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It’s no secret that Kia’s midsize SUV has become wildly popular in the last three years. The Telluride is a rising star in its segment, and it has dominated rankings. The Toyota Highlander is a staple in its segment, but it doesn’t perform as well in rankings as the Telluride. That being said, there’s one type of consumer that should choose the more expensive Highlander over the value-packed Telluride.

Get the 2023 Toyota Highlander over the 2023 Kia Telluride for this reason

When you compare the 2023 Toyota Highlander and 2023 Kia Telluride’s standard feature list side by side, the Telluride has a clear competitive advantage. Features like SynTex seating and a leather-wrapped steering wheel are hard to pass up for a base model midsize SUV. Like many Toyota models, the Highlander’s true value is in its longevity. calls the Toyota Highlander the third most reliable midsize SUV. Highlander models can last between 250,000 and 300,000 miles when they are maintained well. That amounts to over 17 years of ownership based on the average annual driving distance.

So, when you get a new Toyota Highlander, you can expect at least 200,000 miles or 14 years of ownership from the midsize SUV. The average new vehicle ownership period is just 8.4 years. The Highlander can easily exceed that by at least five years.

While the Kia Telluride doesn’t have any significant mechanical issues or reliability problems, it doesn’t have the Highlander’s long history of dependability. Japanese automaker Toyota is responsible for some of the most long-lasting vehicles on the market, like the Toyota Land Cruiser, Toyota Tacoma, and Toyota 4Runner. If any midsize SUV is likely to outlast competitors, it’s a Toyota midsize SUV. So, if you’re interested in owning a vehicle for well over the average new vehicle ownership period, the 2023 Highlander is the way to go.

The 2023 Kia Telluride brings the value

The 2023 Kia Telluride probably won’t last as long as a new Highlander, but it certainly provides enough value for most drivers during the average new vehicle ownership period. Aside from its superior standard features, the Telluride is also attractive and comfy.

It’s a snazzy family hauler that gets more refined at upper trim levels. The final Telluride trim, the SX Prestige X-Pro, is luxury-adjacent.

The 2023 Kia Telluride starts at $35,890. It uses a 3.8-liter V6 engine to make 291 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. The midsize SUV gets 20 miles per gallon in the city and 26 miles per gallon on the highway.

Edmunds praises the Telluride’s smooth ride quality, roomy interior, and great driver assistance features. It isn’t a standout model in its segment for nothin’.

What is the best midsize SUV for 2023?

A blue 2023 Kia Telluride midsize SU is parked.
The 2023 Kia Telluride | Kia

South Korean models like the Kia Telluride and Hyundai Palisade dominate midsize SUV rankings. Some automotive enthusiasts prefer nameplates with long histories of reliability, like the Toyota 4Runner and Toyota Highlander.

The best midsize SUV for 2023 may not even be an internal combustion engine vehicle. The 2023 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is a more fuel-efficient version of the midsize SUV that can travel further on a single tank of gas and outlast many competitors. If you’re looking for the best midsize SUV for the money in 2023, don’t sleep on the 2023 Toyota Highlander Hybrid.


How Much Is a 2023 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Platinum?