The Toyota Kluger, known as the Toyota Highlander in North America, is a crossover SUV assembled by Toyota under the Toyota brand name in its Kyūshū, Japan assembly plant and its Ikeda, Osaka, Japan assembly plant during 2008 and present. It was announced in April 2000 at the 2000 New York Auto Show and introduced as a 2001 model, arriving in late 2000 in Japan and in January 2001 in North America as a mid-year release 2001 model. The Highlander is the crossover counterpart to the 4Runner and has become Toyota's best-selling SUV until the RAV4 outsold it in 2006.
Toyota could not use the "Highlander" name in Australia and Japan, since it is a trim line of the Hyundai Terracan SUV.
Called the Highlander in North America, the Kluger shared the Toyota Camry platform with its Lexus RX/Toyota Harrier cousin and came in five and seven-seat configurations, and became a sales success for Toyota in a number of markets across the world. The Kluger came standard with front wheel drive and offered all wheel drive as an option. The Kluger was not meant for serious off roading, unlike competitors such as the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Chevrolet TrailBlazer, and Toyota's own 4Runner. Although it was originally longer than the 1996-2002 4Runner, the Kluger was surpassed in length by the 4Runner in 2003.