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The Kia Telluride has sat atop midsize SUV rankings comfortably for years since it hit the scene. Auto enthusiasts disagree about whether or not the Telluride is the best midsize SUV, but there’s clearly an appeal to the popular South Korean model. Reputable automotive publications have given it perfect review scores. It seems like no midsize SUV can compete. Two upcoming midsize models are positioned to give the Telluride a run for its money.

The 2024 Mazda CX-90 brings something different to the table than the CX-9

The Mazda CX-9 may compete with the Kia Telluride in rankings, but it’s a different animal entirely. The CX-9 isn’t a competitive three-row SUV. So, Mazda is making something bigger and badder (in the best way possible).

The 2024 Mazda CX-90 is a larger, more aggressive midsize SUV than the CX-9. It’s slightly pricier, but it brings the value in a major way. The CX-90 comes in a whopping 11 different trim levels to satisfy different types of consumers.

It comes standard with a 3.3-liter turbocharged V6 engine to make 280 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque. Mazda offers three different powertrain options for the midsize three-row SUV. There’s a PHEV option that consists of a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, an electric motor, and a 17.8 kWh battery that makes 323 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque. There aren’t any mpg numbers available for the PHEV yet, but it’s expected to get at least 30 miles of electric-only driving range.

The final three CX-90 trims come standard with Mazda’s most powerful mass-production engine, the e-Skyactiv G 3.3-liter turbocharged Inline 6 cylinder. The inline V6 engine makes 340 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque when using premium fuel. Mazda fans are rejoicing over this powerful engine option. The Japanese brand has found a way to produce a sporty family SUV with the class and driving dynamics of a luxury vehicle for an affordable price. According to Motor1, its configuration just went live on the Mazda site, so drivers can check out available options.

The 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander is coming to spice up its segment

A blue 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander midsize SUV is parked.
The 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander | Toyota

The Toyota Highlander is one of the most reliable midsize SUVs on the market. The Highlander can easily last for 250,000 miles when well-maintained. That works out to over 17 years of ownership for a new Highlander, based on the average annual driving distance of Americans. The average new vehicle ownership period is only 8.4 years.

The Grand Highlander is a larger version of the Highlander designed for families that need three-row seating. Toyota offers exciting powertrain options for the midsize three-row SUV, including hybrid system options. The 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander Hybrid MAX is capable of making a massive 362 horsepower.

The Kia Telluride will face stiff competition

Kia may have enjoyed a few years at the top of the midsize SUV vehicle segment, but the race for first place is about to get a lot more competitive once the Mazda CX-90 and Toyota Grand Highlander arrive.

The 2023 Kia Telluride starts at $35,890. It uses a 3.8-liter V6 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. The Telluride offers great value for the money because of standard features like a leather-wrapped steering wheel and SynTex seat trim.

Mazda and Toyota are both producing models that can become more popular than the South Korean Telluride. Which midsize three-row SUV will emerge victorious in the end?

Let us know your thoughts on the two new midsize SUVs in the comment section below.


2024 Mazda CX-90 Starting Price Revealed