm sure the dealer is going to ask more than $21,000 for my Tacoma based on used Tacoma pricing searches I've done.
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Old 12-31-2015, 09:35 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
Jim, by that do you mean the 2H, 4A, and 4H/4L modes, respectively?
Yes

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Old 12-31-2015, 01:17 PM   #70
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For current model Highlanders in the US you must buy either the XLE or the 'Limited' in order to get 5,000lb towing capacity.

Since we live in the city we got a FWD model. It was lower cost and presumably there is less to go wrong. It has worked well for us, but if I was doing it again I might get the AWD version. But that's only because we head out in a month, and I have been looking at the rainy weather in the SW and on the Pacific coast.
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