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A foodie, mum and entrepreneur, Daisy Dagg is the co-author and founder of the Rugby Pantry. Currently living in Canterbury, Daisy is married to Israel Dagg, and they have two kids, Arlo and Tilly.
Every year for summer, Izzy and I pack up the kids and head to the North Island, where we are both from, to see friends and family for the Christmas and New Year break. We always have a truckload of gear and find it extremely hard to get the four of us between Gisborne and Hawke’s Bay, the lake and the coast, with no car.
This year we were lucky enough to work with Toyota New Zealand and were given a Toyota Highlander to drive for the month.
I was very excited when they mentioned they were providing us with a Toyota Highlander. This SUV is one that I have known and loved for a long time, so I was amped to be able to test drive it for a whole month. Izzy and I will be moving more rurally at the end of the year, so I am interested in getting a slightly less city car and a more ‘all terrain’ car, Toyota Highlander being exactly that. Don’t get me wrong, this car is still sleek and stylish and suits the city life, but it has a truly premium level of specifications designed for all terrains – a true all-rounder. Whether it was driving in Napier city or over a farm track to Nuhiti Beach on the East Coast, the Highlander perfected on-road performance, creating an exhilarating drive on all that Kiwi roads could throw at us.
The full array of specifications can be found on the Toyota website www. toyota.co.nz, but I just want to highlight my absolute favourite aspect of this SUV – the space. Every Highlander features seating for seven, but when the last two seats are down the boot space is like a small room.
It is absolutely perfect for fitting the large amounts of gear needed for travelling with two kids and a husband who seems to want to cart around his golf clubs everywhere we go. Seriously, we had four suitcases, a pram, about four smaller bags, some Christmas presents and the golf clubs, and they all fitted into the boot magically.
There is a copious amount of leg room in the back seat, enough to fit even more luggage in front of the kids’ car seats if need be. I also love the other small areas of storage – the big centre console, the sweeping shelf in the instrument panel that is perfect for sunnies, wallets and phones, and the lockable glove box for hiding those valuable items.
In conclusion, this all-round SUV is in my opinion the perfect family wagon.
Affordable, reliable, sleek and stylish – Toyota Highlander boasts city appeal whilst being well known and admired for its off-road capabilities. It has storage galore and then some! Plenty of space for the vast amount of luggage needed for a family. Head into your local Toyota Store to check one out for yourself and have a test drive – you won’t regret it!