Mazda CX-90 PHEV vs. Toyota Highlander Hybrid: Clash of the Electrified SUVs

Compare the performance, efficiency, and features of the Mazda CX-90 PHEV and the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, two top contenders in the hybrid SUV segment.
Mazda CX-90 PHEV vs. Toyota Highlander Hybrid: Clash of the Electrified SUVs

Mazda CX-90 PHEV vs. Toyota Highlander Hybrid: A Comparative Analysis of Performance, Efficiency, and Features

Introduction: In the ever-evolving automotive landscape, the demand for eco-friendly and fuel-efficient vehicles continues to soar. Among the frontrunners in this domain, the Mazda CX-90 PHEV and the Toyota Highlander Hybrid stand out as compelling options. Both vehicles offer a combination of performance, efficiency, and features that cater to the needs of modern drivers. This comprehensive analysis delves into the intricacies of each vehicle, highlighting their strengths, differences, and potential drawbacks to assist prospective buyers in making an informed decision. Performance and Powertrain: The Mazda CX-90 PHEV boasts a robust powertrain that seamlessly blends power and efficiency. Its turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, paired with an electric motor, generates a combined output of 323 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque. This potent combination enables the CX-90 PHEV to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in a mere 5.6 seconds, delivering exhilarating performance that belies its eco-friendly credentials. In contrast, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid employs a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine coupled with two electric motors. This setup produces a combined output of 243 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque, resulting in a 0-60 mph acceleration time of 7.3 seconds. While the Highlander Hybrid delivers adequate performance for everyday driving, it falls short of the CX-90 PHEV's spirited acceleration. Fuel Efficiency and Range: The Mazda CX-90 PHEV excels in the realm of fuel efficiency, offering an impressive EPA-estimated 30 miles of all-electric range. This allows drivers to complete short commutes or errands without relying on gasoline, significantly reducing fuel consumption and emissions. When the electric range is depleted, the CX-90 PHEV seamlessly transitions to hybrid mode, achieving an EPA-estimated combined fuel economy of 56 mpg in the city and 50 mpg on the highway. The Toyota Highlander Hybrid also impresses with its fuel efficiency, delivering an EPA-estimated 36 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway. While it lacks the CX-90 PHEV's all-electric range, the Highlander Hybrid's impressive fuel economy makes it an economical choice for long road trips. Driving Experience and Handling: The Mazda CX-90 PHEV exhibits a refined driving experience characterized by responsive handling and a composed ride. Its well-tuned suspension effectively absorbs road imperfections, ensuring a comfortable and controlled ride quality. The CX-90 PHEV's direct steering and precise handling inspire confidence, making it a pleasure to drive on่œฟ่œ’ๆ›ฒๆŠ˜roads. The Toyota Highlander Hybrid offers a comfortable and stable ride, albeit with a slightly softer suspension setup compared to the CX-90 PHEV. Its handling is competent, providing a predictable and composed driving experience. However, the Highlander Hybrid's larger size and higher center of gravity may result in slightly less agile handling compared to the CX-90 PHEV. Interior Space and Comfort: Both the Mazda CX-90 PHEV and the Toyota Highlander Hybrid offer spacious cabins with ample seating for up to eight passengers. The CX-90 PHEV's interior features a premium design with high-quality materials and meticulous craftsmanship. Its seats are supportive and comfortable, even on extended journeys. The Highlander Hybrid's cabin is also well-appointed, with comfortable seats and generous legroom in both rows. In terms of cargo space, the CX-90 PHEV provides 14.2 cubic feet behind the third row, 44.2 cubic feet behind the second row, and 85.8 cubic feet with both rows folded down. The Highlander Hybrid offers slightly more cargo capacity, with 16.1 cubic feet behind the third row, 48.4 cubic feet behind the second row, and 84.3 cubic feet with both rows folded down. Technology and Features: The Mazda CX-90 PHEV comes equipped with a comprehensive suite of advanced technology features. Its 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system features intuitive controls and a user-friendly interface. The CX-90 PHEV also boasts a premium Bose audio system, a panoramic sunroof, and a heads-up display. The Toyota Highlander Hybrid also offers a range of advanced features, including a 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system, a JBL premium audio system, and a panoramic sunroof. Additionally, the Highlander Hybrid includes Toyota's Safety Sense 2.5+ suite of driver-assist technologies, which includes lane departure alert, automatic emergency braking, and adaptive cruise control. Safety and Reliability: Both the Mazda CX-90 PHEV and the Toyota Highlander Hybrid have earned top safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Both vehicles come standard with a comprehensive array of safety features, including airbags, anti-lock brakes, and electronic stability control. In terms of reliability, Toyota has a long-standing reputation for producing durable and dependable vehicles. The Highlander Hybrid benefits from Toyota's extensive experience in hybrid technology, ensuring peace of mind for long-term ownership. The Mazda CX-90 PHEV, while a newer model, is backed by Mazda's commitment to quality and innovation. Pricing and Value: The Mazda CX-90 PHEV has a starting price of $47,895, while the Toyota Highlander Hybrid starts at $41,455. The CX-90 PHEV offers a more powerful powertrain, better fuel efficiency, and a more refined driving experience. However, the Highlander Hybrid is more affordable and offers a slightly more spacious cabin and more cargo capacity. Ultimately, the choice between the Mazda CX-90 PHEV and the Toyota Highlander Hybrid depends on individual needs and preferences. Those seeking a powerful and efficient SUV with a luxurious interior and a sporty driving experience may find the CX-90 PHEV a compelling choice. Drivers prioritizing affordability, cargo space, and a proven track record of reliability may prefer the Highlander Hybrid.