2019 Toyota Highlander vs. 2019 Honda Passport

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Highlander has standard Whiplash Injury Lessening Seats, which use a specially designed seat to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash Injury Lessening Seats system allows the backrest to travel backwards to cushion the occupants and the headrests move forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Passport doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The Highlander Platinum has a standard Bird’s Eye View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Passport only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Highlander’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Passport doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Highlander and the Passport have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Highlander the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 100 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Passport has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Highlander for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Honda doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Passport.

There are over 18 percent more Toyota dealers than there are Honda dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Highlander’s warranty.

Reliability

A hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs, drives the camshafts in the Highlander’s engine. A rubber cam drive belt that needs periodic replacement drives the Passport’s camshafts. If the Passport’s belt breaks, the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are better in initial quality than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota 17th in initial quality. With 6 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 23rd.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 13 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 12th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Honda is ranked 15th.

Engine

The Highlander’s optional 3.5 DOHC V6 produces 15 more horsepower (295 vs. 280) and 1 lbs.-ft. more torque (263 vs. 262) than the Passport’s 3.5 SOHC V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Highlander gets better fuel mileage than the Passport:

 

 

 

MPG

Highlander

 

FWD

3.5 DOHC V6

20 city/27 hwy

 

 

w/Start/Stop 3.5 DOHC V6

21 city/27 hwy

 

4WD

3.5 DOHC V6

19 city/26 hwy

 

 

LE 3.5 DOHC V6

20 city/27 hwy

 

 

XLE/SE/Limited 3.5 DOHC V6

20 city/26 hwy

Passport

 

4WD

3.5 DOHC V6

20 city/25 hwy

 

 

3.5 DOHC V6

19 city/24 hwy

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Highlander’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Passport:

 

Highlander

Passport

Front Rotors

12.9 inches

12.6 inches

Suspension and Handling

The Highlander’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (53% to 47%) than the Passport’s (58% to 42%). This gives the Highlander more stable handling and braking.

For better maneuverability, the Highlander’s turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the Passport AWD’s (38.7 feet vs. 39.3 feet). The Highlander’s turning circle is .8 feet tighter than the Passport’s (38.7 feet vs. 39.5 feet).

Passenger Space

The Highlander has standard seating for 8 passengers; the Passport can only carry 5.

The Highlander has 29 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Passport (144.9 vs. 115.9).

The Highlander has .6 inches more front headroom and 3.3 inches more front legroom than the Passport.

Cargo Capacity

The Highlander’s cargo area provides more volume than the Passport.

 

Highlander

Passport

Third Seat Folded

42.3 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

41.2 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

83.7 cubic feet

77.9 cubic feet

The Highlander’s optional rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the liftgate door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The Passport’s rear cargo window doesn’t open.

Ergonomics

The Highlander Limited/Platinum’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Passport’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The Highlander’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Honda only offers heated mirrors on the Passport EX-L/Touring/Elite.

The Highlander’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Passport’s power mirror controls are on the dash, hidden behind the steering wheel, where they are awkward to manipulate.

Recommendations

The Toyota Highlander has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

 

Highlander

Passport

Consumer Reports® Recommends

Top Pick

n/a

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

n/a

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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