Ford Explorer vs Toyota Highlander

The Ford Explorer vs. Toyota Highlander has been an ongoing debate for those in Glen Allen, Ashland, and Short Pump looking to secure a family-friendly SUV. To help you choose between the two options, Richmond Ford West decided to put together this comparison, where we'll be going over the performance, safety, and infotainment.

If you continue reading, you'll get a better feel for the differences between the 2019 Ford Explorer and the Toyota Highlander. You can also reach out to our accommodating staff with any further questions!

Ford Explorer vs Toyota Highlander Specs

If we start by comparing the performance specifications of the 2019 Ford Explorer and Toyota Highlander, it's clear the Explorer has an edge in both comfort of ride and athleticism.

This divide is created by the variety offered in the Ford Explorer lineup, which provides three available engines-the strongest being a 3.5L EcoBoost® V6 that generates 365 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. By combining this power with a smooth-shifting 6-speed transmission, the Ford Explorer delivers a satisfying ride each time you settle into the driver's seat.

In comparison, the Toyota Highlander is able to produce 295 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque by utilizing a 3.5L V6 engine. This output is underwhelming and the transmission options scatter between a 6-speed automatic, 8-speed automatic, and an electronically-controlled continuously variable transmission. 

  • Both the 2019 Ford Explorer and 2019 Toyota Highlander offer three different engine options.
  • The engine in the Ford Explorer offers a stronger engine option with its 3.5L EcoBoost® V6 that delivers 365 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque, which is greater than the Highlander's 3.5L V6 engine that achieves only 295 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque.

Comparing Safety Features

Keeping you protected while navigating local roads and bustling highways is a top priority for the Ford Explorer and Toyota Highlander.

Ford, for example, endows their SUV with a comprehensive Ford Safe and Smart™ package that comes with the following systems:

  • Rain-sensing wipers
  • Auto high-beam headlamps
  • Lane-Keeping System
  • Adaptive Cruise Control and forward collision warning with brake support

As for the Toyota Highlander, it comes with Automatic High Beams and Dynamic Radar Cruise Control; however, it simply doesn't offer the comprehensive array of features that the Explorer provides.

Intuitive Infotainment Systems

A little music or easy access to navigation can go a long way in boosting the overall driving experience. Thankfully, the Ford Explorer and Toyota Highlander have modernized infotainment systems.

For example, the Ford Explorer features the SYNC® 3 interface, which gives you the ability to utilize the Voice-Activated Navigation system or SiriusXM® Satellite Radio. Plus, there's the accompanying FordPass™ Connect application that allows you to compare prices from nearby gas stations and look up other useful information.

The Toyota Highlander is no slouch when it comes to infotainment, and this is obvious when looking at the Entune™ Audio interface. While this system proves to be effective, it's typically cited as having a round-about interface that lends itself to a long learning curve.

2019 Ford Explorer vs Toyota Highlander

After comparing key features of the Ford Explorer vs. Toyota Highlander side by side, it seems the 2019 Ford Explorer is an easy choice for those in the Glen Allen, Ashland, and Short Pump communities. To see for yourself, test drive this SUV after contacting your friends at Richmond Ford West or browsing our inventory of Ford Explorer models online today!


Richmond Ford West

10751 West Broad Street
Directions Glen Allen, VA 23060

  • Sales: (804) 474-0571
  • Service: (804) 474-0573
  • Parts: 804-273-1581


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