Automotive

Highlander Hybrid 2014-2016 Used values

  • Last Updated:
  • Nov 3rd, 2020 8:07 am
[OP]
Member
Jul 26, 2008
389 posts
422 upvotes
Montreal

Highlander Hybrid 2014-2016 Used values

Fellow car hagglers ,

Shopping around for a used Highlander Hybrid, narrowed it down to the 2014-2016 years

these are the ones currently on my list.
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For some reason I think vehicle :

Row 4 2016 XLE is the better value, newer year and the VMR Canada price is pretty close the Ask. Going to the dealer tomorrow.
Row 2 2014 XLE seller works for Toyota says vehicle is in top shape, maintenance done at the dealer but has the highest mileage its a 3 hour drive from me.
Row 3 2015 LE, Dealer VMR vs Ask price is 5K is that worth 20K ?. Going to the dealer tomorrow just for the sake of comparison.
Row 3 2013, I have tested driven the vehicle its sound no issue other rust on back tailgate and some star cracks in the windshield that apparently have been repaired. Nice but I prefer the Gen 3s.

Everyone tells me Highlander are very expensive. I friend of mine is returning a leased 2017 XLE hybrid in January with 80K and his buy back price is 27K and the is confident he will be able turn around and resell for a 10K profit.

I intend to keep this car for a long time, My current car is 2005 vibe with 180K that we are keeping as a second car so that's not up for a trade-in value. I am purchasing with $ I have saved up for the last 10 years of keeping our old car.

Given the high demand how much do you think I should start as the offer with the dealers ? 10% off the ask ?
12 replies
Deal Addict
User avatar
Apr 12, 2013
1592 posts
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Markham
If youre keeping it for a very long time I would not recommend a hybrid. The batteries costs alot of $$ and usually last about 10 years based off of what you're looking into it means the 2013 option would need is replaced soon. Yeah Highlanders and Rav4s retain their values really well and for good reasons.
[FS] BNWT Bellfield Faux Fur Trim Parka

Koodo, Public Mobile, Lucky Mobile Customer
Deal Addict
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Jan 8, 2009
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Ontario
kangarooz wrote: If youre keeping it for a very long time I would not recommend a hybrid. The batteries costs alot of $$ and usually last about 10 years based off of what you're looking into it means the 2013 option would need is replaced soon. Yeah Highlanders and Rav4s retain their values really well and for good reasons.
Absolute rubbish. The battery on my Camry Hybrid that I bought new in 2006 is still going strong after 280k km. This is typical.

Now the rest of my car- that's a different story.
"Never wrestle with a pig. You'll both get dirty, and the pig likes it"
Deal Fanatic
Jul 4, 2004
5723 posts
1779 upvotes
Ottawa
As Martin mentioned, the battery should be a non-issue. Odds are that in Canada, the battery, engine, transmission will outlast the rest of the car (because of rust) and of the three, the battery is likely the one that will last the longest. The battery in Toyota's Hybrid system really isn't taxed that much and is not something that has a noticeable failure rate.
Deal Addict
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Apr 12, 2013
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Markham
Martin (deal addict) wrote: Absolute rubbish. The battery on my Camry Hybrid that I bought new in 2006 is still going strong after 280k km. This is typical.

Now the rest of my car- that's a different story.
You can drive it even if the battery is dead, the point is how functional is the battery what is your ROI for paying the extra for battery? A hybrid with a weak/low battery drives significantly worse than a regular gas powered unit.

Not sure what happened your Camry but a gas model easily goes 400k KM 20+ years, I know because I drove one.
[FS] BNWT Bellfield Faux Fur Trim Parka

Koodo, Public Mobile, Lucky Mobile Customer
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Jan 8, 2009
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kangarooz wrote: You can drive it even if the battery is dead, the point is how functional is the battery what is your ROI for paying the extra for battery? A hybrid with a weak/low battery drives significantly worse than a regular gas powered unit.

Not sure what happened your Camry but a gas model easily goes 400k KM 20+ years, I know because I drove one.
You need to get informed. You cannot drive a Camry Hybrid with a dead traction battery.

My battery is fully functional, and from an economy point of view same as new.

A hybrid with a low battery will charge the battery if the battery accepts a charge. If not it will not drive worse other than the extra weight of the battery. If the battery cannot accept regen charging a warning light will appear to replace the traction battery.

All Camrys go 400km and /or 20yrs is a myth that Toyota is happy you are perpetuating.
"Never wrestle with a pig. You'll both get dirty, and the pig likes it"
Sr. Member
Nov 11, 2013
742 posts
742 upvotes
Calgary
Batteries are expensive to replace, co-worker just had his redone this spring for close to 11k. Just out of the battery warranty period
[OP]
Member
Jul 26, 2008
389 posts
422 upvotes
Montreal
Came back from the dealers, Row 3 2015 was sold and gone, these cars move fast.

Test drove the 2016 XLE, dealer had not yet done his mechanical inspection. Vehicle had one issue a hum / vibration that was present at all drive speeds. Friend of mine thinks it might be an unbalanced drive shaft ? Dealer will let me know next weeks what the status of that defect.

Other discovery BlueDriver OBD2 tool reported live sensor data for "Hybrid Battery Pack Remaining Life" at 55.7% I have no idea with this means as google searches are not quite clear. ( I asked about this on the Toyota Nations forum)
Deal Addict
Mar 7, 2010
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OP, are you going to get a mobile pre inspector?
I am thinking get a car from big dealers and they said they did the 150 point inspection...
Not sure if I want to pay another 200$ for a mech to go to check the car again
[OP]
Member
Jul 26, 2008
389 posts
422 upvotes
Montreal
killer007 wrote: OP, are you going to get a mobile pre inspector?
I am thinking get a car from big dealers and they said they did the 150 point inspection...
Not sure if I want to pay another 200$ for a mech to go to check the car again
I wound not pay for a "pre-inspection" waist of time. You buy the vehicle telling the seller you accept the seller's description of the car , ie that its in sound mechanical condition, but the you make a successful mechanical inspection a condition for the sale. Same thing you do when your purchase a home.

I would alway have the car inspected by an independent mechanic , on a used car your always going to find stuff. This freezes the seller from selling the car to someone else and if you really want go ahead with the purchase it gives you another opportunity to have the price lowered or the items fixed.

I'm my case I signed the paper work to purchase the 2016 XLE being sold at a Ford dealership. This one : https://pinardford.com/vehicle_inventor ... on-cruise/

The sale is conditional to a mechanical inspection by the mechanic of my choice.

I will bring it to a Toyota Dealership ask the mechanical inspection and a review of the hybrid system and the computer codes ( more that below).

I am thinking this deal only has 50% chance of working out. The vibration in the car is coming from somewhere, ie the driveshaft ( there is no drive shaft on hybrid )or wheel bearing I can imagine a few $$$ to get that fixed. That's on the Ford to fix.

After my test drive I asked the salesman and then the manager to come out and test drive the vehicle as I wanted to them to witness the vibration. They told me the vehicle had not been inspected yet as it was a trade-in and that would done next.
If the repair was too complex they would send the car to a Toyota dealership.

I was surprised to hear they don't test drive the trade-in they get. The salesman said that every year get shafted on 1 or 2 cars they accept as trade-ins that turn out to be leamons, the cost of being a dealer.

During the test drive I had my BlueDriver OBD2 tool did a full scan of the car. I have yet to do this on a modern car without finding something.

I now know these codes / errors are in the car, will research them, I tell the Toyota dealership I found issues but not the details as I want to make sure they are checking for real.

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So in this example, my educated guess is the car's automatic sensor for rain is not working :
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[OP]
Member
Jul 26, 2008
389 posts
422 upvotes
Montreal
little update on my car shopping experience and why it's so important to get a vehicle inspected by a 3rd party.

I used Andrew recommend in the montreal area by the APA for our inspection.

- Andrew uses a laser thermometer to check that all the heated glass surfaces are working, in the case of the 2016 XLE, the windshield was no longer the original, the replacement was the wrong model as it did not have heat coils that normally are present on this vehicle, Andrew explained that often the power cable that normal supply voltage are just left dangling inside and that can be a fire hazard. Next the replacement glass was not properly installed and a gap was visible on the joint where the glass meets the roof. The replaced window explains why I found the OBD2 errors that related to the glass sensor as they are not present on the replacement glass.

- Both front and back differentials, had oil leaks and the back one the i-drive had orange gasket sealer which meant that someone had opened the unit and it was not found in any Toyota service record. At low speed a strange noise was coming from the back idrive. The dealer did mentionned that this unit was a trade in original owner traded his Hybrid highlander for a gas one because he wanted to two a larger weight. So all these leaking difference fit with the pattern of someone towing over the weight capacity of the vehicle.
This means something happened in the rear diff and with that discovery we walked away from the deal

- Andrew also noted the the back suspension control arms where replaced and in properly installed.

Disappointing on the short term when you think for found the good car, but better to have piece of mind.

Regarding the hybrid batteries, I found lots of information on how to test them on the Prius forums.
There is a paid app called Dr. Prius that works with a number of OBD2 adapters that will do a real live test of the battery based on a short drive. The app will also show the voltage of the individual batteries.

From what I read on line and what a local toyota dealer told me if very important to make sure the 3 air vents under the back seat are clean. These are the vents that cool the batteries and the NiMH batteries can get damaged if they overheat. So they seem well adapter to our cold weather. People that have pets will tend to have clogged vents.
[OP]
Member
Jul 26, 2008
389 posts
422 upvotes
Montreal
Update on our experience: Internet shopping has it limits a test drive and mechanical inspection, even one you do yourself is so telling.

-We are not car experts but after seeing a Pro inspect a car its not hard to do a 1st level triage. the general routine we had was :
tell the seller (in our case only dealers had the car years we were interested in) you are going to a 20 min inspection then go for a test drive.

- I would start the car and star my BlueDrive Scan , Full scan
- Turn on all the heated seats, windows and defrosters . check the outside temps with a laser thermometer our your hand to make sure they are heating.
- Get under the car examine the 4 wheels looks at the struts for leaks, Oil leaks on the transmission, engine, rear diff if a 4x4.
- Examine the front windshield looking for cracks of stone chips, identify if car has original or replacement windshield , on the cars we saw all the replacements were easy to spot because they no longer had the Toyota Logo and the top joint was not perfect, Trying a highway speeds an improperly installed windshield might be source of noise.
- Try all windows, door power lock, sunroof, powered hatch does it close open listen of strange noises.
- Look at the brakes, discs and pads
- Look at the wear on the driver's seat and safety belt, On the highlander every car will eventually have a sag on the driver seat, you can rank the cars by car seat sag factor. the dealer over often omit the driver seat picture as it show the most wear.

You take notes of the points observed, then you can accurately compare between the different cars you see, after a few cars it can get confusing to only rely on your memory.
You don't need to know anything about cars to do you inspection, as long as you have observation skills you'll notice the differences between the cars you see and you'll see the value in the better ones.
Of course you need to have a minute amount of time, better to spend the time now and not after dealing with a bad purchase.

Now go back to BlueDrive OBD2 scan and look at the results of the SCAN, I was literally blown away by this and results I got. Basically out of the 4 hybrid we tried and the 2 gas models only 2 cars had zero codes !

The worst car was a 2017 XLE hybrid with 14 codes : ( ok the only one I would not worry about the the TPS sensor codes)

This car was a Toyota Dealer , it had a 160 point inspection ( blah, blah, blah.)
Original service records one owner at the dealership. On paper is looked like a very good car !
When we went for a test drive the 12 volt battery was dead rust on all the discs and found out later the car has been sitting on the lot since July ! Very good for a hybrid car.

Given this car was at 88000 KM and out of basic toyota warranty why take the risk, It had a replacement chinese windshield, the top gap was wrong, and rust was developing due to botch replacement.

Did i really think the dealer was going to replace the $400 AGM 12 volt battery and start doing full diag of all the code and start troubleshooting, Nope just sell the car to the next average person, who will not even bother with a 3rd party inspection. Mabey the car will be fine, but why take the risk.

The car had not been driven for months. For all I know, a mouse might have taken claim to car, moved in and started chewing on the cables.
I so disappointed. That's when you realize that Internet shopping, CARFAX , Dealer service records are not substitute a real life inspection of the goods.

For those who don't know this Blue Drive, the Status : Current / History means the error was occuring LIVE and was also reported in the History, happened in the past.
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the vehicle you see is the vehicle you are going to get.

I don't believe in the value of ANY Dealer inspection, Toyota certified or not. No one, will scan the car for Error code unless a check engine light / ABS / AirBag light is present .

After all this shopping and total discouraged by the lack of real certification of inspection we tried a 2019 LE Gas with the convenience package, 44 000k ( with balance of warranty 60KM / 3 years)
It's not a hybrid but it has all of the latest Toyota safety features and till has the balance of the original warranty.

On the topic of the hybrid, I loved power the car has, the acceleration is the high point. I was not worried about the hybrid battery pack or the electric combo motor transmission those part are sound.
We were put off by the premium private sellers / dealers are asking for these cars and the ones we found were not in top shape enough for us cheerfully hand over $44 000 after tax for cars that are 3-4 years old.

This is our final grid. hopefully that last car passes our independent inspection , fingers crossed.

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[OP]
Member
Jul 26, 2008
389 posts
422 upvotes
Montreal
Update, this thread started out as a what's the real value of a used hybrid highlander and it turned out into our shopping experience.

We purchased the 2019 LE grey gas model from HGregoire but what a ride.
- Hired Andrew again to inspect the car, notes from inspection :
- both front struts are leaking oil "quote I have never seen this in a recent highlander", are we sure this is an ex rental car driven hard
- Look at this minor dent on the left side passenger door, to properly asses damage entry door has be removed , disassembled , mabey entre skin of the door replaced.
- Font and back disk rotors have be resurfaced or changed.
- This car has a TAG, dealer will charge you full price to have it re-activated call TAG directly.
- This car might have a PEA call Toyota to find out.

So conference call with wife and my car friend, Dealer won't bug on price so we settle for a car dentless repair and they do a pretty good job. The dent is very minor has only noticeable if your lying flat on the pavement and looking up the car.

In theory the leaking struts will be covered under warranty as car only as 44000 KM.

- Dealer offer me $500 to activate the TAG ( Anti Theft device which reduced insurance premium) I called TAG directly them then the VIN and they told me service is active till 2024 !. There is $50 transfer fee to put the device in my name !. Great saved $449 here.

- Next Toyota Customer service will not tell me if car has additional PEA warranty as they say it can only be transferred if the original owner signs a transfer form in the 30 days that follow his sale of the car ! What a piss off, Andrew and others told me that in the past the PEA was linked with the car and this extra step is just a money grab by Toyota they want to resell the same warranty more the once.

- But there are two ways to find the original owner, look for documents in the glove box or get on the internet. Wow , I find an add on Kijiji for a pair of winter tires and steel rims with 1 year wear that were on a 2019 Highlander. What are the odds, 1 in 4 as the seller is the same city as the Toyoto garage where all the service was done for this car.

- I call the fellow and we both fall out of our chairs, he is the original owner of the car Bingo. I purchase the winter tires and rim from him and he gave me all of the original car papers and service records, and wait for it, His original PEA warranty 2 yeas extra of Platinum PEA, so warranty is extended for 2 years till 2024 or 100 000 KM and it include 6 free service visits at the dealer 2 are left. We signed a Toyota form to have the PEA transferred in my name and have submitted that.

- In the car records I read the last report from Toyota dated Sept 20 2020, where they state that both front struts are leaking have are to be replaced as the timing chain gasket is also leaking ( we did not spot this during the inspection) .

So i called by that Toyota dealer explaining I have the new owner have all the service records and I scheduled an appointment for the work, It's about 3 days as the timing cover leak requires the engine to be removed from the car. I really was surprised here I bough into the Toyota quality image and never though a car so recent would require this amount of work.

Would I recommend buying a car from HGregoire ? hell no. These types of places sell cars with a fast turn around, they are often not really aware of what they are selling in regards to extra warranty the cars might have had. They just try to sell their own add-ons. My my case I was offered the full TAG fee and a 3rd party warranty on a car that already had Toyoto PEA.

But as with all used car purchases do your homework, research, investigate, inspect.

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