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Discussion Starter #1
Toyota posted a new Youtube video about the 2020 Highlander Hybrid System II + E-Four.

It seems to show that the rear electric motor provides better AWD performance that the previous system in Gen 3. Notice that it accelerates faster that the 2019 Highlander ghost image on the slippery incline.


I found this about the E-Four system in the RAV4 but the Highlander will be using the same set up:

Hybrid models are equipped with an all-new 2.5-liter hybrid system featuring a 2.5-liter Dynamic Force Engine based on the TNGA concept, realizing both excellent fuel efficiency and smooth acceleration.

As hybrid vehicles that employ a 4WD system, RAV4 hybrid models leverage a new E-Four with advanced hybrid technology. In concert with increased maximum torque of the rear wheels, a new control system allows torque distribution to the front and rear wheels to be changed from between 100:0 to 20:80.

Optimized control of torque distribution to the front and rear wheels during cornering enhances steering stability. An increase in rear-wheel torque contributes to a sense of safety when starting the car on inclines in snow or rain.

e_four 2020.png


e_four 2 2020.png


I found the specs for the rear electric motors and while the 2020 Highlander can send more torque to the rear wheels the motor is actually smaller than the 2019 - 53.6 HP/89 ft/lb for 2020 vs 67 HP/103 ft/lb for 2019. Same rear motor used in the RAV4 as the 2020 Highlander.

The front electric motor for the 2020 has more HP than the 2019 - 180 HP vs 165 HP but the 2020 has less torque than the 2019 - 199 ft/lb vs 247. The 2020 Highlander has a bigger front motor than the RAV4 - 180 HP/199 ft/lb vs 118 HP/149 ft/lb.
 

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Should have also included that while Hybrid Battery in both the 2019 and 2020 are 6.5 Ah and 288 V the 2019 is made up of 30 9.6V modules and the 2020 is made up of 40 7.2 V modules. The 2019 has a 8yr/100,000 mile warranty and the 2020 has a 10yr/150,000 mile warranty. Don't know if the modules have anything to do with that.

RAV4 has 34 7.2V modules and 244.8 V
 

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2020 Highlander Hybrid comes in FWD and AWD configurations with same HP numbers and torque listed for both, right? Does that mean that adding a rear motor does not add additional power to the system due to battery limitations?

Also, were any of the hybrid test drives in San Antonio AWD? Alex’s hybrid review specifically mentioned that the prototype was badged as Hybrid AWD but had no rear motor.
 

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Should have also included that while Hybrid Battery in both the 2019 and 2020 are 6.5 Ah and 288 V the 2019 is made up of 30 9.6V modules and the 2020 is made up of 40 7.2 V modules. The 2019 has a 8yr/100,000 mile warranty and the 2020 has a 10yr/150,000 mile warranty. Don't know if the modules have anything to do with that.

RAV4 has 34 7.2V modules and 244.8 V
This would indicate that the 2020 has switched from Nickle Metal Hydride to Lithium Polymer batteries as well, meaning they take up about 2/3 the space as NIMH batteries and have far more instantaneous current available.
 

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This would indicate that the 2020 has switched from Nickle Metal Hydride to Lithium Polymer batteries as well, meaning they take up about 2/3 the space as NIMH batteries and have far more instantaneous current available.
Still listed as Nickel-Medal hydride in the specs
 

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This would indicate that the 2020 has switched from Nickle Metal Hydride to Lithium Polymer batteries as well, meaning they take up about 2/3 the space as NIMH batteries and have far more instantaneous current available.
BTW Bob - I'm just on the other side of Lake Quinsigamond in Shrewsbury
 

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Discussion Starter #7
2020 Highlander Hybrid comes in FWD and AWD configurations with same HP numbers and torque listed for both, right? Does that mean that adding a rear motor does not add additional power to the system due to battery limitations?

Also, were any of the hybrid test drives in San Antonio AWD? Alex’s hybrid review specifically mentioned that the prototype was badged as Hybrid AWD but had no rear motor.
This youtube video review covered both. Didn't mention being faster but AWD delivered power to the road better - less torque steer.

EDIT - this is the video you mentioned - did you watch until the end?

 

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Direct comparison between two good auto YouTubers about Toyota vs Honda hybrids (RAV4 vs CR-V) including AWD performance. The mention that they would expect the powertrain of both these hybrids to be more reliable than their gasoline versions - something that they both took as a given but does not seem to be an accepted notion around these parts. Alex feels that the mechanical AWD of the CR-V is superior based on the fact that it could theoretically deliver 100% of the power to the rear wheels vs 50% for electric AWD.

 
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