The new engine is a 2.7-liter four-cylinder with 187 horsepower and 186 pound-feet of torque. Running on regular fuel, the new engine has a dual exhaust manifold, Toyota says, for better low-end torque. Fuel economy ratings haven't been released, but the engine will be teamed with a new six-speed automatic transmission that Toyota says will help it perform like a V-6.
The four-cylinder Highlander will be offered in two-wheel drive and with two rows of seats, cutting its curb weight. A third-row seat will be offered as an option, however. Toyota will also offer a power driver seat, air conditioning, and audio upgrades in the value-oriented model. Towing capacity will be rated at 3,500 pounds.
The new four-cylinder Highlander goes on sale in January, alongside the V-6 Highlander and the Highlander Hybrid.