2020 Ford Explorer vs 2020 Kia Telluride – Albany, NY

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  • 2020 Ford Explorer

    A grey 2020 Ford Explorer is facing left.

    Starting at


    2020 Kia Telluride

    A brown 2020 Kia Telluride is parked on a white background.

    Starting at


    300-400Horsepower (HP)291
    310-415Torque (lb-ft)262
    87.8Max Cargo Space (cu.ft.)87
    5,600Max Towing (LBS)5,000

    If you are searching for the perfect, family-friendly SUV with three rows of seating, then you should take a look at the 2020 Ford Explorer vs 2020 Kia Telluride. As part of the same class, these two models have quite a bit in common, including seating for large families and plenty of cargo room.

    The 2020 Ford Explorer can carry six or seven passengers comfortably with 18.2 cubic feet of room behind the last row. If you need more space, you can fold down the third row to expand the cargo area to 47.9 cubic feet. To completely max out the cargo space, you can also fold down the second row to gain a whopping 87.8 cubic feet of room. On the other hand, the 2020 Kia Telluride can fit seven or eight passengers with 21 cubic feet of room behind the third row. By folding down the last row, you can expand the area to 46 cubic feet. By folding down both back rows, you can gain 87 cubic feet of room. At the end of the day, the Ford Explorer has just a little more cargo room with varying seat configurations.

    Let’s take a closer look at the differences between these two SUVs in the categories of performance, interior features, and exterior styling elements.

  • Performance


    A blue 2020 Ford Explorer is driving on a highway.

    The Ford Explorer's Engine Choices

    When it comes to SUVs, buyers typically see one or two engine options at the max. However, with the new Ford Explorer, the sky's the limit. Available with one of three powertrains, you can choose which version is best suited to your daily driving needs. The standard engine is a turbocharged 2.3-liter Ecoboost I-4. Coupled with a 10-speed automatic transmission, this engine generates 300 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque.

    Equipped with either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, it can tow up to 5,300 pounds. The second option is the high-octane turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine. Available on the ST version, it pushes out 400 hp and 415 lb-ft of torque. Please note that this engine only makes 365 hp and 380 lb-ft of torque when it is equipped on the Platinum trim level. Also, it can tow 5,600 pounds easily. Finally, the new Explorer Limited Hybrid model is powered by a 3.3-liter V6 engine mated with a hybrid motor system. This surprising duo manages to generate 318 hp with a towing capacity of 5,000 pounds.

    The Kia Telluride's Only Engine

    On the other hand, the 2020 Kia Telluride comes up a bit short as far as engine options go. Frankly, there aren’t any options. All Telluride models are powered by the same engine. This is a 3.8-liter V6 motor that produces 291 hp and 262 lb-ft of torque. Mated with an 8-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive (all-wheel drive is optional), this powertrain can haul up to 5,000 pounds.

  • Interior Features


    A closeup of a wheel on a maroon 2020 Ford Explorer that is parked in snow outside of Albany, NY.

    The 2020 Ford Explorer

    The first point we want to highlight on the 2020 Ford Explorer falls into the safety category. Every trim level comes standard with the Ford Co-Pilot360 safety suite. Keeping families in mind, the engineers added systems such as blindspot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, emergency braking, and automatic high beams to each model. All of these innovative systems work in unison to help prevent accidents on the road. Your family will be safe whether you get the base model or the top-of-the-line model.

    The base Explorer trim comes with a 40/20/20 split-folding second-row and a 50/50-split third-row for optimize configuration. The driver’s seat features 8-way power-adjustability, and dual-zone climate control is also included. Displayed on an 8-inch touchscreen is the infotainment interface that operates with a rearview camera, Bluetooth connectivity, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Taking things a step further, this base model even comes with a 4G LTE Wifi hotspot to keep you connected to the online community everywhere you go. Dual USB ports have been provided as well as a 6-speaker stereo system.

    Next, the Explore XLT upgrades the vehicle with keyless ignition/entry, premium cloth upholstery, and added lumbar support for the driver’s seat. The steering features paddle shifters and leather wrappings for a sleek look, and two more USB ports have been installed in the back. Then, the Limited model gets heated/ventilated leather seats, ambient lighting, and a wireless charging pad to help keep the cabin de-cluttered. A 360-degree camera system has also been installed along with a 12-speaker Bang & Olufsen stereo. The ST is the sporty version of the Explorer. It adds athletically-styled seats, a restyled instrument cluster, and an automated parking system to the mix. Lastly, the Platinum version receives a larger 10.1-inch touchscreen interface, massaging front seats, and a 14-speaker B&O audio system.

    The Kia Telluride

    Moving on to the 2020 Kia Telluride tells a different story. The base LX is also equipped with several standard safety features, but not as many as the Explorer. All Telluride trims come with rear parking sensors, forward collision warning, adaptive cruise control, blindspot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-keeping assist, emergency braking, and the driver attention system. The LX also includes faux leather upholstery, five USB ports, and an infotainment system displayed on an 8-inch touchscreen. This system works with Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There is no wifi hotspot on this model.

    Moving up to the S will add a sunroof and heated front seats for extra comfort during the winter. The mid-level EX includes ventilated seats and leather upholstery. The touchscreen interface has been upgraded to a larger 10/3-inch screen, and an extra USB port has been installed. You can keep the cabin clutter-free by using the wireless charging pad, and you can silence the back speakers using Quiet Mode. This will allow your children to sleep peacefully during a long drive. Finally, the top-of-the-line SX trim adds front parking sensors, automatic high beams, and a sunroof. Please note that those two safety features are included on the base level of the Ford Explorer. The top-tier Telluride also comes with rain-sensing wipers, heated/ventilated second-row seats, and a dual-panel sunroof. The Head-Up Display has also been included as well as a heated steering wheel.

  • Exterior Styling Elements

    A maroon 2020 Ford Explorer is driving away with a win from 2020 Ford Explorer vs 2020 Kia Telluride, outside Albany, NY.

    Exterior Features of the Explorer

    As with the interior, the exterior of both vehicles varies depending on the trim level. The base Explorer rolls on 18-inch wheels and comes with a power liftgate, rear privacy glass, and LED headlights for enhanced visibility. Next, the XLT gets heated side mirrors, a noise-reducing front windshield, and roof rails for extra storage space. Then, the Limited comes with larger 20-inch wheels, rain-sensing wipers, and power-folding side mirrors. The sporty ST gets a sport-tuned suspension and a different set of 20-inch wheels. You can also add the ST Street Pack or the ST Track Pack for upgraded brakes, red calipers, and 21-inch wheels. Finally, the premium Platinum model adds a dual-panel sunroof and adaptive headlights.

    Exterior Features of the Telluride

    The 2020 Kia Telluride LX rides on 18-inch wheels, and the S model gets 20-inch wheels, roof rails, and a sunroof. The mid-level EX adds a hands-free liftgate, LED headlights, and power-folding side mirrors. Lastly, the top-tier SX includes front parking sensors, automatic high beams, rain-sensing wipers, and a dual-panel sunroof.

    Exterior Color Choices

    As for paint colors, the 2020 Ford Explorer is available in 10 various shades, including Star White Metallic, Iconic Silver, Silver Spruce, Oxford White, Magnetic, Blue Metallic, Agate Black, Atlas Blue, Rapid Red Metallic, and Rich Copper Metallic. As you may have noticed, these paint colors are almost all metallic. This means that they will shimmer in the sun for the most beautiful glimmering finish.

    On the other hand, the 2020 Kia Telluride comes in only seven hues. These paint options include Dark Moss, Snow White Pearl, Everlasting Silver, Gravity Grey, Ebony Black, Black Copper, and Sangria (dark red). Aside from the Snow White Pearl shade, these paint colors tend to have more of a clear-coat finish. There won’t be much shimmer when the sun hits these models.

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