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Kids the number one cause of distracted driving among parents

Parents often wish they could be in two places at once. A feature from Toyota now gives them the next best thing: The ability to yell at their children from a distance.

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General Motors has confirmed to Autoblog that the Pontiac Vibe is included in Toyota's just-announced recall action. The Vibe and the Toyota Matrix share a large number of parts, including the affected cable to the airbag.

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UPDATE: The text below has been amended to include new details provided by Toyota.

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General Motors finally has something to celebrate about. The 2014 Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain aced the latest round of small overlap front crash tests by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety among nine midsize SUVs, and they both scored a Top Safety Pick+ accolade. However, Honda, Mazda and Kia fared badly with their entries earning Poor ratings in the Overall safety category.

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Toyota has announced a small recall of its redesigned, 2014 Highlander over issues with one of its seat belts. The affected vehicles, which were built from November 20, 2013 to January 18, 2014, could have a seatbelt assembly in the middle seat of the third row that wasn't properly secured to a floor anchorage at the factory.

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Do Muppets drive? We're not sure it's necessarily a good idea, but it's been known to happen. Fozzy called his hibernating uncle's Studebaker a bear's "natural habitat," and Doctor Teeth wouldn't get the Electric Mayhem very far without his band's psychedelically painted school bus. But how about Rolf in a 2014 Toyota Highlander?

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Unsung Hero Gains A Bit More Attention

Midsize crossovers like the Toyota Highlander tend to play a thankless role in the life of today's modern family.

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We now have pricing for Toyota's redesigned 2014 Highlander, which is seeing moderate price hikes across the board. Prices for the popular crossover have been bumped from less than 1 percent to less than 3 percent on lower-end models (anywhere from $125 to $890, depending on trim). Toyota has increased prices on higher-end XLE and Limited models more substantially – between 4.1 and 4.5 percent ($1,480 to $1,700). The Highlander Hybrid sees its price increase 2 percent ($930). The new model

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In 2006, I bought a Scion xB (the super upright, first-generation one), and I always had this wild dream of turning the xBox into an aquarium after it had run its course in my personal test fleet. Long story short, that never happened. But apparently the folks at Toyota got wind of my idea – only, well, this isn't exactly what I had in mind.

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Corolla and Highlander get makeovers, while hydrogen fuel-cell car on horizon

In August, Toyota enjoyed its best month of sales in more than five years. The company sold more than 231,000 cars in the United States, a number that topped Ford for the second month in a row.

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Indiana seems like the place to be if you're looking for work in a car factory. In May, Subaru announced plans to invest $400 million in its Lafayette, Indiana plant, creating 900 new jobs in the process and increasing capacity to 300,000 units per year. Now, Toyota has announced plans to invest $30 million in its Princeton, Indiana plant, 170 miles south of the Subaru factory, which also builds the Camry.

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The launch of the 2014 Toyota Highlander is being assisted by Bikini Bottom's number one resident, SpongeBob SquarePants. The new crossover has been wrapped with SpongeBob's square mug all over it as if he's saying "I'm ready. I'm ready. I'm ready. I'm ready," from every direction. Inside is a cabin that Toyota says "captures all of the beloved character's high-octane energy," but might make you question whether this is really the world you want to live in.

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There are, as they say, two sides to every story, so after we posted a video on Monday showing what an owner claimed to be a case of unintended acceleration causing her Toyota Highlander to crash into a house twice, Toyota reached out to us revealing some additional information about the incident.

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Toyota has had plenty of problems in recent years due to claims of unintended acceleration, and now here's a video that actually catches such a claim on video. The driver of this 2010-2013 Toyota Highlander claims that the crossover's accelerator got stuck causing the vehicle to slam into the house twice, and resulting in damage to the Highlander, the house and two vehicles inside the garage. While we don't know when this accident took place, the video was uploaded to YouTube back in January.

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Toyota has pulled the wraps off its all-new, 2014 Highlander in New York this morning, giving Americans a first look at what is sure to be a heavyweight in the mid-size crossover segment.

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Toyota has given us a look at what the company will bring to the 2013 New York Auto Show. Visitors will get to set their eyes upon the all-new 2014 Highlander, and while the automaker isn't saying much in the way of details, we do get the teaser you see above (click to enlarge) to ponder on until next week. The image shows little more than a headlamp and a bit of grille, but gives us the flavor of what the crossover will bring to the table.

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