2022 Kia Telluride Review: Perfect for Errands and Escaping the City
2022 Kia Telluride review highlights:
- 2022 Kia Telluride ($33,390 – 43,290)
- Best three-row SUV for families – U.S. News
- Pros: Upscale, comfortable interior, modern tech, and passenger and cargo space.
- Cons: Heft around curves, sensitive safety systems, and the fuel economy could be better.
For the past few years, the 2022 Kia Telluride has led the pack of three-row SUVs as one of the most popular options you can buy. It sets itself apart with a rugged unique exterior, plush interior, and long list of standard features.
The Telluride is spacious enough for adults, kids, and all their stuff. Innovative cargo solutions and a wide rear hatch opening make storing items a breeze. However, the Telluride could deliver a more refined experience and sips a little more gas than expected.
We took the time to experience what living with the Kia Telluride is like by running daily errands, commuting on the interstate, and even taking the time to get off the pavement. It’s one well-rounded option.
What’s new for the 2022 Telluride?
For 2022, the Kia Telluride gained the rebranded Kia logo and a slightly restyled grille for a more confident and modern look. The new badge is also featured on the rear liftgate and the steering wheel.
The 10.3-inch touchscreen now comes standard, replacing the 8.0-unit in lower trims. Automatic climate temperature control is also standard.
Plus, each model features semi-autonomous adaptive cruise control that uses the navigation system to actively adjust the SUV’s speed while driving through corners.
Which Kia Telluride Trim is Best?
- Kia Telluride LX – $33,390
- Telluride S – $35,890
- Telluride EX – $38,390
- Telluride SX – $43,290
For the most value, the 2022 Kia Telluride LX is an excellent option. Despite being the entry-level model, it has the latest safety features, faux-leather upholstery, a 10.3-inch infotainment screen, automatic climate control, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.
But on the other end of the spectrum, the SX spices things up with Nappa leather upholstery, two sunroofs, an automatic rear liftgate, ventilated and heated seats, 20-inch wheels, a head-up display, the self-leveling rear suspension, and the towing package. Plus, it doesn’t have a ridiculous price tag.
How does the Telluride perform?
We spent a lot of time in the 2022 Kia Telluride. We visited downtown city areas, busy highways, curvy mountain roads, and even areas of the forest without any pavement. Ultimately, the Telluride is a comfortable daily driver with just enough athleticism to provide an engaging ride.
The Telluride has a 3.6-liter V6 engine with 291 hp and 262 lb-ft of torque. It can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in about 7.5 seconds with a peppy acceleration. The engine is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
However, the Telluride can be slow to upshift in some situations, and the brakes are a little soft. It does not take long to master them for smooth and consistent stops. The steering could be more direct, and it feels relativity light at lower speeds.
It has responsive handling and corners well, but you can feel a little heft around sharper curves. The suspension can feel floaty at times, but the Telluride still feels confident and well-planted.
The 360-degree camera and overhead view make it easy to maneuver in tight city parking lots and the woods. The Telluride is surprisingly agile with a pretty tight turning radius. It doesn’t feel as big as it actually is.
The automatic start and stop system can feel intrusive. There is a roar and a bit of rattling as the engine fires up, which can be surprising during peaceful rides around town. But there is a button in the center console that turns this feature off.
There are four driving modes:
Sport: Sport mode adjusts the throttle response and stiffens the suspension for a more engaging ride. The engine sounds great while accelerating in this mode.
Eco: Eco Mode does its best to save fuel by reducing the throttle response, and it causes a high-pitched engine whine from time to time.
Comfort: The Comfort Mode is simply relaxing with a smoother suspension and quiet engine for a peaceful drive.
Smart: The Smart Mode reacts to your driving habits to provide the optimal acceleration, braking, and fuel-saving experience.
Snow: The Snow Mode adjusts the AWD system to confidently remain in control during slippery situations.
The Telluride gets an EPA-estimated 20 mpg in the city and up to 26 mpg on the highway. Adding AWD reduces these figures by about one mpg. For some reason, we fell short with an average of 14.9 mpg.
Can the 2022 Kia Telluride go off-roading?
Yes, the 2022 Kia Telluride can go off-roading. We wouldn’t try to climb up a rock face or ford water with it, but it can get to your campsite and through national parks just fine. Plus, it has enough room for all of your camping gear.
It has an 8.0-inch ground clearance for clearing obstacles and enough torque to easily power through larger dips off the beaten path. It feels confident and in control on gravel and dirt roads, and it didn’t slip through large muddy puddles or slick sections of the trail.
You can hit the AWD lock button to send an equal amount of torque to each wheel. Plus, there is a downhill speed control mode. You can turn off traction control for a little more freedom, and we have faith that the Telluride can easily handle snow.
How comfortable is the 2022 Telluride?
The 2022 Kia Telluride takes comfort to the next level with large, supportive seats. The seats can fit people of all shapes and sizes, plus the 12-way power controls make it easy to find the perfect driving position.
The captain’s chairs in the second row are large and plush too. They can slide forward and back as needed and have plenty of space for installing child seats. The rear doors have wide openings for convenient access.
Plus, the third-row seats are spacious as well, and the backrest sits at a comfortable incline. People taller than 5’4″ may want the second row to pull forward a bit. Six adults can fit in the Telluride without trouble.
The self-leveling rear suspension provides a smooth ride over most surfaces. Rough sections of the pavement are dampened with ease. You can feel a few more bumps while off-roading, but the cab doesn’t shake or rattle.
Outside noise becomes slightly noticeable at higher speeds, and you can hear the engine while accelerating in Sport or Eco mode. The climate system works fast and effectively keeps the whole family cool.
Also, the Telluride has impressive ventilated seats. Mazda SUVs still keep our backsides the coolest, but the Telluride’s system felt more substantial than the ventilated seats in the Toyota Sienna and Toyota Tundra.
What is the Kia Telluride’s interior like?
The Kia Telluride has a spacious, upscale feeling interior with high-quality materials such as wood trim and Nappa leather upholstery. There’s even a soft suede headliner and customizable ambient lighting.
Two sunroofs provide plenty of natural light and fresh air to enter the cabin, and the media controls are clearly labeled. The infotainment system may be hard to reach at first, but adjusting the driver’s seat helps.
There is plenty of forward visibility, but the rear window is a bit small. However, large side mirrors and the 360-degree camera display provide a sense of your surroundings. The parking sensors help too.
Does the Telluride have good tech?
Yes, the 2022 Kia Telluride has modern and advanced tech. The 10.3-inch infotainment system has vibrant graphics and works very quickly. The head-up display and every aspect of the Telluride can be customized to display different infotainment at varying brightness levels.
The digital gauge cluster is easy to adjust, and the turn-signal camera display provides more confidence when changing lanes. There are USB ports in each row, including an available 10-volt household-style power outlet.
You can opt for a wireless phone charging pad and upgrade to the 10-speaker Harmon Kardon audio system. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, but we would like wireless connectivity.
The optional Driver Talk feature amplifies your voice through the rear passenger speakers, so you can really threaten to turn this car around!
Does the Telluride have enough space?
Yes, the 2022 Kia Telluride has plenty of cargo space. You can access the underfloor cargo bin and tow up to 5,000 lbs if you need more room. Also, the Telluride can carry a payload of up to 1,664 lbs.
There are 21.0 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row, 46 cubes with the third-row seats folded down, and up to 87.0 cubic feet total. The second-row seats are power folding, and you can easily fold the third-row seats down. The seats fold flat to create a level loading floor.
We like how there isn’t a center console blocking access to the third row. It’s very easy to access. But the second-row seats slide forward, and the rear doors open wide for quick entry.
The rear hatch is wide with a low liftover height to help make loading heavier or bulky items easier.
While the center console is large and a few storage trays are in the front, storage space for smaller items is limited. The door pockets and seat pockets are pretty narrow. But there are plenty of cupholders all over the place.
How Safe is the Telluride?
The 2022 Kia Telluride is a Top Safety Pick from the Insurance Insitute of Highway Safety. According to the IIHS, the Telluride earned a ‘Good’ score in most of the simulated crashes, which is the highest score possible.
But on the side test, the Telluride got a few marginal and acceptable scores for its structure and safety cage. It got an acceptable score for installing child seats because the anchors are too deep in the cushion.
It got a superior rating for its ability to avoid collisions at 12, 25, and 37 mph. A warning was issued 1.6 seconds before impact.
The automatic LED headlights quickly adjust to oncoming traffic but provide a bit of glare. The Mazda CX–9 has more visibility in the dark.
Standard safety features include:
- Forward collision warning
- Automatic emergency braking
- Blind-spot monitoring
- Lane-keeping assistance
- Lane departure warning
- Adaptive cruise control
The lane-keeping assistance and automatic emergency braking systems can sometimes be a little sensitive. But you can turn these functions off with one push of a button.
How Reliable is the Kia Telluride?
The 2022 Kia Telluride has an above-average reliability rating. It earned a score of 85 out of 100 from J.D. Power. With regular care and maintenance, the Kia Telluride can last between 200,00 to 250,000 miles.
This data is based on similar models from Kia and Hyundai. It’s also based on how the 2020 and 2021 Telluride models are performing. But the Telluride hasn’t been around long enough to accrue tons of mileage. It could surprise us and surpass 300,000 miles.
It costs about $474 to maintain a Telluride annually. This is great compared to the average yearly cost of about $650 for SUVs. It has a low chance of needing a severe repair. Also, it’s had three recalls related to electrical issues, so that could be the biggest concern.
MotorBiscuit gives the 2022 Kia Telluride an expert rating of 8.9 out of 10
The MotorBuscuit editors award the 2022 Kia Telluride with an overall score of 9.2 out of 10. The Kia Telluride sets a new standard among family SUVs with rugged styling, unmatched comfort, and tons of utility.
It’s a practical option with plenty of passenger space, an abundance of cargo space, and the ability to tow up to 5,000 lbs. The interior creates an upscale, peaceful environment with a little wind noise at higher speeds.
The ride is smooth, but there is a little body roll and heft around curves, and the steering could be more direct. It’s more capable than expected but won’t hang out with the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon.
The Telluride is a convenient daily driver and is well-equipped for family trips. But it could have a better fuel economy and a slightly sportier performance.
We can’t wait to see how the 2023 Kia Telluride compares with its mid-cycle refresh. The new X-Line and X-Pro trims add rugged upgrades for more capability and increase the towing capacity to 5,500 lbs.