The Kia Telluride VS. the Nissan Pathfinder for Off-Roading

We have a battle of two three-row SUVs for you today. The 2020 Nissan Pathfinder is driving into the ring to face the crowd favorite the 2020 Kia Telluride. It’s time to see which SUV is better for your family in terms of price, quality, and off-roading capabilities. 

Nissan Pathfinder vs. Kia Telluride 

The Kia Telluride and Nissan Pathfinder start with pretty similar specs. Both of these SUVs have an MSRP that’s around $31k. So, at the same price, this battle really begins to intensify, but maybe one option comes with more standard features than the other. 

2020 Nissan Pathfinder driving on slick road
2020 Nissan Pathfinder | Nissan

The Nissan Pathfinder and Kia Telluride also have a similar fuel economy. They both get up to 20 mpg in the city. The Kia Telluride gets up to 26 mpg on the highway while the Nissan Pathfinder gets up to 27 mpg. 

2020 Nissan Pathfinder and 2020 Kia Telluride performance 

The Kia Telluride comes with a standard 3.8-liter V6 engine that provides 291 horsepower and 268 lb-ft of torque. When properly equipped, the Kia Telluride can tow up to 5,000 lb. It can also accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 7.2 seconds, making it one fast three-row SUV. 

2021 Kia Nightfall Edition parked in dirt
2021 Kia Nightfall Edition | Kia

In the Nissan Pathfinder, you’ll find a standard 3.5-liter V6 engine with 284 horsepower and 259 lb-ft of torque. Even though these numbers make the Nissan Pathfinder seem less powerful than the Telluride, it has a direct-injected engine and can tow up to 6,000 lb. It can also accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 7.4 seconds. 

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The Kia Telluride has optional all-wheel-drive available while the Nissan Pathfinder has optional four-wheel-drive and off-roading driving modes. The Nissan Pathfinder will handle better in deeper amounts of snow and slippery conditions. 

Edmunds pointed out that both of these SUVs handle like larger vehicles instead of sportier options. Edmunds also had positives to say. While the Kia Telluride offers a quieter ride, the Nissan Pathfinder is noted for having a smooth suspension.

2020 Kia Telluride and 2020 Nissan Pathfinder features 

The Kia Telluride offers more passenger space on each row than the Nissan Pathfinder and has more cargo space. There are 87 cubic feet of cargo space in the Telluride, and the Pathfinder has up to 79.5 cubic feet. But the Nissan Pathfinder does have underfloor storage and bins for more convenient organization like the Kia Telluride also has. 

The 3D digital cluster display in the Nissan Pathfinder displays crucial information about your 4×4 driving mode, towing, and turn by turn navigation. The Kia Telluride can display similar information with its heads up display.

2020 Kia Telluride driving in the country
2020 Kia Telluride | Kia

Also, the Kia Telluride comes with more standard safety features like blind-spot alert, rear-cross traffic alert, forward collision warning, adaptive cruise control, and more. The Nissan Pathfinder does include automatic emergency braking, though, like the Kia Telluride does. 

The Nissan Pathfinder comes with standard cloth seats, tri-zone automatic climate control, and power-folding seats in the second and third row. The Kia Telluride comes with leather seats but only has power-folding for the second row of seats. 

2020 Nissan Pathfinder driving down snowy road
2020 Nissan Pathfinder | Nissan

It seems like the Nissan Pathfinder is the more capable option for off-roading with the family. However, the Kia Telluride provides more comfort and safety for daily driving and family trips.

Only go for the Nissan Pathfinder if you need 4×4 capability and the power to tow a little more for off-roading trips. Otherwise, the Kia Telluride is a better family option, while the Nissan Pathfinder is more capable for off-roading.