2021 Kia Telluride - Still a favorite

In July 2019 I reviewed the then new 2020 Kia Telluride and loved it. This past week I drove a 2021 and still love it. It is simply one of the nicest large-ish SUV.

There isn't much 'new' for 2021 thankfully; I mean why tinker with perfection? Even Kia says there are only minor enhancements for 2021. They are: The towing harness has been upgraded from a four-pin to a seven-pin connector; A remote starter button has been added to the key fob; And LED headlamps are included with the EX Premium Package. There is also a new Nightfall Edition. 

I love the name Telluride, it makes me think of the song 'Telluride' by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.

The test Telluride SX V6 AWD was a gorgeous 'Everlasting Silver' color, kind of a pearl gray. Inside was all black. I will admit that sometimes contrasting colors look good but I'll take dark colors any day. I don't need an interior that shows every bit of dirt and grime. 

There is seating for seven (2 up front, 2 in the middle, and 3 smaller folks in the rear). Access to the rear seat seemed adequate.

There are four Telluride models, LX, S, EX, and SX. A base LX starts at $32,190, the test Telluride was $44,090 plus options and delivery for a total of $48,720. 

I didn't put that many miles on the Telluride so I have to rely on the EPA's fuel economy numbers of 19-mpg city, and 24-mpg highway. I saw near the city figure. When I tested the 2020 Telluride I got about 28-mpg on the highway.

Although I saw almost 19-mpg around town it dropped because I sat with the engine idling listening to music while my wife did a little shopping.

Motivation for the Telluride comes from a really nice 3.8-liter V6 rated at 291hp and 262 lb-ft of torque, that is coupled to an 8-speed automatic transmission. The Telluride is no lightweight - it weighs almost 2.5 tons yet it is capable of near 7 seconds from 0-60 mph. 

The 8-speed transmission has 5 different modes. I used either sport or 'Smart'. 

I really can't think of a downside to the Telluride. Oh wait, the head's up display was almost invisible with my sunglasses on. Other than that it was a pleasure to drive and all the controls were easy to use.

There's plenty of room behind the rear seat for your groceries. Need more room? The seats easily fold flat.

Now if you're looking for something a little bigger Kia has just introduced the 2022 Carnival MPV (kind of a cross between a van and a SUV). You can check out all the Kia models at https://www.kia.com/us/en.



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