Ford Explorer vs 2020 Kia Telluride – Ford’s redesigned three-line SUV is faced with serious challenges from Kia’s hungry beginner.
Kia Telluride is not the first attempt of this brand to compete with Ford Explorer, although we will not blame anyone who forgets Kia Borrego 2009 when they first hear it. The Korean SUV’s original size was American it had a very bad time and was so uncompetitive that it failed before the sale started. Kia only sold Borrego for a few years before leaving the segment in the United States.
Koreans obviously have been doing their homework in decades since the Borrego disaster. Their second shot in this segment, the new Telluride for 2020, has all the ability to be a credible competitor on paper and images. To see if it can last in the real world, we knocked on the all-wheel-drive SX Telluride model for 46,910 US dollars to gauge the standby of a medium-sized SUV, Ford Explorer.(Ford Explorer vs 2020 Kia Telluride)
Ford’s iconic SUV has undergone its own reinvention landmark for the year 2020. After nine years of sharing the architecture of transversal machines with vehicles such as Ford Taurus, Explorer twisting the engine back to its original position, with the crankshaft pointing forward to the rear. The rear-wheel drive became standard, but the Ford Explorer XLT AWD $46,810 2020 we directed the torque to all four wheels as needed.
On the way
The new Explorer joins the ranks of a large SUV with a small engine, offering an inline-four turbocharged as a standard powertrain. Don’t mistake the small ones for slow. The Ford’s 2.3-liter engine emits strong 300 horsepower, which pays off by 6.2 seconds running up to 60 mph which puts Explorer at the head of the class. It can also save in the right situation. While Ford has an average of 21 mpg over 700 miles of mixed trip to 20 mpg Kia, on the fuel economy test of our 75 mph highways, Explorer returns 28 mpg which is more impressive compared to the 24 mpg Telluride. Unfortunately, this power was offset by the uneven delivery of Ford engines around the city that made the powertrain calibration noticeably unfinished.
The shift from a transverse mounted to a longitudinal mounted machine may be an advantage for Ford’s manufacturing flexibility, but it does nothing for the customer in terms of packaging or dynamics. Explorer is no more athletic than the designated hitter. He was able to make straight lines occasionally and briefly but disjointed when requested to change direction smoothly. However, due to the smooth and disconnected of the road like that, Explorer does not climb well. When the road turns rough, Explorer is overwhelmed by the hectic body movements.
Kia took a more traditional approach to powertrain than Ford, using the 291-hp V-6 with a relatively large 3.8 litre displacement. It’s more subtle, which is a good thing, because uncompressed machines need more rounds to move fast in traffic. Pushed to its full potential, Telluride reached 60 mph in 7.0 seconds adequate. In addition to the smoother engine, the eight-speed automatic transmission of Kia is better sorted than the 10-speed Explorer, which shifts with longer and clearer torque interference.
Telluride delivers a noticeable improvement in ride and handling compared to the Ford Explorer. The front and back ends move in sync through quick turns and broken sidewalks. The Body roll is taped down while cornering, but not too tight that it brings up head-to-side heads tossing over uneven roads. It was quiet too. Sound level measurements in the Kia cabin recorded three decibels lower than Ford at a speed of 70 mph. It all adds to the calm attitude and accumulates as Telluride rolls down the road.
The Ford XLT trim Level serves as the entry point into the Explorer range, whereas Telluride SX is above the Kia range. If that sounds like an unfair comparison, consider that Kia’s tested price is only $100 higher than Ford, but the list of Telluride features is much more than the better number and outperform the Explorer. Here are some of the calculations of equipment found in Kia that are not expressly present in Ford: heated front and rear seats, ventilated front seats, heated steering wheel, driver seat memory, head-up display, front parking sensor, Sunroof, wireless phone charging, camera system 360 degrees bird’s eye, integrated garage door opener, and second line sun Protector.
In interior style and quality, the Telluride doesn’t just pummel the Ford. It punches well above its weight and delivers a near-luxury experience despite a price that screams “value.” In contrast, the Explorer is a somber study in penny-pinching cost savings and hard, black plastic. If you measure luxuriousness by anything other than size, there are $30K compact cars that are more upscale than this particular $46,810 Explorer.
Even when you score them by interior space alone, the Kia easily beats the 1.9-inch-longer Ford. While the middle- and third-row passenger volumes of these two utes are identical, the Kia prioritizes legroom, which makes for a tangible difference. Its second and third rows are among the most spacious and comfortable in the SUV business, including among behemoths such as the Chevrolet Suburban and the Ford Expedition. You can seat six-footers one behind the other in the front, second, and third rows of the Telluride without any negotiating over how the seats should be positioned. The Explorer’s rearmost row will swallow a full-size adult if the adult in the second row slides his seat uncomfortably close to the front seatback. In addition to its more spacious seating, the Telluride also beats the Explorer on cargo volume behind the third row.
The Bottom Line
Kia’s second shot at the three-row, mid-size SUV market is a first-rate vehicle that is perfectly attuned to the American market. It probably took a massive effort on Kia’s part to deliver this knockout, but the Telluride’s win appears effortless. The big Kia proves the better buy regardless of whether you prioritize interior space, style, value, driving dynamics, or convenience features as your most important need. The Ford’s advantages in straight-line performance and highway fuel economy simply aren’t enough to justify its less accommodating interior, its unpolished powertrain, or its mediocre driving dynamics.