Toyota has just made the Highlander a bit sportier with the debut of the 2021 Highlander XSE. Just like the other XSE models in Toyota’s lineup, the 2021 Highlander XSE gets a sportier exterior, some suspension upgrades and a unique interior.
The 2021 Toyota Highlander XSE is positioned between the XLE and Limited trim levels and is powered exclusively by a 3.5-liter V6 with 295 horsepower that’s mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. It’s available with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
On the outside the Highlander XSE stands out with its more aggressive front fascia, grille, and lower spoiler. It also gets unique headlights with black accents and light-strip DRLs. Unique rocker panels have been added and a chrome dual-tip exhaust. The exterior is finished off with black roof rails, mirror caps, window moldings and 20-inch wheels with black accents.
Inside there are black Softex seats with fabric inserts, ambient lighting and carbon-fiber finish on the instrument panel. A two-tone red and black leather interior with a red-stitched instrument panel is available.
To make it more fun to drive the Highlander XSE gets higher-rate springs and rear stabilizer bar, and the shock absorbers have been re-tuned for lower friction. The electric power steering has also been re-tuned.
The 2021 Toyota Highlander XSE will arrive this fall.