2019 GMC Acadia vs. 2020 Kia Telluride

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Acadia Denali’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Telluride doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the GMC Acadia’s middle seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Kia Telluride doesn’t offer comfort guides on its middle seat belts.

The Acadia has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Telluride doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Acadia SLE/SLT’s optional Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Telluride doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

Both the Acadia and the Telluride have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Acadia the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 157 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Telluride has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

The Acadia’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Telluride’s (6/100,000 vs. 5/100,000).

There are over 2 times as many GMC dealers as there are Kia dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Acadia’s warranty.

Engine

The Acadia’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 19 more horsepower (310 vs. 291) and 9 lbs.-ft. more torque (271 vs. 262) than the Telluride’s 3.8 DOHC V6.

As tested in Car and Driver the GMC Acadia V6 is faster than the Kia Telluride:

Acadia

Telluride

Zero to 30 MPH

2.2 sec

2.6 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.1 sec

7.1 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

17.2 sec

17.3 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

6.4 sec

7.1 sec

Passing 30 to 50 MPH

3.3 sec

3.7 sec

Quarter Mile

15 sec

15.4 sec

Fuel Economy and Range

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Acadia 4 cyl.’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Telluride doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Acadia AWD’s standard fuel tank has 2.9 gallons more fuel capacity than the Telluride (21.7 vs. 18.8 gallons).

The Acadia has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Telluride doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

The Acadia’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Telluride are solid, not vented.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Acadia’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Telluride (255/65R17 vs. 245/60R18).

The GMC Acadia’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Kia Telluride only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Acadia has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Telluride doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

The Acadia offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Telluride’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The Acadia Denali AWD handles at .85 G’s, while the Telluride SX 4x4 pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

The Acadia is 3.3 inches shorter than the Telluride, making the Acadia easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The front grille of the Acadia FWD 4 cyl. uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Telluride doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Acadia uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Telluride doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The front step up height for the Acadia is 1.5 inches lower than the Telluride (18” vs. 19.5”). The Acadia’s rear step up height is .3 inches lower than the Telluride’s (19” vs. 19.3”).

Ergonomics

The Acadia’s speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Telluride’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Acadia SLT/Denali has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Telluride offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The Acadia has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the Telluride EX/SX.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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