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Top Features of Base Model
- Handsome styling
- Seating for six or seven
- Comfortable ride
- Aggressively priced
2020 Kia Telluride: Everything You Need to Know
About the Telluride:
The 2020 Kia Telluride is the newest and largest model from the Korean carmaker. Kia may have an outdated image as a maker of inexpensive economy cars, but the Telluride is a comfortable and well-equipped three-row SUV that seats six or seven people.
It’s handsome, matches the best in segment for space and features, and is priced to undercut competitors slightly. If shoppers are willing to look to Kia for a larger family utility vehicle, they may be pleasantly surprised.
What’s New in the Current 2020 Kia Telluride?
New for 2020, the Kia Telluride comes with only one powertrain, but several trim levels. The basics are:
- 291-horsepower 3.8-liter V6 engine producing 262 pound-feet of torque.
- Eight-speed automatic transmission.
- Front-wheel drive standard, all-wheel drive optional.
- EPA ratings: 23 mpg combined (front-wheel drive), 21 mpg combined (all-wheel drive).
- Seats six or seven, depending on configuration.
What Does the 2020 Kia Telluride Compete With?
SUVs and crossover utilities with three rows of seats make up a growing segment of new-car purchases. Kia hits the sweet spot with a vehicle that should compete well against:
- Chevrolet Traverse
- Ford Explorer
- Honda Pilot
- Nissan Pathfinder
- Subaru Ascent
- Toyota Highlander
- Volkswagen Atlas
The base Telluride is the LX trim, but the bulk of sales will likely come in the mid-level EX model. The sporty S alternative is for those who want a little pizzazz in their three-row family hauler. The top of the range is the SX. Telluride buyers are likely to be families with two or more children who need to carry mixed sets of kids, stuff, and other people. These buyers find a compact crossover too small.
Exterior Design of the 2020 Kia Telluride
To our eyes, the new Kia Telluride strikes a nice balance between style and size. It’s chunky and square-cut, but lacks the aggressive, in-your-face looks of some other large SUVs. Kia’s done a good job of disguising its height. The strong grille has just enough curve in it to add a touch of sleekness as it wraps around the front.
Vertically stacked headlights signal that this is a bigger Kia than any that’s come before. But they’re not so huge as to be intimidating. The standard headlights are halogen projectors, but the top-end Telluride SX model gets LEDs.
Interior Style in the 2020 Kia Telluride
The Kia Telluride is somewhere between a big mid-size crossover and a small full-size SUV. It’s got oodles of space for people, pets, and gear. The front seats are supportive and comfortable over several hundred miles of concentrated driving. Surprisingly, though, the base LX doesn’t include power adjustment even for the driver’s side.
The second row can be either a three-person bench seat or two individual captain’s chairs. The bench slides forward for third-row access, and there’s decent space in back for two adults. It’s not as roomy as a minivan, but better than most (if not all) mid-size SUVs. Seven adults can travel in acceptable comfort. Four adults plus two kids or teenagers will find more than ample room.
Cabin materials are mostly soft-touch surfaces, with hard plastic in places likely to get kicked or stepped on. Upper trims offer two-tone color schemes that dial up the premium feel over the base LX. With the third row up, the Telluride has a decent 21 cubic feet of cargo volume—if you fill it to the roofline. Fold down the third row and it rises to 46 cubic feet. This is how many families will use the car. With both rows folded down, the total is 87 cubic feet.
Storage space abounds for all passengers, with a large bin to the rear of the front console and numerous trays, bins, and cupholders.
What Technology Comes in the 2020 Kia Telluride?
The 2020 Kia Telluride launches with a high level of standard and optional equipment. While it has no groundbreaking technology, it includes most of the latest mass-market features in both infotainment and active safety.
All Tellurides come with an 8.0-inch touchscreen in the center of the dash. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are standard, as are Bluetooth pairing, keyless ignition, and no fewer than five separate USB ports. As always, Kia gets high marks for an intuitive, largely glitch-free interface on its screen—in our eyes, an important plus.
The mid-level EX trim, likely to be the most popular, expands the screen to a 10.3-inch widescreen format, and ladles on the comfort features. Those include wireless charging, a sixth USB port, heated and cooled front seats, three-zone climate control, and a power tailgate.
The high-end SX model comes with a premium Harman Kardon audio system, a surround-view camera system, and an optional Premium package that adds a head-up display and a heated steering wheel. That package also replaces the EX’s standard leather upholstery with softer and more prestigious Nappa leather.
What Kind of Safety Features are in the 2020 Kia Telluride?
So far, the 2020 Kia Telluride hasn’t been rated for safety by either the NHTSA or IIHS. It comes equipped with numerous active-safety features as standard equipment, including:
- Adaptive cruise control.
- Automatic emergency braking.
- Active lane control, and blind-spot monitors.
The high-end Telluride SX trim adds:
- A surround-view monitor.
- Forward parking sensors.
- Automatic high beams.
- A heads-up display is an SX-only option.
What is the 2020 Kia Telluride Like to Drive?
The 2020 Telluride is both new and familiar behind the wheel. It’s new because it’s larger than any Kia that came before. But it is surprisingly well-composed and comfortable for such a large vehicle. Familiar because it continues Kia’s tradition of clear, sensible switches, buttons, and knobs for the most frequently used controls. Plus, it uses Kia’s intuitive infotainment interface.
On the road, the Telluride handles and corners well for a big crossover. It feels akin to European counterparts, but with a much smoother and more compliant ride. Even on sporty low-profile tires, the ride is good—which is usually not the case compared to conventional tires with taller sidewalls. It’s not a vehicle that invites being tossed around twisty mountain roads, but it handles them just fine. And that’s not what its buyers are looking for.
Outward vision is good for such a long vehicle. Kia gets points for a deep tailgate window that notably improves the view in the rear-view mirror. That’s an important detail missed by a lot of family utilities with tougher, more aggressive styling.
Should I Buy a Current 2020 Kia Telluride?
Kia is a new entrant into the increasingly crowded segment of three-row crossovers. Many of its competitors have been well established for years. To overcome that, Kia ensured the Telluride is well equipped in all trim levels, meaning it’s a good value in the segment. We’d have no qualms about opting for a Telluride, and some buyers will give it extra consideration because it’s built in the U.S.
Should I buy a Used 2020 Kia Telluride? Are There Any I Should Avoid? There aren’t likely to be used 2020 Tellurides on the market for at least a year, aside from the occasional dealership demonstrator vehicle.
How Much Does the New 2020 Kia Telluride Cost?
The base 2020 Kia Telluride, in front-wheel-drive form, costs a bit less than $33,000 including a mandatory delivery fee. A fully optioned top-of-the-line Telluride SX runs between $45,000 and $47,000.
Those prices put the Telluride a few thousand dollars below many other three-row SUVs. With a high level of standard equipment, it’s a good value for a new model. Kia dealers eager to expand beyond their mainstay small cars may also be willing to cut deals to get vehicles on the road and in the public eye.
Pros and Cons of the 2020 Kia Telluride
- Stylish inside and out
- Well equipped
- Good ride quality, even on low-profile tires
- May overachieve on fuel economy
- New model in a new segment for Kia
- EPA ratings not that impressive
- Manual driver’s seat in base LX trim
- Flashy styling of S trim level is pricey
The History of the Kia Telluride: First Year for the Telluride
The 2020 Kia Telluride was launched in the summer of 2019 as a new model, largely aimed at U.S. buyers. It is built in Kia’s assembly plant in West Point, Georgia.
Specs & Key Features of the 2020 Kia Telluride
- Body Style
- Sport Utility
- Lambda II 3.8L GDI DOHC V6 w/Dual CVVT
- 291 hp
- 8-Speed Sportmatic Automatic
- Passenger Doors
- Passenger Seating
- Front Wheel Drive
- City MPG
- Hwy MPG
- Air Conditioning
- Android Auto
- Apple CarPlay
- Back Up Camera
- Blind Spot Sensor
- Cruise Control
- LCD Monitor
- Lane Change Assist
- Lane Departure Warning
- Leather Steering Wheel
- Remote Keyless Entry
- Tinted Glass
- Engine: Lambda II 3.8L GDI DOHC V6 w/Dual CVVT
- Transmission: 8-Speed Sportmatic Automatic -inc: Electronically-controlled, Idle, Stop & Go (ISG)
- 3.648 Axle Ratio
- GVWR: 5,776 lbs
- Transmission w/Driver Selectable Mode
- Front-Wheel Drive
- Battery w/Run Down Protection
- Gas-Pressurized Shock Absorbers
- Front And Rear Anti-Roll Bars
- Electric Power-Assist Speed-Sensing Steering
- 18.8 Gal. Fuel Tank
- Single Stainless Steel Exhaust w/Chrome Tailpipe Finisher
- Strut Front Suspension w/Coil Springs
- Multi-Link Rear Suspension w/Coil Springs
- 4-Wheel Disc Brakes w/4-Wheel ABS, Front Vented Discs, Brake Assist, Hill Descent Control and Hill Hold Control
- Wheels: 7.5" x 18" Painted Alloy
- Tires: 245/60R18
- Steel Spare Wheel
- Compact Spare Tire Mounted Inside Under Cargo
- Clearcoat Paint
- Body-Colored Front Bumper w/Black Rub Strip/Fascia Accent
- Black Rear Bumper w/Metal-Look Rub Strip/Fascia Accent
- Chrome Bodyside Insert, Black Bodyside Cladding and Black Wheel Well Trim
- Chrome Side Windows Trim and Black Rear Window Trim
- Chrome Door Handles
- Body-Colored Power Heated Side Mirrors w/Manual Folding and Turn Signal Indicator
- Fixed Rear Window w/Fixed Interval Wiper, Heated Wiper Park and Defroster
- Deep Tinted Glass
- Variable Intermittent Wipers
- Fully Galvanized Steel Panels
- Lip Spoiler
- Metal-Look Grille
- Liftgate Rear Cargo Access
- Tailgate/Rear Door Lock Included w/Power Door Locks
- Fully Automatic Projector Beam Halogen Daytime Running Headlamps w/Delay-Off
- Perimeter/Approach Lights
- Radio: AM/FM/MP3/SiriusXM Audio System -inc: UVO link infotainment system, w/smartphone integration for remote commands and remote vehicle status, 6-speaker, support for Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, 8" touch-screen color display, a total of 5 USB charge ports in all rows and Bluetooth wireless connectivity w/voice recognition (a Bluetooth enabled cell phone is required to use Bluetooth wireless technology), Note: Remote's climate feature is not available on LX and S trim levels due to manual HVAC system
- Radio w/Seek-Scan, Clock, Speed Compensated Volume Control, Aux Audio Input Jack, Steering Wheel Controls and Radio Data System
- Integrated Roof Antenna
- 2 LCD Monitors In The Front
- Front Bucket Seats -inc: 6-way adjustable driver's seat
- 6-Way Driver Seat -inc: Manual Recline, Height Adjustment and Fore/Aft Movement
- 4-Way Passenger Seat -inc: Manual Recline and Fore/Aft Movement
- 60-40 Folding Split-Bench Front Facing Manual Reclining Fold Forward Seatback Rear Seat w/Manual Fore/Aft
- Manual Tilt/Telescoping Steering Column
- Gauges -inc: Speedometer, Odometer, Engine Coolant Temp, Tachometer, Trip Odometer and Trip Computer
- Power Rear Windows and Fixed 3rd Row Windows
- Fixed 70-30 Split-Bench 3rd Row Seat Front, Manual Fold Into Floor and 3 Fixed Head Restraints
- Leather Steering Wheel
- Front Cupholder
- Rear Cupholder
- Proximity Key For Doors And Push Button Start
- Valet Function
- Remote Keyless Entry w/Integrated Key Transmitter, Illuminated Entry, Illuminated Ignition Switch and Panic Button
- Remote Releases -Inc: Power Fuel
- Cruise Control w/Steering Wheel Controls
- Distance Pacing w/Traffic Stop-Go
- Manual Air Conditioning
- Rear HVAC w/Separate Controls
- HVAC -inc: Underseat Ducts and Headliner/Pillar Ducts
- Illuminated Locking Glove Box
- Driver Foot Rest
- Interior Trim -inc: Simulated Wood Instrument Panel Insert, Metal-Look Door Panel Insert, Piano Black Console Insert and Metal-Look Interior Accents
- Full Cloth Headliner
- Leatherette Door Trim Insert
- Urethane Gear Shift Knob
- SOFINO Artificial Leather Upholstery
- Day-Night Rearview Mirror
- Driver And Passenger Visor Vanity Mirrors w/Driver And Passenger Illumination, Driver And Passenger Auxiliary Mirror
- Full Floor Console w/Covered Storage, Mini Overhead Console w/Storage and 4 12V DC Power Outlets
- Front Map Lights
- Fade-To-Off Interior Lighting
- Full Carpet Floor Covering
- Carpet Floor Trim
- Cargo Area Concealed Storage
- Cargo Space Lights
- FOB Controls -inc: Trunk/Hatch/Tailgate
- Smart Device Remote Engine Start
- Find My Car Tracker System
- Driver / Passenger And Rear Door Bins
- Power 1st Row Windows w/Driver And Passenger 1-Touch Up/Down
- Delayed Accessory Power
- Power Door Locks w/Autolock Feature
- Systems Monitor
- Redundant Digital Speedometer
- Trip Computer
- Outside Temp Gauge
- Analog Display
- Manual w/Tilt Front Head Restraints and Manual Adjustable Rear Head Restraints
- Front Center Armrest and Rear Center Armrest
- 2 Seatback Storage Pockets
- Perimeter Alarm
- Engine Immobilizer
- 4 12V DC Power Outlets
- Air Filtration
- Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
- ABS And Driveline Traction Control
- Side Impact Beams
- Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Seat-Mounted Side Airbags
- Parking Distance Warning Rear Parking Sensors
- Blind Spot Sensor
- Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA)
- Lane Change Assist Lane Keeping Assist
- Lane Change Assist Lane Departure Warning
- Tire Specific Low Tire Pressure Warning
- Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Front Airbags
- Curtain 1st, 2nd And 3rd Row Airbags
- Airbag Occupancy Sensor
- Driver Knee Airbag
- Rear Child Safety Locks
- Outboard Front Lap And Shoulder Safety Belts -inc: Rear Center 3 Point, Height Adjusters and Pretensioners
- Rear View Monitor w/Parking Guidance Dynamic (RVM w/PG) Back-Up Camera