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Kia Telluride: Top Alternatives for 2021/2022

Kia Telluride Alternatives

Kia Telluride Alternatives

If an auto expert suggested ten years ago that Kia would reset the bar for the three-row SUV segment, it would have elicited more than a few laughs. Kia’s progress was steady in small quirky vehicles, but it hadn’t had a breakout hit with large vehicles. Yet.

Kia did reset the bar, and the Telluride has that special something. Drivers who think many full-size SUVs are too large say, “Hmm, I think that could work…” and drivers who don’t like compact SUVs say the same thing.

Here’s our take on vehicles we feel compete well with the Kia Telluride.

Read about how we rank our vehicles >>

Kia Telluride Weaknesses

The Takeaway: The Kia Telluride is a very popular 3-row SUV, but finding a good deal may be challenging.

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The Telluride is also sold out. So when you can find one, dealers are marking them up to levels that make buyers wince. Even Hyundai, a sibling brand to Kia, has had to react to the Telluride’s success.

As good as the Telluride is, and we haven’t found a flaw to report, shoppers still like to have alternatives to consider.

Kia Telluride vs. Competitors

Model Max Cargo VolumePassenger VolumeConsumer Reports Reliability RatingIIHS Safety Score
Kia Telluride
87 cu. ft.
157 cu. ft.
5/5
Top Safety Pick
Jeep Grand Cherokee L
85 cu. ft.
159 cu. ft.
2/5
Not Yet Rated
Hyundai Palisade
86 cu. ft.
155 cu. ft.
4/5
Top Safety Pick Plus
Dodge Durango
85 cu. ft.
Approximately 150 cu. ft.
1/5
Moderate
Ford Explorer
89 cu. ft.
153 cu. ft.
1/5
Top Safety Pick Plus

1.  All-New Jeep Grand Cherokee L

Jeep-Grand-Cherokee-L-Alternatives-to-the-Kia-TellurideThe Jeep Grand Cherokee has long been a favorite of reviewers and owners. The reasons why it is loved include its near-luxury accouterments and driving satisfaction, off-road capability, and variety. Now in a three-row, 2-3-2 or 2-2-2 seating layout, the lengthened Grand Cherokee L offers shoppers the best of what the model has always offered, but in a package that can accommodate a larger family.

The Grand Cherokee L offers more variety than the Telluride. The Telluride offers just one engine. Jeep’s Grand Cherokee L offers three, including a V8 and a plug-in hybrid. The Jeep is also the defacto standard of off-road excellence in this segment. Jeep considers its Grand Cherokee L “Trail Rated.” And we believe that it is.

One another area in which Jeep offers more is with regard to included maintenance. The Grand Cherokee L comes with three years of included maintenance, part of what Jeep calls the Jeep Wave program.

The Takeway: The Jeep Grand Cherokee L offers a wider variety of powertrains, more off-road capability, and comes with included maintenance.

Current Grand Cherokee L Deals & Incentives

YearMakeModelCash Incentives (up to)Best Avail. APRLease OffersExpiration
2021JeepGrand Cherokee L2.83%$412/month for 36 months, $3,799 due at signing11/1/2021

You may qualify for additional deals and incentives, check out this month's Jeep deals.

2. Hyundai Palisade

Hyundai-Palisade-Alternatives-to-the-Kia-TellurideWe won’t belabor the point that the Hyundai Palisade is this brand’s Telluride.

While the styling is unique to Hyundai, the basic mechanical aspects are the same or similar. Both vehicles ride on the same 114.2-inch wheelbase. However, the Telluride has a more aggressive look, while the Palisade aimed for a luxurious aesthetic.

So what does Hyundai offer that Kia does not? Again, three years of included maintenance.

The Takeaway: The Palisade is Hyundai’s version of the Kia Telluride and comes with included maintenance.

Current Hyundai Palisade Deals & Incentives

YearMakeModelCash Incentives (up to)Best Avail. APRLease OffersExpiration
2021HyundaiPalisade$379/month for 36 months, $3,599 due at signing11/1/2021
2022HyundaiPalisade$379/month for 36 months, $3,599 due at signing11/1/2021

You may qualify for additional deals and incentives, check out this month's Hyundai deals and average prices paid.

3. Dodge Durango

Dodge-Durango-Alternatives-to-the-Kia-TellurideThe Dodge Durango is similar in many ways to the Jeep Grand Cherokee L. Both are Stallantis brands and use similar engine and infotainment technology. That is pretty much where the similarities end.

What Dodge brings to the table is a high-performance option. Actually two options. Dodge is the muscle car fan’s alternative in this segment, with high-performance engines approaching 800 hp (not a typo).

The Durango is also a body-on-frame SUV that has a reputation for ruggedness combined with comfort for passengers.

The Takeaway: Those shoppers looking for a three-row SUV alternative to the Kia Telluride that really want a muscle car will find the Durango from Dodge is the ideal solution.

Current Dodge Durango Deals & Incentives

YearMakeModelCash Incentives (up to)Best Avail. APRLease OffersExpiration
2021DodgeDurango$3,700 0.00%$371/month for 36 months, $3,999 due at signing11/1/2021

You may qualify for additional deals and incentives, check out this month's Dodge deals and average prices paid.

4. Ford Explorer

Ford-Explorer-Alternatives-to-the-Kia-TellurideIt would be unfair not to include the Ford Explorer in any three-row SUV comparison story. Ford arguably created this segment and has never stopped making Explorers. Ford also breaks the rules. The company has bounced back and forth between front-wheel drive layouts, rear-wheel drive, and even chassis designs. Today’s Explorer is built on a rear-wheel layout with a unique chassis design that adopts all of what Ford wants in a 3-row SUV.

Ford also offers outstanding EcoBoost turbocharged engines, a sporty ST option, and a hybrid in the current Explorer. Like Jeep and Kia, Ford is a leader in infotainment and constantly updates its vehicles to keep them modern and efficient. Interestingly, the Ford Explorer is also the safety leader in this segment, having earned the Top Safety Pick Plus rating from IIHS.

The Takeaway: How can the safest and longest-running three-row SUV model of the modern age not be a consideration when shopping for a vehicle in this segment?

Current Ford Explorer Deals & Incentives

YearMakeModelCash Incentives (up to)Best Avail. APRLease OffersExpiration
2021FordExplorer$5001.90%$349/month for 24 months, $3,429 due at signing11/1/2021

You may qualify for additional deals and incentives, check out this month's Ford deals and average prices paid.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which three-row SUV like the Kia Telluride offers the most cargo space?

The Kia Telluride, Dodge Durango, Jeep Grand Cherokee L, Hyundai Palisade, and Ford Explorer all have very similar cargo volumes of just under 90 cubic feet.

Is the Kia Telluride bigger than a Ford Explorer?

The Kia Telluride and Ford Explorer have nearly identical passenger volume and cargo volume specifications.

Which other models compete with the Kia Telluride?

The Hyundai Palisade is the closest match to the Kia Telluride. The Jeep Grand Cherokee L, Dodge Durango, and Ford Explorer are all also very good alternatives.

Which three-row SUV is like a Kia Telluride but with better performance?

The Dodge Durango is the hands-down best-performance SUV with three rows. Dodge offers multiple trims that take the basic formula the Telluride uses and ramps up performance.

Are there any hybrids in the Kia Telluride’s segment?

Yes. Jeep offers a plug-in hybrid version of the Grand Cherokee L, and Ford offers a hybrid Explorer.