Born for Adventure: Kia’s 2020 Telluride
The Kia Telluride’s ruggedness inspires confidence
Looking for a sport-utility vehicle able to take everything Mother Nature hurls at you, shaking it off and taking it all in stride? The Kia Telluride’s ruggedness is designed to inspire confidence and provide peace of mind, thanks to its advanced, available electronic all-wheel drive system, plus a whole bunch of smart technology.
ELECTRONIC ALL-WHEEL DRIVE
Telluride has what it takes to get a grip. Its available all-wheel drive system with an advanced, electro-hydraulic coupling, primarily sends the power of its big V6 to the front wheels. Makes sense; with more weight at the front, the driven wheels will have better traction. *
But if there is any loss of grip, sensors seamlessly and instantly channel up to 50 per cent of available power to the rear.
The beauty of the system is that can keep shuffling the power between the front and rear axles as the level of grip changes.
TRACTION AT YOUR FINGERTIPS
If, however, the going gets really tough, Telluride lets you take matters into your own hands. Literally.
A tap of the center console drive mode control takes you into professional-grade ‘AWD Lock’. Here, the system’s central clutch can lock-in the power evenly between the front and rear axles. So 50 percent goes to the front, 50 percent to the rear. No variation.
Now add into the equation Telluride’s intuitive traction control system. It works wonders by simply grabbing the brake rotor on a wheel that’s slipping, instantly sending the torque to the side with traction. It kind of mimics the action of more complex, front and rear locking differentials. *
Now for all of you who inhabit the more northerly parts of this big, beautiful country, where snow is a regular challenge to driving peace of mind, there’s yet another control setting to keep you going when the going gets tough. ‘Snow’ mode.
Snow mode directs 80 per cent of the engine’s power to the front wheels, and 20 per cent to the rear to deliver optimum traction for the conditions. The system also softens the throttle action of a heavy right foot to avoid spinning wheels and again, a loss of grip.
This is also the setting you’d use if you were tackling sand or gravel. Easy on the gas, let Telluride do the thinking, let those grippy, all-season tires work their magic, and just keep moving.
Add to all this, almost eight inches of ground clearance, and Telluride will keep on going, not holding back, clawing itself over some pretty challenging surfaces — and get you where you’re going safely, and hassle-free. **
ADVANCED V6 POWER
To tackle the tough stuff, you need an SUV with the power to really perform. While some competitors in this booming mid-size SUV segment offer a four-cylinder engine, Kia prefers the power and refinement of a V6. And what a V6.
With a focus on performance coupled with efficiency, Kia refined its proven Lambda 3.8-liter GDI V6 with Atkinson cycle technology and direct fuel injection.
The result is an impressive 291 hp and 262 lb-ft of torque. This will give you athletic off-the-line acceleration, strong mid-range response for safe, rapid passing, and refined, relaxed high-speed cruising. It does it all.
The smooth-revving V6 comes mated to a new, responsive, eight-speed automatic, adding to the athletic, responsive feel of the SUV.
While Telluride might look, sleek, stylish and sexy on the outside, beneath that head-turning exterior are bones of hard steel. The strong, stiff, torsionally rigid, monocoque body structure features plenty of advanced high-strength steel, especially around the passenger compartment.
This not only helps raise the level of crash protection, but it’s what makes a vehicle agile and fun to drive. And the Telluride is a blast to drive, both on and off road.
It features four-wheel independent suspension that delivers a terrific balance between dynamic, focused handling and impressive ride comfort. There’s also new, electric-assist steering for improved steering precision and feel.
To suit your driving mood, take your pick from not one, but four drive modes — Smart, Eco, Comfort, and Sport. Each one configures the engine, transmission, and steering differently. We really like Sport. It amps up all the responses nicely.
With this new, big, bold, designed-in-America, assembled-in-America Telluride, Kia has definitely given it everything.***
Just make sure you hose-off all that mud when you’ve finished having fun.
Listen-up: No system, no matter how advanced, can compensate for all driver error and/or driving conditions. Always drive safely.
*(No system, no matter how advanced, can compensate for all driver error and/or driving conditions. Always drive safely.)
**(Aftermarket snow tires, sold separately, are recommend for snowy or icy conditions.)
***The Telluride is assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.