The Highlander was one of my choices early last year when I was just doing research. But for the price, it just didn't offer the space I needed for my family. The 3rd row in the Highlander is pretty useless. I wouldn't say you could load the Traverse with 7 adults comfortably, but it fits my kids (5, 7 and 9) and still offers plenty of usable storage room.
I don't think there's any question that Toyotas hold their value. No contest there. But to get an equally equipped Highlander, you're alot more money out the door up front than a Traverse too. My pocket book didn't allow for that extra splurge. I was able to get everything I wanted and needed in my Traverse without giving myself a financial heart attack.
I love the rearview mirror. I've used it in regular mode and did not find it to be dark. It worked just fine as a mirror. I prefer it with the video screen though because it gives me more visibility to what is going on around me and as such, makes me feel safer driving the vehicle.
I also really like the Top Down View when parking. I use that solely to park my vehicle now wherever I happen to be parking. That way I know I'm centered between the lines, all the way in the spot and have enough clearance around me. Fantastic feature.
Having said that, I don't think the rear visibility in the Traverse is great if you're just looking over your shoulder to back up, change lanes, etc. I find it difficult to see anything. I depend greatly on that rear view mirror video, backup camera, front camera and the side mirror indicators that tell me if someone or something is in or near any blind spots. With these additional features, I don't worry about poor visibility because I can always tell what is going on around me.
I'm unsure about the ground clearance. It's honestly not something I looked into or considered. We live in the northern burbs of Chicago and get our fair share of snow. I've only had the Traverse since December 8th. 2,600 miles later it's still driving great. The AWD handled well in the snow we had last weekend. We're expecting more this weekend, so I'll get it out there and test it some more.
Only you can make the decision for yourself. Hopefully the insight you gain from this forum helps you make the best one for you and your family. Good luck!