2019 Ford Explorer vs Toyota Highlander

No vehicle can provide quite the same utility and style as a full-size SUV. Many drivers in the Mechanicsburg, Harrisburg, and Carlisle areas have already made the switch to an SUV for their storage capacity and stylish design. An SUV is a big investment, however, so if you're thinking of making the upgrade, you need to know which one is right for you.

In this comparison, we at Fred Beans Ford of Mechanicsburg will show you how two of the best full-sized SUVs on the market compare. Read ahead to see how the 2019 Ford Explorer and the 2019 Toyota Highlander stack up against each other when it comes to performance, interior, and technology!

Explorer vs Highlander: Performance

Both of these vehicles perform spectacularly and are reliable modes of transportation on the road. If you want to take things off-road, the Explorer is your vehicle. The Explorer's intuitive Intelligent 4WD System with Terrain Management System™ allows you to select between a variety of different modes including Normal, Mud, Sand, Grass, Snow, and Gravel. The drivetrain will automatically adjust to compensate for the dangers each of those terrain types can present.

The Highlander has no similar feature. While the high ground clearance will help if you take it off-road, it simply wasn't designed for extensive journeys off the beaten path. If you plan on taking your SUV on a camping trip, both of these can tow up to 5,000 pounds, but only the Explorer can reliably drive directly to your campsite.

Explorer vs Highlander: Interior

When you own a car, you experience the interior more than anything else. While both of these SUVs can sit three rows of people, passengers in the Explorer will feel a bit more comfortable. The driver can enjoy 41.4 inches of headroom while the Highlander can only offer 40.7 inches.

The rear passengers will notice a considerable difference in legroom. The Explorer offers 33.3 inches of second-row legroom while the Highlander only features a mere 27.7 inches. Hopefully, rear passengers in the Highlander aren't too tall because they have nearly two inches less headroom in the back of the Highlander as well.

Explorer vs Highlander: Technology

If you plan to use your SUV to haul your kids around, technology is particularly important. While the Highlander's Entune™ infotainment system is pretty advanced, it can't compete with Ford's state-of-the-art SYNC® 3 system. SYNC® 3 can be operated entirely by using voice commands. With SYNC Connect and FordPass, you can even control some of the Explorer's functions remotely with your smartphone. The Highlander offers no similar feature.

Despite Toyota's reputation for safety, the Explorer actually gets better marks on frontal crash tests achieving a perfect five stars in comparison to the Highlander's four stars. The large amount of driver assistance features may make up for that from certain perspectives, but the Explorer features all the same kind of driver assistance tech including rain-sensing wipers, Adaptive Cruise Control, Forward Collision Warning, and more. When it comes down to it, the Explorer is the safer choice.

2019 Ford Explorer vs 2019 Toyota Highlander: Which One?

At the end of the day, this Ford Explorer vs. Toyota Highlander comparison reveals the Explorer to be the better SUV. If you think you're ready to make the upgrade, we're ready to help all Mechanicsburg, Harrisburg, and Carlisle drivers. Our friendly team at Fred Beans Ford of Mechanicsburg is happy to offer all the knowledge and help you need to make your decision.

You can read reviews and listen to our advice all day, but the best judge will be your own person experience. Visit us or give us a call to schedule your test drive today!

Make an Inquiry


Fred Beans Ford of Mechanicsburg

6320 Carlisle Pike
Directions Mechanicsburg, PA 17050

  • Sales: (888) 868-4215
  • Service: 717-766-4733
  • Parts: 717-766-4733

Showroom Hours

  • Monday 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Tuesday 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Wednesday 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Thursday 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Friday 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Saturday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Sunday Closed
; ;