The new Toyota Highlander hybrid earned a relatively tepid review from CNN/Money. On the positive side, the author got 28 MPG in mixed driving (no urban driving was included in that loop, which is theoretically where hybrids shine). The additional power was noticed and appreciated, despite the extra 350 lbs of weight. Drawbacks included excessive engine noise when the CVT attempted to hold the revs at peak power, unusable third-row seats, and a general lack of excitement (the word "boring" comes up a few times in the article). The $6000 additional cost for the hybrid version, and the fact that it forces the buyer to pay for a lot of features not directly related to the powertrain, was said to be "a real shame", but the reviewer claimed to be won over by the end of the test.

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