Kia Telluride Review

Kia Telluride Review

Suggested Telluride MSRP

$31,690 SHOP

Average Telluride Used Price

$24,980 SEARCH Review Score

Better SUV Review Ranking    84/100

Kia Telluride Stats


SUV MPG Reivew
19 City
24 Highway


SUV Horsepower Reivew
291 HP
262 Torque

0-60 Time

SUV 0 to 60 Reivew
7.2 Seconds
11.6 to 100mph


SUV Drivetrain Review

front wheel drive


The 2020 Kia Telluride competes with the likes of the Subaru Ascent, Ford Explorer, and Honda Pilot. It has great value with a bold design and long list of standard and available features. It was made for the young and adventurous in mind! It has been described as a rowdier alternative to its cousin, the Hyundai Palisade.

The Telluride is Kia’s largest SUV. Kia’s other SUVs include the Niro, Sportage, and Sorento. There are four Telluride models to choose, with front-wheel drive standard and all-wheel drive optional. You can choose between the LX, S, EX, or SX.

The Telluride was designed at Kia’s studio in Irvine, California and is being assembled in West Point, Georgia alongside certain Sorento and Optima trims. With the Telluride’s competitive starting price of around $32,000 in mind, this three-row SUV is definitely a great option to consider if you need plenty of space, critical stress-relieving safety features, and lots of technology!



There’s plenty of competition in this area of the SUV market, but the Telluride offers a great starting price considering the space, technology, impressive design, and safety features it offers. It has a starting price of around $32,000, which is a bargain compared to some competitor vehicles that offer less features. Going up in trim level will cost you more money, though. You could easily shell out just shy of $50,000 for a range-topping Telluride SX AWD model.


Every Telluride is powered by a 3.8-liter V6 engine. It gets 291 horsepower and 262 lb.-ft. of torque. It’s paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard, but you can opt for all-wheel drive for an additional $2,000 on any trim.

Experts and critics who had the chance to test drive the 2020 Kia Telluride through the mountains of Colorado said the midsize SUV handled well and that they were impressed by the engine’s ability to get it up to speed quickly. Those critics said the vehicle’s adjustable drive modes also proved beneficial while navigating secondary roads riddled with potholes. also took the Telluride out for a spin. We were impressed by how comfortable the ride was!

As for the driving modes offered, there’s Comfort, Sport, Eco, and Smart. However, if you opt for the all-wheel drive system, you’ll get two more. Snow and AWD Lock modes are added in that case. The AWD Lock mode delivers power evenly to all four wheels. As for towing, the Telluride is capable of hauling up to 5,000 pounds.

Kia says with all-wheel drive models, the Telluride gets an EPA-estimated 24 miles per gallon on the highway. It gets 19 mpg city. That does lag behind some competitors. Not to mention, many companies are now offering hybrid versions of their SUVs.


Moving inside the vehicle now, there’s plenty to keep passengers happy and comfortable. The wide console’s design helps convey a feeling of spaciousness. Kia says the Telluride’s interior feels more “luxe living room” than utility vehicle. With room for up to eight passengers, this SUV offers plenty of space! Even the third-row is pretty comfortable.

An 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system comes standard on the Telluride, while a larger 10.25-inch screen with rear view monitor and parking guidance is available.

If you need plenty of power for all your devices, know six total USB charging ports are available. Five ports come standard. Wireless smartphone charging is also available. And if you want to play music off one of those devices, an available 630-watt, 10-speaker Harman/Kardon audio system with Quantum Logic Surround Sound and Clari-Fi will help make your favorite songs sound even better! Another interesting available feature in this Kia SUV, is the multi-Bluetooth wireless connectivity. It allows for up to two phones to connect simultaneously for audio streaming. That means less fighting over who gets to put their music on!

As for cargo space, there’s 21 cubic feet of it behind the third row. That space expands to 46 cubic feet with that back row folded. If both rear rows are folded flat, however, there’s 87 cubic feet of space! That’s a lot, even for an adventurer looking to cram in plenty of equipment and cargo. That amount of space is also about equal to what one of the Kia Telluride’s competitors, the Subaru Ascent, offers. Not many other SUVs out there offer much more cargo space than that! However, the Volkswagen Atlas does offer a whopping 96.8 cubic feet with all of its rear seats folded down.

As we mentioned before, the Telluride’s seats are quite comfortable and spacious. There’s optional heating and cooling for the first and second row. And as for the third row, you’re actually able to recline those seats! If you happen to have kids sleeping in the back, you’re able to also mute the sound for those rows. That means you can listen to your music without disturbing them! If you need to wake the kids up, though, for a bathroom break or after you get to your destination, you can also use a microphone to project your voice toward the back of the vehicle! We can definitely see how that could come in handy, especially if the kiddos were starting to act up.

While we’re about to talk more about the Telluride’s safety features in the next section, it’s important to note that Kia also has a standard rear-seat alert system, so you don’t forget your little ones or furry friends in the backseat. Plus, there’s safe exit assist. That helps prevent your passengers from opening the rear doors into the path of a biker or oncoming car. Those two available features are firsts for any Kia SUV.


While the Telluride definitely has a great boxy look, it also sports some beautiful curves that are easy to look at!

“From the first pencil stroke it was meant to convey the kind of presence associated with the original legendary SUVS -- big, bold, and boxy -- and the go-anywhere, do-anything attitude their square, burly-shouldered shapes suggested,” writes Kia about its Telluride.

Further contributing to the Telluride’s bold look is its wide grille, with its nameplate proudly spelled out on the broad hood above it. The Telluride nameplate can also be found on the vehicle’s liftgate. There’s no disputing the identity of Kia’s flagship SUV here! Kia is proud of this SUV and wants the vehicle’s name known. Some even say the Telluride’s look reminds them of a Range Rover.

A rear sculpted skid plate with integrated twin exhaust tips, meanwhile, hints at the off-road ability and power of the Telluride. That rear skid plate is standard on EX, S, and SX trims.


The 2020 Kia Telluride offers a long list of standard safety features, including blind-spot monitoring, forward collision warning with pedestrian detection, lane-departure mitigation, rear cross-traffic collision avoidance, and more. On the higher trims, you’ll also get a head-up display and a blind-spot view monitor that projects a digital display of what’s beside you in the gauge cluster. There are also seven airbags located throughout the SUV.

One other interesting system to point out is Kia’s Highway Driving Assistant. It’s a partially automated, hands-on-the-wheel system that’s meant to help you while driving in stop-and-go traffic on the highway.


The Kia Telluride’s long list of standard and available technology and safety features are definitely impressive, as is the vehicle’s bold styling. The engine and various drive modes help you keep up with what’s ahead, while the creature comforts inside the vehicle work to keep all your passengers happy. With room for up to eight, the Telluride is a vehicle that’s not just made for weekend trips, but weekend trips with all of your family and friends! It’s the first Kia specifically designed for the United States and it has been selling well!

   Published by Elizabeth Jeneault on Sep 18, 2019  

SUV Competitors
Chevrolet Traverse
Chevrolet Equinox
Audi Q3
Buick Encore


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