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Toyota Highlander vs Subaru Ascent

So, you are deciding between the 2024 Subaru Ascent vs. the 2024 Toyota Highlander for your next big SUV purchase. Although these SUVs may be extremely similar in model type, there are quite differences in what each model brings. Toyota of Clermont experts are diving into the Ascent vs. Highlander to help you determine which SUV is right for you. 

Comparing the Highlander vs. Ascent: Which one is right for you?

2024 Toyota Highlander


2024 Subaru Ascent

Starting MSRP

25 MPG Combined

Average MPG Combined (Gas)

22 MPG Combined

Hybrid Models


Different Trims

8 passengers

Seat Capacity

8 passengers
Up to 2 years or 25,000 miles

Complimentary Scheduled Maintenance

Let’s talk about performance: Subaru Ascent vs Toyota Highlander

ascent vs highlander performance

  • Let’s discuss the engines of these models. The 2024 Highlander gets a 2.4 turbo 4-cylinder that produces more horsepower and torque than the Ascent. 
  • Highlander gets 265 horsepower and 310 lbs-ft of torque vs the Ascent gets 260 horsepower and 277 lbs-ft of torque. 
  • The 2024 Highlander offers more versatility available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations, while the Ascent doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration. 
  • The Highlander vs Ascent can shut off the Highlander’s engine at a stoplight to save fuel, reduce overall pollution, and start back up when it’s time to press the gas. This feature is not available on the 2024 Subaru Ascent. 
  • When it comes to efficiency, the Highlander wins with better handle, and acceleration due to its lighter weight chassis with approximately 150 to 200 pounds less than the Subaru Ascent. 
  • The Highlander’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Ascent’s (5000 vs. 2000 pounds on the base trim). 
  • Also, experience larger brake rotors allowing more stopping power on the Clermont Toyota Highlander. 

It’s easy to say the Highlander wins when it comes to performance, I mean Toyota is all about their reliability. Now, let’s move on to more fun details on these SUV models. We’re talking about the tech, safety, and getting inside of the interior.

Let’s discuss who wins the safety department Highlander vs Ascent

Safety is a very important aspect of your car, especially a family SUV. However, there’s no need to worry about these models both standing strong when it comes to the safety category. Let’s see who may have a slight advantage over the other model in this department. 

  • Luckily, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration tests the impact of these vehicles. The two models both undergo the test of being crashed into a flat barrier. Through this, it was found that the Toyota Highlander is safer than the Subaru Ascent
  • The 2024 Highlander offers a standard secondary collision brake that automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash. The Ascent doesn’t offer this post-collision braking system. Another advantage of this is it can help you lower your insurance through this safety feature. 
  • It also gets a standard blind spot warning system that uses sensors to alert the driver to objects in the vehicle’s blind spots. It is offered standard on Highlander and the Ascent gets it only on certain models including Premium, Onyx, Limited, and Touring that offer these blind spot warning systems.
  • Another advantage is there are almost 2x the amount of Toyota dealerships like Toyota of Clermont than there are Subaru dealerships. This makes it safer and easier in case of an emergency. 

It doesn’t end there, these family cars both factor in the everyday driving experience and give you plenty of other safety features. Enjoy incredible airbag systems, seatbelt pre-tensioners and height-adjustable seatbelts, traction control on the roads, LATCH systems for the little ones, lane departure warning systems, backup cameras, and daytime running lights. As you can see, the 2024 Toyota Highlander wins in the safety department with more available standard safety features, as well as winning the NHTSA test when compared to the 2024 Subaru Ascent.

Diving into these SUV interiors

2024 Highlander interior in Clermont, FL

Now, on to the interior of the Ascent vs Highlander. Stepping into the interior it’s important to make sure that it’s coziness is very apparent. What makes a cozy interior? Well, lots of space for one thing and seats that don’t make you feel like you have been stuck in traffic for 2 hours. Luckily, with these two family SUVs, you’ll find that they both come with plenty of space seating up to eight passengers with multiple different seating options like fabric, SofTex/StarTex (vegan leather), and leather. Now, let’s get into some of the other interior differences:

  • The Highlander offers a liftgate on the higher-level trims that allows you to kick your foot under the back bumper and open up the cargo after a grocery shopping spree. The Ascent doesn’t offer this type of Interior technology. So, it’s a perk for the 2024 Toyota Highlander. 
  • Not to mention, let’s discuss the size differences between the cargo space of the Highlander vs Ascent. Enjoy more cargo space on the Clermont Toyota Highlander with 48.4 cubic feet of space vs the Ascent with 43.5 cubic feet of space with the third row folded down. Then, with the second and third rows folded down the Highlander offers 84.3 cubic feet of space while the Ascent offers 75.6 cubic feet of space. This is a huge advantage with the Highlander giving you more space to haul in your cargo space. 
  • Enjoy a power window lock on both the Highlander and Ascent in Clermont, Florida. This lock is great for preventing children from opening the windows. However, the 2024 Highlander gives you a little something more with the option to operate all windows with the lock on, which is unavailable with the Ascent. 
  • The Highlander has some amazing interior features that just make it more seamless to operate this SUV with the hustle and bustle of life. Enjoy the Highlander’s front and rear windows only using one touch to operate them. Unfortunately, the Subaru Ascent’s front and rear windows require you to continuously press down to fully roll the windows up and down. 
  • For the chilly days and nights, enjoy heated outside mirrors on the Ascent vs Highlander. It’s a great feature that is available on both models, however it’s standard on the Highlander and only available on higher Ascent trims. 
  • The engine on the Highlander isn’t the only thing that has more power. Enjoy power rearview mirrors that automatically tilt to give you a better curb if you are parallel parking, versus the Ascent that doesn’t have this automatic availability. 

Ascent vs Highlander cargo space

And if you still aren’t sold the Highlander wins versus the Ascent. A consumer report ranked the Highlander 27 points higher in reliability than the Subaru Ascent. Consumer reports also did a report ranking Toyota first for overall reliability, whereas Subaru ranked in seventh place. It didn’t stop there either. We know the Highlander is crushing the Ascent, but numbers are numbers. When it comes to brands Toyota vehicles rank above average for long-term dependability by J.D. Power, while Subaru ranks below average.

Customize your next Toyota Highlander at Toyota of Clermont!

So, come see for yourself which vehicle is right for you! Test drive the new 2024 Toyota Highlander at Toyota of Clermont today. We’ll make sure you pick the right ride that you’ll love driving mile after mile. Visit us at 16851 State Road 50 seven days a week! 





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