by Ella Patterson
The Kia Telluride has captivated me since its debut last year. This is Kia’s biggest SUV, and, like most three-row midsize SUVs, it seats up to eight passengers. Other aspect of the 2021 Telluride does things a little nicer than the rest. Its cabin is luxury-like in its quality and the third-row seat can comfortably fit adults. The Telluride rides effortlessly and is equipped with the latest technology and safety highlights. There is a marvelous warranty and competitive pricing.
The 2020 Telluride SX V6 AWD is a comfortable, capable and loyal family hauler. I fell in love with the Telluride after several thousand miles behind the wheel. The Telluride is a pleasant SUV to drive. Its V6 engine is responsive, though outright acceleration is ultimately average for a three-row SUV.
In testing, the Telluride test vehicle sprinted from 0 to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds, which is similar to the acceleration of the Honda Pilot and Hyundai Palisade. The brakes are strong and can bring the Telluride to a halt in a hurry. They’re also easy to modulate for consistent and smooth stops. The steering is light at parking-lot speeds and weights up naturally in turns. The Telluride is stable when going around turns and doesn’t demonstrate unnecessary body roll. The engine’s fuel-saving stop-start feature works smoothly and quietly.
The Telluride offers a very roomy and upscale-feeling cabin with easy access to all three rows. Passenger space is excellent in both the second and third rows. The space feels more open thanks in part to the abundance of large windows. The front-passenger knee room is close. The controls are clearly labeled and arranged logically, but the driver has to stretch to reach the infotainment screen. Visibility is excellent thanks to plenty of large windows. The camera systems and parking sensors are wonderful extras.
Tellurides come with numerous collision avoidance and mitigation systems as well as adaptive cruise control that operates down to a stop. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come standard, with numerous USB ports that are spread across all three rows, although only one can transmit data. The optional wider infotainment screen (EX and up) looks sharp, and it comes with navigation that offers several useful features.
The upgraded 10-speaker sound system is also excellent. The turn-signal camera display in the gauge cluster is less impressive. It’s small, low-resolution and mostly redundant given the regular blind-spot monitoring system.
The Telluride might be the best value in the class for what you get. From the driving experience to the interior to the standard and available features, at every price point you just get a little bit extra, and in top trims you get a near-luxury experience. Overall, we are very impressed with the quality of the Telluride. You also get Kia’s impressive 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty.