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When Driving is about Lifestyle, Car Life Nation is the Answer

When Driving is about Lifestyle, Car Life Nation is the Answer

A closeup of a black 2019 GMC Acadia All Terrain headlight

The 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander – Make the Right Decision

If you’re looking for a stylish, durable and dependable SUV, it’s quite possible that your search started with several models, and now you find yourself down to two choices. This is a common way for drivers to make a decision, and it’s also common for people searching for SUVs to come down to the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander. We’ve seen this choice many times already this year, as these are two top-selling models that are generally earning positive reviews. The best way to finalize an automotive purchasing decision, whether it’s the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander or some other two-way choice, is to really drill down deep and compare the models and as many of their features as possible.

We’re going to do that for you below, so all you need to do is read through the different points of comparison before making a decision. Rather than searching around through different sources to find bits and pieces of information in a scattered form, you’ll find it all in one place. After reviewing, we’re also confident that you’ll see that the choice between the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander is relatively clear.

The 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander – Safety

One of the most common reasons that people choose to purchase an SUV is safety for its occupants, so it makes sense to start there when comparing the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander. Each of these models comes standard with the following safety features:

  • ABS Brakes
  • Driver Airbag
  • Passenger Airbag
  • Front Side Airbags
  • Curtain Airbags

In terms of NHTSA crash test results and corresponding rating, there is a difference that appears, and it does so in favor of the GMC Acadia.

The Acadia:

  • Overall – 5 stars
  • Front Crash Overall – 5 stars
  • Side Crash Overall – 5 stars
  • Side Barrier Driver – 5 stars
  • Side Barrier Passenger – 5 stars

The Highlander:

  • Overall – 4 stars
  • Front Crash Overall – 4 stars
  • Side Crash Overall – 5 stars
  • Side Barrier Driver – 5 stars
  • Side Barrier Passenger – 5 stars

On the surface, it seems as though the difference between these two crash ratings is relatively slight, but it does make a difference in many ways. While both of these vehicles are safe, the GMC Acadia scores higher based on independent testing.

The 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander – Engine

When you look under the hood when performing the analysis of the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander, you’ll see more distinct differences. The choice, then, comes down to how much power and acceleration you want in your engine as you drive one of these vehicles on a daily basis.

The Acadia:

  • Available Engines: 2
  • Max Available Horsepower – 310 hp at 6,600 RPM
  • Max Available Torque – 271 lb.-ft at 5,000 RPM

The Highlander:

  • Available Engines: 2
  • Max Available Horsepower – 295 hp at 6,600 RPM
  • Max Available Torque – 263 lb.-ft at 4,700 RPM

As you see, while once again the comparison between these two models yields somewhat similar results, the GMC Acadia offers a bit more in terms of power and engine capabilities.

The 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander – Bells and Whistles

A red 2019 GMC Acadia Denali climbs up a hill

While safety and engine specifics are of paramount importance when deciding on the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander, that doesn’t mean that the comforts of the ride itself are not also prominent factors in someone’s ultimate purchase decision. Below you’ll find a basic comparison between these two models in terms of their “bells and whistles,” or riding conveniences.

The Acadia:

  • Air Conditioning – Standard
  • Power Windows – Standard
  • Power Door Locks – Standard
  • Driver Power Seats – Standard
  • Passenger Power Seats – Standard

The Highlander:

  • Air Conditioning – Standard
  • Power Windows – Standard
  • Power Door Locks – Standard
  • Driver Power Seats – Not Standard
  • Passenger Power Seats – Not Standard

The Acadia does not come standard with a CD player, but unlike the Highlander, it does come with power driver and passenger seats, which does make it easier for those riding in the cabin to get comfortable.

The 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander – Payload and Towing

Another common reason that people purchase SUVs is for the utility that they offer. If you have ever owned an SUV, it’s likely that someone has asked you to haul or tow something, and that brings us to our next level of analysis with regards to the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander: towing and payload capacities.

The Acadia:

  • Cargo Volume – 12.8 cubic feet
  • Maximum Payload – 1,847 pounds
  • Towing Capacity – 4,000 pounds

The Highlander:

  • Cargo Volume – 13.8 cubic feet
  • Maximum Payload – 1,370 pounds
  • Towing Capacity – 5,000 pounds

Overall, the Highlander appears to be capable of towing more weight, while the Acadia can handle a much larger payload. This decision point appears to come down to what type of utility in which your vehicle will engage while you own it.

The 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander – MSRP

One of the biggest differences to consider when evaluating the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander is the MSRP. The GMC Acadia’s MSRP starts at around $29,000 and moves into the $40,000 range as you scale up to higher-level models. The Highlander starts at $31,300 and moves upward from there as well. $2,300 may not seem like much more than a few dollars per month in payments, but over the course of several years it can add up to quite a difference.

If one takes the average interest rate on a car loan in 2018, which is 4.21 percent, a purchaser will pay an average of $537 per month on a 60-month loan, which comes to a total of $32,210. Someone who purchases the Highlander will be looking at a monthly payment of $598 per month over 60 months with a total amount paid of $35,875. That’s not only about two dollars per day more in payments, but it’s also an extra $3,665 in total payments.

The 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander – Our Decision

Simply put, the analysis between the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander involves two high-quality vehicles. Drivers would do well with either model and likely be happy with their purchase. However, when it comes to deciding on the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander, we think it’s a pretty clear-cut decision for a lot of different reasons.

The safety ratings, engine capabilities and comforts of the ride all seem to favor the GMC Acadia, and those are extremely important factors when it comes to what you drive day in and day out. As such, if we were in a position to make a decision on the 2019 GMC Acadia vs 2019 Toyota Highlander, we’d go with the GMC Acadia. As an added bonus, we would also generally be spending less money than we would if we went with the Highlander. We hope this analysis has been helpful in moving you towards a decision.

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