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Avg. Price Paid:$13,370 - $19,315
Original MSRP: $27,500 - $34,350
MPG: 18 City / 24 Hwy
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2008 Toyota Highlander Recalls & Reliability

These scores and this review are from when the car was new.

Review Last Updated: 2/18/09

Recalls

There have been 7 safety recalls issued from NHTSA.

VISIBILITY:POWER WINDOW DEVICES AND CONTROLSRecall Date: 10/10/2012
  • Summary: Toyota is recalling certain model year 2007-2009 Camry, Camry Hybrid, RAV4, Corolla, Corolla Matrix, Tundra, Sequoia, Highlander, Highlander Hybrid, Yaris, Scion xB, Scion xD and Pontiac Vibe vehicles. The power window master switch assemblies in some of these vehicles were built using a less precise process for lubricating the internal components of the switch assemblies. Irregularities in this lubrication process may cause the power window master switch assemblies to malfunction and overheat.
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 2,519,424
  • Consequence: If the switch overheats, it may melt, possibly resulting in a fire.
  • Remedy: Toyota will notify its owners, and dealers will inspect the switch and apply a special grease that inhibits heat build up or replace any switch damaged by the defect, free of charge. Toyota owners that experience a problem with a switch should not attempt to make repairs, but should contact their Toyota dealer or the Toyota Customer Experience Center at 1-800-331-4331. General Motors will contact the Pontiac Vibe owners affected by this recall and GM dealers will inspect and repair switches as necessary. Those owners may contact Pontiac Customer Care at 1-800-762-2737.
  • Notes: Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 12V491000
AIR BAGS:FRONTAL:SENSOR/CONTROL MODULERecall Date: 04/21/2011
  • Summary: TOYOTA IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2008 HIGHLANDER, HIGHLANDER HYBRID, AND MODEL YEAR 2007-2008 RAV4 VEHICLES. IN THE CURTAIN SHIELD AIRBAG (CSA) SYSTEM, THERE ARE TWO SENSORS IN THE AIRBAG SENSOR ASSEMBLY WHICH ARE DESIGNED TO DETECT VEHICLE ROLL ANGLE. IF ONE OF THESE SENSORS MALFUNCTIONS, THE AIRBAG WARNING LIGHT (MALFUNCTION INDICATOR LIGHT: MIL) WILL ILLUMINATE AND THE ROLL DETECTION SYSTEM WILL BE SUSPENDED; HOWEVER, THE AIRBAG CSA REMAINS AVAILABLE IN THE EVENT OF A SIDE CRASH. IF BOTH SENSORS FAIL NEARLY SIMULTANEOUSLY AFTER INITIAL AIRBAG SYSTEM CHECK, THE CSA AND THE SEAT BELT PRETENSIONER COULD BE INADVERTENTLY ACTIVATED.
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 307,848
  • Consequence: INADVERTENT ACTIVATION OF THE CSA AND/OR THE SEAT BELT PRETENSIONER CAN CAUSE INJURY TO A VEHICLE OCCUPANT.
  • Remedy: TOYOTA WILL REPLACE THE AIRBAG SENSOR ASSEMBLY WITH A NEW ONE CONTAINING IMPROVED ROLL RATE SENSORS, FREE OF CHARGE. TOYOTA INTENDS TO SEND AN INTERIM OWNER NOTIFICATION TO OWNERS EARLY TO MID-MAY, 2011 WHEN SUFFICIENT PARTS AND REMEDY BECOMES AVAILABLE. OWNERS MAY CONTACT TOYOTA AT 1-800-331-4331.
  • Notes: OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV .
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 11V245000
EQUIPMENT:OTHER:LABELSRecall Date: 01/26/2010
  • Summary: GULF STATES TOYOTA IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2005-2010 VEHICLES FOR FAILING TO COMPLY WITH THE REQUIREMENTS OF FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 110, "TIRE SELECTION AND RIMS." THESE VEHICLES WERE SOLD BETWEEN SEPTEMBER 1, 2005 AND JUNE 2, 2008 WITHOUT THE REQUISITE LOAD CARRYING CAPACITY MODIFICATION LABELS.
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 271417
  • Consequence: THIS DOES NOT MEET THE STANDARD REQUIREMENTS.
  • Remedy: DEALERS WILL REPLACE THE CERTIFICATION LABEL, THE TIRE AND LOADING INFORMATION LABEL, AND THE LOAD CARRYING CAPACITY MODIFICATION (ADDENDUM) LABEL FREE OF CHARGE. DEALERS WILL ALSO CORRECT THE OWNER'S MANUAL. THE SAFETY RECALL IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING MAY 2010. OWNERS MAY CONTACT GULF STATES TOYOTA AT 713-580-3300.
  • Notes: OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV .
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 10V035000
EQUIPMENT:OTHER:LABELSRecall Date: 10/01/2009
  • Summary: SOUTHEAST TOYOTA IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2006-2009 SIENNA PASSENGER VEHICLES FOR FAILING TO COMPLY WITH THE REQUIREMENTS OF FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 110, "TIRE SELECTION AND RIMS." THESE VEHICLES WERE SOLD BETWEEN SEPTEMBER 1, 2005 AND JUNE 2, 2008 WITHOUT THE REQUISITE LOAD CARRYING CAPACITY MODIFICATION LABELS.
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 153418
  • Consequence: A DRIVER MAY OVERLOAD A VEHICLE WHICH MAY INCREASE THE RISK OF A CRASH.
  • Remedy: DEALERS WILL REPLACE THE LOAD CARRYING CAPACITY MODIFICATION (ADDENDUM) LABEL FREE OF CHARGE. THE RECALL EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING MAY 2010. OWNERS MAY CONTACT SOUTHEAST TOYOTA AT 1-954-420-2000.
  • Notes: OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV .
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 10V036000
EQUIPMENTRecall Date: 05/14/2009
  • Summary: SOUTHEAST TOYOTA IS RECALLING 3,499 STAINLESS STEEL EXHAUST TIPS SOLD BY SOUTHEAST TOYOTA AS AN OPTIONAL ACCESSORY FOR USE ON MY 2008 HIGHLANDER AND HIGHLANDER HYBIRD VEHICLES. DUE TO IMPROPER HEAT TREATMENT DURING THE MANUFACTURING PROCESS, THE ORIGINAL CLAMP USED TO SECURE THE STAINLESS STEEL EXHAUST TIP TO THE EXHAUST PIPE MAY DEVELOP MICROSCOPIC CRACKS. EVENTUALLY THE CRACK MAY EXPAND CAUSING THE CLAMP TO BREAK.
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 3499
  • Consequence: THE ORIGINAL CLAMP AND THE TOYOTA STAINLESS STEEL EXHAUST TIP MAY FALL OFF THE VEHICLE'S EXHAUST PIPE AND BECOME A ROAD HAZARD WHICH WOULD INCREASE THE RISK OF A VEHICLE CRASH.
  • Remedy: SOUTHEAST TOYOTA WILL NOTIFY OWNERS AND REPLACE THE CLAMP FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING MAY/JUNE 2009. OWNERS MAY CONTACT SOUTHEAST TOYOTA CUSTOMER LOYALTY DEPARTMENT AT 1-800-301-6859.
  • Notes: OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV .
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 09E028000
EQUIPMENTRecall Date: 04/24/2009
  • Summary: TOYOTA IS RECALLING 39,100 STAINLESS STEEL EXHAUST TIPS SOLD BY TOYOTA AS AN OPTIONAL ACCESSORY FOR USE ON MY 2008 HIGHLANDER AND HIGHLANDER HYBIRD VEHICLES. DUE TO IMPROPER HEAT TREATMENT DURING THE MANUFACTURING PROCESS, THE ORIGINAL CLAMP USED TO SECURE THE TOYOTA STAINLESS STEEL EXHAUST TIP TO THE EXHAUST PIPE MAY DEVELOP MICROSCOPIC CRACKS. EVENTUALLY THE CRACK MAY EXPAND CAUSING THE CLAMP TO BREAK.
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 39100
  • Consequence: THE ORIGINAL CLAMP AND THE TOYOTA STAINLESS STEEL EXHAUST TIP MAY FALL OFF THE VEHICLES EXHAUST PIPE AND BECOME A ROAD HAZARD WHICH WOULD INCREASE THE RISK OF A VEHICLE CRASH.
  • Remedy: TOYOTA WILL NOTIFY OWNERS AND REPLACE THE CLAMP FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING MAY 2009. OWNERS MAY CONTACT TOYOTA CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE CENTER AT 1 888-270-9371 MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY, 5:00 AM TO 6:00 PM, SATURDAY 7:00 AM THROUGH 4:00 PM PACIFIC TIME.
  • Notes: TOYOTA'S RECALL NO. SSC 90E. OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV .
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 09E022000
SEAT BELTS:REARRecall Date: 04/18/2008
  • Summary: TOYOTA IS RECALLING 90,189 MY 2008 HIGHLANDER AND HIGHLANDER HYBRID PASSENGER VEHICLES EQUIPPED WITH A THIRD ROW SEAT. THESE VEHICLES FAIL TO CONFORM TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 208, "OCCUPANT CRASH PROTECTION." THE NON-DRIVER DESIGNATED SEATING POSITIONS (DSP) ON THESE VEHICLES IS EQUIPPED WITH SEAT BELT ASSEMBLIES THAT HAVE A FEATURE THAT CONVERTS THE RETRACTOR FROM AN EMERGENCY LOCKING RETRACTOR (ELR) TO AN AUTOMATIC LOCKING RETRACTOR (ALR). THE BELTS CONVERT TO THE ALR MODE AFTER THE WEBBING HAS BEEN FULLY WITHDRAWN FROM THE RETRACTOR. THE SYSTEM IS DESIGNED SO THAT AS THE BELT IS RELEASED INTO THE RETRACTOR, THE SYSTEM REMAINS IN THE ALR MODE SO THAT A CHILD RESTRAINT SYSTEM (CRS) CAN BE TIGHTLY SECURED.
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 90189
  • Consequence: HOWEVER, FOR THE TWO THIRD ROW DSP'S ON THESE VEHICLES, THE ALR MODE DEACTIVATES BEFORE THE WEBBING IS FULLY RETRACTED, SO THAT IT WILL NOT LOCK WHEN CERTAIN REAR-FACING CRS'S THAT HAVE A SHORT SEAT BELT ROUTING PATH ARE INSTALLED IN THE VEHICLE. THIS CAN ALLOW THE SEAT BELT WEBBING TO SPOOL OUT DURING NORMAL DRIVING MANEUVERS, WHICH COULD AFFECT THE STABILITY OF A CHILD RESTRAINT INSTALLED AT THOSE SEATING POSITIONS. AS SUCH, THIS COULD DISCOURAGE THE USE OF A CHILD RESTRAINT AND IN THE EVENT OF A CRASH, THE CHILD MAY NOT BE ADEQUATELY PROTECTED POSSIBLY RESULTING IN INJURY.
  • Remedy: DEALERS WILL INSTALL A NEWLY DESIGNED SEAT BELT COMPONENT FREE OF CHARGE. THE MANUFACTURER HAS NOT YET PROVIDED AN OWNER NOTIFICATION SCHEDULE FOR THIS CAMPAIGN. OWNERS MAY CONTACT TOYOTA AT 1-800-331-4331.
  • Notes: CUSTOMERS MAY CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY: 1-800-424-9153); OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV.
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 08V181000

Reliability

Our reliability score is based on the J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) rating or, if unavailable, the J.D. Power Predicted Reliability rating.

Dependability Ratings1 2008
Overall Dependability
Powertrain Dependability
Feature & Accessory Dependability
Body & Interior Dependability

1These scores come from consumer ratings of their vehicles after three years of ownership.

  • Key:
  • Among The Best
  • Better Than Most
  • About Average
  • The Rest

J.D. Power and Associates Power Circle Ratings do not include all information used to determine J.D. Power and Associates awards. See JDPower.com for more information on Power Circle Ratings. Your experience may vary.

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Warranty

The 2008 Toyota Highlander comes with a three-year/36,000-mile basic warranty.

  • "Toyota's well-earned reputation for top quality and good resale value are strong lures and likely will outweigh in many shoppers' minds the Highlander's obvious shortcomings." -- Newsday
  • "The Highlander, new in 2001, has never been the prettiest, quickest, or cheapest of the I'm-not-a-minivans, but it sells well partly on its sterling quality rep." -- Car and Driver
  • "The Highlander makes the grade on all counts, though it doesn't excel in any one area. Provided it can maintain its outstanding resale value and reliability, it should prove a smart -- if not particularly captivating -- choice for years to come." -- Cars.com
  • "Toyota is known for quality and reliability, but there is a feeling among some that those areas have slipped of late. Toyota officials acknowledged that they have fallen short of some internal standards, and they've responded with a new manufacturing program called Customer First. The Highlander was the first vehicle to benefit from the program, which includes additional prototypes, additional quality control personal, and a renewed focus on product quality." -- New Car Test Drive

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