2020 Kia Telluride vs. 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe XL

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

Both the Telluride and Santa Fe XL have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Telluride has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Santa Fe XL’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Telluride are reminded to check the back seat when a sensor determines the back seat is occupied. The Santa Fe XL doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Telluride’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Santa Fe XL doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Telluride and the Santa Fe XL have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive and around view monitors.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Telluride the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Santa Fe XL last would have qualified as a “Top Pick” in 2019.

Reliability

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Telluride has a standard 800-amp battery. The Santa Fe XL’s 660-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Kia vehicles are better in initial quality than Hyundai vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Kia second in initial quality, above the industry average. With 1 more problems per 100 vehicles, Hyundai is ranked third.

Engine

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

The Telluride’s 3.8 DOHC V6 produces 1 more horsepower (291 vs. 290) and 10 lbs.-ft. more torque (262 vs. 252) than the Santa Fe XL’s 3.3 DOHC V6.

As tested in Consumer Reports the Kia Telluride is faster than the Hyundai Santa Fe XL:

Telluride

Santa Fe XL

Zero to 30 MPH

2.7 sec

3 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

7.2 sec

7.6 sec

Quarter Mile

15.5 sec

16.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

93 MPH

90.4 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

On the EPA test cycle the Telluride gets better fuel mileage than the Santa Fe XL:

Telluride

Santa Fe XL

2WD

3.8 V6/8-spd. Auto

20 city/26 hwy

18 city/25 hwy

3.3 V6/Auto

n/a

18 city/23 hwy

3.3 V6/Auto

4WD

3.8 V6/8-spd. Auto

19 city/24 hwy

18 city/24 hwy

3.3 V6/Auto

n/a

17 city/22 hwy

3.3 V6/Auto

Transmission

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Kia Telluride, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Santa Fe XL.

Brakes and Stopping

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

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

Telluride

Santa Fe XL

Front Rotors

13.4 inches

12.6 inches

Rear Rotors

12 inches

11.9 inches

The Telluride stops shorter than the Santa Fe XL:

Telluride

Santa Fe XL

60 to 0 MPH

118 feet

125 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

133 feet

140 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

For better traction, the Telluride has larger tires than the Santa Fe XL (245/60R18 vs. 235/60R18).

The Telluride S/SX’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Santa Fe XL Ultimate’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Telluride S/SX has standard 20-inch wheels. The Santa Fe XL’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

Suspension and Handling

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The Telluride has a standard automatic load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The Santa Fe XL doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Telluride’s wheelbase is 4 inches longer than on the Santa Fe XL (114.2 inches vs. 110.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Telluride is 3.1 inches wider in the front and 3.1 inches wider in the rear than on the Santa Fe XL.

The Telluride SX 4x4 handles at .80 G’s, while the Santa Fe XL AWD pulls only .74 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Telluride SX 4x4 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.1 seconds quicker than the Santa Fe XL AWD (27.3 seconds @ .63 average G’s vs. 28.4 seconds @ .59 average G’s).

Passenger Space

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The Telluride has standard seating for 8 passengers; the Santa Fe XL can only carry 7.

The Telluride has 8.4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Santa Fe XL (155 vs. 146.6).

The Telluride has 1 inch more front headroom, 2.8 inches more front legroom, 2.2 inches more front hip room, 2.2 inches more front shoulder room, .8 inches more rear headroom, 2 inches more rear legroom, 2.6 inches more rear hip room, 2.9 inches more rear shoulder room, 2.4 inches more third row headroom, .5 inches more third row legroom and 1.4 inches more third row shoulder room than the Santa Fe XL.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Telluride’s middle and third row seats recline. The Santa Fe XL’s third row seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

The Telluride’s cargo area provides more volume than the Santa Fe XL.

Telluride

Santa Fe XL

Behind Third Seat

21 cubic feet

13.5 cubic feet

Third Seat Folded

46 cubic feet

40.9 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

87 cubic feet

80 cubic feet

The Telluride’s cargo area is larger than the Santa Fe XL’s in almost every dimension:

Telluride

Santa Fe XL

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

20.4”/49.8”/83.8”

17.6”/47”/84”

Max Width

54.4”

50.7”

Height

34.5”

n/a

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Telluride’s second row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Santa Fe XL doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Ergonomics

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

The Telluride offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Santa Fe XL doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The Telluride’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Santa Fe XL’s parking brake has to released manually.

The Telluride’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Santa Fe XL’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The Telluride’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Santa Fe XL’s power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The Telluride SX’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Santa Fe XL’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Consumer Reports rated the Telluride’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Santa Fe XL’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

When the Telluride SX is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Santa Fe XL’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Telluride EX/SX has standard front air conditioned seats and the Telluride SX offers them optionally in the second row. This keeps the passengers comfortable and takes the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Santa Fe XL doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats for the second row.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Kia Telluride EX/SX has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) for the front seat. The Santa Fe XL doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/05/26

Both are recommended, but Consumer Reports® chose the Kia Telluride as its “Top Pick,” the highest scoring vehicle in its category, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The Telluride was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” in 2020. The Santa Fe XL has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

Motor Trend selected the Telluride as their 2020 Sport Utility of the Year. The Santa Fe XL has never been chosen.

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

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