Land Rover Defender Made to Look Good in Toyota Highlander AWD Comparison

Land Rover Defender vs Toyota Highlander slip test 7 photos
Photo: YouTube screenshot
Land Rover Defender vs Toyota Highlander slip testLand Rover Defender vs Toyota Highlander slip testLand Rover Defender vs Toyota Highlander slip testLand Rover Defender vs Toyota Highlander slip testLand Rover Defender vs Toyota Highlander slip testLand Rover Defender vs Toyota Highlander slip test
Out in the real world where real people spend real money, the Land Rover Defender and the Toyota Highlander are not competing against each other in any way, shape, or form.
They're not in the same class, they're not in the same price bracket, they don't fulfill the same purpose. Actually, apart from the number of wheels and the fact they can both call themselves SUVs, more things set them apart than bring them together.

Still, the guys at The Fast Lane Car thought it would be a good idea to have them compete against each other in a controlled slip test using rollers. Obviously, they mention the fact they are not direct competitors but don't you think people will watch this and go, "Hmm, if the Highlander isn't doing so great, then probably the Land Cruiser isn't much better either. After all, it too is a Toyota SUV".

Maybe the TFL team is atoning for all the bad press it generated for the new Defender after the whole debacle we're sure you're aware of, or maybe they just wanted to show the difference between AWD and 4WD, and these were the two cars they had access to at the moment. Who knows?

For what it's worth, the Toyota did extremely well at first, acing the first test where the front axle is suspended on the rollers and pulling off with ease in the diagonal test where the left front wheel and the rear right wheels don't have any traction. It was only when three of its wheels were lifted on the slippery rollers that trouble kicked in.

With only the front right wheel touching the ground, the Toyota refused to move. Tommy, the host of this clip, tried switching between the vehicle's various traction modes, but to no avail. It was only when he gave the throttle pedal a good press that the Highlander sent enough power to the wheel with traction to pull the vehicle out of its predicament.

Repeating the test but with the rear right wheel in firm contact with the ground revealed even more of the Highlander's AWD system limitations. Despite Tommy's best efforts, the Toyota refused to move forward without a push.

Needless to say, the Land Rover Defender had no problem getting out of all of these situations, just like you would expect from a vehicle built primarily (so they say) for off-roading. All Land Rover reliability jokes aside, the All-Terrain Response system is considered to be among the best traction control systems in the business - if not the best - and this test proves once again why.

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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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