2019 Lincoln Navigator vs. 2020 Kia Telluride

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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For enhanced safety, the front and middle seat shoulder belts of the Lincoln Navigator are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Kia Telluride doesn’t offer height-adjustable middle seat belts.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Navigator 4x4’s optional Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Telluride doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

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

The Lincoln Navigator weighs 1245 to 1743 pounds more than the Kia Telluride. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.


The Navigator’s 5 year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Telluride runs out after 100,000 miles.

There are over 9 percent more Lincoln dealers than there are Kia dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Navigator’s warranty.


The Navigator has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Telluride doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.


The Navigator’s 3.5 turbo V6 produces 159 more horsepower (450 vs. 291) and 248 lbs.-ft. more torque (510 vs. 262) than the Telluride’s 3.8 DOHC V6.

As tested in Consumer Reports the Lincoln Navigator is faster than the Kia Telluride:



Zero to 30 MPH

2.4 sec

2.7 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.2 sec

7.2 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

4.5 sec

5.1 sec

Quarter Mile

14.7 sec

15.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

98 MPH

93 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Navigator’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 Navigator has 4.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the Telluride (23.2 vs. 18.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The Navigator 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.


A 10-speed automatic is standard on the Lincoln Navigator, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Telluride.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Navigator’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Telluride:



Front Rotors

13.8 inches

13.4 inches

Rear Rotors

13.2 inches

12 inches

The Navigator’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 Navigator has larger standard tires than the Telluride (275/55R20 vs. 245/60R18). The Navigator Select/Reserve/Black Label’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Telluride (285/45R22 vs. 245/60R18).

The Navigator Base’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Telluride LX/EX’s standard 60 series tires. The Navigator Select/Reserve/Black Label’s tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Telluride S/SX’s 50 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Navigator Base has standard 20-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the Telluride LX/EX. The Navigator Select/Reserve/Black Label’s 22-inch wheels are larger than the 20-inch wheels on the Telluride S/SX.

The Lincoln Navigator’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.

Suspension and Handling

The Navigator 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 Navigator’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The Telluride doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Navigator’s wheelbase is 8.3 inches longer than on the Telluride (122.5 inches vs. 114.2 inches).

The Navigator’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49% to 51%) than the Telluride’s (55.7% to 44.3%). This gives the Navigator more stable handling and braking.

For greater off-road capability the Navigator has a 1.6 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Telluride (9.6 vs. 8 inches), allowing the Navigator to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.


The front grille of the Navigator 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 Navigator 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 Navigator has 17 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Telluride (172 vs. 155).

The Navigator has .9 inches more front headroom, 3 inches more front hip room, 3.6 inches more front shoulder room, 3.6 inches more rear hip room, 3.9 inches more rear shoulder room, 4.7 inches more third row legroom, 7.7 inches more third row hip room and 8.9 inches more third row shoulder room than the Telluride.

Cargo Capacity

The Navigator’s cargo area provides more volume than the Telluride.



Third Seat Folded

57.5 cubic feet

46 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

103.3 cubic feet

87 cubic feet

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the Navigator easier. The Navigator’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 29 inches, while the Telluride’s liftover is 30.7 inches.

The Navigator’s cargo area is larger than the Telluride’s in almost every dimension:



Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)



Max Width



Min Width






The Navigator has a standard third row seat which folds flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The Telluride doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.

Both the Navigator and the Telluride have standard second row automatic folding seats. The Navigator’s third row seats also fold up or down at the press of a button. The Telluride doesn’t offer automatic folding third row seats.

The Navigator’s rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the liftgate door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The Telluride’s rear cargo window doesn’t open.


The Navigator’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Telluride’s (6200 vs. 5000 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Kia Telluride is only 5000 pounds. The Navigator offers up to a 8300 lbs. towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

The engine in the Navigator is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the Telluride. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because there are no rear spark plugs and the accessory belts are in front.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Lincoln service is better than Kia. J.D. Power ranks Lincoln 7th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 40% lower rating, Kia is ranked 20th.


Unlike the driver-only memory seat and mirrors in the Telluride SX, the Navigator offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position, foot pedal distance, outside mirror angle, climate settings and radio stations and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

If the windows are left open on the Navigator the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can also lower the windows the same way. The driver of the Telluride can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Navigator’s exterior PIN entry system. The Telluride doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

The Navigator’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Telluride’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the Navigator has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Telluride doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The Navigator 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 Navigator 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.

The Navigator (except Base)’s optional Enhanced Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Telluride doesn’t offer an automated parking system.


A group of representative automotive journalists from North America selected the Navigator as the 2018 North American Truck of the Year. The Telluride has never been chosen.

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

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