After taking home the World Car of the Year award, the Kia Telluride is on everyone’s radar. In addition to that prestigious award, the Telluride earned high honors from NACTOY, MotorTrend, and Car and Driver. It’s clear that this new SUV should cause other popular choices for family camping and weekend off-roading –– like the Jeep Wrangler –– to shake in their boots a bit.
The Jeep Wrangler, for example, has fallen short for 2020. Earning a top three spot on Consumer Reports “Least Reliable Cars” list is probably not what Jeep had in mind when they put the 2020 Wrangler into production.
As far as literally keeping up, the Jeep Wrangler manages to do so. These two SUVs have a similar drivetrain. You have to pay extra for an all-wheel drive Kia Telluride, and Jeep Wrangler buyers will need to upgrade if they want a standard transmission.
As far as torque and horsepower go, the Wrangler and the Telluride both offer a very similar V6 gasoline engine. The Kia Telluride’s engine delivers a bit more power, but nothing to write home about. Drivetrain is about the only way the Jeep Wrangler can keep up with the Telluride, though. The Kia SUV has the Wrangler beat almost everywhere else.
Even with the similar drivetrain, the Kia Telluride can tow 1,500 pounds more weight than the Jeep Wrangler. The Telluride can handle 5,000 pounds while the Wrangler can only pull a 3,500 pound load.
Safety and Warranty
The Kia Telluride has a number of standard safety features that aren’t available on any Jeep Wrangler trims. Lane departure warning and lane keep assist, for instance. The Wrangler also came up short in crash test ratings.
The Kia Telluride has an NHTSA rating of 5 out of 5 stars. The wrangler came up short with 4 out of 5 stars and 3 out of 5. In fact, the year before that the European NCAP gave the 2019 Wrangler a “dismal” 1 star rating. The Wrangler can’t keep up with the Telluride when it comes to safety.
One place where the Jeep Wrangler has an edge in safety is its full size spare tire. The Kia Telluride doesn’t offer this, even though it’s a vehicle marketed for adventure. The Wrangler is found wanting again, though, when we take a look at the warranties. The Kia warranty is nearly twice what Jeep’s has to offer.
The Telluride definitely wins this one. It’s both longer and wider, plus it has a better turning radius. So not only is it larger to accomodate more passengers and cars, but it also doesn’t sacrifice maneuverability for its larger size.
The Telluride seats up to 8 with its third row, while the Wrangler seats 5. The rear leg room and cargo are better for the Telluride as well. However, the Wrangler does have an edge for taller people offering a bit more head room up front.