New King on the Block? — 2020 Kia Telluride SX vs. Honda Pilot Touring: Comparison

New King on the Block? — 2020 Kia Telluride SX vs. Honda Pilot Touring: Comparison


So over the last year we’ve compared the pilot to several of its chief rivals and it’s managed to take them all down even the luxurious Acura MDX And in this case, it might be the toughest one yet the all-new 2020 Kia Telluride! this is Kia’s first car designed from the ground up for the North American market and it is Packing a lot of features into its three rows of space But is it enough to take down the Refresh pilot? Let’s find out! So like always we’ll start off with the pricing of these two for the Telluride There’s been a lot of confusion about what exactly it competes with But rest assured that it is sized and priced right in line with all the other non luxury 3-row crossover That being said it starts out a little over $31,000 and we have the top trim here the SX all-wheel-drive which goes for forty three thousand four hundred and ninety dollars From there we have the two thousand dollar prestige package which includes a slew of features floor mats wheel locks and a 1045 Destination charge. All told that brings the price to a very competitive forty six thousand seven hundred ninety five dollars While that sounds like a lot of dough I say very competitive because on the pilot it takes nearly Fifty grand to get that top trim Elite. What matches up closer on price to the telluride is the Touring trim Which is what we use for this comparison It starts at forty four thousand seven hundred twenty dollars and in typical Honda fashion There are no additional options besides for the nine ninety five destination charge That puts the total price at forty five thousand seven hundred fifteen dollars or just about a thousand dollars cheaper than the fully loaded Kia And to make up for that small difference. We’ll start the pilot off with one point Starting out with the powertrains these two crossovers are pretty close to each other Both have naturally aspirated v6 engines three and a half liters on the Honda and 3.8 liters on the Kia the telluride ends up with more horsepower at 291 versus 280 and both have the same amount of torque and Then for the transmissions the Honda technically has more ratios, but it’s not a meaningful difference Both also have torque vectoring all wheel drive systems as I already mentioned Now moving into how these two actually drive we were impressed by both of them First and foremost both are tuned for comfort and they ride excellent But despite that neither feels like a big lumbering boat or anything like that Power delivery is very good in both since they are naturally aspirated and the Transmissions are very smooth, even the pilots which has taken some flak in the past for being a bit lethargic Of course neither of these are sports cars, but the Telluride steering has a more natural and even weight to it But all in all both crossovers are pretty similar and they excel at making the driving experience Pleasant Finally finishing this part up they have nearly the same combined fuel economy ratings at 22 versus twenty one combined But anyways, that’s it for the powertrain info. So now let’s move on to the exterior designs and features So while these two are pretty similar to each other under the hood you certainly can’t say the same thing about the designs The Honda definitely has the more traditional and conservative look up front. But this updated 2019 grille did make things look more aggressive The tele ride however has a very different look than the competition One that borrows characteristics from much more expensive vehicles like Range Rover it has a large boxy grill with telluride branding across the hood and Then off to the side you have a stacked LED headlight cluster with the really unique yellowish daytime running lights The pilot’s headlights are also fully LED and down at the bottom. Both models will have LED fog lights, but Since they are pretty much the same I won’t award any points here Around at the side and back though The Telluride does have some objective advantages besides for the subjective opinion that it looks substantially more stylish to my eyes. The Kia has very upscale. Looking full LED taillights compared to the partial units on the Honda and Then it also has exposed exhaust outlets instead of hidden ones on the pilot So overall if you are concerned with provocative styling in this class, the telluride is pretty much the only name in the game Now checking out all the individual features. They have nearly identical turning circles and ground clearances of close to eight inches The wheels however are not very similar besides for both being 20 inches The Honda goes with a contrast design while Kia goes with a fully blacked out on the SX trim Heading to the mirrors both models come with heating and blind spot monitoring but only the telluride has auto dimming and power folding Now in addition to the blind spot monitoring both Honda and Kia give you their entire Suites of safety systems as standard equipment that means they have automatic forward emergency braking Lane Keeping Assist adaptive cruise control and auto high beam headlights and Like I said, these features are standard on all trims. Not just these loaded models One pretty significant difference between these two are their warranties the pilot comes with the industry standard three-year basic and five year power train warranties, but Kia almost doubles that to five year basic and ten-year powertrain However, neither of them have complimentary maintenance The last two things I mentioned on the outside are the 5,000 pound tow ratings on both and then the fuel tank capacities of nineteen and a half gallons on the pilot and eighteen point eight gallons on the Kia Now since the pilot already has better fuel economy. It does of course have the greater fuel range at 429 miles versus 395 miles But as you can see even though they look very different on the outsides They have similar features, but now let’s go ahead and see if the same thing happens for the interiors Now moving into the interiors the first thing we have are the key fobs for the standard smart entry systems Besides for design the main difference here is that Honda has integrated remote start Whereas on the Kia you have to do it be at the UVO app Another small point to mention is that the pilot has an unlock sensor behind the handle instead of having to press the button So first opening up the doors just like on the outside the interiors could not look any more different the Honda once again has the more traditional design finished here in beige leather and Then Kia has gone with a more upscale. Look which as equipped gives you luxury grade Napa leather Now as far as the actual seat functionalities, both are 10-way power adjusting. However, the telluride has extra power thigh extension Both of them also have two-person memory. But only the kia has ventilation at this price point So visually the Telluride’s cabin has the richest design in the class and that is also backed up by class leading materials The top part of the dash is made of a soft touch plastic with stitching and then through the middle There is a really realistic faux wood trim Finally, the two grab handles are also covered in soft leather and all the buttons that look like aluminum or aluminum By comparison the pilots materials are what I consider normal for the class But they are much less luxurious than the Kia’s. So overall the Telluride will take the materials point Press the buttons to start both When you do both large touchscreens will fire up eight inches on the Honda and over ten inches on the Kia UVO Checking out the gauges they look very different. But ultimately they both have 7-inch multifunction displays with the same capabilities However, the telluride does have a head-up display which the pilot can never get Moving on back to the steering wheels the telluride also has the advantage here since its wheel is heated and it uses real aluminum trim They are both manually tilt and telescoping Next up we have the very important aspect of storage where both models absolutely strive Honda went with separated armrests to allow for a blank space to set things and then underneath there is an absolutely massive bin Additionally, there is some more storage in the front Kia also gives you large bins in the center and front but overall. They’re not quite as large as in the Honda However Kia does fight back by giving you a wireless phone charger that the pilot is missing Now coming to the shifters, Honda uses an electronic one and Kia has a traditional one Regardless of personal preference on this part both have manual modes and paddle shifters on the wheel However when you go into reverse the Kia gives you a nice 360-degree camera that takes up the whole display, which is something the Honda doesn’t offer The next stop are the climate controls where both models give you a three zone automatic setup They’re also very ergonomically friendly since all the buttons are large well labeled and all in one cluster Now let’s hear the audio Even though they have the same speaker count the Kia branded system has the richer sound and Now that brings us to the infotainment systems Starting with the Honda it now has the latest Honda link system with the better graphics performance and touch response This one also has built-in navigation in addition to both Android auto and apple carplay The Kia also has the latest version of UVO and on this high-end Telluride, we have the large display with split-screen functionality This system has both integrated navigation and Android auto and apple carplay I’ve already awarded the kia point for having the larger display. But other than that the software experiences are both very pleasant Finally the last thing to mention up front is the regular moonroof on the pilot compared to the dual panel set up on the Kia But anyways now, let’s move on to the rear areas which are historically the pilot’s most dominant area Already so checking out the back seats Surprisingly the Telluride has more legroom at forty two point four inches versus forty point two in the pilot They do however have identical Headroom measures Additionally these high-end models come with seven passenger captains chairs Which on the pilot are heated and on the telluride are heated and ventilated That’s a feature not available on many cars costing twice what the Telluride does now as far as other amenities both have manual sun shades rear climate controls as Well as two charging USB ports and a household outlet Where the pilot has a leg up is in the rear seat entertainment For 2019, it has a larger 10.2 inch display and it gets all the advanced features from the Odyssey like direct screen casting from a smartphone Now moving on to the third row of seats both crossovers have a very convenient OneTouch folding and sliding mechanism to give you a nice pathway Once in the third row the pilot is slightly more spacious overall though, not more than a five percent difference Both also have rear air vents, but only the Kia gives you charging USB ports Moving around to the rear both have smart opening tailgates and Once they open up you’ll find some of the best cargo capacities in the class Behind the third row the Kia actually has the advantage at 21 cubic feet versus 16 But as the rows of seats fold, they become essentially identical So if you’re looking for spacious options, either of these two will more than suffice Well guys that that concludes this comparison between a newcomer and an established leader as You can see both are really well rounded offerings But at this point the Kia’s combination of size features and luxury make it the new value king in the class But as always we do recommend checking them out in person Thanks for joining us on this car confections face-off comparison and be sure to subscribe for more comparisons and our signature floor review videos See you next time and take care!

23 Replies to “New King on the Block? — 2020 Kia Telluride SX vs. Honda Pilot Touring: Comparison”

  1. The Telluride has been described as being like a Lexus in KIA disguise . It’s the luxury KIA that drastically improves their image .

  2. Let's talk sales how many telluride on the road not too many, on the other hand there's a lot of Honda Pilot out there that's says a lot.

  3. One thing I am still trying to figure out is which one will hold its value over the long run. As far as I know Honda has the best resale value even better than Toyota and they are just as reliable as Toyota which is also something really useful for someone like me who keeps the vehicle for a long ass time.

  4. Honda pilot isn't the rival to the Acura MDX because they are made by the same manufacturer..also,the MDX is a luxury SUV.the Honda pilot is not

  5. Telluride bests Honda in every category by enough that I went out and bought one. For the record, Telluride is much more luxury oriented than Pilot/Passport so they aren't really in the same category in that respect anyway. I put luxury KLexus badge overlays on my Telluride as soon as I got it. People say it looks like a Ranger Rover from the Front, Lincoln Aviator from the side, and Caddy or Volvo from the rear. Telluride also has a better warranty than Pilot.

  6. You should have compared the Kia to the top of the line Honda. It would have been a more fair comparison. Even further demonstrating the value of the Kia. The Kia infotainment center and quality is also much better.

  7. No way to compare highlander to pilot. Highlander is was smaller.

    Don’t want a Kia because they need to prove reliability for about another 5 years. Haha.

  8. Way to dethrone the leader KIA!! Telluride is an official new King… Love this Telluride; Made in Georgia, U.S. of A!!!!

  9. Stupid comparaison, 1.5 point for the seat for kia. kia more power but less performance, kia have a basic system 4 wheel drive, you don't compare out of road . kia is not suv it's a minivan .

  10. Well it is a brand new vehicle so don't be in a rush to get one, they need to work the bugs out. Look at the Ascent.. tons of problems and it's only been out a little over a year. The Telluride can expect issues too. The rule of thumb? wait until the vehicle has had 3 years on the road before you buy or face some setbacks getting there. For the moment the Pilot has been on the road since 2002 and is the segment leader in the mid-sized SUV/Crossovers. Also the pilot is significantly faster in the zero to 60, it does it in 6.3 seconds whereas the telluride does it in 7.3 seconds. Guess they forgot that part. Also the the NHTSA has 68 complaints on the 2020 telluride while the 2020 pilot has zero complaints. This needs to be taken into consideration.

  11. Telluride is the most luxurious in the 3 row suv category. It even outdid BMW, Mercedes and others to be awarded Motor Trends suv of the year. Along with that, it has the most advanced tech and safety features, earning a 5 star rating in all crash tests. With Telluride's 10 year warranty and overwhelming consumer demand, you can also expect Telluride to have excellent resale value and reliability.

  12. You should compare the pilot elite, despite price differences, also think about reliability and resell value!
    Besides that, the Kia is impressive in terms of accessories, but I'd prefer the Honda, for reliability and resell value!
    Nice comparison video though!!!

  13. Correction. You said they both have paddles. I believe the Telluride does not have paddles. The Honda does… if you want a Telluride with paddle shifters you will have to go for the Hyundai Palisade that is the closest thing to the Telluride. Maybe just make a correction! Your squad member -Spencer!!!

  14. I am a huge Honda pilot fan but the Telluride takes hands down. Price wise, you get better incentives on a Honda. You will be lucky to buy a Telluride at MSRP, all dealers are marking them up by thousands of dollars and people still buy them. I received $6,000 off MSRP on a Pilot EX-L while Kia will not bother selling at a dime below MSRP. Just something to consider if on the market for an mid-size SUV. I still haven't gotten one though.

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