Skip to main content

Looking for an SUV for a family of five isn’t the easiest of tasks. The Kia Telluride has a lot to offer for the price, but the Tesla Model Y has more technology. Since both have room for five passengers, what features set one SUV apart from the other?

Is the Tesla Model Y Performance upgrade worth it?

How does the Tesla Model Y compare to the Kia Telluride?
Visitors look at a Tesla Model Y SUV, but does it have as much room as a Kia Telluride? | Qilai Shen/Bloomberg via Getty Images

For 2021, The Tesla Model Y comes in a Performance and Long Range version. Tesla’s website has all of the specs to compare the two.

The Performance model comes with a long-range battery. It is a dual-motor all-wheel-drive platform. It weighs about 4,416 pounds and has 68 cubic feet of cargo space. The top speed is 155 miles per hour, and the range is an EPA-estimated 303 miles.

There is room for up to five and comes with a warranty for four years or 50,000 miles, whichever comes first. The battery and drive units come with a warranty for eight years or 120,000 miles, whichever comes first. The 0-60 time is 3.5 seconds.

The price for the Performance model electric vehicle starts at $60,990.

The Long Range model is also offered as a dual-motor all-wheel-drive platform. It also includes a long-range battery. It weighs the same 4,416 pounds and also has 68 cubic feet of cargo space. The top speed is 135 miles per hour, so about 20 less than the Performance. The range is a bit more at an EPA-estimated 326 miles.

It has room for up to seven with an optional third row. The 0-60 time is 4.8 seconds. The warranty is the same, but the price of the Long

Is the 2021 Kia Telluride a good car?

The 2021 Kia Telluride has a few trim options. The LX starts at $32,190. The S model starts at $34,590. The EX starts at $37,590. Finally, the SX trim starts at $42,490. For this example, we will use the top trim, the SX, for comparison against the Tesla.

The curb weight for the Telluride is 4,317 pounds for the front-wheel-drive option. The all-wheel-drive vehicle weighs 4,482 pounds.

The cargo is listed in three categories: behind the first row (87 cubic feet), behind the second row (46 cubic feet), and the third row (21 cubic feet). There is no top speed listed.

As far as range, the EPA-estimated mileage for the front-wheel-drive model is 20 mpg in the city, 26 mpg on the highway, and 23 mpg combined. The EPA-estimated mileage for the all-wheel-drive model is 19 mpg in the city, 24 mpg on the highway, and 21 mpg combined. The fuel tank capacity is 18.8 gallons.

The Telluride has room for seven and has two captain chairs in the second row. The Telluride is covered by Kia’s 10 years, 100k mile warranty program.

Which SUV makes more sense?

There are a few things to consider in this argument. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, weather can impact how well your electric vehicle runs.

“Extreme weather – very hot or very cold – impacts range in EVs. The additional heating or cooling needed for passenger comfort requires more energy than more moderate temperatures would. Cold batteries also have greater resistance to charging and do not hold a charge as well.”  

U.S. Department of Energy,

If you live in a place that experiences extreme weather, it is a good idea to take this into consideration. Additionally, not all areas have convenient access to chargers. The Tesla is a solid contender, but only if these stipulations don’t come into play.

If you need to use the third row for children, the Telluride might make more sense. It is easier to access the third row in the Kia vs. the optional third row in the Tesla.

If money is a factor, the Telluride will offer extra options in the top-of-the-line trim. The price of the Model Y will likely increase as extra options are added.


How Long Will a Kia Telluride Last?