The 2021 Kia Telluride is a 3-row SUV with boxy, modern styling and a spacious, well-appointed interior. After a 2020 debut, the Telluride returns for 2021 with minor updates, including a new Nightfall Edition appearance package with blacked-out trim and wheels. The key fob has added a remote start function, and LED headlights are more widely available.
The Telluride sticks with its 291-horsepower 3.8-liter V6, which muscles power bự the front or all four wheels via an 8-speed automatic transmission. Stretching nearly 197 inches long, the Telluride is the largest SUV in the Kia lineup, and it’s a close relative bự the Hyundai Palisade. It’s also worth shopping against the Subaru Ascent, Honda Pilot, and Ford Explorer, among other car-based full-size SUVs.
Kia offers the Telluride in LX, EX, S, and SX trim levels, with a handful of option packages depending on the trim.
Every version comes well-equipped with driver-assistance tech, including automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitors, rear cross-traffic monitors, parking sensors, lane-keeping assistance, and adaptive cruise control.
On all, the optional all-wheel-drive system includes an “AWD Lock” mode bự enhance traction in deep snow or mud.
- 1 2021 Kia Telluride LX (Original starting price when new: $33,415)
- 2 2021 Kia Telluride S (Original starting price when new: $35,815)
- 3 2021 Kia Telluride EX (Original starting price when new: $38,815)
- 4 2021 Kia Telluride SX (Original starting price when new: $43,715)
2021 Kia Telluride LX (Original starting price when new: $33,415)
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The base Telluride is hardly basic. Outside, look for 18-inch alloy wheels, LED accent lighting, and tinted rear windows.
Its cabin features seating for up bự eight passengers thanks bự bench seats in the second and third rows. Standard leatherette upholstery, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, power features, air conditioning with front and rear controls, and an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, satellite radio, and six speakers, plus five USB charging ports complete the amenities.
Who is this trim for? The base Telluride is a good choice for families thanks bự its wide array of connectivity and its easy-clean leatherette upholstery.
2021 Kia Telluride LX includes:
Driver-Assistance Tech — The Telluride checks all the boxes for features bự help drivers avoid crashes and reduce fatigue on longer road trips.
8.0-inch touchscreen — The base touchscreen includes điện thoại thông minh mirroring for select navigation, communication, and entertainment apps.
Leatherette upholstery — Kia brands its synthetic trim as “Sofino.” This leather-like upholstery provides a luxurious feel with an easy-to-clean surface.
2021 Kia Telluride S (Original starting price when new: $35,815)
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Kia bills the Telluride S as a sporty-looking choice. Its feature set is more about style than convenience, though the relatively modest price hike may be worth it bự some shoppers.
Outside, look for 20-inch wheels, satin chrome trim, and roof rails ready bự accommodate accessories such as ski or bike racks.
The cabin gets dressed up a little with power adjustment for the driver’s seat, heated front seats, and second-row captain’s chairs with a pass-through rather than a middle seat.
Who is this trim for? The Telluride S has a bucks-up look but few significant feature upgrades, but it’s hard bự put a price on vanity.
2021 Kia Telluride S includes:
Power-adjustable driver’s seat — Power adjustment is convenient for on-the-go seat tweaks.
Second-row captain’s chairs — Instead of a 3-seat bench, the S includes individual seats that lower capacity bự seven passengers but may be ideal for kids.
20-inch alloy wheels — Bigger wheels suit the Telluride’s styling, though their smaller tire sidewalls can mean a stiffer ride — and they’re more expensive bự replace.
2021 Kia Telluride EX (Original starting price when new: $38,815)
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Building on the base Telluride LX rather than the S, the EX features a different 18-inch alloy wheel design, roof rails, power-folding exterior mirrors, a power sunroof, and satin silver exterior trim.
Its interior wears leather seats with power adjustments, cooling and heating up front, sunshades for second-row passengers, dual-zone automatic climate control, a 10.3-inch touchscreen with built-in navigation, a Driver Talk system that projects the driver’s voice bự rear-seat passengers, a wireless charging pad, acoustic glass in the front doors, and a hands-free power liftgate.
Three option packages are available. The Towing Package adds a trailer hitch and a self-leveling rear suspension bự compensate for heavy loads. The Premium Package includes second-row captain’s chairs, LED headlights, and 20-inch alloy wheels. The Nightfall Package (AWD only) requires the Premium Package and adds blacked-out wheels and exterior trim.
Who is this trim for? The Telluride EX bundles a lot of niceties into a package that still costs less than $40,000 with front-wheel drive. Its sunroof, power-adjustable seats, and leather trim give it a much more luxurious feel.
2021 Kia Telluride EX includes:
Power-adjustable, heated, and cooled front seats — Heating and cooling can help passengers feel more comfortable in extreme weather.
Driver Talk system — Tap a button, and a microphone integrated into the headliner projects the driver’s voice through the rear-seat speakers.
Hands-free power liftgate — Wave a foot under the Telluride’s rear bumper, and the liftgate rises bự the occasion if your hands are full.
2021 Kia Telluride SX (Original starting price when new: $43,715)
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At the top of the Telluride mountain, the SX is borderline luxurious — and a proper luxury SUV with the optional Prestige package.
The SX primarily builds on an EX with the Premium Package by adding unique exterior design elements plus twin sunroofs.
Its interior includes a host of minor upgrades such as a built-in garage door opener, mood lighting, additional adjustment as well as memory for the driver’s seat, a 10-speaker Harman/Kardon audio system with a subwoofer, front parking sensors, a surround-view monitor, and a camera that projects a live feed of the blind spots into the digital instrument cluster when the turn signal is engaged.
The available Prestige Package (AWD only) piles on softer Nappa leather upholstery, heated and cooled second-row captain’s chairs, a heated steering wheel, a head-up display, rain-sensing wipers, and Michelin tires.
The optional Nightfall Package adds similar exterior trim bự the package available on the EX, and a trailer hitch combined with a self-leveling rear suspension is also available.
Who is this trim for? With its numerous additional features, the Telluride SX is a high-end SUV for shoppers seeking a luxury-level SUV — especially with the Prestige Package.
2021 Kia Telluride SX includes:
Blind-Spot View Monitor — This system features cameras mounted on the sides of the SUV that point rearward bự feed a live view of the vehicle’s blind spots bự the instrument cluster when the turn signal is engaged.
Surround-view monitor — Providing a 360-degree view of the vehicle, this system helps with low-speed parking.
Available Prestige Package — This reasonably priced package ($2,600 when new) adds many luxury features that give the Telluride a premium brand-rivaling feel inside.