When pondering a trip to the mountains this weekend, I thought about the Kia Telluride. Then, when it was time to do a grocery run, I thought about the Kia Telluride. Finally, Monday morning carpool sure felt like it would’ve been better with, you guessed it, the 2022 Kia Telluride SX.
I WASN’T SURE (AT FIRST)
Listen, I drove the Telluride briefly when it first came out. Then I did a full review of its first cousin, the Hyundai Palisade, so I figured, I know this thing. I almost didn’t accept a recent press loan thinking ‘what will I have to say that’s new?’ As it turns out, I’ve got plenty so grab a chair.
The Kia Telluride is one of the rare vehicles on the road that is 100% worth the hype. The only other car I feel that way about is the Porsche 911 (almost any year) and the new Ford Maverick (hot damn!). This may not be news to you, because people are buying the hell of them. You may even know one or two families that have one. Let me tell you why they’ve made a smart move and why this could be a good choice for you.
Comfort is actually really complicated. Plenty of cars are kinda comfortable. The seats are in the right place, the buttons relatively easy to reach, and the cabin is somewhat fine to be in. Few cars hit that magic spot where the driver is happy, the passengers are chill, and even the ones WAAAAAAY BACK THERE aren’t whining. The Telluride finds this sweet spot and digs right in, giving everyone a good time and even providing the driver with a little (dare I say fun?) along the way. This is all thanks to minimal body roll, great steering, and badass brakes. It’s a place I’d literally like to be right now.
Also noteworthy is the safety suite which is standard in all trims and includes wonderful things like automatic braking, lane keep assist, and blind-spot monitoring. I drove the SX trim, which is the pimpest of them all with captain’s chairs, black wheels, all-wheel drive, and a rockin’ Harmon Kardon sound system.
The MPG is the easiest thing to hate about the Telluride. It’s 2022 and gas is crazy expensive and we’re all under pressure to keep the planet around for a little longer. I averaged 21 mpg while behind the wheel, but I did some freeway driving. While this is reasonable for a 3 row SUV, it wouldn’t fall under the fuel-efficient category by any means.
The other bummer about the Telluride is that the adaptive cruise control isn’t the best. My expectations were honestly low because you need a lot of torque for a vehicle this big to keep up. Overall, the adaptive cruise control, while well placed, was clunky and disappointing. Wonh, wonh.
Considering the fact that so few people actually use this function, it may not be an issue. So the only other truly debatable characteristic is the styling. Like Kim Kardashian, the Telluride’s rear end isn’t for everyone. But others think it’s gorgeous.
THE VERDICT- 2022 KIA TELLURIDE ?
It’s great. Duh. I said that at the top. If I were to buy it, I’d spring for the SX. Some of you will say $46,000 FOR A KIA! I say to you, you clearly haven’t driven a Kia lately. For $45k, the Germans will throw you a bag of rocks and tell you that you’re lucky to have it. Today is a new day, my excellent friends.