The 29-year-old, a winner of two ranking event titles this year along with the prestigious Masters crown, lost his only previous Crucible final to the Scot in 2011 but eight years on emerged triumphant in Sheffield.
Trump hit a record-equalling seven centuries and became the first player to earn £1m in a single season as he claimed the title in a sensational contest that saw a Crucible-record total of 11 hundreds for the final and took the tournament total to 100, breaking the previous best of 86.
It’s now four defeats in World Championship finals for Higgins, second only to Jimmy White (6), and his third defeat to a third different opponent in the Sheffield showpiece in as many years.
But Monday night belonged to Trump, who finally fulfilled his potential in the sport’s premier event.
“I’ve worked so hard for this, it was an amazing final,” he told the crowd in his post-match interview.
“John is such a great player, I always seem to raise my game and still don’t beat him. This is probably the best I’ve ever played in a major final – but I still didn’t feel comfortable coming into tonight.
“I can’t put it into words how well I played, that’s what you’ve got to do to beat John – he is one of the greatest to play the game.”
Trump’s spectacular evening session on Saturday night, where he won seven of the eight frames to open up a 12-5 advantage, proved the deciding factor despite Higgins’ best efforts.