The 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe Just Outranked the 2021 Kia Telluride

While the 2021 Kia Telluride may rank near the top of the midsize SUV class, the 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe was able to knock it out of the number one spot on U.S. News & World Report’s list of ‘Best Midsize SUVs for 2021.’ Pretty shocking, right? After all, the Kia Telluride has been winning awards left and right for the last couple of years. So how then did the Hyundai Santa Fe manage to snag the top spot on U.S. News’ list?

2020 Hyundai Santa Fe parked
2020 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

The 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe is a mere fuel sipper, according to U.S. News

Now, there are a few reasons why the 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe was able to outrank this year’s new Kia Telluride. One of those reasons comes down to performance. While both reportedly offer a pretty comfortable driving experience, it’s the 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe that offers much better fuel economy ratings. 

According to EPA estimates, when equipped with its 2.4-liter base engine, the 2020 Santa Fe delivers 22 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. According to U.S. News & World Report, those numbers signify some of the best fuel economy ratings in the midsize SUV class. Choose the Santa Fe’s turbocharged engine, and those EPA-estimated ratings drop only slightly, delivering 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway.

Unfortunately for the 2021 Kia Telluride, it’s not quite as efficient. Instead, its 3.8-liter V6 engine is actually pretty thirsty. According to the EPA, this year’s Telluride earned an EPA-estimated rating of 20 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. Choose an all-wheel-drive model, and those numbers drop to 19 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway. Pretty disappointing, if you ask me.

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Its interior is comparable to the Kia Telluride’s

This is a tricky one. Technically, the 2021 Kia Telluride’s interior did get a higher rating than that of the Santa Fe’s. Not by much, though, which is important to keep in mind. While the Kia Telluride’s interior scored an 8.3 out of 10, the 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe’s interior scored an 8.1 out of 10. Pretty marginal difference. What’s so special about the Santa Fe’s interior then?

According to U.S. News & World Report, there’s kind of a lot. Not only does the Hyundai Santa Fe look good on the inside, but plenty of high-quality materials were also used when decking out its interior. U.S. News & World Report added that the Santa Fe’s seats are as roomy as they are supportive. The 2020 Santa Fe’s infotainment is also pretty easy to use.

U.S. News & World Report isn’t the only one to have recognized the 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe for its quality interior either. According to Consumer Reports, the Santa Fe’s interior is “modern, clean, and nicely finished.” 

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The 2020 Santa Fe is also more reliable than the 2021 Kia Telluride

The 2020 Santa Fe was able to outrank the 2021 Telluride in terms of reliability too. While the Hyundai Santa Fe earned a 4.5 reliability rating from U.S. News & World Report, the Telluride could only manage a 3.5 reliability rating. Meaning, the Hyundai Santa Fe offers among the best reliability ratings, while the Telluride’s reliability rating is just above average.

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U.S. News is actually pretty enamored with the 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe

In the end, it’s not all that surprising that the 2020 Santa Fe was able to outrank the Kia Telluride in U.S. News & World Reports’ list of ‘Best Midsize SUVs for 2021.’ U.S. News has already ranked the Santa Fe as the ‘2020 Best 2-Row SUV for the Money’ and tapped it as the top choice on its list of ‘2020 Best New Cars for Teens.’